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Cleary Will Play With Pain

PK for GM.

via Craig Custance tweet,

Dan Cleary says he’s about 50 percent. Will play game 1 in Nashville.

via Ansar Khan tweet,

Cleary said he will play in opener. Will need pain killing injection before each game. Said he has tear in knee, bone on bone rubbing.

What do you think, is a Dan Cleary at 50% a better choice than any other player at 100%?

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Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

Against a team that forechecks us to death like Nashville does, he needs to sit. Someone else with better wheels needs to be playing.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/09/12 at 02:12 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Confirming what some fans already figured. Still trying to figure out if this is ‘veteran experience’ over youth and mobility?

Ridiculous. Cleary hasn’t contributed much at all since the beginning of the year. It’s obvious him playing on his knee has made it worse. Conner can bring what Cleary can when Cleary is 90%. Sit his arse, Babcock.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 04/09/12 at 02:12 PM ET

Avatar

What do you think, is a Dan Cleary at 50% a better choice than any other player at 100%?

No.

Not at all.

And I think I would pick a few of the youngsters over Dan Cleary at 100% this year…

Posted by Garth on 04/09/12 at 02:17 PM ET

Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

“And I think I would pick a few of the youngsters over Dan Cleary at 100% this year”

This.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/09/12 at 02:20 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

They’ll play him until he can’t skate at all. Just like Franzen last year with his jacked-up ankle. With Cleary’s style of play it isn’t gonna be pretty. They need to sit him and Emmerton and plug a couple other guys in…... but they won’t.

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 04/09/12 at 02:21 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

What do you think, is a Dan Cleary at 50% a better choice than any other player at 100%?

No. Not even close.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/09/12 at 02:23 PM ET

42jeff's avatar

Why oh why do the Wings make us have these discussions?

Posted by 42jeff from The greater Howard City, MI metroplex on 04/09/12 at 02:24 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

At a certain point ‘veteran loyalty’ is pointless and counterproductive.  That point is the playoffs where you can’t afford a shift with a guy who can’t skate, can’t stickhandle, can’t hit can’t shoot etc…

You need knees for all those things.  Just because Stevie Y did it once doesn’t mean anyone else can, least of all Dan Cleary who is orders of magnitude worse of a hockey player than the Captain.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 02:26 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

This is all on the coaches and trainers. the player will alway want to play.

Cleary is not Stevie Y. He is not even Franzen. Grandpa Joe is a role player and he should sit.

But Babs learned from the best, Scotty, and Scotty did not trust younger players. So neither does Babs. Hope I’m wrong and that Grandpa Joe is watching the game from a luxury box rather than playing.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/09/12 at 02:27 PM ET

calquake's avatar

I’m willing to let Cleary play the first game, maybe two but at that point, if he isn’t contributing, he has to sit.  If Uncle Mike hasn’t lost his team yet that may just do the trick.  Players have eyes and ears too.

Posted by calquake on 04/09/12 at 02:39 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

I’m willing to let Cleary play the first game,

With all due respect but why?

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 02:41 PM ET

Rdwings28's avatar

Cleary will prove himself. Always has, always will. will beats skill.

Posted by Rdwings28 on 04/09/12 at 02:44 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Conner at 100% > Cleary at 50%

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 04/09/12 at 02:47 PM ET

Avatar

50%? Hell no. Sit your ass down. I’m not even sure I’d want Datsyuk out there if he was at 50%. OK, maybe I would…but he is a very special case. Point is, Cleary hasn’t contributed anything lately, and with the playoffs we cannot afford that liability if the tear is that bad.

I suppose his veteran presence is OK right now, maybe on the 4th line for 5-8 minutes a night. But as soon as Helm comes back, Babcock better sit Cleary down.

Posted by tehGOALIE on 04/09/12 at 02:47 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

Because you can’t have Abdelkader, Miller, Conner as your third line?

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 02:47 PM ET

Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

will beats skill

But will can only beat skill if will is more than 50% healthy. Cleary may be 100% willing but if he just physically cannot keep up, then he’s just a hinderance, not a help.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/09/12 at 02:48 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

I suppose his veteran presence is OK right now, maybe on the 4th line for 5-8 minutes a night. But as soon as Helm comes back, Babcock better sit Cleary down.

I expect that is the plan.

Why not give Joakim Anderson a shot, the, if it’s 4th line time.  Folks rave about his defense and strength on the puck.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 02:49 PM ET

calquake's avatar

With all due respect but why?

