Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Asleep At The Switch

All I know is this: one year ago, two years ago, three years ago?  Detroit featured three of the best five players in the world.  Some seasoning may have meant Cup #12.  Some aggression at the deadline could have landed a piece like Iginla (I said "like") and we never would have heard of, for instance, Tatar or Nyquist again.  But at least the effort would have been there.

Ken Holland holds on to the Nicastros and the Teletubbies and the Youtube sensations, the junior World Cup superstars...while Ray Shero is dealing in real talent, for real Cups.

Was Detroit even a remote destination for Jarome Iginla? Nope.  But I'll bet we kicked Feaster's tire, though...right?  One little kick? A little swipe and then move over for Ray, boy.

Tick Tock. Talent to waste, years to wave goodbye to Kenny.  Russia's calling Pavel home.

All this Iginla deal does, as far as we're concerned, is remind Wing fans of the "we like our teams" and "the cost was too steep", the "getting ______ back is like a deadline deal".  Honestly, I'm tired of hearing the bullshit alibis as to why this team can't be improved.  Shero improves his. He's aggressive every year. Every year since '08 he's been daring.  Has it always paid off? Nope.  But there he is...in the arena, while Ken Holland kicks tires.

Get us DeKeyser, Kenny.  I'm looking forward to the over-ripening stories the next four years until he gets to Detroit.

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FranzensMouthguard's avatar

They acquired Morrow, Murray, and Iginla without giving up a roster player or a top 5 prospect from their system.

Posted by FranzensMouthguard from Chicago, IL on 03/28/13 at 09:48 AM ET

Guilherme's avatar

the fact is, the Cap has finally caught up to the Wings

Wings had at least $5M for the last two season. Not a valid excuse.

Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 03/28/13 at 09:52 AM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

Wings had at least $5M for the last two season. Not a valid excuse.

Agreed.  It might be about Illich’s new focus.

Posted by MoreShoot on 03/28/13 at 10:04 AM ET

henrymalredo's avatar

Posted by MoreShoot on 03/28/13 at 10:33 AM ET

Honestly, if the Wings do decide to make a change in management (which I don’t think they do, they just need to make some changes in the way they do things), they should just completely clean house.  I don’t buy the arguements I hear from some fans that Nill, Babcock, Yzerman, etc., would’ve made some awesome move, but were blocked by Babcock.  If you’re going to make a change, make a change.

Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 03/28/13 at 10:52 AM ET

I’m not talking about in terms of cap space for the Wings, I’m talking about how it’s changed the bussiness nature of the game.  There are more teams that think they’re competitive, which means less sellers and higher trade prices.  Teams can afford their players, I don’t think there has been a single player traded in the cap era because their team couldn’t afford them in terms of real dollars and you also have teams active in free agency that weren’t before.

Posted by henrymalredo from Lansing on 03/28/13 at 10:16 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

Is it just me, or does it seem like DRW considers it a win when they make it to the playoffs? It seems like getting into the bubble means more to Holland than how they do inside the bubble. As long as the streak continues, Mr. Hesitant looks to be patting himself on the back for a job well done.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 03/28/13 at 10:31 AM ET

I have to agree with this assessment.  Holland has made several “make the playoffs and who knows what will happen” sort of comments over the past few years. 

I get that the Wings are in the “growing pains” phase of the new salary cap system, and it largely isn’t Holland’s fault.  It is frustrating watching Pittsburgh get player after player.  I’m on the fence with Kenny, but I’m gonna keep the faith for another year.

Where I’m really frustrated with the organization is with what is happening with the lineup.  If we can’t make moves, there’s nothing that can really be done about that.  But what we can do is thank people like Danny Cleary, Todd Bertuzzi, Mikael Samuelsson for their years of service and have them take seat.  I’m tired of seeing washed up veterans sucking up valuable minutes while our “more precious than gold” prospects stagnate on the bench or in GR.  If the children are our future, let’s live in the future.  If we’re gonna rebuild, lets rebuild.  If you get the youngsters in the place Chicago had theirs back in 08-present free agents will want to come to Detroit.

I know there’s a lot of fear the that players like Nyquist aren’t quite ready.  Let’s put em in the water and teach em how to swim for christ’s sake.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 03/28/13 at 10:20 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

The two prospects the Pens gave up for Iginla were their 10th and 12th rated per HF.

So that more or less translates into the Wings having had to give up a 1st rounder, Martin Frk and Teemu Pulikkinen for Iginla.

You people are out of your f*cking minds if you think that’s a good trade for the Wings. Seriously…we’re entering fever swamp territory around here.

To what end? What possible purpose would it serve to give up that much for Jarome Iginla, for a team that has NO CHANCE at making a serious Cup run with or without him?

Posted by Mandingo from The Garage on 03/28/13 at 09:28 AM ET

That’s the absolute truth right there. And it would have been just as stupid to give up two second-rounders for Murray. In those two instances, Tick Tock the Broken Clock’s “inertia” worked out for the best for the organ-I-zation.

My issue with Holland is the guys he doesn’t go after (Souray, Semin for 1 yr fer cripes sake) when we have moneys left over, the trades he doesn’t make (White, Filpulla) and we lose guys for nothing...

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 03/28/13 at 09:59 AM ET

And then we give up a first-rounder to get one of those “freebies” back.

As for DeKeyser, I’d say the Wings have two strikes against them in being the kid’s final pick. One is the “Iginla” factor (i.e., top players no longer view the Wings as a preferred destination and legitimate Cup contender). And the second is the “over-ripe” factor (i.e., every prospect not named Brunner anticipates they’ll have to ripen-until-they-rot in G.R. before getting a real chance to make the Wings roster).

As a fan, it’s a frustrating process to watch.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 03/28/13 at 10:51 AM ET

Avatar

Absolutely, chelios.
I hear commentators praise the Wings for their development, but how many of the players want to play in the ahl for 5years before getting a shot?

As good as Miller and saves have looked this year, I think they both go in favor of younger players. Or Emmerton if you want to keep one of them over him. They need to keep the bottom 6 open for prospects to make their way to the top two lines.

Trade white for what can be gotten, let Huskins walk, buy out Sammy and Cola, trade Flip before the deadline, let Cleary walk, bring up hungry youth, trade for skilled depth at the deadline next year.

Posted by teldar on 03/28/13 at 11:04 AM ET

Avatar

Finally people get it, Holland is the emperor with no clothes.  Is it a coincidence that the Hawks are perennial Cup contenders since Bowman’s been there?  The frustrating thing for a fan watching this is what’s the plan?  If we’re good enough to compete but not a legitimate contender than why sign guys like Samuelsson?  Why not see what you have on the farm as opposed to letting them go for nothing?  I would understand if Holland said we’re going to see what the young guys can do and stick with that, but every year he makes the Red Wings the Boca Raton of the NHL, a place where ex-Wings can go and collect a paycheck before they die.  The funny thing is that fan apathy is increasing, ratings are down, and the owner is trying to get a new arena in place, and we continue to have a GM who does not have the balls to make a move, is way too comfortable with re-treads, and over rates his own players.

Posted by bababooey on 03/28/13 at 11:17 AM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Posted by bababooey on 03/28/13 at 12:17 PM ET

Abso-feckin-lutely!

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 03/28/13 at 11:36 AM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

I’ll echo the sentiments that many are expressing:

Know Bowman = Know Cups.
No Bowman = No Cups.

The funny thing is that fan apathy is increasing, ratings are down, and the owner is trying to get a new arena in place.
Posted by bababooey on 03/28/13 at 12:17 PM ET

The new arena may be the key to seeing some changes in the front office. This is not a time that Ilitch Enterprises can afford to have the Red Wings in a down period. But that may be moot because the City is in such dire financial straits that it can’t afford to chip in one red cent into a new arena; I seriously doubt the State would either.

Last I heard about the issue was a Detroit News report over the holidays that said the Wings owed the city millions in cable tv revenue, property taxes and rent (none paid since the lease expired in 2010). That is tens of millions of dollars owed to the City and I will not be surprised if the Wings are Keyn Orr’s first phone call.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 11:49 AM ET

dougie's avatar

But that may be moot because the City is in such dire financial straits that it can’t afford to chip in one red cent into a new arena; I seriously doubt the State would either.

As it should be. I have yet to hear a convincing argument about why the taxpayers should pay one red cent to facilitate stadiums and arenas for gazilionaires and their hobbies.

Posted by dougie on 03/28/13 at 11:53 AM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

As it should be. I have yet to hear a convincing argument about why the taxpayers should pay one red cent to facilitate stadiums and arenas for gazilionaires and their hobbies.
Posted by dougie on 03/28/13 at 12:53 PM ET

I concur. Every economist that has studied the issue (without receiving compensation from a team or other interested party) has concluded that there is no benefit to the local economy once construction is finished. This is particularly true with a new Wings arena because it is a replacement facility, not a new facility.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 12:04 PM ET

stonehands-78's avatar

i really like our team.

Posted by stonehands-78 from the beginning ... a WingsFan, on 03/28/13 at 12:05 PM ET

PaulinMiamiBeach's avatar

Know Bowman = Know Cups.
No Bowman = No Cups.

this.

I wonder if Scotty is interested in being a GM…

and I wonder how much of the “holy hell yes I want to play in Detroit, even if it’s for less money” was because of players knowing and respecting Bowman and wanting to play for him because they knew it meant their best shot.  it was BOWMAN they saw as their “shot” - not Holland or the Wings or Detroit.

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/28/13 at 12:10 PM ET

Avatar

Haven’t read all the comments so don’t know it this has been addressed. The excuse that players don’t want to live in Detroit is crap. How about Yzerman or Lidstrom who spent their careers here and raised families here? Or the guys who will play their whole careers here? Or the guys who stayed after they hung them up like Osgood, Draper, Maltby, Holmstrom ect. I’m so tired of the fact that its the city of Detroit keeping the players away. Yes it’s not the best city but I don’t think it’s as bad as the media portrays it to be. Also how many players actually live int the city? Maybe a few of the younger guys but I’m guessing not very many if any. If free agents are saying that’s a reason ton not sign get some of those guys on the phone.

Posted by Catie on 03/28/13 at 12:18 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

I wonder if Scotty is interested in being a GM…

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/28/13 at 01:10 PM ET

His son Stan is GM of the Hawks, that why he jumped ship to Chicago. If Mr. I had brought Stan aboard somewhere along the way, who knows how this would have turned out.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 12:20 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Posted by Catie on 03/28/13 at 01:18 PM ET

The local environment is not the issue. It is the environment within the organization. Even though he won a Cup and a Gold Medal, it appears that top tier FA’s do not want to play for Babs, despite Kenny offering them competitive money.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 12:24 PM ET

dougie's avatar

If Mr. I had brought Stan aboard somewhere along the way, who knows how this would have turned out.

He wouldn’t have signed Iginla. He probably wouldn’t have modeled himself after Ray Shero, either.

And that would be considered an epic FAIL around here.

Posted by dougie on 03/28/13 at 12:34 PM ET

SYF's avatar

It was 2010 that the Wings signed Babcock to a four-year extension.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 03/28/13 at 12:36 PM ET

Avatar

He wouldn’t have signed Iginla. He probably wouldn’t have modeled himself after Ray Shero, either.

He wouldn’t have had to.

Posted by Garth on 03/28/13 at 12:44 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

It was 2010 that the Wings signed Babcock to a four-year extension.
Posted by SYF from the deadline on 03/28/13 at 01:36 PM ET

So it will cost Mr. I $4mill to fire him after this season. Maybe less if someone else hires him during those two years.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 12:55 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I don’t suppose a study in how the Penguins got enough roster/prospect depth and superstar players in their prime to make moves like a guaranteed first-rounder and two prospects for what is possibly a very short date with Jarome Iginla would be worth much to the Holland/Shero comparison here, huh?

Although in truth, I don’t think Iginla forces the Flames to trade him to Pittsburgh if he doesn’t want to be there.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/28/13 at 01:19 PM ET

SnLO's avatar

Yes it’s not the best city but I don’t think it’s as bad as the media portrays it to be.

You’re right, it’s worse. The last four years have not been kind to this region. The city is a cross-section of a ghost town and a dump. Crime is rampant and the schools are a disgrace. I can imagine the question forming in your mind: “why don’t i just move then?”  yeah… tempting… if I could afford it.

It was 2010 that the Wings signed Babcock to a four-year extension.

I will start with agreeing Babs is the issue and it is time for him to go, but the issue remains who to replace him with? The problem I have is that the best coach available is Bowman, and he isn’t coming back. There is no next best. The closest to that is what we already have in Babcock, but he is proving inadequate for the style and quality of the personnel available. Babcock is proving he lacks the tactical skill to deploy a team with an opportunity to win. His square-peg in-a-round-hole approach to game will no longer work because he doesn’t have the veterans that can win despite his line deployments. Sorry, I’m rambling, but, in short, I am all on the Babcock has exhausted-his-welcome train. I just don’t see a viable replacement.
.

Posted by SnLO from beyond the M-1 on 03/28/13 at 01:23 PM ET

Avatar

J.J.
The pens got that depth by ducking and getting 5 top 5 picks in a row then drafting reasonably well. Similarly to Chicago. And what Edmonton is doing now. But it looks like the Oilers are going for 10 in a row.

Posted by teldar on 03/28/13 at 01:25 PM ET

SYF's avatar

We can agree that this team is in transition, CaptD.  It’s happening right in front of our eyes.  I took a step back and realized that this coaching staff just might be the best group available to make this transition from a veteran-laden team to a team full of homegrown draft picks who are young, who are going to make boneheaded youthful mistakes, who are going to suffer the crash and burn of adjusting to the NHL level of play.

Having said that, watching the most talented NHL player in the league wither without an evil, goal-scoring bastard of a power forward on his wing is too painful to watch.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 03/28/13 at 01:29 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Having said that, watching the most talented NHL player in the league wither while playing on the third line with 8 and 11 on his wings to too painful to watch.

Fixed.

I respectfully disagree with you SYF. I think this is the wrong coaching staff. Give Babs an all-star team, like he inherited when he joined the Wings, or like the Canadian Olympic team, and Babs is better than anyone at getting the most out of them. Give Babs a team with any youth on it and he refuses to coach or develop them and plays his vets no matter what.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/28/13 at 01:44 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Then the guy we need is right next to him:  Renney.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 03/28/13 at 01:51 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

The pens got that depth by ducking and getting 5 top 5 picks in a row then drafting reasonably well. Similarly to Chicago. And what Edmonton is doing now. But it looks like the Oilers are going for 10 in a row.

Ding ding ding

If we want to be in that position, the league would very much like for us to spend a few years at the bottom of the standings building up to that.

I really don’t want the Red Wings to do that.

Of course, I also don’t want the Red Wings to become Calgary, who tried for far too long to avoid a much-needed rebuild and are neck-and-neck with the Dive for title of league laughingstock right now (who are also a fairly good study in how to suck for a while and then STILL suck because you’re run by dummies).

That’s not to say I’m jumping in front of any arrows for Kenny Holland’s defense. I’m not happy with the defensive plan and although the Stuart and Rafalski situations hurt us, I think the team needed to be in better position to roll on without that. I don’t like the Samuelsson signing. I think Abdelkader got paid too much. I think Tootoo got paid too much. I still like Colaicovo, but I’d have much rather the Wings not had to sign him in the first place.

Trading Filppula right now is a dumb idea. I expect White to be gone by next Wednesday.

Hell, I’m not even saying I disagree with the idea that Shero is doing a better job as the GM of his club. I will say that Shero got himself a head start through means I don’t want the Wings to do.  The guy started playing Oregon Trail and chose to be the banker. Dude started with six extra oxen and a million bullets and he’s just out there firing at rabbits because he can afford to.

Meanwhile, Holland is hoping that nobody else gets dysentery.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/28/13 at 02:13 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Man I’m only half way through reading comments and I’m laughing my ass off.

This blog is awesome.  Very interesting to see the brains of Detroit fans conditioned to react so differently to the same set of facts. 

So far I haven’t seen anyone call someone else dumb just because they had a different opinion.  Hasn’t been nearly as much of that since what’s his name hasn’t been around.  At least not with the same screen name.

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 03/28/13 at 02:21 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

My biggest fear doesn’t have anything to do with Holland. My biggest fear is that it’s because players don’t want to live and play in Metro Detroit anymore. That the team isn’t good enough anymore to make up for the fact that it’s - let’s face it - an ugly, depressing, dystopian hellscape.

OK…maybe that’s a little harsh. I think this endless winter is really starting to get to me.

Posted by Mandingo from The Garage on 03/28/13 at 09:53 AM ET

Yeah, Novi isn’t so bad.

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 03/28/13 at 02:23 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

It’s not Iginla, it’s inertia.
Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 03/28/13 at 10:04 AM ET

Your command of the English language and context continues to amaze me.

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 03/28/13 at 02:28 PM ET

stonehands-78's avatar

” ... Hasn’t been nearly as much of that since what’s his name hasn’t been around.  At least not with the same screen name.”

Bob?

Posted by stonehands-78 from the beginning ... a WingsFan, on 03/28/13 at 02:28 PM ET

Avatar

Trading Filppula right now is a dumb idea.

Well, the alternatives are to either overpay him, get a 7th rounder for him at the draft or lose him for nothing, which are all dumber ideas in my opinion, so I’m going to have to respectfully disagree with you.

Unless you’re proposing that Detroit loads up over the next few days to make an all-out run for the Cup, in which case I’m all ears…

Posted by Garth on 03/28/13 at 02:43 PM ET

SYF's avatar

@NHLRumorMillcom is tweeting:  Report:  Bouwmeester, Flames have discussed trade.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 03/28/13 at 02:54 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Brad Stuart pulled a conditional 7th rounder because there was absolutely zero secret that he was gone.

If Winnipeg is willing to give a first for him, then I’d pull that in a heartbeat. Hell, if any team is willing to do that, I’m ok with it, but I don’t think the difference in what Filppula brings back right now versus what he brings back in a postseason trade is worth more than what having Filppula on the roster right now brings, which is a guy who is absolutely a better forward than everybody on the team not named Datsyuk and Zetterberg.

We’re not really buying if using Filppula as a trade chip and we’re not selling him for anything because Filppula doesn’t seem to be anywhere on the radar for a team’s “final piece’ unless a GM goes a little crazy (and GMs like that tend not to have playoff-caliber teams on their hands).

Let me amend my statement though, because I’d trade anybody on this roster at any time for the right deal. Trading Filppula isn’t a dumb idea; I’m just too dumb to think of a good deal that involves Filppula being moved right now.

I’ll say about “overpaying him”, that Filppula is worth more than $4M and he’s probably worth $4.5. I think the concept that he has to come in under $4M is wishful thinking.  I’d much rather make cap space by not paying a 4th-liner $1.9M.

“Losing Filppula for nothing” is an interesting concept because I think the Red Wings will make the playoffs. I think they’ve got an outside chance of getting lucky enough to get four rounds deep (although I’m not confident in that). I also think that when roster limits go away and we’ve got an opportunity to give some kids a taste of playoff game action, having a playoff performer like Filppula makes the team better and it gives the Wings some flexibility in letting some of those kids get a taste of that action against competition they should be able to dominate.

In a quantifiable way, if Filppula’s rights aren’t traded and he signs as a UFA, we will have “lost him for nothing”, but I think the chance of getting a round or two (and possibly three or four) of intangible benefit thanks in part to having him on the roster is a thing of value.

... plus, if we get lucky enough and Filppula kicks ass in the playoffs, then teams are absolutely going to clamor for his rights before July.

I’d trade that potential intangible benefit and the lottery-ticket that is his potential future trade value for the right price now; I just can’t tell you what that right price is because everything I’m immediately comfortable with is something I don’t think another GM would do.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/28/13 at 03:02 PM ET

Surfer Ken's avatar

His son Stan is GM of the Hawks, that why he jumped ship to Chicago. If Mr. I had brought Stan aboard somewhere along the way, who knows how this would have turned out.

By far the biggest mistake The Wings have made over the past 20 years.

Posted by Surfer Ken from San Clemente on 03/28/13 at 03:52 PM ET

dougie's avatar

JJ, the statement that you think the Wings have an outside chance to go 3-4 rounds deep is ,uh, shall we say, a bit unusual.

Please feel free to expound at length. I could use some Kool Aid about now.

Posted by dougie on 03/28/13 at 04:04 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

JJ, the statement that you think the Wings have an outside chance to go 3-4 rounds deep is ,uh, shall we say, a bit unusual.

Dumber things have happened than a team that’s supposed to be first or second-round fodder getting a shot to play for the Cup.

JS Giguere drove the Ducks to a cup final (and a WCF against the Minnesota Wild). Colorado’s backup goalie has a Conn Smythe for that shit.

If you’ve got a ticket to the dance, you’ve got a shot.

If you wanted to award the Stanley Cup based on the most-consistent best team, then they’d rename the Presidents’ Trophy and both San Jose and Washington fans would be even less tolerable than they are now.

Let’s not get into the gambler’s trap of thinking that because I say they’ve got a chance means I think they’re going to do it though.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/28/13 at 04:14 PM ET

WingsFaninCO's avatar

One in a million?  Soooo…you’re saying there’s a chance.

Posted by WingsFaninCO on 03/28/13 at 04:22 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

The pens got that depth by ducking and getting 5 top 5 picks in a row

Did you mean “by sucking”?

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 03/28/13 at 04:26 PM 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