BY CHRIS ZADOROZNY,
The Detroit Tigers season is over yes, but free agency is beginning and the Tigers have some decisions to make on their own players. The Detroit Red Wings started great but are sputtering currently with a four game losing streak and the Detroit Lions snapped their two game losing streak against the Tim Tebow-led Denver Broncos with a 45-10 win.
Detroit Tigers: The Tigers have six players that are free agents going into free agency and the front office has some decisions to make regarding their team going into 2012. Outfielder Magglio Ordonez, Infielders Carlos Guillen, Wilson Betemit and Ramon Santiago, and pitchers Joel Zumaya and Brad Penny are all free agents. The Tigers did pick up the option on “the perfect closer,” Jose Valverde who converted 49 saves in 49 attempts will be making $9 million this upcoming year. General Manager Dave Dombrowski and owner Mike Ilitch will be looking to spend the money that was used on Guillen and Ordonez elsewhere such as a second baseman and a couple of pitchers.
A few players that will be on the Tigers radar include Jamey Carroll, Mark Ellis, Aaron Hill, Kelley Johnson, Aramis Ramirez, Jose Reyes and C.C. Sabathia to name a few. The first four are second baseman while Ramirez is a third baseman, Reyes a shortstop and Sabathia a star starting pitcher. Free Agency begins as players will be able to sign with other teams on November 3.
Detroit Red Wings: The Red Wings have hit a small skid early in the season, currently on a four game losing streak. It all started with a blowout loss to the Washington Capitals two weeks ago, 7-1. Three nights later, they lost to the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena 4-1. Ty Conklin started in net for the Wings while starter goaltender Jimmy Howard stayed at home with his newborn baby and his wife. Darren Helm scored the only goal for the Wings in the loss.
In a rematch of the great seven game series of the Western Conference semi-finals last year in the playoffs between the San Jose Sharks and the Wings, the Sharks came out on top but not after a controversial call early in the game. The Wings lost 4-2, the last goal being an empty net goal.
It was an intense, physical hockey game that made the rivalry even more interesting. Henrik Zetterberg got the scoring going with a goal early in the first period but Ryan Clowe on the power play and Patrick Marleau put one each on the board to take the 2-1 lead in the second period. Tomas Holmstrom put his first “official” goal on the scoresheet to tie the game at two late in the second period but Sharks captain Joe Thornton retook the lead for San Jose with a goal under two minutes left in the period. Thornton put the game away in the third with an empty net goal to secure the 4-2 win.
The controversy surrounding the game was a disallowed goal to Holmstrom late in the first period as the referee ruled incidental contact with goalie Antii Niemi. The goal was waved off and no penalty was called. Holmstrom secured himself outside the crease before Niemi had position on him and in fact, Niemi ran into Holmstrom which is legal. The fact the goal was called off is confusing, but the Wings still lost.
Looking to end the losing streak, they traveled to Minnesota to take on the Wild and goaltender Josh Harding got the better of the Wings this time as he shut them out 1-0. Jimmy Howard got the loss and it seemed like the Wings couldn’t even buy a goal. Harding played out of his mind earning the win and the shutout. The Red Wings will look to end their four game losing streak against the Wild at home tonight at 7:30pm on Fox Sports Detroit.
Detroit Lions:The Lions stopped their two game losing skid against the Broncos this past Sunday by winning in a blowout 45-10. It wasn’t looking good early for the Lions as they gave up a field goal early in the first quarter on the first drive. On the first drive of the game for the Lions though, they took the lead and never looked back.
Wide receiver Titus Young received a 41 yard pass from quarterback Matt Stafford followed by a Jason Hanson field goal early in the second quarter to take a 10-3 lead.
The wide receiver Tony Scheffler caught a one yard touchdown pass from Stafford to take a 17-3 lead. Running back Maurice Morris ran one yard into the end zone late in the first half to put the Lions up 24-3. The defense also had a big game with a fumble recovery for a touchdown by Cliff Avril and a 100 yard interception for a touchdown by Chris Houston. Calvin Johnson also had a 56 yard touchdown reception from Stafford sandwiched in-between the Avril and Houston touchdowns.
It was the second start of the year for the highly hyped Bronco quarterback Tim Tebow who threw one touchdown and one interception on 179 yards. He also completed 18 passes on 39 attempts. It was a game that the Lions needed after the two losses at home to the 49’ers and Falcons. The Lions are now 6-2 heading into their bye week. Their next game is going to be against the Chicago Bears on Sunday, November 13 at 4:15pm at Soldier Field on FOX.