The Malik Report
So the Flyers fired Craig Berube, the Leafs and Sabres are looking for a head coach and Todd McLellan's on thin ice in San Jose.
I get the concept that other teams--and especially deep-pocketed ones like Philly and Toronto--believe that they can sway Mike Babcock to leave the Red Wings and join their cause with a combination of millions of dollars and some say in player personnel, but if you were to ask me, the Flyers' circus is the last place Babcock would want to go.
In Philadelphia, the general manager and the owner rather regularly override the coach's player personnel decisions, and I simply cannot imagine Mike Babcock and Ed Snider getting through the first, second, third or fourth time that Snider wants Babcock to start goalie X over goalie Y, to bench player Z over player A or B, or to give more ice time to player C over player D. Babcock wants to be the damn coach, and in Philadelphia, the coach is not always the coach.
It just doesn't make logical sense. So the rumormongers will go back into Babcock overdrive today, he may be asked about the Flyers' situation by a Tampa or NHL beat writer who doesn't know that there is an embargo on coaching questions per the coach himself, but this concept that Babcock can be swayed to head to Philly...It ignores the job hazards that Babcock simply cannot stand.
No surprise here, however:
Update #3: Have fun with the Free Press's Steve Schrader's summary of Babcock rumors on your own.
Updated 4x at 11:52 AM: As we wait for the Red Wings and Lightning to take the ice at Amalie Arena subsequent to last night's 3-2 Wings win, several articles popped up between the overnight report and this morning, so:
Per the Free Press's Steve Schrader:
Glendening spoke with the media after the game, as noted by MLive's Ansar Khan...
The things that didn't quite fit, the playoff notebooks and miscellany will constitute "overnight report" material for the playoffs, and I can't think of a better way to start this misfit montage than with this little exchange Henrik Zetterberg had with NBCSN's Andy Brickley:
In an article about the Lightning's playoff preparation, the Toronto Sun's Terry Koshan also gave Mike Babcock a bit of a stump upon which to issue playoff philosophy...
Sometimes the stats DO tell the story:
Coach Jon Cooper was fuming after the game, as the Tampa Bay Times' Joe Smith noted:
The Detroit Red Wings began their first-round series against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday evening, entering their playoff run as massive underdogs to the high-flying Lightning, and "stealing a game" at Amalie Arena was to be absolutely essential for the Wings to shake playoff rookie Ben Bishop's confidence and give NHL playoff rookie Petr Mrazek some swagger.
The Wings got a whole shitton of swagger from Petr Mrazek--to the tune of 44 saves on 46 shots--as Detroit was out-shot ridiculously (46-14) and out-attempted worse (68-28), but won 3-2 thanks to two glorious Pavel Datsyuk goals, a Luke Glendening backhand and an astonishing amount of penalty-killing and even-strength work against the shot-happy, penalty-drawing Bolts.
This was anything but a textbook example of "how to win game 1," but Detroit took it, and they made Ben Bishop look shaky as Petr Mrazek put on a damn clinic.
Red Wings GM Ken Holland gave a very extensive interview to Detroit Sports 105.1 FM's Matt Dery this afternoon, speaking with Dery about the state of the Wings pre-playoff time for over 16 minutes:
RED WINGS PLAYERS DONATED $312,590 TO SUPPORT CHARITABLE PROGRAMS IN 2014-15
... Red Wings Players and Head Coach Mike Babcock Made In-Kind Ticket and Monetary Donations to 31 Michigan Nonprofits…
DETROIT – In partnership with the Detroit Red Wings Foundation, 24 players on the Detroit Red Wings roster and head coach Mike Babcock participated in a charitable program during the 2014-15 season, ranging from ticket and financial donations, meet and greets with hospitalized children and military members, volunteering at charitable organizations and serving as spokesmen for community relations theme nights during Red Wings games.
Seven players made donations based on personal statistics achieved over the course of the season, generating a total donation of $24,975 to seven Metro Detroit-based nonprofits.
Updated 15x at 2:39 PM: The Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning face off in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal this evening (7:30 PM on FSD/FS Florida/Sportsnet/RDS/97.1 FM), and the morning skate provided two main avenues of information:
1. The Tampa Bay Lightning are healthy enough that everyone but Jason Garrison will play, and Jonathan Drouin will be scratched;
2. And Justin Abdelkader (broken middle or ring finger) won't be able to play this evening.
On the Lightning's side, as ESPN's Joe McDonald noted, Braydon Coburn will be bringing his 6'5" frame back into the lineup...
Updated 5x at 12:17 PM: Abdelkader is out!
The Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning face off in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal tonight (7:30 PM EDT on FSD/FS Florida/CNBC/Sportsnet/RDS/97.1 FM), and the Lightning apparently chose to "take an optional" ahead of Game 1--with a healthy roster, as reported by TampaBayLightning.com's Bryan Burns:
Braydon Coburn, Alex Killorn, Jason Garrison and Andrej Sustr are all on the ice in regular jerseys for #TBLightning optional morning skate.
Sportsnet has aired a set of playoff-promoting videos discussing "Anything for Hockey's Ring Legends," and Mike Babcock discussed winning the Cup in 2008:
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.