Abel to Yzerman
Ansar Khan(!) was handing out balloons as the Wings boarded busses for the trip to TC today. He found a few minutes to throw a few questions at his primary antagonist, Mike Babcock. One subject was potential diamond in the rough Brent Sopel.
On veteran defenseman Brent Sopel, in camp on a tryout: “I think he has a chance to be a real good fit for us. He can shoot the puck, he can skate with the puck. He’s got to take (away) some of the erratic play he’s had. (Wings assistant coach) Todd McClellan coached him juniors, I’ve known him since he was a kid, we have a real good feel for him and think he’s a top-four NHL defenseman. Now, just because we think it doesn’t mean anything, he’s got to relax and let his skill come to the forefront and show us what he brings (though the preseason).’‘
I’ve decided I don’t like the term “blogosphere” anymore. Kind of like “Michigander” or “diet”. Not real fond of those two either. So, this will be the last time you see it at A2Y. Henceforth and thusly, any time I present to you a conglomeration of views in one sloppy post I will title it “Stealing From My Friends”.
I sense that you are apprehensive. Apprehensive like a transvestite Dive fan caught in Raleigh at 0130 on a Tuesday? No, but understandably wary. Me too. Here we go.
Nobody brings out the statesman in Mike Babcock like Teddy Kulfan. Allegedly the Detroit News beat writer, Kulfan exchanged couch-side text messages with the Wing head coach yesterday. The result? Our first Mike Babcock Consolidated Quote of the Day for 2007-‘08.
MBCQOTD 12 Sept 2007
“I like our team Teddy. I like it. I liked it last year and I’m liking it today almost as much as I like string cheese even though I never tear off the pieces of string, just eat it in three bites. Everybody likes their team now though, until about November when you know they won’t be liking anything in Columbus. Nah, kidding Teddy. Don’t write that. Write this: I’m driving the bus to TC. Kenny told me so. Guaranteed it. You know, lots of people said we wouldn’t make the playoffs last year but we made them then stayed in ‘em for a long, long time. A really long time. Like weeks. Planning on doing that again. Driver gets to pick the music on the bus. Got “Rumours” all cued up for the boys.”
JV Deep Digger George Sipple, still trying to make his mark in a town that is bursting at the seams with ambitious beat writers, caught up with Dan Cleary and Kris Draper yesterday. Undoubtedly, Mike Babcock will be relieved to read that both players approve of the lines he’s tentatively floated, the same lines that will change approximately 233 times before Christmas.
“When I look at our team and the depth that we have, obviously management believes we can do it from within,” Cleary said. “Filppula—great young talent. Hudler, Franzen all have the ability to make up the second line.”
“You look at Filppula; you look at the year Clears had last year,” Draper said. “From the sounds of it, Pav and Hank are each going to play center. So we can still have a balance of some good lines.”
It’s been more than twelve hours since I made the bold statement that I sounded exactly like Ozzy on the way home from work yesterday. It takes a confident blogger to write that. I’ll bet Paul wouldn’t. Well how about this? I sang “Cool Change” by Little River Band all the way to the house this afternoon and I nailed that sucker too. That’s called range.
Speaking of which, we have ourselves a day of votes to tally. Some lucky winner will win some winnings and I, for one, can’t wait to walk up to that winner and wistfully wish them well. One day down, six to go before we determine the official A2Y graphic guru. We’ll run the entries by you then list the current vote standings at the bottom. All votes for the next 24 hours will take place in the comment section of this brilliantly written post.
Driving home yesterday I came to a startling conclusion. When I put my mind to it, and the conditions are perfect, I sound exactly like Ozzy in “Crazy Train.” Not every time, oh no. But I figured I’ve heard that song close to 700 times over the “history of my life” (Rocky II was on Versus!!!! last night) and I’ll bet yesterday and a late night in Hong Kong in ‘94 were the only times I really nailed it.
Oh, and Scott Bowman’s happy with the Wings. Unless…
Dave at Gorilla Crouch is an ambitious dude. About a month ago he started sending out emails that sounded all official, suggesting Central Division bloggers join forces for one big, fat look at the Division Gary Gave Us. He laid out a schedule, wrote us some promotional verbiage and set the stage for a three-week bonanza.
I guess it goes without saying that Ansar Khan(!) saw the writing on the blog wall. Just minutes after I’d named Bruce MacLeod as this year’s deep digger captain (a move I reversed moments later after heavy pressure from outraged A2Y readers), the MLive Wing beat writer put down the red wine long enough to grace us with a few lines of prose.
Henrik Zetterberg is healthy and Dominik Hasek is hungry. The two arrived from Europe over the weekend and joined most of their teammates for an informal practice Monday at Joe Louis Arena in preparation for the start of training camp on Friday. Zetterberg skated with the team, Hasek took the ice after most of them were done.
It was mid July when the Red Wing marketing savants unveiled this little beauty, a campaign for the ages. Designed by children, geared for the the ignorant and roundly criticized by smart people everywhere. Yes, “Fire on Ice” made its debut and the brilliance of it was startling to us all.
The pure childlike genius of this creation prompted a groundswell of artistry unlike anything seen here since TeamDub danced in his garage on webcam during a live blog last April. The contest to “replace the fire on ice logo because it sucks and sucks hard” began July 17th and wrapped up this evening. Now, your voice will be heard. We’ll open up the polls and determine a winner. And oh what a winner that winner will be. Displayed on the A2Y front page, a 25 dollar gift certificate to Ice Jerseys and the never ending admiration of all 13 of us.
Ready? Excellence awaits you.
Bruce MacLeod is the anti-
and there will be no arguments on that. The guy’s prolific, consistent and not afraid to toss some speculation in there.
Take a seat Khan(!). Your reign is over.
Updated 2037 EST: I stand corrected. I have no idea how I betrayed my sarcastic roots. MacLeod remains the anti-digger. Khan(!) retains the title.
Updated 1748 EST: this from A2Y reader BDH.
Deep Diggers: Getting Their Asses Handed to Them by the Macomb Daily since April 4, 2007.
Short. Simple. Classic. Just like Freddy Patek.
Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland confirmed, Monday, that three free agents with NHL experience will try out at the team’s main camp this week: defensemen Brent Sopel and Jassen Cullimore and forward Aaron Downey.
More from MacLeod. Reaction later.
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