The Malik Report
via Craig Custance of ESPN (must be an ESPN Insider to read on),
There's no doubt seasoning in the American Hockey League is crucial to the growth of most young hockey players. When citing the virtues of the league, scouts and team executives often say the same thing: They've seen players hurt because they were rushed to the NHL but never because they spent too much time in the AHL.
You can't help but wonder if Brendan Smith is pushing the limits of that theory....
This was the year we'd find out if the former Wisconsin star was ready to make that next step as an important NHL contributor. Then the lockout hit. And with the way talks are dragging, it could be another year in the AHL for the Toronto native.
Red Wings assistant GM Jim Nill doesn't believe there's such a thing as too much AHL development.
"I don't think you can ever be that way," he said during a phone conversation earlier this week. "The American League is even better this year. Right now, it's the best league in the world. The competition is there. In light of the situation, he's playing. He could be one of those other people who is sitting out."
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins announced on Monday that this Friday’s home game versus the Charlotte Checkers will air live on Fox Sports Detroit at 7 p.m.
The game will be called by the award-winning broadcast team of Ken Daniels and Mickey Redmond, who have worked Detroit Red Wings games together on Fox Sports Detroit for 15 seasons. Daniels is a two-time winner of Michigan Sportscaster of the Year (2003 and 2010) and was presented with the 2010-11 Ty Tyson Award by the Detroit Sports Broadcasters Association. Redmond, who has worked in the team’s television booth for 26 years, was honored in 2011 with the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for outstanding contributions as a hockey broadcaster.
from Bob Wojnowski of the Detroit News,
After the pennant was clinched and the World Series berth secured Thursday, Mike Ilitch spoke briefly on the dais, the size of the moment heavy in his voice. He thanked Tigers fans, gave a thumbs-up to manager Jim Leyland, was steadied by general manager Dave Dombrowski, then quietly exited the back of the stage.
There, away from the lights and the celebratory roar, Ilitch sat in a golf cart, surrounded by family, and posed for pictures. Minutes later, the cart zipped away with Ilitch and disappeared into the right-field tunnel.
The Tigers owner is 83 and moving slowly these days, but that's OK — he only has one thing left to chase. Of all the forces driving the Tigers, this is the most persistent one, the one that most desperately needs to be fulfilled. A World Series title has become Ilitch's last grail, and after nearly achieving it in 2006, when the Tigers lost to the Cardinals, the quest has grown more urgent....
Ilitch has four Stanley Cup rings from 30 years of owning the Red Wings. He has the Little Caesars empire, the Fox Theatre and so much more. He and his family are a towering force in rebuilding Detroit, and that would seem to be enough for several lifetimes.
But Ilitch unabashedly says his life wouldn't be complete without a World Series title. He's a former Tigers minor leaguer who forever harbored baseball dreams, and even though he no longer regularly bounds into locker rooms to greet players, they get the message. They see it in the team's $132 million payroll (fifth-highest), in Comerica Park's three million-plus attendance, in the fervent tones of a front office clutching a mandate that needs to be met soon.
Thanks to Sean Leahy for the twitter pointer...
from Andi Petrillo of CBC,
As talks continue in the NHL dispute between the players and owners, and previously scheduled regular season games are falling by the wayside, there is one elite athlete who is patiently waiting to take his permanent spot in hockey history.
Once this labour dispute is over, it will become official: Nicklas Lidstrom's No. 5 will be retired by the Detroit Red Wings.
It's an amazing stamp on an NHL career that began with modest expectations. It was only due to diligence that Lidstrom landed on the radar of North American hockey evaluators in the first place.
Current Red Wings general manager and executive vice president Ken Holland first found out about the defenceman in January 1989 through Neil Smith, who was then with the Detroit organization before becoming an eventual Stanley Cup winning GM with the New York Rangers.
Detroit's chief European scout at the time, Christer Rockstrom, is credited with discovering Lidstrom.
from Mike Chambers of All Things Avs,
In the press release, Quincey says: “After spending some time with (Cutthroats owner) Mr. (John) Hayes, I realize we have a common desire to further the development of youth hockey in Colorado which is a primary focus of the Cutthroats. Being able to do that while playing for a coach (Derek Armstrong) who has helped me throughout my career, and staying home in Denver, is an ideal situation for me considering the circumstances.”
from Micheline Maynard of the New York Times,
Frank Joseph James Lynch died Tuesday at a nursing home in Dearborn, Mich., at 95, having spent a remarkable 63 years connected with the Red Wings.
When I heard the news, I immediately teared up because his death took another piece of my childhood with him, and took away a voice that was part of Detroit sports history. I have no memories of the Red Wings that don’t include Lynch.
Perhaps because baseball is more popular, Harwell was more widely known. But in Detroit, which calls itself Hockeytown, Lynch was just as treasured. I first became aware of him because of my father, who grew up in Massachusetts and was a rabid hockey fan, regularly planting himself in front of our basement television to watch games. My mother, although a baseball fan, did not have much interest in hockey, and my brother did not follow sports.
I figured out that if I wanted quality time with my father, watching hockey was a way to get it. So I sneaked downstairs, first watching quietly, then asking questions: “What is icing?” “Why was that a penalty?” “Is he really hurt?” My patient father eventually told me, “Just pay attention to the announcer.”
The announcer was Budd Lynch.
from Lauren Abdel-Razzag,
More than 300 family members, friends and fans attended, including retired Red Wing great Gordie Howe and team owner Marian Ilitch.
"Budd went into a career that put him in the Hockey Hall of Fame and the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame. But most of all, he was a hall of famer to his family, a hall of famer to his friends," said Deacon Bill Jamieson, who said he has been friends with Lynch for more than 30 years. "It's a legacy to be imitated."
Lynch's casket was wheeled into the church accompanied by a bagpiper. On a table close by sat a framed photo of a smiling Lynch, a glass microphone statue and a bobble head doll of his likeness.
Detroit, MI... Some of the most popular players in the recent history of the Detroit Red Wings will be giving local hockey enthusiasts the opportunity to enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime experience in the coming weeks. The formidable foursome of Darren McCarty, Kirk Maltby, Kris Draper and Joe Kocur has reunited to present the ‘Grind Line 4-on-4 Fantasy Challenge’ at Joe Louis Arena.
Beginning today and lasting until availability is exhausted, teams comprised of nine (9) skaters and one (1) goaltender can purchase a special package providing participants with the chance to take on a squad featuring all four Grind Line members as well as several special guests from the Red Wings Alumni Association. All players competing must be at least 21 years of age. A total of six (6) matches will be held at JLA on the dates below (game times TBD):
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.