College of Sports Media Game of the Night:
We’re going to the desert tonight for game five between the Detroit Red Wings and the Phoenix Coyotes. With the series tied at 2-2 this one has turned into a best of three contest. Going into game four the Coyotes looked to have all the momentum on their side. They took game one in Hockeytown USA 4-2 and looked poised to sweep the two away games. Unfortunately it was not meant to be for desert dogs. Detroit’s big guns stepped up and the Red Wings pulled out the 3-0 win. Henrik Zetterberg scored twice and Pavel Datsyuk added the other. Most impressive in the win was goaltender Jimmy Howard. He stopped 29 shots en route to his first ever postseason shut out. You have to give it to the kid, Howard bounced back nicely following a mediocre effort in game three. He’ll need to continue to playing well because things don’t get much easier for Detroit. Out of the final three games two (if necessary) will be played in Phoenix, where, surprisingly, the Coyotes were a much better team (who knew empty seats = home ice advantage). Whether there were fans or not Phoenix still put up a 29-10-2 record at Jobing.com Arena. It’s unlikely that captain Shane Doan will be in the line up tonight as he’s still nursing a shoulder injury. Without Doan the offensive responsibilities fall on the shoulders of Matthew Lombardi, Wojtek Wolski and Lee Stempniak. No problem, for Lombardi (1G/4A) and Wolski (3G/1A) – they’re one-two on the team in playoff scoring. The same cannot be said about Stempniak. He played incredible since being acquired from Toronto at the trade deadline, but has registered only an assist so far this series. This series is going to come down to the play between the pipes. Can Howard maintain his play from game four or will Ilya Bryzgalov bounce back from the last game and lead his team to round two?