The Malik Report
by George Malik on 11/14/13 at 04:39 PM ET
The Red Wings sent Jordin Tootoo to Grand Rapids today, and if Patrick Eaves clears waivers, he'll follow Tootoo to the AHL. While Tootoo--and his father, Barney--view the demotion as a significant setback, the Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner reports that Griffins coach Jeff Blashill hopes to make the most of Tootoo's addition, especially given that the AHL's much more...let's say "rugged" than the NHL in terms of frequency of fighting:
“From I’ve observed and from what I’ve gathered, Jordin is a very good person who brings energy and physicality and toughness to a team,” he said of the veteran [forward]. “I don’t know exactly what role yet that means. But we’ll try and utilize him as effectively as possible.”
Blashill said he will “sit down with staff in the morning” and decide who Tootoo will be paired with, and the best way to use him. The Griffins already have a physical presence with defenseman Brendan Evans and forwards Triston Grant and Mitch Callahan.
“I think physicality is a positive thing,” Blashill said. “That’s an attribute you want on your hockey team and you can’t have too much of that. Every player brings different things to the table, so we try to do our best to put them in a position to be successful. That’s what we’ll try to do with Jordin as well.”
Wallner continues, noting that Tootoo, Eaves and the recently-demoted Xavier Ouellet will bolster a streaking Griffins team that's receiving key contributions from Cory Emmerton and Gustav Nyquist.
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