Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Cat Scratch Fever!

Even the Motor City Madman himself must be thinking that these Predators are starting to become trouble. Tomas Vokoun continued to have some fun with his new found friends from Detroit. Facing 41 shots Vokoun frustrated each and every one of the Red Wing shooters, collecting a 2-0 shutout as the Predators tied up their best of seven series at 2 wins each. It was Vokoun's first career playoff shutout and the faithful of the Gaylord Entertainment Centre were ready to help him celebrate!

Detroit’s power play once again let them down, the Wings went 0-5 on Tuesday night and have only scored once in 20 extra man scenarios in the series. The highly productive Red Wing offense of the regular season has sputtered at times (usually in the first two periods of each game) , been out hit and run into a wall named Vokoun. The Predators goaltender has faced 83 shots since the series arrived in Music City, the Predators outscoring the Wings 6-1 in the two games, sending the Wings back to Detroit with their tails between their legs.

Manny Legace held the loneliest corner of the hallway by the bench for the last period of the game. After letting three goals in on ten shots, Head coach Dave Lewis replaced him with Curtis Joseph after goal number three went in at 2:04 of the third. Already the questions are being prepared, who will start game five. Cujo or Legace. Expect the Wings to turn to Joseph for the all important fifth game.

For the Wings there are ominous flashbacks to a guy named Giguere, the Mighty Duck goaltender last year caught this kind of a wave and sent the Red Wings packing on the way to the Stanley Cup finals. Nashville can only hope they can ride Vokoun’s jetstream just a little bit further along.

Game five goes in two nights time at the Joe. Detroit needs to come out with much more emotion, take to the ice and play as if they may be eliminated with a loss. Then again that’s not too far from the truth, the way the Preds are handling the Wings in Nashville, a win in game five may as well be considered the series finale. A game six in Nashville will be as close to a guaranteed win night as Nashville might ever hope for.

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