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Abel to Yzerman

The Big Guys

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

Three of the Red Wings who have been noticeable on the ice over the last week have something in common.

In a league where speed has become valued and has largely taken over, big bodies can still be effective and dictate a game in their own way.

Michael Rasmussen (age 21, 6-foot-6, 229 pounds), Givani Smith (23, 6-2, 210) and Adam Erne (25, 6-1, 212) all have used their strengths to make an impact in recent games and add another dimension to the Wings’ lineup.

Michael Rasmussen has tallied two goals and an assist over the past five games.
“Size still matters,” coach Jeff Blashill said of the impact being big has these days in the NHL.

A big, strong, immovable player will have certain advantages on the ice that a smaller, lighter player cannot have in certain situations with, or without, the puck.

“There’s different ways to separate yourself,” Blashill said. “One is through speed, one is through size and one is probably through competitiveness and hockey smarts.

continued

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Comments

Avatar

don’t forget the little guys though:

@FriedgeHNIC

Apr 4
Luke Johnson (MIN) and de la Rose (STL) on waivers

2020-21

Jacob de la Rose - 0 G, 1 A, -2

Robby Fabbri – 10 G, 8A, +3

this is what the captain brings to the table, with a shout out to Darren pang..

Posted by rickytarr on 04/05/21 at 03:51 PM ET

d ca's avatar

Here’s my problem with this whole article: had Rasmussen and Smith been given more opportunities this whole year their play wouldn’t be so surprising.

As far as trades and waivers:  I am really sick of hearing about it. Fabbri was going to go on waivers because he couldn’t earn a spot on the Stanley Cup Blue’s roster and still hadn’t recovered from knee surgery. de la Rose was a waiver pickup that was expendable. It was one waiver player for another. The Wings actually had a pretty good chance of getting him on waivers for nothing—unless a similar deal was worked out elsewhere. Fabbri had the say because the Wings had open PP spots available—that’s why he went along with it.

A low risk trade worked out—-great. How about another low risk trade—-Alec Regula for Brendan Perlini? Now,is there any way to get Regula back?

So he’s 1-1 in those trades.

4th Round Pick for Adam Erne seems to have worked out finally. Last year it wasn’t.
David Pope for Alex Biega
Vili Saarijarvi for Eric Comrie
Oliwer Kaski for Kyle Wood

I’d say those make it 2-2-2. AHL players = ties. Losing a goalie to waivers a few days later is a loss.

Now lets get back to the point. One players has 24 games (Ras) and the other 12 (Smith) vs the regular Erne (32 games). It’s time to trade the vets and play the kids.

Posted by d ca on 04/05/21 at 04:17 PM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

Its dumb to critique Stevie Y. Right?

Posted by ilovehomers on 04/05/21 at 04:19 PM ET

d ca's avatar

I think Stevie’s done exactly what needs to have been done except for standing up to a coach that was supposed to be a young player development guru and clearly failed to be so.

This deadline and this summer’s cap space is the make or break point with Yzerman to me.

Posted by d ca on 04/05/21 at 04:29 PM ET

Royal Grand Exalted PooBah's avatar


Now lets get back to the point. One players has 24 games (Ras) and the other 12 (Smith) vs the regular Erne (32 games). It’s time to trade the vets and play the kids.

I agree as long as that’s Steve’s long term goal. Of course the kids are more fun to watch. They are the new shinny toy to play with but I am doing my best to be patient because I want the Red Wings to become the beasts of not long ago where they put terror into the hearts of fans of opposing teams across the country!

hehehehe…. show me your war face!

Posted by Royal Grand Exalted PooBah from the basement of the Alamo on 04/05/21 at 04:52 PM ET

Avatar

This deadline and this summer’s cap space is the make or break point with Yzerman to me.

So you are basically not willing to let Yzerman’s draft picks develop. Because, so far, only Zadina has even played at the NHL level.

The goal is to build another perennial contender. That’s going to take time. But if you want to give up after 2 seasons and 3 summers work, feel free.

Posted by evileye on 04/05/21 at 05:06 PM ET

damndog revenge   From the bowels of Detroit's avatar

Ras has been a monster of late. Staal’s goal would not have happened without Ras. I am loving seeing this kid come to life.

Erne, Ras, Svech and Smith are coming to life because Blashill most likely is being directed how to coach this team.from management. Yzerman asked Blashill to change his scheme last season and by the end of that season, the team was improving. The Pixie Dust is strong!

Yesterday’s game would have been different if TB had a different goalie in. Not saying the wings would have lost but closer.

This team is turning the corner some. Its not all doom and gloom and its not close to parade time. But they are competitive, which is better than last year.

