The Malik Report
by George Malik on 05/17/13 at 10:22 AM ET
As we wait for the Red Wings' Friday practice to begin, the Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner penned a superb article about Tomas Tatar's role with the Grand Rapids Griffins, and Deadline Detroit's Rebecca Powers profiled Fox Sports Detroit analyst Darren Eliot, but a short interview Dallas Stars GM and former Red Wings assistant GM Jim Nill gave to the Fan 590's Bob McCown and John Shannon caught my eye (or ear, as it were):
I was particulaly ill and out of the loop when the Wings allowed the Stars to take Nill, and while his interview mostly involves finding a replacement for Glen Gulutzan (the Grand Rapids Press's Wallner wonders whether former Grifins coach Curt Fraser might get a nod, and the Dallas News's Mike Heika wonders whether Nill will try to swipe associate coach Tom Renney from Detroit)...
The magintude of Nill's departure can't be understated. The Wings have more or less been waiting for Nill's family situation (kids in college and Mrs. Nill battling breast cancer) to stabilize before bidding him a fond farewell, so the fact that capologist Ryan Martin has essentially served as the other assistant GM, the fact that the special assistant to Ken Holland in one Kris Draper (who spoke with WBBL about the Wings-Ducks series prior to Game 6) has been groomed to take a bigger role and the fact that Jiri Fischer (director of player development), Chris Chelios (de-facto Grand Rapids Griffins assistant coach), Chris Osgood (goalie coach and scout) and Kirk Maltby (pro scout) are all helping management allows the team to better withstand the blow that is Nill's departure...
But the Wings also somewhat bafflingly allowed Nill to leave the organization in late April despite the fact that Nill made the final decisions at the draft and despite the fact that Nill worked to build the Grand Rapids Griffins' roster over the past two seasons...So to hear Nill speak about being immersed in his new job already is a little startling, and it reminds us that the Wings are engaging in changing of the guard and/or youth movements (relatively speaking) both on and off the ice.
Nill's gone and busy in his new position, and while the Wings continue to attempt to "rebuild on the fly," there are some legitimate questions as to who will be tapped on the shoulder to take leadership roles as the team finds Nill's successor from somewhere within the 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.