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Can Brendan Smith Be More Defensive?

from Bill Roose of DetroitRedWings.com,

 Brendan Smith entered his ‘full’ NHL season with a reputation for being an offensive defenseman, but the Red Wings would like for him to modify his game.

Red Wings coach Mike Babcock has instructed Smith to be more responsible on defense and less offensive-minded, which often times led to turnovers last season.

“Be a real good defender, a real good penalty-killer, a real good puck guy, who moves the puck quickly,” Babcock said. “The offensive stuff will look after itself, but less plays where you force something. Just play simple.”

More than three years ago, Smith was the talk of a college hockey world infatuated with his offensive acumen. In his third and final season at the University of Wisconsin, Smith was the only defenseman to finish among the nation’s top 65 scorers. His 52 points, which included 15 goals, ranked him No. 9 in the country and put him in the running for the Hobey Baker Award that year.

The adjustment will take some getting used to, Smith said.

continued

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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.