GameThread: Ducks @ Red Wings - He Took The Midnight Train Goin' Anywhere

Bye, Hank! Don't let the door hit ya on your way out! - USA TODAY Sports

Let's get the hell out of Detroit - for good.

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Don't want to get ahead of myself but I found this Tweet from Ducks' radio guy Dan Wood interesting:

LA has a 3-2 series lead over the Blues with Game 6 tonight in Los Angeles. DUN DUN DUNNNN!

Moving on...

SERIES LEADERS

Scoring: Birthday boy Ryan Getzlaf remains at the top of the Ducks with five points in the series. Thanks to his game-winning goal on Wednesday, Nick Bonino is one point away from tying Getzlaf for the lead. Bonino and Getzlaf have three goals each; however, of Bonino's three goals, two are of the game-winning variety.

Johan Franzen, also know as 'The Ass Mule', leads Red Wings in goals with three and all three have come on the power play. Damien Brunner is the Red Wings overall points leader with five.

Goaltending: Numbers can be deceiving. Both Jonas Hiller and Jimmy Howard have stood on their heads at different times throughout the series, and at other times, some saves (or lack thereof) have made both fanbases squirm.

Hiller currently leads the goalie stat battle. Jonas holds a 0.930 SV% and a 2.08 GAA; Howard has a 2.85 GAA and 0.903 SV%

I'd like to see the number of saves each player makes with his glove. Howard has a brilliant on-his-butt save with his glove straight up in the air in Game 5. Hiller has his typical snatch the puck out of the air and show it to the shooter save a couple times every game.

Who's Hot? Nick Bonino scoring machine-o! Two out of three of Bones' goals have come on the power play. He may not be a somewhat immovable object like Johan Franzen but he's just as dangerous. On top of his scoring, he just seems to be the spiritual leader of the team.They need Bonino. I still can't believe I'm saying that.

Pavel Datsyuk is second on the Red Wings in scoring with four points. What scares me the most about Datsyuk is when his hands get hot. Sounds weird, I know, but think back to the goal he scored. It was a laser shot between Hiller's shoulder and the post through a tiny, tiny opening that popped the water bottle. When he starts getting on a roll of making almost trick shots like that one, he's nearly impossible to stop. The Ducks need to lay the body on him early and wear the old guy out.

Who's Not: Only two Ducks have appeared in the series and have no points: Toni Lydman (injured) and Luca Sbisa. Conversely, seven Red Wings have appeared and currently have no points: Brian Lashoff, Cory Emmerton, Todd Bertuzzi, Jonathan Ericsson, Jordin Tootoo, Niklas Kronwall (!!) and Danny DeKeyser (injured).

*********

Yeah, I did it! I took a lyric from the Detroit Red Wings beloved song 'Don't Stop Believing' by Journey - sung by fans at the JLA every game - and made it my headline. And you know why? The song is about getting the hell outta Detroit and not looking back.

Just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world
She took the midnight train goin' anywhere
Just a city boy, born and raised in south Detroit
He took the midnight train goin' anywhere

A singer in a smokey room
A smell of wine and cheap perfume
For a smile they can share the night
It goes on and on and on and on

(Chorus)
Strangers waiting, up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching in the night
Streetlights people, living just to find emotion
Hiding, somewhere in the night.

Working hard to get my fill,
Everybody wants a thrill
Payin' anything to roll the dice,
Just one more time
Some will win, some will lose
Some were born to sing the blues
Oh, the movie never ends
It goes on and on and on and on

(Chorus)

Don't stop believin'
Hold on to the feelin'
Streetlights people

Don't stop believin'
Hold on
Streetlight people

Don't stop believin'
Hold on to the feelin'
Streetlights people

Now that I have the song stuck in your head, I'll continue.

Following the conclusion of their season, the Detroit Red Wings will officially become a member of the re-aligned eastern conference. Not only will a win tonight put the Ducks in to the second round of the playoffs, it will shut the door on years of history between Anaheim and Detroit, hockey-wise.

Detroit fans will never understand just why we hate the Red Wings so much. Many long-time Ducks fans are around my age and became a fan of the team somewhere between elementary school and freshman year of high school. For me, it was 1995 and I was in seventh grade.

Until the 2003 season, the Detroit Red Wings destroyed a part of my soul attached to my hockey team. No matter what, the bad guys in red had a stranglehold over the Mighty Ducks in the regular and post season. I still remember the playoffs where Paul Kariya blocked a shot and broke his foot in Game 3 against Detroit, who were already up 3-0 in the series. Game 4 tickets were my birthday present from my parents and I wasn't able to see my favorite player play in the final game of the series. They ruined my birthday, even if it was unintentional.

Anaheim has a chance to close out their Western Conference history with Detroit in a playoff elimination in a building that's never been especially kind to the team. Don't get me wrong, there have been a few great moments in Satan's Buttcrack Joe Louis Arena for the Ducks but the bad outweigh the good. I'd like to see the boys emphatically shut the door and come home knowing they'll only have to see these guys twice in the regular season and only in the playoffs when both teams reach the Stanley Cup Final. I'll take it.

Win this one for my inner-child, Ducks.

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