The Malik Report
by George Malik on 06/30/13 at 11:35 AM ET
You can add yet another team to the long list of Vincent Lecavalier's suitors...
But he did meet with the Red Wings today, we think...
And, as Wings GM Ken Holland and director of amateur scouting Joe McDonnell told the Windsor Star's Bob Duff, the Wings believe that drafting and player development, even as an educated guessing game, is in fact what separates attractive destinations from also-rans, so today's draft (airing on NBCSN and TSN from 3-8 PM and then the NHL Network in the U.S. thereafter) is really when the team will get down to team-building business:
Holland pointed to the composition of the 2012-13 Red Wings as the way a team must be built for long-term success.
“The team we put on the ice against Chicago (in the second round of the playoffs) probably had 15 draft picks, including (free agents Danny) DeKeyser and (Damien) Brunner, who I consider homegrown because they weren’t drafted. We’ve hung onto our draft picks, we’ve tried to be patient, and I think for the first time people are starting to see there’s some kids and there’s more kids on the horizon.
“Our team is homegrown. If you’re going to be competitive in the NHL, it has to be through the draft. Players coming through the system have to be homegrown. If you don’t have players coming through the system, free agency doesn’t matter
Now that Nill has moved on to take over as GM of the Dallas Stars, Detroit head scout Joe McDonnell will be the one making the draft calls at the microphone on the Detroit table today at New Jersey’s Prudential Center, and it’s clear that he and Holland are on the same page when it comes to the significance of the draft.
“In the salary-cap era it’s everything,” McDonnell said. “If you don’t draft well and develop your players, you don’t have any hope. If you’re going to be a good organization you better draft. In years past some guys said ‘draft, shmaft.’ Not anymore. It’s the lifeline of an organization.”
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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.