The Malik Report
As noted earlier this afternoon, the Wings' beat writers all reported that Daniel Alfredsson hasn't skated with the Red Wings in some time now, and isn't expected to attend training camp. Ken Holland told the Free Press's Helene St. James that the team's willing to wait for Alfredsson to take the time he needs to figure out whether he's healthy enough to play, and this evening, Alfredsson's agent made a statement to TSN:
Alfredsson, who finished second on the team in scoring with 49 points last season, is an unrestricted free agent after leaving the Ottawa Senators to sign a one-year contract in Detroit.
''Daniel had a strong summer training and was feeling great while skating here but suffered a setback on his fifth day of high intensity on ice sessions," Alfredsson's agent J.P. Barry told TSN. "It's the same back issue he has been dealing with for a few years. He needs some time to let things settle and then determine whether his back is up to the rigors of another full season. He will be patient for now before making any decisions.''
"I think I owe him the class and dignity to allow him to get to a point where we sit down and make a decision about his future," Holland added. "Whether we sign him to a contract or not will be based on feedback from his body. Before we even get there, we have to see if Alfie's body is going to allow him to play.
Here's what Capgeek has to say about the deadlines for signing unrestricted free agents:
If youwant to follow along with the Red Wings prospects' game against Minnesota this evening (7 PM start), Pointstreak will have the box score, the pre-game notes are already up, and myself, SlapShotgoal, the Wings and MLive's Brendan Savage have been attempting to live-Tweet it.
A very kind gent posted the lineup on Twitter, and it looks like I was right about Ty Stanton and Mitch Wheaton being "in" on defense and Marc McNulty sitting out:
According to the Detroit News's Louis Aguilar, ahead of the unofficial groundbreaking for the Red Wings' follow-on rink on September 25th, Olympia Development's going to showcase some of the new rink's "specs" this Thursday:
Olympia Development of Michigan is going to show the public new details of its new $450 million venue that will be the home of the Detroit Red Wings and the expected catalyst for a 45-block entertainment district on the northern edge of downtown.
Olympia Development of Michigan will be presenting the plans at a public meeting Thursday at 5 p.m. to the Detroit City Planning Commission. The meeting is open to the public and will be held in the Committee of the Whole on the 13th floor of the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center, located at 2 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48226.
The plans to be unveiled will show many new details of the layout of the new arena. Next Thursday, is the expected target date for construction to begin for the long-awaited development that will create a new home area for the Detroit Red Wings. The arena would be among the five “new neighborhoods” with hundreds of new apartments, offices and other mixed-use retail that could open by summer 2017, according to the billionaire family that controls much of the land.
The Red Wings' prospects may have enjoyed a full "off-day" during a dreary Sunday in Traverse City, but this morning's practice ahead of tonight's game against Minnesota (7 PM) was all about managing players' energy and attention spans.
Having played 2 games in 2 nights and heading into their 3rd game in 4 nights--and, regardless of tonight's outcome, a 4th game in 5 nights tomorrow--Grand Rapids Griffins coach Jeff Blashill and his platoon of assistants (Griffins assistants Dave Noel-Bernier and Pat Ferschweiler, Toledo Walleye coach Derek Lalonde, informal assistants Chris Chelios and Mike Knuble and goalie coach Jeff Salajko) focused on extracting the maximum amount of instruction from the minimum amount of time possible.
"Practice" lasted for exactly 24 minutes, and it involved the drills I've discussed before--and again, save Anthony Mantha's "productive demotion" to the Bertuzzi-Athanasiou line (the Wings really need to get some secondary scoring), Colin Campbell's promotion to the Nosek-Frk pairing and Jared Coreau starting, there wasnt much "news"...
Updated 2x at 3:13 PM: The Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness has already reported about a Wings training camp try-out and the state of Danny DeKeyser's contract, and when he Tweeted this out, I immediately thought, "Well, the dealine for signing unrestricted free agents is December 1st.."
Here's Pleiness's report:
"My instincts would probably say that I’m not sure he’ll be able to report to camp on Wednesday,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said during a phone interview Monday. “I want to see how he’s feeling and talk to his agent. I also want to talk to Alfie in the next 24 hours.”
Alfredsson suffered a minor setback in his recovery from a nerve issue in his back.
He didn’t take at all last week and was unable to skate with the team Monday.
