Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Red Wings-Avalanche wrap-up and overnight report: on the McLeod-Kronwall hit and the Wings’ win

Blogger's note: This entry is going to piss you off if you're a Red Wings fan.

The Red Wings took a very late flight to Phoenix with a player who insists that he was at fault for getting hit from behind by Cody McLeod in a concussed Niklas Kronwall, and the Red Wings brought Kronwall along having defeated the Colorado Avalanche 4-2.

The Red Wings both ensured that the Avalanche wouldn't set a new team record for the most wins to start a season and dodged a bullet in terms of the team's #1 defenseman not sustaining a more severe injury thanks to a reckless hit, and while the team's spirits were quite high about the performance of the "Eurotrain/Two Kids and an Old Goat 2" line, as well as those of Johan Franzen and a liability turned overworked game-saving back-up in Jonas Gustavsson...

You can't really talk about the game without talking about the hit, and both teams were very vocal about their analysis of what took place when McLeod hit Kronwall (and what happened when John Mitchell left his feet to hit Luke Glendening but didn't land a similar impact).

NHL.com at least posted the Wings' feed of the hit...

Because We All Bleed Red found Altitude's take, and Mike Haynes and Peter McNab's takes are ludicrous...

And it's studio analysts' take on the hit is worse:

Clearly, you HAVE to finish a hit on the team's best defenseman to get him off the ice. Because it was Kronwall's fault.

NHL.com's Rick Sadowski noted Wings GM Ken Holland's assessment of Kronwall's status, as well as coach Mike Babcock's take...

"I think [Friday] we've got to see how he feels," Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said. "He talked to the doctor. He's alert. Let's get to [Friday] morning. Let's see how he's doing.

"He obviously hit his head. He hasn't gone to the hospital. I went down to the locker room and he was talking to the doctor. He was being evaluated. He was going through the sequence of events."

NHL Director of Player Safety Brendan Shanahan will determine whether McLeod will be suspended.

"I don't know," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said when asked about the hit. "The good thing about that is they pay Shanny to figure that out, not me.

"(Kronwall) will be evaluated, obviously. Tough situation for him. Anytime you get hit like that, you're out cold. He's doing pretty well. Obviously, when you see that and see a guy knocked out on the ice, you're scared to say the least."

And MLive's Ansar Khan also took note of Kronwall's status--and Kronwall told Aftonbladet's Per Bjurman that he needed stitches to close a cut ear and that he had a "knot" on his forehead, but that he was okay, which is also what he told Fox Sports Detroit's Trevor Thompson...

"He's in the building and was talking to the doctor when I left (the dressing room),'' general manager Ken Holland said.

Holland said Kronwall will not return to the game but he will accompany the team to Phoenix after the game.

"I think tomorrow we've got to see how he feels,'' Holland said. "He talked to the doctor. He's alert. Let's get to tomorrow morning, let's see how he's doing.''

Holland stopped short of calling it a concussion, even though that's what the team said it is.

"He obviously hit his head,'' Holland said. "e was being evaluated. He was going through the sequence of events.''

You'll note that the team's avoiding the concussion issue as Khan, the Free Press's Helene St. James and everyone else who understands the NHL's concussion protocols pointed out that, as soon as the word "concussion" is uttered, players can't return to action until they go a full week without post-concussive symptoms.

St. James reported that, eventually, the team moved to utter that word--though it may be denied at some point, especially if Kronwall passes his baseline neurological tests, given that he is the team's #1 defenseman.

I'm not saying that the Wings would rush Kronwall back--the Wings don't do that kind of thing, they never have--but I am saying that it's a dirty word.

General manager Ken Holland told the Free Press that Kronwall has "a mild concussion," and also suffered cuts to his right ear. Kronwall was to continue on the trip with his teammates, who next play Saturday at Phoenix.

...

Kronwall, who was awkwardly positioned when impact occurred, spent several minutes on the ice being tended to by medical personnel before being removed on a stretcher.

"It was really scary hit, Kronner, he can't move for a few seconds," Pavel Datsyuk said. "Everybody on the bench, like, can't breathe. But after they say he OK - not OK, but OK."

