Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard made 28 saves in the Red Wings’ shutout win in Game 4. (Steven King/Icon SMI)
By Allan Muir
When Jonathan Toews watches the tape of Chicago’s 2-0 Game 4 loss in Detroit, he should pay close attention to the play of his nemesis Henrik Zetterberg and of Zetterberg’s Red Wings teammate, Pavel Datsyuk.
He’ll see the two stars were subjected to a series of hooks, jabs, slashes and all manner of uncalled cheap shots, just as Toews was. He might also notice that, despite that duress, they rarely lost their cool.
And really, that was the difference tonight and in the previous two games that have seen the Wings wrestle control of this series from the Stanley Cup favorites. While Toews and the Hawks allowed their frustration to get the best of them over and over again, the Red Wings simply gritted their teeth, put their heads down and kept their focus.
That’s how the Wings have earned a 3-1 series lead that’s surprising only to those who haven’t watched them in action. Yesterday, Pierre McGuire offered some insight on the series to SI.com’s Stu Hackel, which you can read here. And it’s why the Stanley Cup favorites are on the ropes and facing elimination in Game 5 on Saturday.
Here are some thoughts and observations from tonight’s action: