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Diggers Converge On Meech

Forty hours after he registered 8 shots on goal against Edmonton, in the midst of the best game a defenseman (other than Lidstrom) has had for the Wings this year, Derek Meech is now a popular fella with the Diggers.

A few hints for you Derek.  When they converge on you, Khan(!) in front, Kulfan filing his nails off to the left, Helene to the right, they’re not going to say much.  Not too many questions.  They’ll just kinda stand there until you start talking. And then? Get this…here’s something Brendan Shanahan learned long ago.  They’ll write whatever you tell them, word for word, with no follow up. Tell them that after the Oiler game you became the first human in history to drink a gallon of milk in under an hour without puking.  They’ll believe it. They’ll write it.  It will become fact.

Where’s MacLeod you ask?  Great question.  He didn’t make the trip.  Yeah, weird.  Good?  Definitely.  He’s the best, the only quality reporter in the bunch.  Oh.  It’s because his cheap-ass employer won’t send him on road trips.  Yeah, he’s a beat writer whose only beat is the beat he covers that’s within driving distance. 

In the absence of the Anti-digger, here’s the quality you get.
St. James

Meech will be in a four-man battle with Chelios, Andreas Lilja and Brett Lebda for the last two openings on defense. As the Wings see it, that’s just the kind of healthy competition that should help spur a long playoff run.

A four-man battle Helene?  Just to be clear, you’re saying Chris Chelios is in a “battle” to retain his spot when he returns?  Umm, no.  Chelios is locked in.  It’s a three-man battle and as many have pointed out, and as distasteful as it may seem, Lilja’s probably got it sewn up.  Can Meech play his way into that equation? Can Lebda? Sure, it’s possible.  Just not likely.

All the Diggers have Meech stories today.  I just read them all and dozed through each one.  Read them if you want.  Khan(!), Kulfan, St. James.

Khan(!)‘s also got a little contract chatter: Cleary deal for 2.5/year still on the table.  Lilja’s agent and Holland might not be the BFFs they were a year ago, as they haven’t spoken lately.  Recommendation here is that Kenny wait as long as possible on that situation, and this:  Chris Chelios will be offered another one-year deal. 

Uncle Mike’s decided who Brad Stuart will be paired with and I like it.


Babcock said he’ll pair Stuart with Kronwall, who is expected to return Friday against San Jose after recovering from a clavicle injury. Stuart is expected to be at today’s practice at Joe Louis Arena and will play Friday.

St. James

Among Stuart’s duties will be manning a point on the power play and helping to kill penalties. Stuart and Babcock date to their days in Red Deer, Alberta, and to the Western Hockey League.

“North American kid, skates well, can move the puck, can play physical, solidifies our top four,” Babcock said when asked to assess Stuart. “I’ve known the kid for a long, long time, and I think he’ll be a real help to us.”

All the diggers have really taken a liking to that “North American kid..” quote from Babcock.  I’ve now read it 19 times.  Pretty riveting stuff I wouldn’t have determined on my own without that explanation.  I’m sure, you know, the whole “Brad” thing hasn’t clued us all in to the fact that he’s North American.

Kulfan: Mike, can you confirm that Brad Stuart is, in fact, North American?

St. James: Mike, yesterday you told Ted Kulfan that Stuart is North American. Care to expand on that?

Khan(!): Mike, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t ask you this question.  Is Stuart still North American?

Our diggers.

Speaking of Diggers and ineptitude, let’s move briefly to Denver.  I have a feeling by now you’ve heard of the Floppa return to the Ass Can.  You’ve probably also read Woody Paige’s Judy Blume-like novella from yesterday.  There are, literally, at least twenty lines I could pull from that column that deserve our special brand of attention.  This one seemed particularly effective.

—“The Joe Sack Five have done a lot of winning…” 

Joe Sack Five?  The Joe Sack Five.  Terrible.  And, for the record, he’s including Scott Parker in the Five Sack, along with Hejduk.  He also refers to them as “Ice boys.”  That’s right Darren…Ice Boys.

One more note on the Denver media.  There’s a battle royal going on between the Dive bloggers and a local broadcaster.  Joe at Mile High Hockey is leading the blogger charge and doing quite well.  Read this post, as well as the comments.


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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: wphoulihan@gmail.com