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Ann Arbor plans on ‘dropping the puck’ on New Year’s Eve

On Wednesday, the NHL will reveal the details of the "Fan Zone" they're placing outside of Comerica Park for the Hockeytown Winter Festival, and on Thursday, the University of Michigan's Board of Regents will vote on a measure allowing fireworks to be used during the Winter Classic itself, which MLive's Kellie Woodhouse revealed is expected to yield $14-15 million in fan spending in the Ann Arbor area...

And if you plan on staying in Ann Arbor prior to the game, the Ann Arbor Chronicle reports that you will be able to ring in the New Year with the dropping of a...Puck?

Two events scheduled for New Year’s have received approval for their associated street closings from the Ann Arbor city council: The Puck Drops Here and the National Hockey League’s Winter Classic Game. Council action came at its Nov. 18, 2013 meeting.

In connection with the NHL Winter Classic Game to be played on New Year’s Day, the Ann Arbor Area Convention and Visitors Bureau is hosting a New Year’s Eve event called The Puck Drops Here, which will mimic the dropping of the lighted ball in Times Square, but with a 6-foot diameter lighted “puck” that is being fabricated by METAL.

The name of the event is a play on words. In the game of ice hockey, the start of action is marked with an official dropping of the puck between two opposing players – the puck drop. It’s similar to the tip-off in basketball. The name of the event also plays on the expression popularized by U.S. President Harry Truman: “The buck stops here.”

The Chronicle also lists all of the street closures expected for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day (and it states that "lawn parking" will be allowed in the neighborhood surrounding the stadium), and the Ann Arbor Convention and Visitors' Bureau has more information about the "puck drop":

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NHL.com’s profile of Red Wings prospect Anthony Mantha reveals that he wasn’t a ‘Nill pick’

Anthony Mantha registered a goal and an assist in the first game of the "Super Series" between what are essentially all-star teams representing the Canadian Hockey League's three respective major junior-playing branches in the QMJHL, OHL and WHL, and the Red Wings have already signed the 20th overall pick in the 2013 draft to an entry-level contract for a simple reason:

Mantha would've been way more expensive to sign later, even though he already has what Capgeek states is the highest-cap-hit contract of any Wings prospect at $925,000 per season for his first three years (with a $70,000 AHL salary and a $92,500 signing bonus for his first three years as a pro, and that $925,000 isn't an averaged number; it's the NHL salary he'd earn).

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Red Wings-Predators set-up and overnight report: the Wings *should* be able to pounce on the Preds

The Detroit Red Wings' six-game winless streak provoked the following comment from TSN's Scott Cullen in his latest set of power rankings:

This Week 16 Last Week17 Detroit Red Wings 9-5-7

Winless in six sounds worse than it really is, since the Wings have accumulated points in five of those six games, but a seven-game home winless streak is a problem for a team that had hopes of being a contender.

I don't buy the concept that the Red Wings have to turn in some sort of membership in the, "We've earned the right to be taken seriously" card because they've amassed an ugly 1-2-and-3 record over their past six games and two weeks' worth of play, especially given the progress made in the team's losses to Washington and the Islanders.

That being said, as the Wings embark upon a slate of 4 games played over the course of 6 nights starting this evening against Nashville (7:30 PM, FSD Plus/FS Tennessee/AM 1270), owing all of an 0-1-and-6 home record of late and 3-2-and-6 record at the Joe for this season, heading into three straight home games (Nashville this evening, Carolina on Thursday and Ottawa on Saturday; the Wings will head to Buffalo for Sunday's game), the Wings have most certainly burned their margin for error over the next month or so.

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Red Wings prospect news: Mantha scores gamer in Super Series; a Bertuzzi profile and Griffins stuff

The Subway Super Series got underway on Monday night in Gatineau, Quebec, with a team of QMJHL stars battling a...middling-on-paper Russian team. Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Jonathan Drouin stole the show via a 3-assist performance in the QMJHL's 3-2 win over Russia, and Montreal Canadiens prospect Charles Hudon got talked up for his 2 goals-and-1-assist perforance in La Belle Province, but NHL.com's Adam Kimelman notes that a certain Red Wings prospect scored the game-winner:

Anthony Mantha's goal with 4:07 left in the third period snapped a 2-2 tie and gave the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League a 3-2 win against Russia on Monday in the opening game of the Subway Super Series, palyed in Gatineau, Quebec.

The line of Mantha, Charles Hudon and Jonathan Drouin supplied all the offense for QMJHL. Hudon had two goals and an assist; Drouin had the primary assist on all three goals.


Mantha, taken by the Detroit Red Wings with the 20th pick of the 2013 draft, scored the winner at 15:53 of the third. Hudon carried the puck into the Russia end and dropped it for Drouin. His shot was blocked, but Mantha grabbed the loose puck in front of the Russia net, kicked it his backhand in the crease and scored.

Strong play in front of the net is nothing new for Mantha. Last season he was the only 2013 draft-eligible player in the Canadian Hockey League to score 50 goals, and this season he leads the QMJHL with 24 goals and 54 points in 23 games.

The Subway Super Series' website and Canadian Press also posted recaps, HockeysFuture spoke with Hudon and Drouin, and Sportsnet posted a 1:17 highlight clip:

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Red Wings confirm participation in benefit for Matt Sorisho this Wednesday at Compuware Arena

Last weekend, Ken Daniels and Fox Sports Detroit revealed that the Red Wings are taking part in a fundraiser for the family of Matt Sorisho this Wednesday, November 20th at Compwuare Arena in Plymouth (from 6-10 PM), and today, the Red Wings' community relations department fleshed out the team's participation. Per DetroitRedWings.com's Christy Hammond:

Detroit Red Wings players Danny DeKeyser, Jimmy Howard, Mikael Samuelsson and Stephen Weiss will be joined by head coach Mike Babcock along with alumni Ted Lindsay, Kris Draper, Chris Osgood and Kirk Maltby at a benefit held on the covered ice at Compuware Arena in Plymouth, Mich., on Wednesday, Nov. 20, at 6 p.m.

