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Wings Skating In Denver

Media reports state Henrik Zetterberg is on the ice after taking a day-off yesterday.

Jonas Gustavsson won (3-1) his game today with the Grand Rapids Griffins against the Toronto Marlies in Toronto, giving up one goal on 31 shots and is headed to Denver.

The three goalies with the Wings right now, Howard, Mrazek and McCollum are on the ice in Denver too.

via Ansar Khan tweets,

Cleary rotating in.

Howard practicing again, rotating in with McCollum. Howard said yesterday he hopes to return next Wednesday.

Defense the same as last game:

added 4:18pm, power play via Khan...

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Anytime You Can Mention Elle Macpherson In A Hockey Story, You Do It

from Steve Schrader of the Detroit Free Press,

Elle Macpherson, Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and calendar model, actress and Belle Tire girl?

Sort of. She connected the dots during an appearance last week on ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" when Kimmel wondered whether she was a fan of the Super Bowl.

It's OK, Macpherson said, "but actually, I like ice hockey. I have an 11-year-old stepson who plays for Belle Tire in Detroit. It's really good. He plays Triple-A hockey. I'm like a hockey mom, believe it or not."

Believe it. Logan Soffer — the son of Macpherson's billionaire husband, Jeffrey Soffer — plays for the Belle Tire 2003 squad.


I wonder if attendance will now pick up?

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  Tags: elle+macpherson

Ken Holland On His Team

from Nichols On Hockey,

Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland was on Vancouver’s TSN 1040 on Wednesday morning.

On if he’s still in the market for a defenseman:

“Well, I would say to you there’s a lot of talk about us looking for a right-shot defenseman. That was last summer when we weren’t sure about Daniel Alfredsson’s health, and we really wanted a right shot defenseman we thought could play on the power play. As we speak today, I think we’re No. 1 in the league on the power play. Mike Babcock puts out four forwards on each unit. Danny DeKeyser, a defenseman, on one unit. Kronwall on another unit. With the development of Sheahan, and Tats, and Nyquist, Helm is healthy, Abdelkader, Zetterberg, Datsyuk – we’ve been able to have two units.

“So ideally would we like to have a right-shot defenseman, yeah; but I think it has to be the right right-shot defenseman. We’re not just looking for a right-shot defenseman. Our defense has played real good. We’ve come off it a little bit in the penalty kill. We were first or second on the penalty kill for a long time, but the last 10 games we haven’t done as good a job. We need to get better in that area.


Update: Ken Holland appears at the 7-minute mark of the following clip, and he speaks for 10 minutes:

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As we wait for late-afternoon Wings practice in Denver, Wings’ trade options appear to be dwindling

Updated 2x at 11:53 AM: The Red Wings chose to fly to Denver this morning, perhaps to beat the snow--and they won't even land until 1:30 to 2 PM EST (11:30-12 PM MST), and probably practice between 3-5 PM EST (1-3 PM MST), so, very briefly:

Well, first, the Avs defeated Dallas 3-2 in a shootout lst night, they've won 2 straight and 3 of their past 4 games, and they're in a desperate battle to earn a wild card spot because the Northwest Division is stacked, so they're going to bring desperation and urgency galore to Thursday's game.

Otherwise, in the trade rumor department:

As Paul noted, the Buffalo News's Jon Vogl reports that it certainly sounds like the Sabres aren't going to move Tyler Myers;

On TSN, Pierre LeBrun stated that the Red Wings are indeed interested in Cody Franson, but the whole within-divison dynamic, never mind the Detroit-Toronto rivalry, would likely yield a much higher price than a 2nd round pick and a solid prospect;

And Winging It in Motown's J.J. From Kansas spoke with Japer's Rink's Rob Parker about the parameters by which the Wings might acquire Mike Green, and Parker believes that a Mantha or Larkin would be absolutely necessary.

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Ranking The Red Wings

from Brendan Savage of Mlive,

Here's how the Red Wings fared this week.

• ESPN.com: Third, up from ninth. What they're saying: "How much fun is this race for the top spot in the Atlantic Division? The Wings have won 12 of 16 and are tied with the Canadiens, a point back of the Lightning."

• FoxSports.com: Fifth, up from seventh. What they're saying: "Detroit won its sixth straight - all without goalie Jimmy Howard - to move into first place in the Atlantic Division. Will the Wings make a trade for a defenseman to bolster their playoff run?

• NHL.com: Fifth, up from eighth. What they're saying: "The Red Wings continue to be the masters of suffocating shot attempts. Detroit is allowing 3.2 fewer per 60 minutes than second-stingiest Tampa Bay. For an idea of how clustered the middle is in this area, that's about the difference between 6th and 19th."

• The Hockey News: Fourth, down from second. What they're saying: "Pavel Datsyuk went head-to-head against John Tavares Saturday and shut down one of the hottest scorers in the NHL in a 4-1 win. The only blemish on their record recently was a 5-1 drubbing at the hands of the Lightning. Coming up: A huge test for the Wings comes in February when they play nine of 11 on the road. They're just 12-8-3 away from Joe Louis Arena."

• CSN New England: Seventh, down from fourth. What they're saying: "Five wins in a row without Jimmy Howard going into the All-Star break confirms that Mike Babcock's crew are playoff-caliber at all the other spots on the roster. They could still use a right shot D, however."

more weekly rankings...

