The Malik Report
The Grand Rapids Griffins have experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows over the course of their 2015-16 season, and right now, they're in a rut. Grand Rapids has lost 5 of its past 6 games, including a 7-3 loss to the Milwaukee Admirals on Saturday night.
The Griffins' website offers a recap...
From the Free Press's John Gallagher and JC Reindl:
The new Detroit Red Wings hockey arena under construction has attracted a surge of outside investment interest, with developers vying to build a new hotel, housing and stores that could fulfill the promise of an expanded district of sports and entertainment rising on the northern edge of downtown.
Seven hotel developers have indicated an interest in building the planned hotel. And at least 10 qualified residential developers are expected to bid on building housing in the district, officials of the Ilitch family's Olympia Development told the Free Press last week.
The whole investment could eclipse $1 billion in public and private dollars. When the arena opens for the Detroit Red Wings season in late 2017, some 210,000 square feet of office and retail space will arrive at the same time, and the first 225 units of residential housing in adjacent projects will come on line a few months after, the Ilitches predict.
“Our ongoing conversations with retailers, prospective office tenants and residential developers have been extremely positive,” said Steve Marquardt, vice president of Olympia Development. “The District Detroit is coming to life and bringing opportunity and investment to our city.”
Gallagher and Reindl continue, and the Free Press also posted a list of "key details" about the District Detroit's construction, including one aspect of the "Detroit Events Center's" dimensions that will get cheers...
The new arena's concourse will be three times the size of Joe Louis Arena's.
And among the "5 coolest features in the future Detroit arena":
Up-close club seating: The arena will have five different clubs, including one club position between the locker room and the ice. "So the players literally walk right through that club," Wilson said. "It will be the best chance in hockey to get close to your favorite players." The club will have room for about 250 ticket-paying fans or concert-goers.
So Dylan Larkin took a 13.172-second lap around the rink in Nashville, earning the NHL's fastest-ever time for a skater taking part in the Fastest Skater event at the All-Star Game, but there's apparently a burr under the saddles of those who remember Mike Gartner setting a 13.386-second lap record in 1995.
The Hockey News's Daniel Nugent-Bowman explains:
When Gartner established his mark 20 years ago in Boston, he was required to start from a static position at center ice. Larkin was permitted to have a skating start from the blueline. The clock only started ticking once he crossed the red line.
Does that start count for two tenths of a second's worth of skating time? I have absolutely no idea, but should Mike Gartner want to come out of retirement and take on Larkin one-on-one, I'd pay to see it.
In any case, Larkin nearly fell over while making his record-setting attempt, and that may have taken some time off his lap, as ESPN's Scott Burnside noted...
Dylan Larkin won his Fastest Skater heat against Roman Josi, taking 12.894 seconds to make the loop...
And as the fastest skater of the East and West's participants, Larkin was able to take a lap attempting to beat Mike Gartner's full-rink lopp record, which he did with a 13.172 second loop:
Mike Gartner set the record in 1995, with a 13.38 second lap, a year before Larkin was born.
Evening news: Some well-deserved Larkin mania and discussion of ‘bus-driving’ Datsyuk and Zetterberg
Of Red Wings-related note this evening:
MLive's Brendan Savage kicks off the Dylan Larkin mania with a superb essay profiling Larkin from many perspectives, including those of Ken Holland, Mickey Redmond and Larkin's teammates:
Larkin is certainly no average teenager with his face being on the cover of The Hockey News, fans in the Joe Louis Arena stands wearing Red Wings jerseys with his name and No. 71 on the back and the constant media demands, which will undoubtedly reach new heights in Nashville. But none of it has gone to his head, according to those who know him best.
"For sure," said roommate Luke Glendening. "Even the first day I met him in the summer he was like, 'I don't know what's going to happen this year' but he had goals and he's achieving them one by one. Every day is a testament to that and he loves being on the ice, he loves being in the gym, wherever he can be.
"He's still pretty quiet. He's a jokester. He's got a good sense of humor. The maturity you guys (in the media) see is the same maturity we see at home. I think that's unique to a 19-year-old but for someone in his spot especially. It's extremely cool to watch."
Savage also asked Holland and Redmond whether Larkin's discomfort at the All-Star Game might benefit him in the long term...
Dylan Larkin ready for the red carpet.
In the first picture he is with Taylor Hall and John Scott.
You can watch all the proceedings on the NHL Network starting at 5:00pm ET and the Skills Competion at 7:00pm on NBCSN.
Of prospect-related note:
In the AHL, the Grand Rapids Griffins know how the Wings feel about home ice of late. Grand Rapids is now 0-4-and-1 in its last 5 home games after dropping a 4-2 decision to the Toronto Marlies, surrendering 3 3rd-period goals after buildng a 2-1 lead--and surrendering those 3 3rd-period goals in the game's final 6:22 of regulation.
Dylan Larkin's first day at the NHL's All-Star Weekend was spent taking part in "media day," and Larkin, who doesn't kow any of his non-Red Wings teammates, admitted that he's feeling nervous about this weekend's festivities, as he told NHL.com's Dan Rosen...
"I feel more nervous than I would for an actual game," Larkin said Friday. "I don't really know many guys and I don't really know what's going on."
Larkin was a fan until this season, another teenager dreaming of one day getting his chance but never expecting it to come this soon.
He was playing for the University of Michigan last season, and participating in the IIHF World Junior Championship with the United States. Now he's an All-Star from an NHL Original Six franchise on pace for a 25-goal season before he turns 20 years old.
Larkin is third in goals (15), assists (18) and points (33) among rookies.
"Just to be here is awesome, especially as a young guy to see all these guys, how they handle themselves with the media and how they represent themselves in public," Larkin said. "It's just really cool, special to me to be a part of this. I grew up watching most of these guys."
If you have some free time this weekend, the Clark Park Hockey Coalition is attempting to raise funds to sustain the program today and on Saturday, as noted by the Associated Press...
Former members of the Detroit Red Wings will skate during an alumni game to raise funds for youth hockey.
The annual Frozen Fish Fiasco starts at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at Clark Park in southwest Detroit.
The event is a weekend of games featuring amateur teams from youth hockey organizations. It has raised more than $75,000 for the Clark Park Coalition.
Team STAHLS' is the alumni team's opponent. It was formed by a group of workers from Sterling Heights-based Stahls' which is a direct supplier of jerseys to professional sports teams.
And WWJ Newsradio 950:
Of Red Wings-related note this afternoon:
1. Petr Mrazek was named the "ECHL Alumnus of the Month," most likely preceding NHL Player of the Month honors...
The 23-year-old went 7-1-1 in nine appearances in January with two shutouts, a 1.32 goals-against average and a .952 save percentage. He allowed two goals or less in eight of his nine appearances and made at least 22 saves in seven games.
Mrazek has appeared in 32 games with the Red Wings this season posting a record of 18-9-4 with three shutouts. He is second in the NHL with a .932 save percentage and ranks third with a 2.03 goals-against average.
Selected by the Red Wings in the fifth round (141st overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, Mrazek has seen action in 73 career NHL games going 37-23-6 with eight shutouts, a 2.14 goals-against average and a save percentage of .926.
2. And NHL.com's Pete Jensen suggests that Mrazek is the Red Wings' "fantasy hockey MVP" thus far:
About The Malik Report
The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.