The Malik Report
by George Malik on 03/09/12 at 02:44 PM ET
According to Fox Sports Detroit’s Art Regner, the injury-plagued Red Wings’ management staff did in fact kick every tire leading up to the trade deadline, and while Ken Holland, Jim Nill, Ryan Martin and the rest of the front office attempted to bolster a team which currently boasts five players who started the season with the Grand Rapids Griffins going into tonight’s game against Los Angeles, the Wings did their best to to add more to their lineup:
According to a source close to the team, this is how it played out for the Wings on deadline day 2012. There were two primary targets for the Red Wings on Feb. 27: Buffalo’s Paul Gaustad, now with Nashville; and Columbus’ Sami Pahlsson, now with Vancouver.
The entire league was aware that the Wings wanted to add a gritty, big-bodied forward who was an above-average face-off man. Gaustad fit that description, but the day before the deadline, the Sabres informed the Wings that they had already been offered a first-round draft pick for Gaustad. Detroit had traded their first-round pick a week earlier to the Lightning for defenseman Kyle Quincey. The Wings asked the Sabres to contact them if things changed but knew the call would never come—Gaustad was gone.
Once deadline day hit, the phones were busy in Holland’s office, but the Detroit brass didn’t like what they were hearing. Every team was asking for the moon in return for a rent-a-player or a marginal talent who wasn’t worth the asking price.
Several of Detroit’s top prospects were off the table, and the Wings were more inclined to part with only draft picks in any deals. They certainly weren’t willing to give up high-scoring prospect Teemu Pulkkinen, who every team apparently wanted to acquire.
As the day dragged on, some in the Detroit camp became frustrated, even disgusted, by what teams were demanding. The phone would ring, Holland would relay the offer to the assembled hierarchy and virtually every head in the room began shaking no.
Pahlsson was still a possibility, and the Wings thought they had a legitimate shot until the Blue Jackets informed them they had been offered two fourth-round picks and young defenseman for the veteran center. Once Pahlsson came off their board—the Wings felt they didn’t have the picks to get him—a day filled with hope became uneventful and disappointing for Detroit.
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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.