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WDIV speaks with Murray Howe about his father’s stem cell transplant

WDIV aired the following story regarding Mr. Hockey, and, well...It's pretty moving, and it's also an indication that Dr. Murray Howe wants the world to know that he's got his dad's genes (sleeveless scrubs in winter?). Great stuff from WDIV's Hank Winchester:

The transcript is available as well...

Doctors Roger and Maynard Howe, who have no relation to Gordie but are huge hockey fans, thought their adult stem cell treatment could bring Mr. Hockey back to life.

"One of our employees, Dave McGuigan who is our vice president, had worked originally for the Detroit Red Wings and so he knew the Howe family," said Dr. Roger Howe, of Stemedica. "So we approached Dave one day and asked him if he could reach out to the family and find out if they might be interested in having Gordie enrolled in an approved clinical trial where he could be treated for his stroke condition with Stemedica cells."

Murray said the family discussed it together.

"This is definitely something we should consider, you know, for our dad, really because at this point we have nothing to lose," he said.

It required flying an almost lifeless Gordie Howe from his daughter's house in Texas to San Diego. Then he had to travel to Mexico, where the clinical trial already was underway. Just hours after the stem cells were injected, Gordie showed a new sign of life.

"I said, 'Dad, you can't walk,' and he said, 'The hell I can't,'" said Murray.

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Prospect news: On Janmark, Kadeikin, Paterson and Griffins/Great Skate notes

The one thing that's utterly freaked me out while trying to get my legs back under me is the month of prospect stuff I missed. Part of me wants to go back and offer a digest of every single game that every single player participated in over the past month, but that's probably unrealistic.

As such, I'm going to try to give you some per-player context on an as-we-encounter them basis, and that begins with 3 games played today:

In the Champions Hockey League, Mattias Janmark registered a shot on goal and played on the 3rd line as the Frolunda Indians dropped the CHL final, surrendering a 2-0 lead and eventually dropping a 4-2 decision to Lulea, their SHL rival. These games are technically exhibition affairs, but bragging rights were on the line here.

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Early overnight report: On the Fathers’ Trip, Howard, Franzen and coach’s comments

Updated 2x at 9:53 PM: I have a 7:30 AM appointment with a snowplow and moving two cars so that plow can clear the 2-4 inches of snow that's going to fall in the condo complex's parking lot this evening, so I'm just going to go with an "early overnight report" tonight and amend it as necessary.

1. First, to answer a question I posited, WXYZ's Tom Leyden Tweeted that yes, Sergei Fedorov is going to be attending his induction into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame on February 12th:

2. If you missed it, ESPN's Pierre LeBrun checked with his sources about Oliver Ekman-Larsson's availability during ESPN's weekly writers' chat, and he's not available, period, so shift your trade deadline speculation, Wings fans;

3. Regarding the present-day Red Wings and Tuesday's practice happenings, the Wings leave for Denver and a two-game Fathers' Trip (against the Avs on Thursday and Coyotes on Saturday), and I was quite surprised--pleasantly so--to hear and read Wings coach Mike Babcock get downright mushy about the trip's importance, as noted by CBS Detroit's Ashley Dunkak:

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Sipple: Mr. Hockey will indeed head to Saskatoon for a charitable appearance on Friday

Murray Howe spoke with the NHL Live for 13 minutes on Monday night, discussing his father's condition and the stem cell treatment that's made a dramatic impact upon his father's quality of life; tonight, WDIV will air a special report about Gordie that will include footage of Howe at his daughter Kathy's home in Lubbock, TX at 11 PM this evening.

In the interim, the Free Press's George Sipple reports that Gordie is officially making the trip to Saskatoon to attend Friday's Kinsmen's Dinner with his immediate and extended family, as well as Wayne Gretzky:

Murray Howe told the Free Press in a telephone interview Tuesday he was heading back to Lubbock on Wednesday to help accompany his father, along with other family members, to Saskatoon for the public appearance.

Gordie Howe's younger brother, Vic, who played for the New York Rangers, died Saturday at age 85 in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. Murray Howe said Gordie would not be able to attend his brother's funeral, but would be with two sisters, Helen and Vi, while in Saskatoon and the family would gather there for a memorial service for their brother.

Although the event in Saskatoon had been planned for more than a year, the Howe family told organizers in August that Gordie probably wouldn't be able to attend because of declining health. They definitely didn't think he'd be able to attend following a series of strokes that he had in the months that followed.

But Howe has made a drastic recovery, to the point that family members told the organizers "if there's an extra chair for him, he thinks he can make it."

Sipple continues at extended length, discussing the treatment Gordie underwent and allowing Murray to give us an update on Mr. Hockey's general functioning:

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Practice post: Jimmy Howard steadily progressing toward mid-February return; Fathers’ Trip imminent

Updated 2x at 4:29 PM: The Red Wings practiced in earnest today, after taking something of a pre-Toast of Hockeytown "Snow Day" on Monday; while Henrik Zetterberg's "maintenance day" is a little worrisome, the Wings' beat writers were far more intrigued by the possibility that Jimmy Howard may return to the lineup on or around the team's February 11th game in Pittsburgh.

With Jonas Gustavsson heading to Toronto to start the Griffins-Marlies matinee tomorrow, it appears that Howard will accompany Petr Mrazek and Tom McCollum on the Fathers' Trip (the Wings leave tomorrow for games against the 28-18-and-11 Avalanche on Thursday and bottom-dwelling Coyotes on Saturday), and Howard told the Free Press's George Sipple that his limited practice work hasn't resulted in any setbacks:

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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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