McLeod, a fourth-liner, was assessed a boarding major and a game misconduct. His hit will be reviewed by the NHL, and likely lead to a suspension by league disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan. That's of little consequence to the Wings, who don't know who long they will be without a crucial player. Generally, players have to be free of concussion symptoms for a week before being cleared. Brendan Smith is expected to return to the lineup in place of Kronwall.

Players found out fairly quickly that Kronwall was up and about.

"He was out, he didn't really know what happened there," defense partner Jonathan Ericsson said. "He was out of it for a little bit. Then he was asking some questions. It was a little scary but we found out early he was fine and he was going to recover fine."

And the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan spoke with Babcock and Holland about the incident...

"He’ll be evaluated, but obviously it’s a tough situation anytime you’re out cold,” Babcock said. “When you see that and get knocked out cold, you’re scared, to say the least. Those hits, we have to get out of the game.”

Red Wings general manager Ken Holland wouldn’t commit to saying Kronwall had a concussion until seeing how the defenseman felt today.

“That word (concussion) to me, I think tomorrow we’ve got to see how he feels,” Holland said. “He talked to the doctor. He’s alert. He’s in the building. Let’s get to tomorrow (Friday) morning, let’s see how he’s doing. He obviously hit his head. Let’s get to tomorrow morning. The media is anxious to (know), he’s obviously not coming back to the game (he didn’t). He hasn’t gone to the hospital. I went down to the locker room, he was talking to the doctor. He was being evaluated. He was going through the sequence of events.”

While MLive's Ansar Khan spoke with Ericsson and Franzen about Kronwall's on-ice status:

“That was really scary, he was out, he didn’t really know what happened there,’’ Jonathan Ericsson, Kronwall’s defense partner, said. “You could see he was out of it for a little bit. He was asking some questions. I made him aware of what happened. We found out pretty early that he was fine and he was going to recover.’’

Said Franzen: “I was there when they rolled him off. He seemed fine. He didn’t want to get carried out.’’

Khan says that the players didn't want to assess the hit too harshly without having seen it replayed, bu they didn't like what they saw:

“(Kronwall) tried to turn and get rid of (McLeod),’’ Franzen said. “He’s supposed to let up on the hit. I don’t know if he didn’t have time. We’ll see what Mr. Shanahan (league director of player safety Brendan) has to say about it.’’

Forward Daniel Alfredsson said, “You carry a lot of speed to go in and forecheck but at the same time you have to be responsible for what you’re doing, especially when you carry a lot of speed.’’

Fortunately, Kronwall escaped a serious injury. The five remaining defensemen stepped up their play. Four of them logged more than 22 minutes, including a game-high 25:54 from Danny DeKeyser (five blocks).

“Kronner is our best defenseman by far. Losing him was a big thing,’’ Ericsson said. “Especially up here with the (high) altitude, it’s tough to get some breath between your shifts, and now you have to go out there sooner than before.’’

Kronwall himself didn't speak with the American media, but the Swedish media had his cell phone number. After Aftonbladet's Per Bjurman spoke with him, Expressen's Gunnar Nordstrom asked Kronwall about the hit. What follows is roughly translated:

"I feel okay, but we'll see tomorrow," says Kronner to SportExpressen.se.

Everyone who saw the blast Colorado's Cod McLeod leveled via a hard body check against the Swede's head in the corner boards and feared a concussion.

Kronwall's cautious in his comments as to whether McLeod should be suspended as it involved a check to the head of the Swede.

"It was more my own fault. I don't want to be put in that [decision-making] chair," he said an hour after the incident.

Kronwall was cared for by physicians in the arena, and he never needed to visit the hospital in Denver.

The Red Wings flew to Phoenix right after the game, and they'll play the Coyotes on Saturdya.

Kornwall gave a thumbs-up to the crowd as he was wheeled off on a stretcher after being injured, a sign that he was conscious and not seriously injured.

"I feel good right now. We'll see how it feels tomorrow. Cross your fingers," he says via SportExpressen.se.

