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Ken Holland tells Wallner that the Red Wings’ prospects are receiving a developmental boost in GR

The Detroit Red Wings' brass is doubtlessly pleased with the Grand Rapids Griffins' progress given that the team's one win away from a Calder Cup championship. After Game 3, Wings coach Mike Babcock suggested that Luke Glendening will play at the NHL level at some point (and he praised Tomas Jurco and Riley Sheahan, too) we already know that the team's planning on accommodating Tomas Tatar, Joakim Andersson, Gustav Nyquist, Danny DeKeyser and probably Brian Lashoff as full-time NHL players next season...

And this afternoon, Wings GM Ken Holland told MLive's Peter J. Wallner that a combination of strong player development and the boost that the Griffins players' confidence levels are receiving from their Calder Cup run could yield ten or more current Griffins playing for the Red Wings at some point in the future:

“Success breeds confidence and that’s what we’re seeing,” said Ken Holland, the Red Wings general manager who watched the Grand Rapids Griffins defeat Syracuse 4-2 on Wednesday to take a 3-0 lead in the Calder Cup Finals.

Holland has high hopes.

“We look at the age of this team and we’re hoping half of them end up in the National Hockey League, and lots of them are going to be in Detroit,” he said.

Wallner says that Holland, de-facto assistant GM and now Grand Rapids Griffins GM Ryan Martin and Wings coach Mike Babcock attended Wendesday's game, just as the trio took in Games 1 and 2 in Syracuse, and the trio believe that the Griffins' playoff run should allow some players to skip a developmental step along the road to becoming well-rounded professional hockey players...

“This is an experience where there’s no other way to get it other than to experience it,” Holland said. “Look at our series with Chicago. There were players there who were on Rockford and we had players who had been here.”

Nyquist, Andersson and DeKeyser were with the Red Wings throughout the playoffs. After the Red Wings were eliminated by Chicago in seven games in the conference semifinals, the three were returned to Grand Rapids. That experience is paying off for Grand Rapids.

“After what they’ve been through (in Detroit) and then playing in this, it speeds up the process,” Holland said. “Now, it’s not going to speed it up by a year or two, but it’s certainly going to help.”

And while it's not likely that the team will sign Griffins captain Jeff Hoggan or the team's other AHL-only-contracted veterans to NHL deals, Martin tells Wallner that Hoggan, Brennan Evans, Nathan Paetsch, Jeff Brett Skinner or Triston Grant have done a helluva job in terms of mentoring the next generation of Red Wings players:

“I think they have been just incredible character players in the locker room for us,” Martin said. “They have been a fabulous to the mix.”

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Bugsy's avatar

Lipids: HDL 61, 50, 50, 46.2-49.5 TG 109, 134, 179, 129, 160 (94)  LDL 90, 113, 105, 100, 98
U/A: WBC 2-4, 2-4, 2-5, 6-12, 1-2 RBC 0-2, 1-2 (1+ ketones)

So the “overripe” Griffins are now paying off for the present/future. It does seem that playoff experience is worth its weight in gold.  Keep enough veterans around for the “kids” next year (as noted, including Bertuzzi, Miller, and/or Cleary), grab the free agent power forward without being ridiculous in salary and bring the 27 or however many they sign into camp and sort it out from there.

Again, I’d put more faith in the GR core that keeps the Wings in contention yearly in a cap world than reaching for expensive players just for the sake of doing something while setting the organization back in a numbers crunch (however, I don’t think Chicago’s too heartbroken about falling back a few years after winning their last Cup and partial dismantling—Pittsburgh is probably having second thoughts about their moves, although a first, 2 2nds and 2nd level prospect wasn’t excessive a price?).

The Wings don’t have to be at the top of the heap during the regular season to win the Cup, just be good enough that their ceiling is a Cup winner once the playoffs start (as noted before, the last 2 teams to win the Presidents’ Cup and the Stanley Cup in the same season were the Wings, and they’ve certainly missed the Stanley Cup despite winning the Presdients’ Cup before).

P.S. In hindsight, when just about all the articles declared the Penguins winners at the trade deadline and Wings among the losers (and I know the clamoring continued that they should have traded Filppula, White, etc. which I understand), is that judgment equally valid now about “winner” and “loser”? Do we wait until September to reassess? I’m the least knowledgeable among y’all, so this is a sincere question/checking if I understand the situation correctly.

