This weekend against Minnesota, the Michigan hockey team had 12 opportunities on the power play, including three with a two-man advantage. But in the 27 minutes the Wolverines spent with an extra man — or two — across the two games, they failed to convert a single time.
If Michigan hopes to make an NCAA Tournament appearance, it will need to begin coming out of weekends with more than three points.
The Wolverines can start by sweeping the Gophers, who are in third place –– three points ahead of Michigan –– in the Big Ten standings. By picking up their first sweep, the Wolverines will leave the company of Penn State as the only Big Ten teams without one.
Two years ago, Nick Blankenburg was a forward. Two weeks ago, the freshman was a defensive force on the blue line against Ohio State.
But two days from now, the freshman will more than just go back to his roots — during practice on Tuesday, Blankenburg skated with Michigan’s top line for the first time since converting back to being a forward.
To say the Michigan hockey team’s defense has been inconsistent this season is an understatement. The Wolverines have given up the fourth-most goals in the Big Ten this season with 77 goals against — 24 more than No. 4 Ohio State, which has allowed the fewest goals in the conference.
But amid all that inconsistency, junior defensemen Luke Martin and Griffin Luce have backstopped an up-and-down group of blueliners.