The Avalanche obviously felt very different about the hit. Avs coach Patrick Roy was very blunt in his post-game comments, as noted by the Associated Press, and if you head down to the multimedia section of this recap, the Avs' locker room clip ends with Matt Duchene insisting that the "fault" lies with both players:

"To be honest with you, I didn't look at it because I didn't want to look at it," Roy said. "I didn't want to make a comment on it. From the bench, I thought Kronwall turned his back at the last minute. Does that make it dirty? I guess Shanahan has to make a decision. From the bench I saw a defenseman turn his back at the last second. For anyone who knows the game it's hard for a player to stop."

...

The opening period was dominated by a fired-up Detroit team following that hit on Kronwall along the boards. The hit sent his helmet flying as he crashed to the ice. This rivalry may just be heating back up. It used to be bitter and bloody one during Roy's playing days, but it's tapered off a bit, in large part due to the slide of the Avalanche, who have missed the playoffs the past three seasons.

Can this rivalry get heated again? After all, the two teams meet just twice this season as the Red Wings switched over to the Eastern Conference.

"We're a long way before we're getting to where the Red Wings are," Roy said. "It's amazing what they've been doing over the years. They've been there (playoffs) every year."

If that pisses you off, hold on to your hat. The Denver Post's Mark Kiszla was in town the day the Denver Post lamented its sports teams' lack of "real rivals," and he was generally pleased by what took place, bloodletting included--at least at the start:

The blood feud is back. The bile again flows between the Avalanche and Red Wings. It's ugly. It's edgy. It's wickedly beautiful.

Detroit beat Colorado 4-2 on Thursday night. But it was a brawl. While the Avs lost for the first time in seven games, the chant of Red Wings (stink!) again shook the walls of the arena in all of its profane glory.

...

McLeod, heading straight at the No. 55 on Kronwall's back, dropped a hip and crashed into the Detroit defenseman. Bang-bang play? Sure. But a dirty hit? Absolutely. When you can see a man's numbers and crunch him into the boards, the onus is on the man who instigated the collision, not the player with his head down.

On the heels of a firestorm started throughout the NHL by a vicious hit from Maxim Lapierre of St. Louis on San Jose's Dan Boyle, the Department of Player Safety will need to take a long, hard look at McLeod's action.

Did McLeod intend serious harm to Kronwall? Only a blind loyalist partial to the Wings would suggest such foolishness. But did McLeod tee up Kronwall? Yes. Only an Avalanche homer would suggest the hit was unavoidable.

Hold on, hold on...

Was it a cheap shot? Avalanche coach Patrick Roy pleaded ignorance, as not to incriminate McLeod for his hit.

...

Accidents happen. But, in rear-end collisions, everybody knows which party the insurance company finds at fault.

McLeod is a likable fellow. He has a good heart, which is valued by the boys in the room. But he can be a knucklehead on the ice. And he deserves a suspension.

Most of the mainstream media types seemed to hit the hay or be watching the Tigers-Red Sox game, so I was a little surprised to see a lack of "national" outrage, but the Hockey News's Ken Campbell saw the hit (as did TSN's Bob McKenzie, who thinks that the suspesion's worth at least one game), and chose to weigh in.

While Campbell got on a bit of a inspired tear against cheap hits distracting the hockey world and the sports word from the good stuff that happens on the ice and has happened on the ice during what really has been an impressive first half of October, Campbell hit the nail on the head by blasting the Avs' announcers:

Good thing he deserved it, though. At least that’s what Avs analyst Peter McNab, a good guy and a pretty decent analyst who tried his best to be even more brainless than Cody McLeod at that moment, thought when he declared that Kronwall, “got a little of (his) own medicine.” McNab went on to say that Kronwall has made a career of dishing out big hits, but the difference is Kronwall has made a career of administering big open-ice hits that are generally clean.

And speaking of McLeod, once again we have one of these senseless acts perpetrated by another one of these so-called honest tough guys, you know, the guys who are supposed to keep everything safe out there. The fact is, McLeod has almost as many career fights (70) as he has points (79). Isn’t he supposed to be around to stop rats like Lapierre and (reformed rat) Matt Cooke from doing this kind of stuff? Really working well, isn’t it? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: For some reason, the hockey establishment seems to think you need guys like Cody McLeod around to protect your skill players from guys like Cody McLeod.

