Abel to Yzerman
Stop the presses. Khan(!) and I agree, mostly, on the unlikely prospect that our Miracle of Czech Insanity can last an entire season mentally and physically healthy.
But, what are the odds that a guy who turns 43 in January can once again make it through the season healthy? It wouldn’t be such a bad thing if he missed some time in the regular season as long as he’s healthy in the playoffs. Once again, the Wings will do what they can to minimize the risk by not overworking him and not playing him on consecutive nights.
What are the odds? Slim.
In case you didn’t know, our Deep Digger Captain has been providing equally shallow “scouting reports” on the Wings for a few weeks now. Here are a few more of his efforts.
July is the perfect time for this. Hockey stories are slim. News is relegated to the Darren Garcias of the world and all we can do is wait for September. But, Phil Randolph has made my day. He's tagged me with one of those top five deals. The topic, I think, is your five favorite songs. Oh, I've got songs brother. I've got opinions and I've got songs, opinions about songs, songs about my opinion of songs. The A2Y top 5: 5. Night Moves. Bob Seger's best and the anthem for every middle aged man who spent his formative, pathetically awkward teenage years in Michigan. 4. Blinded By The Light. Manfred Mann's remake of the Springsteen tune. Every time I listen to it I hear something better about that song. It could very well be the greatest classic rock song of all time. OF ALL TIME (Rocky reference). 3. Tuesday's Gone. Skynyrd's finest and a constant reminder that Ronnie Van Zant died way too young. Speaking of which, if you ever get the chance (and you're a Skynyrd fan), find the song "Brickyard Road" from Ronnie's little brother, Johnny. Great tribute. 2. Little Guitars. Diver Down, in my opinion, is Van Halen's best effort. Every song is great, but this one will always stand out for me. 1. Overplayed, a cliche of a song, and I'm embarrassed that it's in my top fifty much less my top ten. But, "I Want You To Want Me" holds the top spot. Cheap Trick is a horrible reminder of what can go wrong when a good rock band sells out. But that didn't happen until later. Sentimental choice. My wife would kill me if it wasn't my publicly professed number 1. Feel free to list your own top five below if you'd like, and here are the bloggers I'll return the favor to: Acid Queen Peklund Truth Serum Cason DC Sports Chick
Two guys we mentioned here fairly often during the season were the Detroit News’ David Guralnick and John Niyo. Guralnick’s the all-world photographer who made an A2Y name for himself for shooting Tuesday games in January the way most photographers only shoot Game 7’s in May. Niyo is the hungry young understudy to former Digger captain Ted Kulfan. They both hit homeruns today for the feature they’ve written and shot on Chris Chelios’ Malibu torture sessions.
David Guralnick, Detroit News
...but it’s the circuit training—a nonstop, 60-minute succession of exercises that Chelios swears by and others swear at. (The first time ex-teammate Mathieu Schneider tried it, he vomited.) Even in his mid-40s, Chelios still powers through it like “a machine,” Goodman says, adding, “It’s his competitiveness: That’s the reason he’s still willing to do the work that you have to do to sustain yourself.”
Just a few thoughts running through my little mind today. Questions I demand you consider as you finish your weekend. Ready? Great.
Does Little Gary have any clue about the opportunity dropped in his lap? The other “big three” sports are all mired in controversy and the NHL, if marketed, could come out smelling like a pretty little rose. A rose perched on the sill of your kitchen. Yes, surrounded by empty beer bottles and crusted mac and cheese bowls, but a rose nonetheless.
Baseball’s lead story: the dirtbag that is Barry Bonds. Football: the absolute dirtbag that is Michael Vick. Basketball: a gambling controversy that’s going to spread to every corner of that league of thugs.
I love the “ask the beat writer a question and have your answers published” features. But, I’m always just a little skeptical. Did “Judy” really script a grammatically perfect question regarding the salary cap and its ramifications on the Wings’ custodial crew?
Whatever. Maybe I’m just overly cynical today. Maybe Ansar Khan is really monitoring his email and maybe Wing fans are really writing him consistently. Maybe they’re sad and lonely and Khan(!) is their cyber soulmate, there to answer those Wing-related questions that keep them tossing and turning. This week? Jack, Cam, Chris, Dan, S.J., Steve and Pat (no hometowns listed) put our Deep Digger Captain on the spot.
Last year we decided to pass the uneventful days that made up much of the Summer of Ken with a few new features. One was highlighting a Michigan sports blog every week that wasn’t necessarily hockey-specific. One of the early sites we focused on was Where Have You Gone, Johnny Grubb? Greg Eno, one of Michigan’s true sports historians and that blog’s creator, has another one we’ll look at today.
The Detroit Free Press’ Helene St. James had the opportunity to speak with Scotty Bowman earlier this week.
Q: The Wings weren’t able to re-sign Mathieu Schneider and Todd Bertuzzi, but kept Dominik Hasek and signed Brian Rafalski. How do you like the team’s outlook?
A: They got a good defenseman to replace Schneider. I think they’d like to get another forward. It’s just a matter of filling the spots.
ESPN SportsNation is asking you which Detroit pro sports team “matters the most”. Pretty overwhelming results so far. Check them out here.
If I had to rank them, I’d say (1) Wings (2) Tigers (3) Lions (4) Pistons.
Edited 21 July: that’s my personal ranking. If I had to guess what the rest of the state feels, I’d probably rank them this way: (1) Tigers, (2) Wings, (3) Lions, (4) Pistons
I’ll always believe that the Tigers have a certain place in the heart of all Michigan sports fans. As someone said below, ‘68 was an amazing year and it affected much more than the Detroit hardcore baseball fan.
An amazingly eventful week, considering there’s been no hockey news to speak of. We kicked off the “Re-design the Wings Logo Because Fire On Ice Appears To Be The Work of a Crossdressing Dive Fan” contest on Monday.
WDFN has been very good to all of us this year as they gave us exclusive first rights to their weekly interviews with Chris Chelios. Here’s your chance to return the favor and help out a great cause. Listen in the next two days as they conduct their 9th annual Radiothon to stop Leukemia and Lymphoma. Click here to find out more, listen or—even better—donate.
About Abel to Yzerman
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: firstname.lastname@example.org