The Malik Report
Updated with the Stars' lineup for tonight's game at 2:29 PM: The Red Wings' prospects prepared for a stiff test in facing Jim Nill's Dallas Stars' prospects this evening at 7:30 via a brisk and superbly-organized practice this morning at Centre Ice Arena. The vast majority of Jeff Blashill's drills were very specific, involving dump-in retrieval, neutral zone play, breakouts, rotating penalty-killing "boxes" and power play units to get more traffic to the front of the net. Jim Bedard made sure that the goalies, including tonight's starter, Jared Coreau, would be sharp and ready for traffic themselves.
At present, it appears that the lines will remain the same as last night, with two exceptions:
Updated 5x with some Cleary stuff, some Bertuzzi stuff and some Hockey News Q's and A's at 2:02 PM: Oh joy, here we go:
From the Red Wings' PR department:
RED WINGS DROP PUCK ON THE 2013-14 SEASON WITH FIFTH ANNUAL MI WINGS COMMUNITY TOUR PRESENTED BY ITC
… Eleven Players to Make six stops en Route to Training Camp on Sept. 10 …
Detroit, MI… The Detroit Red Wings announced today the itinerary for the fifth annual MI Wings Community Tour presented by ITC Holdings Corp., with three groups of Red Wings players scheduled to stop at a military base, children’s hospital, police training academy, U.S. Coast Guard station and two elementary schools throughout the state en route to training camp in Traverse City on Tuesday, Sept. 10. All six stops on the tour are closed to the public.
Amongst this morning's Red Wings-related news stories:
The Red Wings' prospects defeated the Minnesota Wild's prospects 3-1 last night, and while I tried to focus on player evaluation and posted audio of my interviews, the Traverse City Record-Eagle's James Cook penned a superb recap, noting that Andreas Athanasiou's two-goal performance and all-around hustle impressed coach Jeff Blashill:
The Detroit Red Wings opened their slate of round-robin games at the prospect tournament with a 3-1 win over the Minnesota Wild. The game included a pair of scraps--Tyler Bertuzzi more or less played "tug and pull" with Carter Sandlak, and Richard Nedomlel got some serious pops in on Kurtis Gabriel--and then there was this moment with Wild prospect Oliver Archimbault...
But the Wings carried the day, with Andreas Athanasiou scoring two goals, Riley Sheahan scoring another and Jake Patersson pitching a shutout for almost 58 minutes, and eventually stopping 20 of 21 shots while the Wings fired 35 at Johan Gustafsson. With a big game against the heavily-favored Dallas Stars (who defeated
Buffalo St. Louis 5-2 on Thursday) set for Friday evening, the first of three round-robin games
The Detroit Red Wings' prospects defeated the Minnesota Wild's prospects by a 3-1 tally tonight in Traverse City, with Andreas Athanasiou scoring 2 goals, Riley Sheahan scoring the third and Jake Paterson stopping 20 of 21 shots--and the Wings face a stacked Dallas Stars team (Dallas defeated St. Louis 5-2) tomorrow night at 7:30 (the team practices at 11:30, and all practices are free and open to the public, with game admission at Centre Ice Arena costing $10).
I'll write up a little slate of player analyses in a bit, but I wanted to get the audio out to you ASAP. Those of us in the press corps spoke with the players in scrums this evening, so you may hear these interviews again.
Andreas Athanasiou discussed his superb performance, his desire to push the Wings to their first prospect tournament win and the reason he plays with a torn-up palm on his top hand glove:
Oh geez...Here are Brendan Smith and Justin Abdelkader, thumb-warring for the WWE championship belt...
Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said Cleary has an open invitation to join the team for training camp next week in Traverse City on a pro tryout, but with no guarantee of a contract. Holland hasn't heard back from Cleary, who hasn't indicated whether he will accept the invitation.
The 34-year-old forward is one of several notable unsigned free agents. Cleary turned down a three-year contract offer from the Red Wings just before the start of free agency on July 5.
The Red Wings value Cleary's abilities, leadership and versatility. But Holland has said the team would need to shed salary and trim three players before it could even consider signing him.
It's an understatement to suggest that the Red Wings' prospect tournament is a whole other ball of wax as compared to the summer development camp, and that was very, very evident as the Red Wings' prospects and try-outs engaged in something of a morning skate ahead of tonight's 7:30 PM game against the Minnesota Wild (Jared Coreau told me, among other things, that Jake Paterson starts this evening, and you can at least follow the game's box score along on Poinstreak and the Left Wing Lock).
Grand Rapids Griffins coach Jeff Blashill, assistant coaches Spiros Anastas and Jim Paek, Red Wings director of player development Jiri Fischer, goaltending coach Jim Bedard and executive and defenseman's mentor Chris Chelios were all on the ice with the prospects, so six of the 10 coaches from the summer camp returned--yielding smoothly and superbly-run drills, with players able to ask for pointers whenever necessary...
This is pretty spiffy:
So the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame is now asking fans to vote on its 2014 induction class...Give 'er a go as the aforementioned Wings are on the ballot.
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.