The Malik Report
by George Malik on 03/16/12 at 12:16 PM ET
The Red Wings won’t practice till 12 or 1 PM PDT today, so we’re kind of in a holding pattern in terms of learning whether the Wings will be able to “dig out “of the hole they’ve dug for themselves while employing Pavel Datsyuk’s services against the San Jose Sharks, but a few stories/videos popped up which are worth noting this morning:
• For the record, the Griffins made the Wings’ recall of Jordan Pearce official today;
• For the record, MLive found that Wings fans would love to see Detroit begin the playoffs by playing against the Avs instead of the Predators;
• And while Paul posted this just a few minutes ago, it’s important to post in this Wings blog, too: USA Today’s Kevin Allen proffered a list of potential general manager candidates, and he listed Brendan Shanahan, Red Wings assistant GM Jim Nill and Wings “Special Assistant to Ken Holland” Kris Draper as headliners:
1. Jim Nill (Detroit assistant GM): At 53, Nill probably is at the crossroads of his management career. He has been the most qualified GM candidate for several years, but he has chosen to stay with the Red Wings for family reasons. Plus, Red Wings owners Mike and Marian Ilitch treat him well financially and otherwise. As a talent evaluator and GM Ken Holland’s most trusted advisor, Nill has been crucial to Detroit’s success for many, many years. He is highly respected around the NHL. He could get an interview for any job he wants. But he will have to decide quickly whether he wants to move up because the window could close on him.
14. Kris Draper (Detroit special assistant to GM Ken Holland): Count on him following the same path that Yzerman took. He’ll study under Holland and Nill, learning how the Red Wings manage their cap and evaluate players. Anyone who knows Draper knows he will work at this. He is a born leader with four championship rings. It will take him some time, but he will be a GM candidate.
Here’s what I know about Jim Nill: while he certainly wouldn’t mind helming his own team one day, he’s incredibly comfortable as Ken Holland’s right-hand man (capologist Ryan Martin is the left-hand man), the person who runs the Wings’ draft and plays the largest role on the team in terms of drafting and developing prospects as he’s also the Grand Rapids Griffins’ de-facto GM, he’s very comfortable with the concept that team players sometimes play supporting roles and he and his family are very, very comfortable in Metro Detroit, where Nill’s well-paid, has strong community ties and just enjoys his present role as the NHL’s best managerial “team player.” I don’t know if he’ll eventually leave Detroit, but I tink there’s no character flaw in Nill should he choose to remain exactly where he is, because the grass isn’t nearly as lush, green or self-sustaining away from his current position.
Quickie update: Here’s an awesome wallpaper from CBS Detroit. Tomas Holmstrom mucking it up in the corner in LA with tons of snow hitting the glass.
&bll; And no, Oilers fans, I don’t think Nill will leave Detroit to helm the Oilers.
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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.