In a city whose residents know all too well how to demolish what has been built over time, the Detroit Red Wings practiced Detroit's second favorite activity -- demolition -- with a 5-1 dismantling of the Minnesota Wild at Joe Louis Arena Thursday night before an announced crowd of 19,327.
The current Wild theme of not showing up to start the game began 2:25 into the contest as Johan Franzen started the show with a deflection into the goal behind last-minute starter Josh Harding, thrust into the start after Niklas Backstrom had come up with what head coach Todd Richards called 'a tweaked groin' in the pre-game.
We'll save the details for the likes of Chip Scoggins, Minneapolis Star-Tribune Vikings beat writer, who is filling in on this two game road trip for Michael Russo, who luckily had arranged to take this road trip off after his Olympic adventure.
Let's leave it at this: the difference in the game was the fact that the Red Wings are on the cusp of the playoffs, and the Wild are not. The Wings played like the playoffs were in their future, and the Wild played like they had already searched Teemaster.com thoroughly, looking ahead for April warm-weather times.
To make matters worse, Wild leading scorer Guillaume Latendresse did not come out for the third period, as he was clobbered by an errant Brian Rafalski stick in the back of the neck, late in the second period. Latendresse was taken to Detroit Medical Center for observation.
If you dare, the Next Game: at Buffalo, Friday (tomorrow), 6:00 PM Central (7:00 PM Eastern) Time, HSBC Arena. (Wild TV: FSNorth; Sabres' TV: MSG-Buffalo; XM Radio, Ch. 206)
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