Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

A dissenting opinion

Last night, I plainly stated my belief that Mike Babcock's sharply-worded criticism of his team was not only necessary, but also long overdue. I'm getting incredibly tired of the, "Waive everyone, bring up ALL the Griffins" (the Wings have gotten pretty close there) "and fire Babcock, he's the problem!" talk.

The coaching staff consists of more than one man, and watching the Wings' Game-Day Preview after the Wings' loss reminded me that associate coach Tom Renney and assistant coach Bill Peters often share the ice with video coach Keith McKittrick and goalie coach Jim Bedard.

Just as the management is more than "Ken Holland"--Holland, assistant GM Jim Nill, capologist Ryan Martin, manager-in-training Kris Draper, Mark Howe's pro scouting staff (which includes Kirk Maltby), the team's amateur scouts, player mentors like Chris Chelios and Chris Osgood and director of player development Jiri Fischer--so there are more than two people coaching and managing this team.

Just as importantly, while you and I may not agree with their decisions, the men in charge of this team's coaching and management are trying to win, not trying to specifically piss you off or drive players out of town. Suggestions to the contrary simply don't hold water over the long haul. Coaches and management want their players to succeed, and while we have every right to criticize their decision-making processes, this concept that coaches and management only exist as adversaries of their own personnel isn't accurate.

And as for this poor guy wearing #13, who's supposedly being "driven out of town?"

Yes, we know that Pavel Datsyuk has suggested that he may finish his career in Russia. Yes, we know that he's got strong patriotic leanings, to the point that the Wings have somewhat reluctantly agreed to allow him to play for the Russian national team at the World Championships while injured, and have done so repeatedly. Yes, we know that his daughter's attending school in Yekaterinburg, which is never a good sign.

But Datsyuk HAS been vocal after wins AND losses, and in case anybody forgot, here's what he told DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose about the supposed slug playing on his line:

Pavel Datsyuk’s English isn’t always easy to understand. But the Russian star perfectly described what Justin Abdelkader meant to the Red Wings in the first half of the season, which ended with Thursday’s 3-0 win over Edmonton.

“He goes through and gets the puck to me or goes back in front of the net and fights for every puck,” Datsyuk said, Friday afternoon. “Some people only measure him if he scores. But if you see him … he does a lot of hard jobs.”

Abdelkader was finally rewarded for his hard work when he scored his first goal of the season Thursday at Joe Louis Arena, which snapped a 41-game scoring drought.

Using an analogy to sum up Abdelkader’s contribution to the top six forwards this season, Datsyuk said, “It’s like somebody needs to pull the piano and somebody needs to play the piano. This is a guy who pulls the piano.”

I don't like the Abdelkader-Datsyuk-Cleary line combination--which became an Abdelkader-Datsyuk-Franzen line last night--but Datsyuk's not exactly skating into puck battles at half speed, shrugging his shoulders and going back to the bench having given a quarter of his usual effort...

And he's not alone in the, "Top six-to-nine forwards gone completely silent over the past 10-12 games" department. Datsyuk has been able to succeed at the NHL level regardless of his linemates, as has Henrik Zetterberg, and they tend to receive leeway in terms of scoring slumps, but brass tacks are brass tacks, and the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan penned this before last night's game:

Pavel Datsyuk has gone 10 games without a goal. It’s a lengthy streak, but interestingly, Datsyuk has gone through more droughts that have been much longer.

Datsyuk’s longest stretch without a goal is 21 games, from Nov. 5 2002 to Jan. 28, 2003 (he missed 18 games in between due to injury). In all, Datsyuk has had 11 droughts of at least 10 games in his career.

It's 11 games now, and Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Valtteri Filppula, Damien Brunner, Johan Franzen, yes, Danny Cleary and Justin Abdelkader, Niklas Kronwall, Jonathan Ericsson, Jimmy Howard and the rest of the Red Wings' players need to step up.

This isn't a case of the Wings' coaches being the sole reason that its players can't or won't succeed. The Red Wings' players aren't rowing the boat, and a significant chunk of blame for this team rowing in circles has to lie with the players.
 

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Comments

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IwoCPO's avatar

The coaching staff consists of more than one man

No it does not.  You have a head coach. He’s the leader and the ultimate man responsible. The Jack Adams is not the Jennings. It doesn’t go to a “staff”. It goes to the head coach. 

Just as the management is more than “Ken Holland”

No it is not. Holland hires (and rarely fires) everyone below his position. Everyone. It’s his responsibility.  His burden alone.  That’s what leadership is about. 