This event will raise money for medical, home modification and mobility equipment expenses that Matt Sorisho, a senior at Detroit Catholic Central High School, faces after suffering a serious injury during a hockey tournament that left him with life-changing spinal cord injuries, which are estimated to be over $500,000 in the first year.

Tickets are still available to the event for $100 and can be purchased online by visiting http://bidpal.net/matt18 The e.vent will feature a large assortment of auction items, including packages donated by the Red Wings:


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Red Wings Monday practice post: mixed bag of injury news as Smith good to go, Alfredsson still iffy

Updated 7x at 4:14 PM: The Red Wings returned to practice at Joe Louis Arena after having dropped consecutive shootout decisions on Friday and Saturday, and MLive's Ansar Khan reported good news on the injury front...

Wings on ice for practice. Everybody is skating, including Weiss and Smith, who've been out with injuries.


Correction, Alfredsson is not skating.


Wings skating with these lines: 49-13-44, 93-43-21, 71-18-37. 20-8, Weiss skating with top 6, they're short a player on bottom six.

And bad news in the hype department...

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The Winter Classic hopes to come in, go out with a ‘bang’

Via RedWingsFeed, the Detroit Free Press's Mark Snyder reports that the University of Michigan's Board of Regents have what I'll suggest is a "unique" Athletic Department proposal to vote upon at the Board's upcoming meeting:

One is a “close proximity fireworks display” for the NHL’s Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs, to be held Jan. 1 at Michigan Stadium.

From the regents’ agenda posted today: “Fireworks would be displayed at various points during the playing of the national anthems of Canada and the United States, and during player introductions. They may also be displayed during musical performances during the first or second intermission. Immediately following the game, the event would close out with fireworks for approximately one minute. The brief pregame and intermission displays will be performed from the field and rooftops and the postgame display from the rooftops of the east and west towers of the stadium.”

NHL Enterprises would contract with ACE Pyro for the display.

Update: Via Paul, MLive's Kellie Woodhouse offers some economic context for the event:

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Red Wings will reveal details of Hockeytown Winter Festival’s ‘Coke Zero Fan Zone’ on Wednesday

The Red Wings emailed a press release about a press conference (scheduled for Wednesday morning) to their "media" email list this morning, and I am intrigued to find out what the "Coke Zero Fan Zone" will involve:


WHAT: Major announcement detailing the Coke Zero™Fan Zone which will be a prominent feature of the 2013 SiriusXM®Hockeytown Winter Festival™and will take place outside of Comerica Park™.

Detroit Red Wings and Olympia Entertainment representatives join Red Wings Alumni to share details about the five-day celebration which will provide a festive backdrop with hockey and winter-themed activities all ages can enjoy.

Hockey activities, food offerings and a special live music performance preview that will be part of the Fan Zone will also be showcased.

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Griffins issue ‘Tip a Griffin’ reminder, post Jurco’s hat trick and play ‘Spelling Bee’

The Grand Rapids Griffins posted a Tweet reminding fans that their annual "Tip a Griffin" charitable event is taking place tomorrow, and Tuesday's charitable event very literally has the players engaging in community service:

Update: FYI:


(The Griffins revised their lineups via email: Jordin Tootoo's now taking part and the 3 remaining locations will now include those who were supposed to take part in the Ucello's event in Caledonia, MI):

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins usually look for tips near the net, but on Monday, Nov. 18 from 6-8 p.m., they’ll exchange their jerseys for aprons in an evening of serving appetizers, entrees and beverages to patrons at Uccello’s Ristorante, in the return of the team’s popular Tip-A-Griffin fundraiser.

Griffins players, coaches and hockey staff will visit all four Uccello’s locations in West Michigan to serve and wait tables, with donations and raffle proceeds benefiting the Griffins Youth Foundation. In its previous seven editions, Tip-A-Griffin raised nearly $70,000 for various local charities.

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Former Red Wings alum Reg Sinclair’s passing yields loss of a legend for Mike Babcock’s alma mater

Sometimes obituaries of hockey players offer little context. On Friday, the NHL reported that Reg Sinclair, who played in 69 regular season and 3 playoff games for the Red Wings back in the 1952-1953 season, had passed away at age 88.

It turns out that Mr. Sinclair has more than 69 games' worth of a connection to the Red Wings, and, when Mike Babcock receives his honorary doctorate from McGill University next Monday, the CBC News reports that Babcock's likely to pay tribute to one of the McGill Redmen's most legendary players:

Born on March 6, 1925 in Lachine, Que., Sinclair served with the Royal Canadian Air Force from 1943 to 1945. After the war, he enrolled at McGill, where he was an all-star with the Redmen from 1945 to 1949, and earned a commerce degree in 1949.

During his senior year, Sinclair served as captain of the Redmen and was voted MVP of the Senior Intercollegiate Hockey League after winning the conference scoring title with 21 goals and 14 assists in 12 games.

A prolific scorer, he tied a McGill single-game —recordwhich still stands—scoring 10 points, including seven assists, against the University of Montreal Carabins on Feb. 25, 1949.

Sinclair also established a number of other McGill records, including: most assists in a period, most assists in a game, fastest five points and assists in a game, fastest four points and assists in a game, and fastest three points and assists in a game.


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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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