The Low Down on D-Town (February 21, 2012)

This week in Metro Detroit sports, the Tigers pitchers and catchers have reported to Spring Training in Lakeland, Florida, the Detroit Pistons had Flo-Rida play a concert Sunday evening during halftime, and the Red Wings have extended their home winning streak to an NHL record 23 wins.

Detroit Tigers: Pitchers and catchers reported to training camp Sunday, with some familiar faces reporting early. Miguel Cabrera was down early, and according to Alex Avila, he has dropped 25 pounds in off season to slim down to play third base. The rest of the team is scheduled to report on Thursday, February 23, with their first full workout beginning the next day.

Former third baseman Brandon Inge will now reportedly battle for the job at second base. Free agent signee Prince Fielder is taking first base, Miguel Cabrera’s old position, forcing Inge out of the lineup for now. Inge will battle Ramon Santiago and Ryan Raburn in Spring Training. There are many possibilities here in which Manager Jim Leyland could platoon all three there, or just keep two and platoon them. As Spring Training starts and moves forward, we will see who earns the job.

The fifth starter position is also up for grabs, with 20-year old Jacob Turner as the front runner. He competes with five other players within the organization.

Detroit Pistons: The Pistons have reached double-digit wins this season, and seem to be climbing the ladder in the standings, although the playoffs look to be out of reach. The Pistons stunningly upset the Boston Celtics at the Garden in Boston, 98-88, led by Greg Monroe who had 22 points, nine rebounds, an assist, and a block. The Pistons at one point led by 13 points in the game, as the Celtics dropped their eighth game at home this season. The Pistons improved to 9-22, earning their third win on the road.

Up next was the Sacramento Kings, who had about the same record as the Pistons. The Kings had a slight advantage with one more win, and average more points per game. The Pistons didn’t look at statistics and went out and played some basketball. They beat the Kings for win number 10 on the season, 114-108. Rodney Stuckey led the way for the Pistons with 36 points, three rebounds, a steal, and a block. Rookie Brandon Knight also added 23 points and 10 assists.

After a 4-20 start for the Pistons, they have won six of the last eight games, and are looking to continually improve. Flo-Rida made an appearance this past Sunday at halftime for the Pistons, as they use new ways to bring fans to games. The Pistons did end up defeating the Celtics, 96-81, improving to 11-22, and 8-10 at home. The Pistons will face the Cavaliers in Cleveland on Tuesday, February 21 at 7:00pm.

Detroit Red Wings: The Detroit Red Wings have made history, and they are continuing to do so with every home game they play. They have broken the record for consecutive home wins in a season, with 21 in a row after the defeat of the Dallas Stars on Valentine’s Day, 3-1. They then faced a formidable opponent in the pesky Nashville Predators on Friday, February 17, and squeezed out a win in a nail biter.

Pavel Datsyuk found the back of the net with five seconds left in the third period to win 2-1. It looked as if the teams were heading to overtime. It was more than just padding the record. There was another record to be broken. It was a multiple-season home win record set again by the Boston Bruins, which was on the line that night. They tied the 22 consecutive, multiple-season home win record with a win over the rival Predators.

They were looking to break the record with a big game against their arch-rivals, the San Jose Sharks, this past Sunday, February 19. The Red Wings squeaked out a win there too, 3-2, dominating for a better part of the game. Henrik Zetterberg got the scoring going in the first period, followed by Drew Miller in the second period. The Sharks got on the board late in the second period with a goal by Logan Couture, but it was no ordinary goal. The puck was bouncing all over the top of the net and was eventually inadvertently knocked in by Justin Abdelkader’s stick.

Darren Helm netted his sixth of the season midway through the third period to put the Wings up 3-1, but the Sharks were swimming back to the surface. Patrick Marleau scored to pull the Sharks within one, but Joey MacDonald and the Red Wings held on to win their 23rd consecutive home game, a new NHL record.

Their next game is against the Chicago Blackhawks, Tuesday, February 21 at the United Center at 8:00pm in Chicago. They will look to extend their streak against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday, February 23 at 7:00pm at Joe Louis Arena. Go Wings!

To read the original article, go to The Michigan Journal.


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