Okay, get ready for the rant:

Of course, this kind of ridiculousness is exacerbated by a league that refuses to truly get serious about these kinds of hits and a players’ association that tacitly approves of them by virtue of the fact it goes to bat for these guys when they appeal their suspensions. The fact the NHLPA will argue on Patrick Kaleta’s behalf in the appeal of his 10-game suspension represents an enormous conflict of interest.

It all makes you wonder whether these guys will ever learn. Kaleta has been fined or suspended six times over the past four years, so you have to wonder whether he can ever be rehabilitated. Perhaps he just knows that he’s one of the worst players in the NHL and that he simply has to play that way to stay in the league. And if it costs him a couple hundred thousand dollars and, ultimately perhaps his livelihood, well at least he made his money while he could.

The NHL should be harsh on Lapierre and McLeod, but it probably won’t. Neither is a repeat offender by the strict definition of the term by the collective bargaining agreement, so their actions and sentences will be viewed as isolated, one-time events. Then it will have to deal with the players’ association, which will somehow think it’s perfectly all right that the interests of Cody McLeod will trump those of Niklas Kronwall.

Deep breath!

The thing is, for the most part, NHL players have learned to show their opponents more respect when it comes to hits from behind over the past couple of years. The vast majority knows when to let up, the same way Ryan Reaves of the Blues did on a hit along the boards against Chicago Thursday night. But there is a group of these guys who are either too disrespectful or too dim to make the adjustments so many others have.

Whatever the case, they should have their right to play in the best league in the world taken away from them for a long, long time.

That much I agree with. I have yet to watch a Red Wings game in which Cody McLeod does not attempt to injure a Red Wings player, and I have yet to watch an Avalanche game in which Cody McLeod does not attempt to make some sort of dangerous, reckless hit, slash, knee, elbow, etc. TSN's Aaron Ward talked about Ben Lovejoy being a habitual kneeing offender on Wednesday--in a segement called "You Can't Do That"--rand players like Lapierre, Kaleta, Reaves (who was a holy terror during the Wings' prospect tournament) and McLeod are plain old dangerous to everyone around them.

As for the game...

  • You and I both know that the Wings continue to be out-shot by a ridiculous margin, having given up 35-ish shots per game since the first Bruins game, and combine the heavy workload with the Wings' defense parting like the red sea on both Avs goals, and this team needs to reduce the wear and tear on its goalies. The Wings were out-shot THIRTEEN TO FIVE in the 2nd period, and that's just scary. Five defensemen don't excuse that;
  • Despite giving up two softer-type goals, Jonas Gustavsson's gone from liability to reliable backup over the course of three straight wins, and that's pretty bloody amazing. He looks mobile with those shorter pads and he's playing like he's finally figured out that the Wings were more than happy to liberate him from the play-on-the-goal-line-or-else bullshit Francois Allaire was demanding of him in Toronto. It takes a while to figure that stuff out;
  • Johan Franzen must obviously be told that he's playing Colorado every game;
  • Stephen Weiss was "going" for a while, but he's come up cold over the last two games. The Wings need more from him and more from Daniel Cleary;
  • The hard part of assessing Brian Lashoff's play is that when he's on his game, you barely notice him. By that standard, he's been excellent;
  • The fourth line was a bit disjointed. Glendening had the fear of Pete put into him by that Mitchell hit, and Miller came up on the bottom end of the Sarich fight in terms of taking both a penalty and the team's middling PK surrendering a goal against while he was in the box. As such, Tootoo barely played, and the Wings could have used him--for forechecking in the 2nd period;
  • Alfredsson. Wow. It's early, but please tell me that he wants to play more than one year;
  • I really liked the way Kindl looked with Ericsson. We ought to get used to that pairing--and the good news is that Kindl has the speed to back up Ericsson's occasionally terrifying pinches;
  • And it is WONDERFUL to see Danny DeKeyser shake off whatever little sophomore slump he was battling and return to his steady-as-can-be and offensively demonstrative form. Hell, he made Kyle Quincey, who was playing "at home," look good;
  • Okay, Smitty, here's your chance. Make something of it.