I’m done defending this organization. Done.  Holland hasn’t done dick at the deadline or the offseason in YEARS.  Babcock’s being tuned out.  A cleansing is required. 

 

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 01:16 PM ET

Avatar

Four things:

-Datsyuk leaving.  Maybe he will, maybe he won’t… but I seem to recall a certain player who threatened to stay in Russia as his RFA status was expiring in an attempt to milk a few more mil out of Detroit when talks were stalling between the two parties.  Oh, hey, that was Datsyuk, too.  Wow.  How terribly odd that these rumors would start swirling around him, a year and a half ahead of his last NHL contract.

-The blame game.  Really, it’s just so, so stupid and pointless.  At some point in the fairly immediate future the fanbase is going to have to start understanding Detroit’s not that great relative to the rest of the league anymore… and that’s not anyone’s ‘fault’.  It’s the way the NHL is going to work from now on.

-That said, Detroit’s been without 3 legit top 9 forwards pretty much all season.  Are they a top 3 or 4 with Sammy, Bert and Helm back and playing?  Maybe, maybe not.  They are a top 6 team though.

-Jimmy Howard getting a huge deal will be a big, big mistake.  Giiiiigantic.  I can’t imagine Holland dropping the ball that much.  I’m thinking it’s 4 years top and 4.5 mil a year tops.  Even that’s more than I would pay, but if Holland goes beyond that he’s really dropping the ball on that contract.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 03/14/13 at 01:18 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

thank you Chief, took the words out of my mouth.  Mr. type A personality Babs really is just a figure head of his democratic coaching staff?  Horse shit.

Same with KH.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 01:19 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

And Pavel not doggin his teammate, MUST mean they’re having success right?  No even strength goals in 12 games, no primary assists in however many.. Pav must be lovin’ it, you’re right.

I’d be more willing to bet Pav was being tactful.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 01:20 PM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar


  Datsyuk’s longest stretch without a goal is 21 games, from Nov. 5 2002 to Jan. 28, 2003 (he missed 18 games in between due to injury). In all, Datsyuk has had 11 droughts of at least 10 games in his career.

What a disappointment… I mean, sophomore slump.

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 03/14/13 at 01:21 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Even that’s more than I would pay, but if Holland goes beyond that he’s really dropping the ball on that contract.

That’d be just playing the blame game HD.  And you’re above that.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 01:22 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

I seem to recall a certain player who threatened to stay in Russia as his RFA status was expiring in an attempt to milk a few more mil out of Detroit when talks were stalling between the two parties.  Oh, hey, that was Datsyuk, too.  Wow.  How terribly odd that these rumors would start swirling around him, a year and a half ahead of his last NHL contract.

Whatever.  Datsyuk’s deliberately spreading “return to Russia” rumors now to get more money in his final contract, instead of a real desire to go home and leave a franchise that is doing nothing to improve itself?  I see. 

 

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 01:23 PM ET

Avatar

He’s the leader and the ultimate man responsible.

Which makes all the whining about PK or PP coaches over the years a bit interesting, eh?

No it is not. Holland hires (and rarely fires) everyone below his position. Everyone. It’s his responsibility.  His burden alone.  That’s what leadership is about.

He’s been a total chump.  I mean, what kind of loser doesn’t maintain the same standard of success when everyone pretty much spends the same amount as he did back when he could spend 2-3 times more than half the league?

I’m done defending this organization. Done.  Holland hasn’t done dick at the deadline or the offseason in YEARS.  Babcock’s being tuned out.  A cleansing is required.

I agree, but I’m thinking more along the lines of a cleansing of spoiled, overwrought fans than I am of the front office.

It will be nice to have all the frontrunning blowhards off the bandwagon.  All the dopes who just don’t understand The Way Things Are.

It’s been exactly three seasons since Detroit was coming off BACK TO BACK CUP FINALS, and ‘fans’ like the Chief are ‘done defending this organization’?

Good riddance you bunch of front-running, spoiled poser faux-fans.  Go buy a Tigers jersey and bleep yourselves.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 03/14/13 at 01:27 PM ET

Mandingo's avatar

Whatever your opinion is of which individual actors may be responsible, the plain fact of the matter is that what the organization as a whole is doing, it isn’t working. And it hasn’t been working for a while.

It’s no more complicated than that.

Fairly major changes need to be made. The culture of mediocrity that has crept into being over the course of the last few seasons has to be reversed.

Well, I mean, I guess it doesn’t HAVE to be reversed, but it certainly does if this team wants to start competing for Cups again. Because right now they aren’t even close. It’s not a matter of making tweaks or minor moves.

