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Andreas Athanasiou On His Play

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Through it all, he finished second on the Detroit Red Wings with 18 goals in just 64 games, while ranking 11th in average ice time (13:27) and ninth in power-play minutes (1:12) among the club's forwards.

He believes he's capable of taking a bigger step next season.

"I don't want to say I'm happy with my production because I always want to do better than what happened, but I think the goal for next year is to step it up and do even better," Athanasiou, 22, said. "For this year, I don't think they're terrible numbers. I did well with what I was given."

His blazing speed and finishing ability have made him a fan favorite.

"I see the support I get from the fans; it's definitely a good feeling to see them support my play, my game, so I like that," Athanasiou said. "If I can provide them with some entertainment and some good hockey that's what I got to do."

Despite his flair, Athanasiou is still learning to play a 200-foot game and improve defensively. Blashill has called him out for a lack of competitiveness.

"I don't look at it too much (being singled out by Blashill); obviously, I see some people comment on it, message me about it or tell me about it, but I don't pay too much attention," Athanasiou said. "This is a team and every night it's going to take a team effort to win. As for individual efforts, I'm going to take care of that and make sure that I'm good for this team and making sure I give us what I can give."

read on

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Comments

Avatar

Love your game AA but don’t listen to the fans.
We’re fickle and can turn on you fast.

Posted by Ventr on 04/17/17 at 11:11 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

I am not sure every player on the Wings has to play the 200 foot game. AA is a goal scorer and hasto provide some 200 ’ effort. Others (many of them) can’t score and have to play more of a 200’ game.

The problem is the Wings have far too many non scorers.  I do fear he will be at the top of the list of tradeable players,  another HUGE mistake.  A lot more to give as he gets more NHL experience. BOO Blashill

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 04/17/17 at 12:42 PM ET

Avatar

Athanasiou can also be a weapon on the backcheck.

And, he’s big and strong enough to win more board battles.

But I agree that it’s silly to take this guy and try to turn him into a Glendening type or Miller type, given his unreal speed and hands.

Better would have been some tutoring and example setting from Pav: you have unreal talent; think how many more chances you will have and create when you put your mind to using your speed and hands to also separate other players from the puck when they least expect it.

I’m not comparing their games, overall, but I do think AA can be a certain kind of defensive weapon. That’s doesn’t necessarily require having to play all 200 ft or eliminating offense to think defense-first. It’s more like what Babock said: guys with certain talent can turn defense to offense in a hurry when they bear down.

Posted by Lefty30 on 04/17/17 at 12:51 PM ET

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I still cannot understand why if a player brings zero offense (Glen, Miller, Sheahan and to a lesser extent Helm), it’s accepted they play a 200 feet game.

Posted by VPalmer on 04/17/17 at 01:00 PM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

I think its important for fans to understand there is two parts to this sentence the latter being the more important of the two.

Despite his flair, Athanasiou is still learning to play a 200-foot game and improve defensively. Blashill has called him out for a lack of competitiveness

Everyone wants to turn this narrative that the wings are trying to turn AA into Glendening or Miller, where the reality is, at least my read of the situation and comments made all season, is that AA needs to compete and engage like Glendening, and Miller, and Abby, AND Hank, AND Pavel, AND Yzerman, AND Lidstrom etc. etc. etc. all those before him. Compete Day in Day out to be a compLete NHL player and maximize the talent he has.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 04/17/17 at 01:31 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Maybe it is just me, but I am a bit concerned with AA talking about his entertainment factor.  No mention of playing as a team.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/17/17 at 01:40 PM ET

Avatar

Maybe it is just me, but I am a bit concerned with AA talking about his entertainment factor. 

I actually noticed it too.

Posted by VPalmer on 04/17/17 at 01:48 PM ET

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Maybe it is just me, but I am a bit concerned with AA talking about his entertainment factor.

I wish every player was concerned about entertaining the fans.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 04/17/17 at 02:28 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

I’m kind of afraid he’s not a huge team player. Have wondered that, especially with some of the benchings.

This reinforces my fear. he’s young, hope he learns the red wing way.

Posted by TreKronor on 04/17/17 at 03:29 PM ET

Avatar

this,

I wish every player was concerned about entertaining the fans.

equals this,

I’m kind of afraid he’s not a huge team player.

Have wondered that

remember he was traded in Jrs for complaining about playing time.

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 04/17/17 at 03:34 PM ET

WingsFanInBeanLand's avatar

“This is a team and every night it’s going to take a team effort to win. As for individual efforts, I’m going to take care of that and make sure that I’m good for this team and making sure I give us what I can give.”

Did y’alls just gloss over this?

Posted by WingsFanInBeanLand from where free agents no longer dare. on 04/17/17 at 03:45 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Ha, yes I did WFiBL.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/17/17 at 03:46 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.