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Morning news: Wright and Blashill weigh in on drafting and developing; Rasmussen the self-motivator

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Of Red Wings-related note this morning:

1. Red Wings director of amateur scouting Tyler Wright spoke with DetroitRedWings.com's Arthur J. Regner regarding the emphasis on education during development camp, as well as some discussion of the Wings' draft-and-development philosophies:

"We're going to make some good picks, we're going to make some not-so-good picks. When you get 11 picks, with 50 player contracts, with the amount, not everybody can be signed," Wright said using this year's draft as an example. "But I think when you go into this process and you let these kids know that your window of opportunity now has started from the draft, now it's development camp, now we got a baseline of numbers.

"We got 19 defensemen here, almost as many as forwards. For that matter, we know internally as an organization that we need to draft and we need to develop defense. Are all 19 going to play? Absolutely not. Some of them have to play for us.

"In say, two to three to four years, that's when we sit back and we evaluate how we did on this draft. We go back and look at the 2014 draft now as a staff on what we did, what we could do better, why did we like a guy, and maybe he hasn't taken that next step and let's learn from that.

"We're constantly learning as a staff. So, for us to sit here and evaluate these kids, I think it's just too premature right now."

Regner and Wright continue at length...

2. Hockeybuzz's Bob Duff spoke with Wings coach Jeff Blashill regarding his takes on the Wings' development camp...

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Alain Vigneault On The Hiring Of Lindy Ruff

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,

Alain Vigneault is way ahead of you.

“Now that we have Lindy on board, I know what some fans and people in the media will say if we get off to a rough start or hit some bumps in the road,” the Rangers’ head coach told The Post by phone Monday after the official confirmation that longtime NHL head coach Lindy Ruff would be joining his staff as an assistant. “They’ll be saying that Lindy should replace A.V. and that’s the reason he was hired.

“You know what? That kind of talk doesn’t bother me at all. I’ve never taken things like that personally. I’m in this to win,” he said. “I want us to have the best coaching staff we can. For me to be able to bring in a coach like Lindy to take care of the defense makes us a stronger staff and gives our team a better chance to win.

“It’s great for us.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Possible Interest Rate Increase In Canada Would Be Good News For The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,

You might not have noticed that the Canadian dollar closed on Friday at 78 cents against its American counterpart. That’s by no means where it was five years ago when it was trading at par or above par against the U.S. dollar, nor is it as dire as January, 2002, when it dipped to 62 cents. But that close of 78 cents on Friday represents the highest value it has had in the calendar year of 2017.

And if it can nudge its way up to 80 cents, something that could very well happen, particularly if the Bank of Canada increases interest rates this week, that would be a very, very good thing for the NHL.

“It will make a significant difference,” said one NHL executive. “It wouldn’t have any effect on this season, but it could make a difference next year.”

With the salary cap already set at $75 million, teams will have no more cap room this season despite what the Canadian dollar does. But with one third of the league’s revenues coming in Canadian dollars, the difference between a 73-cent dollar (which is where it was trading at its 2017 nadir in May) and an 80-cent dollar is huge for the league. Not only do Canadian NHL teams take in revenues in Canadian dollars and pay their players in U.S. dollars, they also provide roughly 33 percent of the league’s overall revenues.

To break it down further, consider that NHL revenues, which have flattened over the past couple of seasons, are about $4 billion (U.S.). One third of that is approximately $1.3 billion. If the Canadian dollar were to gain seven cents, that would bump that revenue figure up by more than $90 million U.S. dollars. 

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Tomas Tatar’s Contract Situation

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News,

...my sense is: This is a player about to turn 27 looking for a big pay day, pushing the limit, a bit, and thinking if he does not get it here, he might make more money and win more with another team.

The Red Wings may have that timing in mind, too. But for a different reason.

The franchise is in transition, and progress is halting. Players like Tatar and some others may well be transitional figures between the teams of the six Stanley Cup finals from 1995 to 2009 to the next fine Red Wings team.

If the Red Wings ultimately discard Tatar, it might be amid considerations that by the time they are ready to push towards the top of the NHL again, annually, he will likely be in his early 30s, and they will have other players. Tatar’s prime years seem unlikely to match the club’s.

One could expect a deal, but if it is not worked out, it is only more evidence of a roster mismanaged or a simple recognition on the part of the Red Wings that Stanley Cup contention is going to take more than a few years, certainly.


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Tyler Johnson Signs A Seven-Year Contract In Tampa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed forward Tyler Johnson a seven-year contract worth $5-million AAV, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.