As for the quips and quotes department, ColoradoAvalanche.com's Rob Knabenbauer reports that the Avs felt stifled by Jonas Gustavsson...

"Their goalie came up big for them, I can’t stress that enough," Avs center Matt Duchene said. "I think at the end there, I don’t even know how many shots we had, maybe 10 shots there at the end of the game on him and he was stopping everything. I mean, he had a heck of a game for them.”

Colorado's streak ended one victory shy of tying its franchise record of seven straight wins to begin a season, in 1985-86 when the club was in Quebec. The six-game streak had already set an Avalanche team record to begin a season.

For Roy, he ends up tied with Mario Tremblay for the NHL record of consecutive wins by a head coach to begin a career (6-0). Tremblay won his first six games after taking over the Montreal coaching duties after just five games in the 1995-96 season, a team Roy was the goaltender for.

But the Avs insisted that their second period effort was enough...

"The intensity was there – I thought we could have scored three or four goals," Roy said. "It wasn't easy, but we had really good chances."

And they really did enjoy playing against the Wings again:

"Detroit is always a team that is always there when it comes down to playoff time, when it comes down to the end of the road for the team that is going to be in contention, and for us it certainly measures where we are at against teams like that," [Alex] Tanguay said.

For Matt Duchene, who grew up watching the old rivalry back in Ontario, the Avs-Wings game is one he looks forward to.

"It's always exciting when we play these guys," Duchene said. "It's a great atmosphere. It's fun to wear that burgundy and blue against the Red Wings."

I hope they enjoy the same result when they come to the Joe on March 6th, but that's just me.

Overall, Roy told the Denver Post's Terry Frei that he was satisfied with his team's overall play...

"I thought our guys played very hard," Roy said. "It would have been very easy for them to give up after the first and we bounced back in the second period. . . It was a good game. It was fun to be part of it. Our fans, I think, were really into this one and I thank them for it.

Roy said the Avalanche played better in the loss than it had in some of the earlier wins.

"We didn't have the result, but I'm telling you, if we play a lot of games like this, we're not going to lose that many," he said. "We'll win our share of games like this."

And Frei duly notes that the Avs made things very tight in the 2nd:

The Avalanche got within one at 2:36 of the second when Erik Johnson went virtually end to end with the puck on a power play and beat Gustavsson from the right circle. That's the kind of play the defenseman was expected to pull off more often since the Blues made him the No. 1 overall NHL draft choice in 2006. And while Johnson has been strong in the early going for the revived Avalanche, it was his first goal and just his second point of the season. It came after Detroit's Todd Bertuzzi — playing his 480th regulars season game since March 8, 2004 — drew his second minor of the game, this one for holding.

And it was 2-2 at 14:42 of the second, when Paul Stastny won a neutral-zone faceoff on another power play and Gabe Landeskog broke in and netted what also was his first goal of the season. But Franzen got the game-winner in the third after Alex Tanguay went off for hooking at 5:34. Datsyuk's second goal, at 13:35, gave the Red Wings breathing room.

Matt Duchene said, "Other than the first period, I think we played a good game. I really liked our second period and we really battled tonight."

The AP's recap also offered the Avs' take on the game, save Franzen offering this on the McLeod hit...

"I don't know how much time he had to actually slow down there, but he's got to be able to at least lower his point of impact," Franzen said. "He's got to find a way to not hit (Kronwall) in the head."

With the author noting that the Avs are still proud of their 6-1 record:

"We're 6-1. We still have the best or second-best record in the league," Duchene said. "It's unfortunate we couldn't have kept it going against these guys, but we played hard and played really well."

The Avalanche simply ran into a hot goaltender as Gustavsson bottled up Colorado's potent offense most of the game. Even when the Avalanche pulled Semyon Varlamov for an extra skater with more than 1 minute remaining, they couldn't sneak anything past Gustavsson.

"That was a tough one," Paul Stastny said.

...