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 01:41 PM ET

Because he has earned it with his time in Detroit.  This isn’t fantasy league hockey.  These are real human beings with emotions and feelings.  If it’s not possible for him to physically play or he’ll hurt himself worse then that is on the medical staff.  Any competitive person wants to be out there contributing.  All I’m advocating is that Cleary be given the chance to do so.  If he doesn’t contribute (and I’m not just talking aboot scoring) then Uncle Mike gets the finger pointed at him if he doesn’t adapt.

Posted by calquake on 04/09/12 at 02:49 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Because you can’t have Abdelkader, Miller, Conner as your third line?

You’re right. Your third line should be Abdelkader, Miller, and Franzen until Game 3, then it’ll be Helm, Miller, and Franzen.  smile

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 04/09/12 at 02:51 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

then Uncle Mike gets the finger pointed at him if he doesn’t adapt.

He had the balls to pull Hasek in 2008. Does he have the same now?

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 04/09/12 at 02:52 PM ET

calquake's avatar

He had the balls to pull Hasek in 2008. Does he have the same now?

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach on 04/09/12 at 01:52 PM ET

I don’t know… check his wife’s purse. cheese

Posted by calquake on 04/09/12 at 02:54 PM ET

Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

He had the balls to pull Hasek in 2008. Does he have the same now?

This should be an easier decision. Cleary came out and admitted to being only 50% healthy. Give it to Dan for being honest, but he needs to be real and know that he’s not going to be able to do much good on one bad leg.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/09/12 at 02:57 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

He had the balls to pull Hasek in 2008. Does he have the same now?

I would sure hope so, yanking your starting goalie takes a lot more stones than telling your 3 or 4th line winger to have a seat.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 02:59 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

I was feeling pretty positive about Wings playoff chances until (as expected) Babcock’s eternal love for his Vets.  It started with Goose practising on 4th Line. Duh Wings have scored most of their goals lately, if not all, in the 3rd Period when Mr Stubborn changed up the Lines.  Really do not understand this coach sometimes.  I like Cleary but why on earth would you play a player at 50%, No rational to this!  Goose should be with Pav and Conner should be 3rd/4th line.

And while I am at it I foresee Smith getting no Ice Time in the playoffs even though he is better than Kindl/Quincey even with some Rookie mistakes.

Where is Joey at with his injury, feel better with him on Bench as Backup than Conklin, and I think players feel better with Joey.

Rinne is not in the Top 10 in any goalie stats other than Games Played (73!!) and Wins, Howie is better statistically and more rested.

Radulov didn’t do much in Reg Season except Cherry Pick, wait till the Playoff style hockey starts, one dimensional PP specialist!

Other than Babcock’s questionable decisions, I am hoping for Wings in 6!!!  No home ice advantage unless there is 7th Game.

Getting back to glass half full despite Babcock (Not Scotty Bowman) in game coaching and his post game rhetoric!

Sigh!!!

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 04/09/12 at 03:20 PM ET

TKShreve's avatar

I can respect that Cleary had a career year last year in goals and points. I was very excited to see if he was going to continue his ascent. That has not been the case this year.

In fact, I have noticed his below par performance more often than not. He was pushed down to the third line very quietly for a team that bounces its players around like superballs. I thought that was proper given the circumstances.

In the end, Babcock should be icing the best possible team he has from the start. DET is looking to grab at least one game in NSH.

I do not see Danny in that mix given his current rate of play. Sorry Clears.

Posted by TKShreve from East Uptown on 04/09/12 at 03:48 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

  I’m willing to let Cleary play the first game,

With all due respect but why?

Because if the Wings lose the series, it wont be solely because of an injured Dan Cleary playing 14 minutes of game 1. Certainly there could be an upgrade, and I’m all for that. But one game to see how a proven veteran can play isn’t going to swing the series.

Any more than one ineffective game and I’ll be right there with you bitching about Babs.

Its Emmerton who needs to sit first in my mind. He’s way too good at over-backchecking and it’s bit us many a time.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 04/09/12 at 03:49 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

Its Emmerton who needs to sit first in my mind. He’s way too good at over-backchecking and it’s bit us many a time.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 04/09/12 at 02:49 PM ET

I agree he should sit for sure, I swear he is always 1 step behind the guy who is just about to score or who has just scored a goal.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 03:54 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

Its Emmerton who needs to sit first in my mind. He’s way too good at over-backchecking and it’s bit us many a time.

  Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 04/09/12 at 02:49 PM ET

Forgot about Cemmer!  Good point! He is only on the team as Wings no other options.  On the upside he may turn out OK down the Road, but Nyquist and Smith have earned their spots on the team, NOW!

What is up with Mursak?  Is he worse than Emmerton?

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 04/09/12 at 04:13 PM ET

John W.'s avatar

Yeah, this is just plain stupid.  Why would you let a guy play at 50% and why the hell would you let the other team know you’re only at 50%?  Nashville gets last change at home, and I guarantee everytime Cleary steps on the ice, Radulov will gleefully jump over the boards too.  No doubt he gets burned for at least 1 goal on Wednesday.  Conner would be 100X more effective.  Nashville will beat Cleary into submission and skate circles around the pieces.  Idiotic.

Posted by John W. from a bubble wrap cocoon on 04/09/12 at 04:32 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

What is up with Mursak?  Is he worse than Emmerton?

I think its only because he’s a center and Mursak is a winger.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 04:38 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

Why would you let a guy play at 50% and why the hell would you let the other team know you’re only at 50%?

It’s a decoy.  Cleary want’s to see if the Preds will wack him mercilessly, so to unleash our deadly PP, which has been playing possum for 3 weeks.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 04:43 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Duh Wings have scored most of their goals lately, if not all, in the 3rd Period when Mr Stubborn changed up the Lines

Like against St. Louis when he moved Bertuzzi back up to the top line in place of Nyquist and they scored 2.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 04/09/12 at 05:12 PM ET

yzer19man's avatar

I admire Danny’s heart and willingness to play in spite of the odds stacked against him, but he should really consider scratching himself, telling Babs he is not up for the task, if this is really as bad as it sounds.  What happens when on his first shift in game one, he goes down, injures his knee badly, and is done for the game??? Down to 11 forwards just like that..There shouldn’t even be a thought about risking this, in game one against possibly the toughest opponent in the league, who has had our number the past few games. I just hope this isnt as bad as it sounds, otherwise I seriously have to question the decision making process here.

Posted by yzer19man from Chicago, IL on 04/09/12 at 05:15 PM ET

yzer19man's avatar

It’s a decoy.  Cleary want’s to see if the Preds will wack him mercilessly, so to unleash our deadly PP, which has been playing possum for 3 weeks.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 03:43 PM ET

+1 haha, we can only hope

Posted by yzer19man from Chicago, IL on 04/09/12 at 05:16 PM ET

John W.'s avatar

It’s a decoy.  Cleary want’s to see if the Preds will wack him mercilessly, so to unleash our deadly PP, which has been playing possum for 3 weeks.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 03:43 PM ET

You win.

Posted by John W. from a bubble wrap cocoon on 04/09/12 at 05:39 PM ET

TKShreve's avatar

I know I’ve seen some people calling for him to rest over the past few weeks.

Question is…..... will rest even help Cleary or not? It’s obvious he is a step behind.

If so, why didn’t he take the last two weeks off?

If not, why play him when we have a bag of healthy young pups looking to prove themselves?

Posted by TKShreve from East Uptown on 04/09/12 at 05:52 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Cleary ain’t no Stevie Y but I do admire his determination to play through it.

Having said that, I’d sit him for at least another week (which would be about three games) because as far as I’m concerned, Gus is playing better than expected.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 04/09/12 at 06:13 PM ET

Avatar

Strong feeling he won’t be on the ice for Game 2…

Posted by Herm from the office on 04/09/12 at 06:18 PM ET

SYF's avatar

It’s a decoy.  Cleary want’s to see if the Preds will wack him mercilessly, so to unleash our deadly PP, which has been playing possum for 3 weeks.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/09/12 at 03:43 PM ET

You eternal optimist.  I bow to you.

Go Wings!

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 04/09/12 at 06:33 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

  With all due respect but why?

  Posted by SolidTG7 on 04/09/12 at 01:41 PM ET

Because he has earned it with his time in Detroit.  This isn’t fantasy league hockey.  These are real human beings with emotions and feelings. 

Posted by calquake on 04/09/12 at 01:49 PM ET

For cryin’ out loud, save the leftwing touchy-feely bullshit for NPR…these are the fuchin’ playoffs!

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/09/12 at 06:43 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.