The Malik Report
from Graeme Nichols of Senators Extra,
Now that the Olympic break is over, the race for a playoff spot is on.
Entering last night’s action, the Senators were one point behind the Red Wings in the Eastern Conference’s wild card standings.
Following Detroit’s 2-1 overtime win in Montreal last night, Ottawa now sits three points back of the second wild card seed. Given the circumstances, an Ottawa loss would move them five points back and be devastating for their playoff chances.
Moreover, with only three more games (including tonight) before the NHL’s trade deadline on March 5, Ottawa’s proximity to a playoff position will inevitably affect Bryan Murray’s deadline philosophy....
In the last two Olympic years, no team has been better after the Olympic break than the Detroit Red Wings. In fact, they were the only team in the NHL to have a point percentage higher than .800 in either season following the break.
Probably the shortest post every in The Malik Report, but I've been working since 7:00am and need some sleep.
Just when you think the Wings had the game, Montreal scores late with their goalie pulled.
Then in OT, it is good Nyquist! Wings win 2-1.
Feel free to discuss...
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
A source said they also have interest in defenseman Andrew MacDonald of the New York Islanders, who leads the NHL in blocked shots. He is certain to be dealt as a rental; he’s in the last year of a deal earning just $550,000.
“We’re set in goal,” Holland said. “With the development of (Tomas) Jurco, (Gustav) Nyquist, (Tomas) Tatar, (Riley) Sheahan, -- if you have a healthy (Johan) Franzen, (Pavel) Datsyuk, we expect to get (Stephen) Weiss back next week – we feel up front (they’re set).
“Tonight (at Montreal) we’re going to sit out veteran players who could play in the NHL. I don’t know that I can make a deal that there’s many players out there that are better than those forwards.”
added 1:58pm, via Anthony French of the Detroit Free Press,
“He’s good to go,” general manager Ken Holland said this morning.
Datsyuk, 35, has been battling a left knee issue that kept him out of action with the Wings for more than a month before the Olympics but didn’t keep him from starring for the home team in Sochi. He tallied six points — including three goals — in five games.
“He was very good,” Holland said. “I thought he was very good. I think the issue he’s got is something he’s just going to have to play through.”
via Khan tweets,
Holland said Grand Rapids defenseman Alexey Marchenko out 6-8 weeks, will need ankle surgery.
Lines at skate at Bell Centre: Franzen-Datsyuk-Bertuzzi, Abdelkader-Helm-Alfredsson, Tatar-Sheahan-Jurco, Miller-Andersson-Nyquist.
Looks like Eaves, Cleary and Glendening are out based in how they're skating but that's not confirmed.
If Franzen is cleared they'll be one over limit believe. Will need to send down a player. Maybe Sproul, who it appears isn't in tonight.
Defense pairs are Ericsson-Kronwall, Quincey-DeKeyser, Lashoff-Smith
added 12:01pm, Khan tweet,
Babcock said he thinks Franzen is good to go but it will be game time decision. Bertuzzi is playing for sure. Sproul is not. Howard starts
DETROIT– The Detroit Red Wings announced today a game time change for Nick Lidstrom Jersey Retirement Night, presented by Flagstar Bank, on Thursday, March 6. The club’s 133rd consecutive sellout, originally posted as a 7:30 p.m. start, has been pushed back to 8:00 p.m. to accommodate the pre-game ceremony retiring No. 5 in honor of defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom.
The Toledo Blade's Rachel Lenzi recently revealed that the Red Wings' ECHL affiliate, the Toledo Walleye, is considering ending its status as having dual affiliations with the Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks because the lack of roster continuity (the Wings and Hawks can assign as many as 6 players from their respective AHL affiliates to Toledo) have absolutely wreaked havoc upon the team's ability to ice any sort of consistent roster.
The Walleye sit at the very bottom of the ECHL's Eastern Conference with a 16-31-3-and-1 record, and their 36 points are six better than the bottom-feeding Las Vegas Wranglers.
Between the Red Wings, Grand Rapids Griffins, Blackhawks and Rockford IceHogs' respective injury issues, the team has all but literally needed to install a revolving door outside its locker room, but when you're 16-and-35, heads are going to roll. As a result, the following press release came as no surprise:
I've spent the past two days basically hibernating after two weeks' of 2-to-4-AM wake-up calls and Olympic work, absolutely exhausted by the time change and grind. The Nicklas Lidstrom of blogging (Paul) has kept at it, however, so I'm not necessarily surprised to find that, ahead of the Wings' back-to-back games in Montreal tomorrow and Ottawa on Thursday:
- Johan Franzen won't be sure whether he's bested his post-concussive headaches until he's played in a game, which is worrisome;
- Neither Jakub Kindl (knee) nor Stephen Weiss (abdominal issue) are quite ready to play (so Ryan Sproul will make his NHL debut);
- Pavel Datsyuk came back from the Olympics with his knee feeling just as badly as it did when he left;
- And we won't know whether Daniel Alfredsson, Jonathan Ericsson, Jonas Gustavsson, Niklas Kronwall or Gustav Nyquist came back from Sochi any worse for wear until Wednesday's morning skate.
- On top of all of that, Ken Holland informed Detroit Sports 105.1 FM that he's not going to move what might become a draft-lottery-eligible 1st round pick, nor any of the team's top prospects, in order to bolster his Henrik Zetterberg-less roster with the trade deadline a little less than eight days away (and you can be most certain that the first words that come out of his managerial counterparts' mouths when talking trade turkey involve Anthony and Mantha).
From the Red Wings' PR department:
RED WINGS FAN DAY AT THE JOE SET FOR MARCH 11
… Fun-Filled, Free Event Presented in Partnership with Coca-Cola …
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings and Coca-Cola have teamed up to present the 2014 edition of Coke Zero Fan Day at Joe Louis Arena, scheduled to take place on Tuesday, March 11 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Red Wings GM Ken Holland reflected upon his Olympic experience and briefly addressed the Red Wings' trade deadline plans while appearing on Detroit Sports 105.1 FM today:
Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News was at practice today and had this to report after practice...
Datsyuk wasn’t sure whether he would be able to play Wednesday in Montreal.
“It’s similar,” Datsyuk said of how he is feeling compared to when he left. “I’m hoping one day the pain (would go away). Now, it’s still the same.”
Datsyuk arrived in Detroit on Monday after spending a few days in Russia, following the national team’s disappointing early exit in the Olympics.
It was an opportunity, said Datsyuk, to gather his thoughts and get some rest, and “move forward.”
Datsyuk said the loss of Henrik Zetterberg (disc surgery) for the remainder of the regular season will be a tough loss.
“It hurts a lot,” Datsyuk said. “You’re missing the captain. He’s a leader. It’s a big miss. We need to stick together (as a team).”
more on the Wings including the lineup for tomorrow is still up in the air...
Ansar Khan with his update...
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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.