The Malik Report
ESPN's Sean Allen has penned a fantasy hockey column noting intriguing personnel moves by NHL teams which may help you in your fantasy hockey pool, and he offers an unconventional observation regarding Red Wings try-out Mike Knuble...And a more conventional observation regarding Damien Brunner:
Mike Knuble is apparently headed to camp with the Detroit Red Wings. His numbers dropped off significantly with the Washington Capitals least season after he strung together nearly a decade of 20-goal seasons. But, to be fair to Knuble, the Capitals were not the place to be to score goals last season and it's likely his one-dimensional offensive game was not being used effectively by former coach Dale Hunter. Knuble certainly would have 25 goals left in his tank if he is used on a scoring line by the Red Wings. However, things are getting a little crowded for the Wings on offense.
Updated 3x at 1:53 PM: Day 2 of the Red Wings' abbreviated training camp is underway, and I'll be updating this post with Tweets and news from said event.
There is some slightly worrisome news at present, as noted by the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan...
Via RedWingsFeed, and in the middle of the night: the Red Wings posted a really slick slate of video highlights from the first day of training camp on their YouTube channel. It's nice to see the Wings receiving warm applause as they take to the ice, working out under strength and conditioning coach Pete Renzetti in the Plymouth Whalers' gym, and taking part in drills. This video "touches all the bases" in making sure fans see new faces--including associate coach Tom Renney--as well as the fan favorites, with everybody getting back to the business of playing hockey:
The Detroit Red Wings' abbreviated training camp, which will continue at Comuware Arena today (click here for all the details) with practices from 12-12:45 PM and 1-1:45 PM (again, the doors open at 11, admission and parking are free, concessions stands will be open, and there will be a scrimmage on Tuesday at 6 PM, which will also be free to the public, and aired on Fox Sports Detroit and 97.1 the Ticket)...
Opened to a predictable amount of fan support on a rainy Sunday afternoon, with about 2,000 fans appearing at the 3,400-seat rink on a little over twelve hours' of official notice, as the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan noted:
The numbers weren't as big as some other cities, but the level of fan animosity regarding the lockout was and continues to be very high in Metro Detroit, and to put it bluntly, the Wings' "Thanks For Sticking With Us" policy of open practices is very new.
That being said, the most important people in the rink on Sunday told the Free Press's George Sipple that they were happy to see their beloved Wings back on the ice...
I receive a weekly email digest from Crain's Detroit Business, and tucked in there was an intriguing story from Bill Shea about the surprisingly enormous amount of data usage generated by sports fans posting text messages, Tweets, checking the internet and trying to bring up scoresheets at sports arenas.
Shea wrote a downright remarkable--as well as easily readable--article explaining why it is that it's so damn hard for you to get "bars" on your iPhone or Android device, speaking to Motorolis Group's Rob Todd about the challenges of providing sufficient bandwidth to entertainment vanues, and he also revealed why Joe Louis Arena's data and cellular coverage is particularly spotty.
As it turns out, all the uncertainty regarding how long the Wings will stay at the Joe before moving on to a new facility is turning off potential wireless developers, literally and figuratively:
Well now. The first and second Red Wings training camp, day 1 posts seem to have run out of room, so here's a roundup of this evening's news stories as they relate to the first day of the Wings' abbreviated training camp.
The Wings' Facebook Day 1 photo gallery is bigger than the one on their website, and, via RedWingsFeed, the Windsor Star's Dax Melmer posted an excellent photo gallery as well (Michigan Hockey's Michael Caples and the Detroit News's David Guralnick posted photo galleries, too, and the Wings website's gallery is available here) ...
DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose took note of Damien Brunner's much-heralded arrival...
“He's obviously a goal-scorer, but he's got more qualities than that,” said Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg. “He's a good skater, sees the ice very well and he wants to win. That's a good quality to have.”
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock has already stated that Brunner will begin the shortened 48-game season with the NHL club. Pavel Datsyuk will center the Wings’ top line along with Zetterberg and Brunner, who have seemed to forge some continuity already having passed the time of the NHL lockout by skating as linemates for EV Zug in Switzerland’s top pro league. Zetterberg collected 16 goals and 16 assists in 23 games with Zug. But the biggest concern for Brunner is can he make the adjustment to the smaller NHL rinks? Players don’t have a lot of time in space to create opportunities in the North American game as they do on the Olympic-sized ice sheets in Europe.
Updated at 7:50 PM w/ the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness confirming the news: If you missed it in the first training camp, day 1 post, the Free Press's Helene St. James reported that the Red Wings will officially name Henrik Zetterberg their captain on Tuesday, and that Tomas Holmstrom will probably officially retire on Thursday or Friday...
The Red Wings are starting their campaign to win back fans angered by the lockout by having a free Red and White Game on Tuesday.
They plan to use that opportunity to anoint Henrik Zetterberg as the new captain. The announcement will be made before the 6 p.m. start of the game.
Zetterberg, 32, takes over for Nicklas Lidstrom, who retired last May. It's a job the Wings have been grooming Zetterberg for since last decade, when they placed his locker next to then-captain Steve Yzerman.
In other big news, the retirement of Tomas Holmstrom will take place either Thursday or Friday. The Wings want to have the press conference at Joe Louis Arena, which has been rented through Tuesday by Ford Motor Company in to prepare for the North American International Auto Show.
And MLive's Ansar Khan is confirming the news--and Khan also found that Zetterberg had to grit his teeth and pretend that he doesn't already know what's about to happen:
Updated 10 frickin' times at 8:47 PM: Twitter posts galore = ran out of space in the previous Red Wings training camp, day 1 post, so here are a few updates worth noting, with more to come:
According to MLive's Ansar Khan, Darren Helm suffered a minor back injury last week, and while he is sore, whatever he "tweaked" didn't show up on an MRI...
"I do feel a lot better from the day it happened,'' Helm said. "Hopefully, each day it continuously gets better and I can get back on the ice soon.''
But, he added, “It's hard for me to bend down and touch my toes or pick anything up.''
Helm said he hurt himself last week while doing "easy, light weight squats.'
Updated 5x at 2:50 PM: The Detroit Red Wings have officially begun training camp at Compuware Arena in Plymouth, and, for lack of a better term, the Wings' official Twitter account and the beat writers are Tweeting the hell out of it. Here's a selection of said Tweets, with stories from the first day to follow:
I guess one must follow the CBA to the letter, per the Red Wings' PR department:
RED WINGS RECALL THREE PLAYERS FROM GRAND RAPIDS … Detroit’s 2012-13 Training Camp Opens Later Today at Compuware Arena …
Detroit, MI…The Detroit Red Wings today announced that defensemen Brian Lashoff and Brendan Smith and forward Damien Brunner have been recalled from the Grand Rapids Griffins of the American Hockey League. Detroit’s 2012-13 Training Camp begins at 12:00 p.m. (noon) today at Compuware Arena in Plymouth, Mich. Fans are invited to attend this afternoon’s proceedings free of charge.
Full 2012-13 season ticket packages as well as Six & 12 Game Plans are on sale now. More information on all Red Wings ticketing options can be obtained by calling the team’s Sales & Service Department at 313-396-7575 or by visiting DetroitRedWings.com.
Update: Here's the Grand Rapids Griffins' version of the press release:
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.