Posted by Mandingo from The Garage on 03/14/13 at 01:28 PM ET

Avatar

Datsyuk’s deliberately spreading “return to Russia” rumors now to get more money in his final contract, instead of a real desire to go home and leave a franchise that is doing nothing to improve itself?  I see. 

See also: Lidstrom.
See also: Hudler.

It’s not exactly a new move, dude.  You don’t have to have ‘The Prince’ memorized to figure it out.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 03/14/13 at 01:28 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

Good riddance you bunch of front-running, spoiled poser faux-fans.  Go buy a Tigers jersey and bleep yourselves.

You said, “faux”.  Nice.  Does that mean you’re leaving? I can never tell.

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 01:30 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

You don’t have to have ‘The Prince’ memorized to figure it out.

Awww, look at well-read HD going all Machiavelli on us.  Like a pharmacist.  Just to be clear, you’re saying Datsyuk is going to fleece the organization for more money, hold them hostage, then re-sign for two or three more years?  Is that it? Are you still here, or was that too front running or faux for you?

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 01:32 PM ET

NIVO's avatar

I hope we get a beautiful new arena soon. Atleast we can look good in it while gettin our ass handed to us.


And yes that was sarcasm just in case anyone isnt sure. OK, so if it DOES pickup this weekend and we manage to get all 4 points, we still need to all discuss possible movement(s) at the deadline. We need a stickied thread for this discussion.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/14/13 at 01:36 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Good riddance you bunch of front-running, spoiled poser faux-fans.  Go buy a Tigers jersey and bleep yourselves.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 03/14/13 at 01:27 PM ET


ahahah, you have no idea how epic this is because of your narcissistic tendancies but holy shit.  King of hypocrite’s wear’s a crown of thorns, lmao.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 01:38 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I’m with Chief.  HiHD stands for himself.

We’re all Wings fans, but I like the way Chief is a fan more than I like how bloviated fartbags who ruin comments sections with their tireless dickbaggery are fans.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/14/13 at 01:38 PM ET

Avatar

I am not in the extream that G is describing, but does anyone think the team today is better than the team we took the the playoffs the last two years? Even with Helm and Sammy back?

Thats my problem. We were not good enough last year but we didn’t improve.


I don’t see the plan right now to get back to the top. We are not a cup contender right now. With people back from injury I don’t see it either.

So is the plan just “Wait for the young kids to get ready.”? Maybe, but that is one risky plan in any sport.

Waiting for the right deal or FA to show up. Its been a while since that happened and waiting for a low risk one isn’t easy.

Tank for a high pick?  Not doing a good job of it.

I just don’t see this combo of players taking us to a cup right now.

Posted by lancer on 03/14/13 at 01:43 PM ET

gt500x's avatar

I hope we get a beautiful new arena soon. Atleast we can look good in it while gettin our ass handed to us.

It worked for the Lions!  :D

Posted by gt500x on 03/14/13 at 01:44 PM ET

NIVO's avatar

ROFL, JJ. Im gonna have to fit “dickbaggery” into a sentence this week.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/14/13 at 01:46 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

The Red Wings’ players aren’t rowing the boat, and a significant chunk of blame for this team rowing in circles has to lie with the players.

I agree that once the puck drops the players have to perform as best they can.  The only point I would add is that they have to be put in a position to succeed based on their skill sets.

In the case of Aby he has been put in a position that he does not have the skills for and it is making himself and the Pav line look out of sync.  He is a 4th liner and does a good job there.  Maybe it is just that there is nobody else to fill that role right now with Bert hurt.

Hopefully last nights performance will be a turning point for the Wings as it must be close to hitting bottom.  It really was a team effort with few bright spots.

I still am a believer that the Ice time allocated to players should be when possible based on their performance.  Contracts (1 way/2 way), the Cap, etc. will make this difficult at times.

Losing streaks are tough to shake.  I still think most of the Wings are choking their sticks and thinking too much instead of using their instincts to make plays.  A win or 2 would help in a lot of ways.

Maybe they need an intervention from a Sports Psychologist to get their heads on straight, LOL!

 

 

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 03/14/13 at 01:50 PM ET

Mandingo's avatar

Posted by Mandingo from The Garage on 03/14/13 at 01:58 PM ET

Avatar

Just as importantly, while you and I may not agree with their decisions, the men in charge of this team’s coaching and management are trying to win, not trying to specifically piss you off or drive players out of town.

Yeah, we definitely want to hang on to the dead weight that’s accumulated over the past few seasons with dear life. And extend them and pay them more!