This rivalry may just be heating back up. It used to be bitter and bloody one during Roy's playing days, but it's tapered off a bit, in large part due to the slide of the Avalanche, who have missed the playoffs the past three seasons. Can this rivalry get heated again?

After all, the two teams meet just twice this season as the Red Wings switched over to the Eastern Conference.

"We're a long way before we're getting to where the Red Wings are," Roy said. "It's amazing what they've been doing over the years. They've been there (playoffs) every year."

Rick Sadowski writes for both Hockeybuzz and NHL.com, and in his Hockeybuzz recap, he noted that Roy was satisfied with Semyon Varlamov's performance...

"There were a lot of scramble plays," he said. "I cannot say they were easy goals. The first goal, Franzen turned and showed great hands. The fourth one, Datsyuk ... I mean, how many guys can pick up rebounds like this? He's probably the only one in the league that could do such a thing. The third one, the power-play goal, it was a perfect shot over the shoulder. I thought (Varlamov) did a good job."

And he noted that Matt Duchene was none too pleased with the inconsistent refereeing on Thursday night (join the club, Matt, join the club) while discussing the game as a whole:

"We still have the second-best record in the league," Matt Duchene said. "It's unfortunate we couldn't keep it going, especially against these guys, but we played real hard. They played really well, too. They're great hockey players and they showed it tonight."

No one showed it better than Datsyuk and Franzen.

"Datsyuk was unbelievable," Duchene said. "He's a fun player to watch when he's doing that. It's unfortunate that he put in two against us, but you have to tip your hat to him."

It did bother Duchene that he had a semi-breakaway late in the first period when he managed to get off a shot on goal despite getting slashed by defenseman Jakub Kindl.

"I got slashed on the hand and the (referee) told me it was all pants," he said. "I don't know. I didn't like it at all. I tried to go upstairs and I hit (Gustavsson) right in the toe. If I don't get slashed on the hand, hopefully I get the shot up and it's in. He's convinced I got hit in the pants. That's his call. I thought it could have been a penalty or a penalty shot for sure."

Sadowski's recap for NHL.com will serve as our pivot point between the Avs and Red Wings' perspectives, and we'll start with the obvious angles:

The Red Wings, who have won four games in a row, also got 38 saves from goalie Jonas Gustavsson. He's limited teams to five goals in a three-game winning streak while Jimmy Howard recovers from a bruised hand.

Franzen has 15 goals and eight assists in 28 games against Colorado; Datsyuk has 17 goals and 26 assists in 40 games.

" We usually play pretty good coming in here," Franzen said. "We make it hard on them and you have to slow them down as much as you can. You know, it's high altitude and you have to play smart to beat these guys. They have some great skills and some great speed and I think we did a good job with that."

Franzen scored his second power-play goal of the game at 7:10 of the third period after Avalanche right wing Alex Tanguay took a hooking penalty to give the Red Wings a 3-2 lead. Franzen, who didn't have a goal in the first seven games this season, was in the right of the slot when he one-timed Justin Abdelkader's cross-ice pass behind goalie Semyon Varlamov.

Datsyuk scored his second goal at 13:35 when he put in his rebound after Daniel Alfredsson's feed got past sliding Avalanche defensemen Andre Benoit and Erik Johnson.

"What a play by Datsyuk," Avalanche coach Patrick Roy said. "You don't see too many guys capable of picking up a rebound like this. That was quite something."

The Wings' PK is still a work in progress, but with Alfredsson dishing out assists left and right, the power play's taken flight:

"When a player gets injured on your team and you get a big power play you want to come through, and fortunately we did to get the lead," Alfredsson said. "That was important for us and that whole period was good. Obviously, we ended up winning the game on the power play; that was a big factor tonight."

The Red Wings' coach told the Free Press's Helene St. James that he wasn't exactly thrilled with his team's 60-minute effort...

"We were scrambling in the second," coach Mike Babcock said. "We didn't get ourselves off the ice in time. But obviously a really good first period for us, and a real good third. And give Gus credit, he played great."

Fittingly enough for a Wings-Avs game, there was a fight, too, with Drew Miller and Cory Sarich dropping gloves after cross-checking each other late in the second period. Sarich got in several blows to Miller's head before it was over.

