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Tomas Jurco Expected Back For Tuesday’s Game Against Dallas

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

During a stretch that has seen heavy traffic in sick bay, one player at last is ready to check out.

Tomas Jurco is expected to play Tuesday when the Detroit Red Wings host the Dallas Stars, which would be Jurco’s first NHL game in seven months.

He underwent back surgery in the off-season and was sent to the minors this past week to play a couple of games as part of his comeback process.

He complained of tightness after Friday’s game, but was checked out by team doctors.

“We expect Jurco to be cleared for Tuesday,” Wings general manager Ken Holland told the Free Press on Sunday.

Jurco’s availability stands in contrast to that of a couple of other players. Forward Tyler Bertuzzi appeared to hurt his left leg/foot when he fell after being hit by Montreal’s Alexei Emelin during Saturday’s 2-1 overtime loss. Defenseman Brendan Smith appeared to injure his right leg/knee after a run-in what Phillip Danault.

Holland said both players need to undergo tests, which might not come until Monday. Dylan Larkin also got nicked by Emelin, but Holland said Larkin is fine.


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Line Combos Starting To Click For Detroit

from Brendan Savage of Mlive,

It took almost a quarter of the season but the Detroit Red Wings might have finally figured out the proper recipe for success.

Although the Red Wings' two-game winning streak ended Saturday night at Joe Louis Arena, they managed to get at least a point for the third straight game by reaching overtime against the powerful Montreal Canadiens....

Captain Henrik Zetterberg, who has been playing on a line with Tomas Tatar and Anthony Mantha, likes the way the Red Wings have blended together the past three games.

"We almost had the same lineup for three games now," Zetterberg said. "We're starting to get some chemistry.

"It was a good week for us. You look back on the last three games and ... we're pretty happy. We wanted to get two points here tonight. We were that close but they found a way and we didn't."


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When the Pistons-to-Detroit deal went down

The Free Press's Vince Ellis tells the tale of when and how the Pistons-to-Detroit deal was finalized last summer:

It seemed like a normal summer evening at Comerica Park.

Justin Verlander was on the mound for the Detroit Tigers.

The Seattle Mariners were in town, and fans were settling in for a perfect night for baseball.

The result was 4-2 in favor of the home team, but it was anything but a normal night in June.

Mike and Marian Ilitch were in attendance, quietly enjoying the game from the owners suite behind home plate.

A visitor dropped by during the middle innings to say hello.

It was Flint-area native Tom Gores, the chairman and CEO of Platinum Equity, a private-equity firm based in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Gores also owns the Pistons. Gores was the guest of the Ilitches’ son Chris, who is president and CEO of Ilitch Holdings.

Ellis continues, and the story doesn't "read" as particularly exciting per the preview, but it's interesting to know who was there and what as going on as the deal went down.

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Prospect news: Griffins ‘pick six’ vs. Monsters; Givani Smith scores a hat trick; JvP wins for Davos

Of prospect-related note: In the AHL, six goal-scorers, including Tomas Nosek (1G, 2A), Matt Lorito, Kyle Criscuolo and Matt Ford (1G, 1A) found the back of the net and Eddie Pasquale stopped 29 of 31 shots as the Grand Rapids Griffins defeated the Cleveland Monsters 6-2, sweeping the teams' home-and-home series.

The Griffins' website filed a recap:

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‘Roughly Translated’: Holland discusses Ouellet and Mantha

Red Wings GM Ken Holland made some telling comments to the Journal de Montreal's Jean-Francois Chaumont, discussing Xavier Ouellet and Anthony Mantha, but as Chaumont writes in French, I'm going to roughly translate his article into English so you can read Holland's take on the Wings' pair of Francophone prospects:

"I'm always hopeful that Anthony and Xavier will be two important pieces of our puzzle in the future," Holland told the Journal. "I have no reason to believe otherwise. They're just 22 and 23 years old."

"Xavier made the team this year, but he has to be patient," continued the Wings' GM. "We have 8 defensemen on our team. He's fighting for a job right now. He has the talent to become a good defender in the NHL. Our scouts have long believed in him. It hasn't changed today. He just has to wait for his turn."

Holland drew a fair picture for the short-term situation for Mantha and the Red Wings.

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The overnight report: Red Wings-Canadiens wrap-up—forward momentum

The Red Wings' 2-1 overtime loss to the Montreal Canadiens yielded a body count for the Red Wings and perhaps some lessons learned as Detroit went 2-0-and-1 over a stretch of games that they really needed to go 2-0-and-1 (at least) upon to help build a foundation for a post-Thanksgiving rally.

In the case of Saturday's game, the Red Wings were able to go toe-to-toe with the Montreal Canadiens despite losing Tyler Bertuzzi, Brendan Smith, and for a time, Dylan Larkin, and had puck luck been different, we could be talking about a Red Wings win instead of an overtime loss.

It's hard to be too negative discussing a game in which Anthony Mantha and Henrik Zetterberg had 6 shots apiece, Justin Abdelkader, Riley Sheahan and Luke Glendening combined for 17 hits, Detroit fired 58 shots at or near Carey Price and the Wings received excellent goaltending from Petr Mrazek.

The Wings need results right now, there's no doubt about that, but "the process" has gotten to be pretty damn good lately, and the players who've needed to step up have done just that.

For the Canadiens, everything unfolded as it should against a determined opponent, as the Montreal Gazette's Pat Hickey noted:

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Red Wings-Canadiens post-game injury updates

Of injury-related note after the Red Wings-Canadiens game:

1. Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman reported that Jimmy Howard would be out for 10-14 days with his groin injury;

2. Per MLive's Ansar Khan:

3. No news on Brendan Smith:

4. And this is the truth regarding the gentleman who hurt Bertuzzi, hurt Larkin and hurt Nielsen:

If you missed it earlier, the Wings' beat writers reported that Andreas Athanasiou will be out for at least 2 more weeks, Tomas Jurco may or may not be ready to go on Tuesday, and Darren Helm may be out until January.


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Red Wings-Canadiens quick take: growing pains

The Detroit Red Wings attempted to break the Montreal Canadiens' hex over the Wings on Saturday evening, battling Montreal to a 2-1 OT defeat.

Detroit worked damn hard, especially without Tyler Bertuzzi and Brendan Smith's services, but the Wings were unable to translate an OT power play into a goal, and the Canadiens skated in 2-on-1 and Galchenyuk tucked the puck past an otherwise heroic Petr Mrazek.

This was a "growing pain" game for the Wings--Detroit took a step forward in going toe-to-toe with the league's best team, Detroit dominated statistically and nearly won it, but the Wings couldn't finish vs. Carey Price, and that was enough to sting the Wings.

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Petr Mrazek commits grand robbery

Petr Mrazek made an amazing save on Artturi Lehkonen:

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‘Three Things’: A Game-Day Preview video, two game set-ups and a Griffins preview video

Updated 2x at 6:04 PM: Of Red Wings-related note this evening:

1. The Red Wings filed a Game-Day Preview video in which Dan Mannes sets up tonight's game:

2. Canadiens.com posted a game preview in which Max Pacioretty stated the Canadiens' plan against the Red Wings this evening:

Continue Reading »

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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.


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