Posted by damndog revenge From the bowels of Detroit on 04/05/21 at 06:59 PM ET

Avatar

I think Svechnikov belongs in this group, too.
Whether mgmt agrees, we shall see.

Given how long he was out and injured and how limited
his ice time and chances, he made more impact on the scoresheet
in less NHL time than any of the above, arguably even than Zadina, though we can
appreciate his greater upside and focus on playing an all-around game.

Posted by lefty.30 on 04/05/21 at 08:16 PM ET

d ca's avatar

  This deadline and this summer’s cap space is the make or break point with Yzerman to me.

So you are basically not willing to let Yzerman’s draft picks develop. Because, so far, only Zadina has even played at the NHL level.

The goal is to build another perennial contender. That’s going to take time. But if you want to give up after 2 seasons and 3 summers work, feel free.

Posted by evileye on 04/05/21 at 05:06 PM ET

First off, Zadina wasn’t Yzerman’s pick. In 2018 the Entry Draft was run under Holland. Stevie didn’t return until April 2019.

Beyond that, I don’t know how you pulled not letting prospects develop is from. I was clearly talking about prospects that were drafted in 2017 (Ras) and 2016 (Smith). They along with Cholowski (2016) and Lindstrom (2017) should be playing. Veleno should be up after the deadline getting his taste of the pros (he’s 21 and the ELC slide doesn’t apply to him). FYI, the AHL hasn’t announced whether there will be playoffs or not—so that is why I think the NHL would suit him better. 4-5 years is enough time to let the prospects develop. The Wings are clearly trying to over-ripen still. That works when you have a conference finals type team: not when you are a bottom dweller.

This deadline the Wings should be trading vets for draft capital (and hopefully one of a couple young d-men that other teams can’t protect from Seattle—-Jake Bean or Haydn Fleury for example). That draft capital of course will need to develop as it should. Again 4-5 years is plenty. Drafting higher should mean that top pick is ready sooner: say 2-3 year time frame. The ELC slide is what should dictate when they come up in that case.

Give up? Again where do you get that from.

An inflection point in the rebuild (this year’s trade deadline and summer free agency) is not the same as expecting the team to make playoff runs. My point is the rebuild can be sped up or continue to move along sluggish or even step backward if not handled properly.

But I don’t know how you coming to your ideas from my points.

Posted by d ca on 04/05/21 at 10:54 PM ET

d ca's avatar

....Erne, Ras, Svech and Smith are coming to life because Blashill most likely is being directed how to coach this team.from management. Yzerman asked Blashill to change his scheme last season and by the end of that season, the team was improving. The Pixie Dust is strong! ...

Posted by damndog revenge From the bowels of Detroit on 04/05/21 at 06:59 PM ET

Disagree on Ras, Svech, and Smith coming to life on anything related to team conditioning.

Almost all of these players developed beyond Blash’s reach. (maybe you can give a tiny, tiny bit of credit for Erne; but, he’ll be 26 in a few days and was developed by Tampa’s system). Blash gets none of the credit for the others. Ras:

“I think he did exactly what he should have done when he went down to GR and that’s picked his game up to another level,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “That’s the message I got from the Grand Rapids staff.

Larkin said

, With Ras, one thing that stuck out when I saw him in training camp is his skating. He’s more explosive, quicker first stride.

Svech focused on losing weight and increasing lower-body strength thereby improving endurance during the off-season. Part of that came from being a few more months out from his serious injuries. Blash gets 0 credit on this either.

Smith should have been the player to benefit most from this season’s format. No idea what he worked on this off-season. But I imagine it was skating quicker. In the hope he made the team as it represented the best opportunity to play as a legitimate 4th line grinder at the NHL-level.

The team is seemingly improving compared to the beginning of the season because the horrible start to the season and the COVID issues from playing the Hurricanes at the start. Other teams are wearing down and a few seem to think they have a night off is my observation.

It’s not because of an ever improving scheme.
Wings PP% for the year: 12.3% (3rd worst)
Wings PK% for the year: 74.8% (4th worst)

They are 10th best at faceoffs (due mainly to 1 player) and that means they start more possessions than most with the puck, but their FF% is 46.15 (2nd worst) which shows how bad their coaching scheme (or talent level) actually is.

I think you are reading way too much into a few games in March and April where they won by multiple goals. Oh how quickly we all forgot that 1-7 beating mighty Nashville put on this team after getting shutout the two games before that.

Posted by d ca on 04/05/21 at 11:44 PM ET

Avatar

But I don’t know how you coming to your ideas from my points.

You called this summer a “make or break point for Yzerman”. I assumed breaking point meant you thought they should move on to a new GM if things weren’t successful. I just think that is way too soon to judge Yzerman’s efforts.

 

Posted by evileye on 04/06/21 at 09:36 AM ET

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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com