Johnson, 26, skated in 66 games with the Lightning during the 2016-17 season, recording 19 goals and 45 points to go along with 28 penalty minutes. He ranked tied for third on the Lightning for goals and fifth for points. Johnson also ranked third on the Bolts for power-play goals with six and was tied for fifth with three game-winning tallies. Johnson's 18:49 average time on ice last season ranked third among all Lightning forwards. He also led the Lightning for face-off wins (583) and face-offs taken (1,122).

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tyler+johnson

Impressions from the fourth day of the Red Wings’ summer development camp ‘17

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit Red Wings' summer development campers engaged in vigorous practices on Monday, returning to the practice grind after Sunday's scrimmage.

Both teams Zetterberg and Kronwall skated for 45 minutes under the guidance of a veritable cornucopia of coaches--Griffins coach Todd Nelson and assistant coaches Ben Simon, Bruce Ramsay and Mike Knuble, Toledo Walleye coach Dan Watson and assistant coach Andy Delmore, director of player development Shawn Horcoff and goalie coaches Jeff Salajko, Brian Mahoney-Wilson and their Swedish and Czech consultants, all on the ice at the same time!--engaging in drills that emphasized pace of play and speed of transition.

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AHL announces home openers: Griffins to raise Calder Cup banner on Fri, October 6 vs. Manitoba

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

This is a one-liner of an entry if there ever was one: The AHL has announced its home openers for the 2017-18 season, and the Grand Rapids Griffins will be raising their Calder Cup banner against the Manitoba Moose on Friday, October 6th. The AHL had already announced October 6th as the Griffins' home opener, but the opponent had not been revealed back on June 26th.

Perhaps just as interestingly, the AHL will be releasing its full 2017-18 season schedule tomorrow.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

Radek Faksa Re-Signs With The Dallas Stars For Three Years

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

FRISCO, Texas - Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has re-signed center Radek Faksa to a three-year, $6.6-million contract.

Faksa, 23, posted 33 points (12-21=33) in 80 games for Dallas during the 2016-17 regular season, his first full season in the NHL. On the season, he finished fourth on the team with 101 hits and his 33 points were tied for fifth.  He finished second amongst team forwards with 62 blocked shots, which were tied for 21st amongst all League forwards.

In his career, Faksa has played 125 regular-season games over two seasons with Dallas. In total, he has posted 45 points (17-28=45). He also appeared in 13 games for the Stars during the 2015-16 Stanley Cup Playoffs, tallying five points (3-2=5) and two game-winning goals.

"We're thrilled to have Radek locked in for the next three seasons as he is an important part of what we're building here," said Nill. "He has proven to be a trustworthy, 200-foot player and we fully expect him to continue growing in all areas of his game."

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: radek+faksa

MSM takes from the fourth day of the Red Wings’ summer development camp

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated 2x at 6:16 PM: I'm a little occupied trying to empty out 12 pages' worth of practice notes, but as I do so, the Wings' media corps has penned a set of articles that are worth noting:

1. The Free Press's Helene St. James spoke with Grand Rapids Griffins coach Todd Nelson regarding the progress made by Dylan Sadowy, who had a bumpy rookie season in the AHL and ECHL:

“He came in and is learning the pro life,” Nelson told the Free Press during development camp in Traverse City this past weekend. “He is a young kid – just from this past season to now, I see the maturity in him, I see him taking ownership of his game. He is on the right track. Dylan has a great shot and a nose for the net.

“Some people trend quicker, some people don't. We have to be patient. He is working hard on his game and I like what I see from him.”

Sadowy, 21, said it took him “a little while” to get adjusted to pro hockey, and sounded confident about his second pro season.

“I’ve talked to the coaching staff, I know what I need to do,” he said. “It’s just getting faster on the ice and giving it 110% every single time, every single shift.”

St. James continues, and she posted a video of Sadowy's comments:

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Audio from the fourth day of the Red Wings’ summer development camp ‘17

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Red Wings' summer development campers went hard and fast today--literally so in some instances--as the players skated for 45 minutes' worth of systems work under the guidance of Grand Rapids Griffins coach Todd Nelson (among others), and then the players worked on speed and agility drills that tested their skating and reaction times.

The teams also practiced at separate times, which made observing the players a little easier (there are still 45 of them), and after the teams' respective practices, I conducted the following interviews:

First, I did my best to break through the language barrier as Libor Sulak discussed the development camp thus far, his hope to play in tne NHL this upcoming season, and how he was able to land a contract with the Wings as a free agent. His English is way better than my Czech:

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Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink

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