Posted by Bugsy on 06/14/13 at 12:13 AM ET

EDJ's avatar

Surely you mean Brent Skinner and not Jeff at the end of your post? I sure wish Jeff Skinner was in the organization…

Posted by EDJ on 06/14/13 at 12:47 AM ET

Bugsy's avatar

Surely you mean Brent Skinner and not Jeff at the end of your post? I sure wish Jeff Skinner was in the organization…

Maybe George was wishing, too….

Posted by Bugsy on 06/14/13 at 12:52 AM ET

SYF's avatar

Off-topic.  Saw this on youtube today:

YouTube account HockeyWebCaster has been terminated because we received multiple third-party notifications of copyright infringement from claimants including:

Gary.Ass and his buttfuching lawyers…

Posted by SYF from #GORDIEHOWEARENA on 06/14/13 at 01:32 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

Fred Murtz is still uploading stuff, but he posts the NBC feeds: https://www.youtube.com/user/HockeyHitsnGoals/videos

:/ Stupid lawyers, indeed.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 06/14/13 at 01:41 AM ET

SYF's avatar

Oh cool, George.  Thanks!

I immediately subbed his channel and dumped HockeyWebCaster from my subscriptions list.

Posted by SYF from #GORDIEHOWEARENA on 06/14/13 at 01:43 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

I’ve been going with Fred Murtz and Hockey Highlights in HD ( https://www.youtube.com/user/HockeyVideoHD ) as well as the must-watch Wings video uploaders that are We All Bleed Red ( https://www.youtube.com/user/weallbleedredd) and AWood40 ( https://www.youtube.com/user/awood40/videos ) for a while now as the fact that HockeyWebCaster was posting fewer and fewer videos gave me the hint that something was up.

Paul’s a maestro of YouTube searches, but I don’t have his secrets down, and I need to find stuff fast, so those are the people I go with right now. Regrettably they come and go because the NHL doesn’t seem to believe that these folks actually increase interest in broadcasts—which they do!

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 06/14/13 at 01:57 AM ET

SYF's avatar

awood40, I saw first and actually conversed with on youtube about my posting his vids in A2Y and then a few weeks later, Hockeywebcaster.  Just last year, you introduced me to WEALLBLEEDREDD.  I’ve subbed all those guys now.

Posted by SYF from #GORDIEHOWEARENA on 06/14/13 at 02:01 AM ET

Bugsy's avatar

Regrettably they come and go because the NHL doesn’t seem to believe that these folks actually increase interest in broadcasts—which they do!

It could be worse. They could have done what Major League Baseball did for years and wipe out any game highlights it could find (and still may be doing). At least the NHL allows a lot highlight clips to stay. The NFL will occasionally try to get videos wiped out, I haven’t seen the NBA wipe out videos yet but maybe I just haven’t paid attention.

Posted by Bugsy on 06/14/13 at 02:06 AM ET

SYF's avatar

When they’ve hooked the new fans, youtube provides a way to see more of the noobs ability to view other videos of their favorite hockey players.  Many of the $0.20 fans here in Vegas first heard about him in youtube and thus followed along.  Youtube has done wonders for FIFA like you wouldn’t believe.  All it takes on youtube is a simple word or phrase and a whole shitload of related videos pop up.  It’s so simple.

I would never had heard of EIHL and known about the Coventry v. Nottingham Brawl.  I’m a fan and a subscriber now.  Youtube works.

Posted by SYF from #GORDIEHOWEARENA on 06/14/13 at 02:14 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

I’m sure that the CBC’s opening video is already kaput—as soon as Twitterers said that the video included Oasis’ “Live Forever,” the YouTube uploads were blocked due to copyright violations!

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 06/14/13 at 02:15 AM ET

SYF's avatar

I don’t get that.  I’ve never heard of some of those songs in some fans’ vids and they got me looking for elsewhere.  And I’ve purchased the CDs and/or clips from iTunes.  They’re too restrictive with copyrights.

Posted by SYF from #GORDIEHOWEARENA on 06/14/13 at 02:18 AM ET

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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.