Pleiness continues, and honestly, I know you and I would love some closure in this situation, but it wouldn't surprise me if Alfredsson continues waiting to skate until his back feels better, and when he does skate, I expect him to continue skating until he's absolutely sure that he's unable to continue.
And in news regarding another Swede, the Free Press's Helene St. James spoke with Joakim Andersson regarding his tenuous future as a Wing, and Andersson's desire to remedy his biggest weakness:
Updated with DeKeyser talk at 1:27 PM: The Red Wings have yet to release their training camp roster, but the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness reports that the Wings have decided to give at least one defenseman a tryout...
Wings general manager Ken Holland confirmed that veteran defenseman Aaron Rome has been invited to training camp for a tryout.
Rome, 30, is a left-handed shot.
“He’s a vet who’s played pro hockey for a number of years,” Holland said during a phone interview.
Rome played 25 games last season with Dallas, registering just one assist and finishing a minus-6.
Capgeek reports that Rome had just wrapped up a 3-year deal with Dallas with a cap hit of $1.5 million per season, and The Sports Forecaster describes the 6'1," 220-pound defenseman as follows [edit: Pro Hockey Talk's Mike Halford reminds us that Rome's the guy who hammered Nathan Horton, too /end edit]:
Updated at 1:13 PM: The Red Wings' prospects hope to get back on track and qualify for the 3rd place game via defeating the Minnesota Wild (7 PM start at Centre Ice Arena, not 7:30), and while coach Jeff Blashill was on the ice for all of 24 minutes, the Wings' prospects worked very hard on transition plays and coverage in the defensive zone, especially on the PK.
The biggest "shocker," given that every player was on the ice, was that Anthony Mantha was in a white jersey while his previous linemates, Martin Frk and Tomas Nosek were wearing red ones, and after practice it was confirmed that Mantha will play alongside Andreas Athanasiou and Tyler Bertuzzi, while Colin Campbell's gotten a promotion from the third line to play alongside Frk and Nosek. The Wings rather desperately need some secondary scoring here, so the switch-up makes a ton of sense.
from Craig Custance of ESPN,
This summer, Holland signed a four-year contract extension with the Red Wings clearing another obstacle for a new deal with the coach. The Holland extension has done little to move along Babcock’s, which takes us to a question that hasn’t been raised all too often during these months of non-negotiations: What goes into Babcock’s decision?
“You know? That’s a good question,” Babcock answered. “I guess as we talk, I’ll know more. There’s part of my life that is very, very public and there’s part that’s very, very private. How’s that?”
Not all that helpful.
“I’m not going there,” Babcock said. “What we’re doing is -- players negotiate every day. We’re not even negotiating, we haven’t got around to doing anything.”...
For Babcock, it could be the motivation to try and win in Detroit at time when outsiders suggest the pendulum is swinging the wrong way. Or it could be the motivation to cement a legacy elsewhere. Maybe, it’s as simple as being the league’s highest paid coach. Until it’s settled, that motivation stays with Babcock. And once the season starts, if there’s no deal, he says he’s done talking about it. If he’s asked in a scrum about his contract situation, he’s moving on to the next question.
“It’s going to be dead,” he said, shooting down the suggestion it could become a distraction.
“No chance,” he said.
For now, he’ll talk about it, but he’s not offering up much in the way of hints of where he’s leaning. Or what goes into the decision.
“Who knows? It doesn’t matter,” Babcock said. “I was fishing this morning. Now I’m watching hockey. If you think my life is any different, it’s not.”
more for ESPN Insiders...
As I prepare to head to Centre Ice Arena, the Red Wings are holding a Captain's Practice at Joe Louis Arena, and the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness reports that someone's conspicuously absent...
While MLive's Ansar Khan and the Free Press's Helene St. James report that another player's crossing his fingers about a last-minute deal:
Update: As I was heading to the rink, MLive's Brendan Savage discussed Martin Frk's opportunity to "re-set" his pro career as the prospect tournamnt continues (the Wings play Minnesota at 7 PM), as well as several other topics, over the cousre of a conversation with Ken Holland:
According to Red Wings play-by-play announcer Ken Kal, the team's taking part in its second-to-last charitable golf outing of the "summer" today...
Then it's "off to work" at trainnig camp, and just as Jimmy Howard and Jonas Gustavsson sounded optimistic tones at yesterday's HockeyFest at the Joe, the Free Press's Mike Brudenell reports that Niklas Kronwall feels that his team's poised to succeed this upcoming season:
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