Posted by godblender on 03/14/13 at 01:59 PM ET

Avatar

We are finally reaping what was sown the last three years. Key personal not being replaced by the talent level that was needed has put more holes in this team than a Tijuana donkey show. Babs has wanted a top 6 forward for years now with no delivery, getting outbid on prize free agents, and questionable handling of players have caused alot of this. We are Wings fans for life but we hold this team to a high water mark. To whom much is given much is expected.

Posted by Breuker19 on 03/14/13 at 02:17 PM ET

NIVO's avatar

Amnesty buyouts are sounding much purtier.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/14/13 at 02:23 PM ET

NIVO's avatar

We are Wings fans for life but we hold this team to a high water mark. To whom much is given much is expected.

totally agree. We are spoiled to this standard, and thats not a bad thing. We all bitch because we care. If we didnt, this place would be a ghost town. Rock On fellow Wings fans.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/14/13 at 02:26 PM ET

Avatar

He’s been a total chump.  I mean, what kind of loser doesn’t maintain the same standard of success when everyone pretty much spends the same amount as he did back when he could spend 2-3 times more than half the league?

Thanks for putting it into perspective.

So Ken Holland was never particularly good, he just had free reign to spend whatever he wanted.  I guess he was only ever a better GM than JFJ and Slats, who were the only teams able to spend what Holland was able to spend.

Posted by Garth on 03/14/13 at 02:32 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

I seem to recall a certain player who threatened to stay in Russia as his RFA status was expiring in an attempt to milk a few more mil out of Detroit when talks were stalling between the two parties.

That “drama” was driven by Pavel’s agent, not by Pavel.

I think the current talk of him going back to Russia is being driven by these factors:

1. Lil’ Gary’s lockout gave him a taste of what it would be like to have his family around him nearly every day.

2. His daughter is now 10 and he may be having regrets about missing her “growing up” years. And seeing Nick head home, in part, for that reason may be a factor.

3. As much as he’s saying nice things about Abby, you have to know he’s looking around at guys like Tatar, Nyquist and even Andersson and wondering why they aren’t playing with him right now. It’s no mystery why he hasn’t scored a goal in 11 games – except, of course, to Babcock.

If Pavel does leave, I won’t blame him one bit for his decision. He’s got at least three excellent reasons for making that choice.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 03/14/13 at 02:54 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Not that anyone gives two shits about my opinion, but I’ll give it anyway by splitting the difference here: To me, Babcock is completely responsible for what happens with the team on the ice. He gets input from the assistants, but otherwise he makes the lineups, tells who to be on the ice when, and ultimately has sole responsibility for the performance of the on-ice product.

The “front-office,” on the other hand, is run more by committee, with other hands in the cookie jar besides Ken Holland’s (Executive Vice President & General Manager); does he truly have ultimate authority over the other brass when it comes to on-and-off-ice personnel decisions? How much say does a guy like Nill (Vice President & Assistant General Manager) or Devellano (Senior Vice President & Alternate Governor) actually have in that room? I mean, hell, Devellano is even listed above Holland on the Wings’ “Management” listing.

Whatever. Bottom line is I’m not going to stop watching or cheering for the Wings, even if they pull a Lions, and whatever anyone else wants to do is their business and not for me to judge.

That’s it, that’s all I’ve got. Nothing worth reading, really.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 03/14/13 at 03:21 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

I truly think Babs is on his way out. This season almost smells like his last in Anaheim.

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach on 03/14/13 at 03:27 PM ET

statelouis26's avatar

99% of the Wings fans here are nothing but whiners who change their story game to game.  All those that now want everyone fired and the team blown apart were those that dogged the people who dared question the almighty Holland.  It’s reactionary 24/7.  It’s not about being right or wrong.  It’s a culture.

For the record I don’t think Ken or Babs should be fired for two years of mediocrity.  It’s not even close to rock bottom, aka Columbus OH.  But it’s clear that both have their flaws.  Babs lost much of his integrity through his decisions the past couple years.  Playing players by their contract and not according to their effort/performance is biting the team in the ass right now.  As is being obsessed with paying and playing has-been veterans.  Keeping Wing veterans around too long and putting them in the organization simply out of loyalty is not a successful endeavor.  These problems or faults in the way the organization need to be changed and can be w/o removing Ken and Babs.  Babs is a good coach and his strengths overcome his weaknesses.  What he lacks in people skills and recent devotion to those making the most he makes up for in the right mentality.  He is constantly seeking innovation in the game and implements game plans which worth with the players he is given.  The current teams lack of consistency and effort should be corrected through the reward approach Babs use to throw around.

The same is true with Holland.  The obsession with re-signing your own talent at all costs (Cleary, Quincey, hopefully not Howard) has to stop.  The obsession with acquiring veterans who are not capable of playing a role which is needed (i.e. Samuelsson as a top six guy) has to stop.  The obsession with resigning veterans (Osgood, Maltby, Cleary, Chelios) above their value, keeping them around until they retire and taking up the roster spots of young guys who need to graduate from GR has to stop.  Loyalty is a fantastic plan to maintain a strong organization but is only great to a point.  Having Draper as an assistant to an assistant of the assistant GM?  Having Osgood play Luminosity with the goalies with Bedard on the payroll?  The Wings need the top talent in the front office and on the ice period.  Does putting every veteran Wing’s in the front office after he retires accomplish that?  Idk.  Sitting on players that everyone and their brother knew was going to leave in the off-season needs to stop.  Stuart, Filppula, Hudler, etc.  Again, Holland’s weaknesses are outweighed by his strengths.  Him and his team are great at finding and developing talent.

Signing Howard to 7 year deal above 5M is bonkers.  He has not proven anything in the playoffs.  He cannot carry the Wings for stretches like other goaltenders with that salary (Smith, Lundqvist, etc.).  Howard is probably a good goaltender and 4M is pushing it.  Kenny is not signing players to value anymore.  If Howard would not accept 4M for 3years let him go.  It’s not the end of the world.  There’s the monster who has been a starter and Mrzak waiting in the fold.

Posted by statelouis26 from Detroit, MI on 03/14/13 at 03:31 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

To whom much is given much is expected.
   
Posted by Breuker19 on 03/14/13 at 02:17 PM ET

They painted over that 2 years ago, changed it to, “Good things are bound to happen”

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 03:57 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

99% of the Wings fans here are nothing but whiners who change their story game to game.

And you still pop around to school us, despite how beyond-hope we are.

Somebody call the Conclave back, they *#$%@& up yesterday.  This guy should be the Pope.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/14/13 at 03:58 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

99% of the Wings fans here are nothing but whiners who change their story game to game…

Sweeping generalizations are a good idea, and usually lend a lot of credibility to any following statements.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 03/14/13 at 03:59 PM ET

SYF's avatar

99% of the Wings fans here are nothing but whiners who change their story game to game.

I quit reading after that.

Posted by SYF from Zata's Epic Viking Beard on 03/14/13 at 04:09 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

I like our team.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 04:19 PM ET

statelouis26's avatar

Thanks for the Pope joke JJ.  You might want to throw in the old “white smoke” comment too, it’ll keep things fresh. I believe these were my exact words; “It’s reactionary 24/7.  It’s not about being right or wrong.”.  Enjoy Kansas.

Posted by statelouis26 from Detroit, MI on 03/14/13 at 05:25 PM ET

statelouis26's avatar

Sweeping generalizations are a good idea, and usually lend a lot of credibility to any following statements.

Posted by RedMenace from aboard the Crazy Train on 03/14/13 at 03:59 PM ET

That’s why I decided to go with 99% instead of 100%.

Posted by statelouis26 from Detroit, MI on 03/14/13 at 05:28 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

That’s why I decided to go with 99% instead of 100%.

Posted by statelouis26 from Detroit, MI on 03/14/13 at 05:28 PM ET

I looked it up. 99 percent is still a really high number.  That’s just an FYI.

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 05:39 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I believe these were my exact words;

I didn’t read those words because I stopped after you said your first stupid thing.  If you’re going to throw down a wall of comment, I certainly appreciate you letting me know it’s not worth reading in your very first sentence.  Thanks for that.

Just to make it perfectly clear where we stand, since I think we may have a bit of a miscommunicattion here: your opinion means precisely nothing to me.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/14/13 at 05:47 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Those knee jerk reactions to our power play not clicking.. wait..

Those knee jerk reactions to immanent departures of Stuart and Lidas.

It must be all knee jerk reactions because no one is talking about problems that’ve been sustained over 2 years with this team, right?  Everything we’re talking about is a night to night basis.

You clearly don’t take the time to read what 99% of Red Wing Fans write most days, win or lose.  Only when you think you have an “in” to toss in some sanctimonious condescension do you chime in with your winded drivel.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 03/14/13 at 05:48 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

ust to make it perfectly clear where we stand, since I think we may have a bit of a miscommunicattion here: your opinion means precisely nothing to me.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/14/13 at 05:47 PM ET

JJ I don’t think he’s going to reply to my comment. If you talk to him would you let him know that even though he doesn’t like to generalize, 99 percent is really super very high?

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 03/14/13 at 05:48 PM ET

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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.