I believe that was the Wings' first fight of the year, right?

Anyway, the Wings were going to take what they could get, especially given how shanken up they were by the hit, as they told the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan...

“We’re happy with the win,” Datsyuk said. “It’s a young team and they skate really fast. They had chances. But our goalie (Jonas Gustavsson) had another outstanding game.”

Gustavsson had 38 saves while winning his third consecutive start this week with Jimmy Howard out with a bruised left hand.

“Gus could have been the first start three straight games,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said.

But the victory was marred by an injury to Kronwall early in the game. Kronwall left the game at 2:13 of the first period on a stretcher, the team later announcing he had a concussion and cuts near his ear. Kronwall was skating back to retrieve a puck when Avalanche forward Cody McLeod checked him into the boards, Kronwall’s head hitting the area between the glass and dasherboards.

“Everybody on the bench couldn’t breathe, thinking different thoughts,” Datsyuk said.

And MLive's Ansar Khan (who also posted quote-less recap):

[M]issing their top defenseman and having to play virtually the entire game with a thin blue line against one of the NHL’s two undefeated teams was a tough task.

But the Red Wings persevered, overcoming a lousy second period and 40-shot barrage to score twice in the third and pull out a 4-2 victory at the Pepsi Center. They extended their winning streak to four while stopping the Avalanche’s six-game run under first-year coach Patrick Roy.

“We usually play pretty good coming in here,’’ Johan Franzen said. “We make it hard on them, try to slow them down as much as possible. It’s high altitude. You got to play smart to beat these guys because they got some good skills and great speed.’’

Franzen scored a pair of power-play goals, the second snapping a 2-2 tie at 7:10 of the third. Pavel Datsyuk scored two even-strength goals, the second providing a cushion with 6:25 remaining.

Jonas Gustavsson made 38 saves in winning his third consecutive game in place of Jimmy Howard, who is expected to return from a bruised left hand and start Saturday in Phoenix.

“I felt pretty good out there again today, but once again the guys helped me a lot,’’ Gustavsson said. “No matter how good we play there’s always a couple of bounces or skilled plays from their side. You got to step up and made a few saves.’’

Again, the Wings really did overcome Kronwall's absence via a team effort:

Fortunately, Kronwall escaped a serious injury. The five remaining defensemen stepped up their play. Four of them logged more than 22 minutes, including a game-high 25:54 from Danny DeKeyser (five blocks).

“Kronner is our best defenseman by far. Losing him was a big thing,’’ Ericsson said. “Especially up here with the (high) altitude, it’s tough to get some breath between your shifts, and now you have to go out there sooner than before.’’

That's where we're gonna end it as the press hauled tail for sunny Phoenix soon after the Wings did. Here's hoping that we hear good news about Kronwall today, and bad news for Cody McLeod, "deserving" or not.

Highlights: The Red Wings website's highlight clip is narrated by Ken Daniels and Chris Osgood:

If you want to know what "out-of-towners" thought about the game, TSN, Sportsnet and ESPN posted highights.

Post-game: The Avalanche's website posted clips of Paul Stastny, P.A. Parenteau and Matt Duchene discussing the game...

As well as a defiant Patrick Roy's post-game presser:

Wings coach Mike Babcock felt a little differently about the hit, but he was diplomatic while speaking with Fox Sports Detroit's Trevor Thompson:

Photos:

The Denver Post posted a 26-image gallery;

The Detroit Free Press posted a 20-image gallery;

The Detroit News posted a 14-image gallery;

If you want a wallpaper-sized picture of Kronwall lying on the ice while fans look on uncomfortably/aghast/baffled, CBS Detroit provides for your needs;

ESPN posted a 62-image gallery;

And NHL.com, the Avs' website and the Wings' website posted 37-image galleries taken from the same pool of images.

Statistics:

Shots 40-28 Colorado overall. Detroit out-shot Colorado 12-10 in the 1st but was out-shot 13-5 in the 2nd and 17-11 in the 3rd.

Detroit went 2-for-3 in 4:10 of 5 on 4 PP time and went 0-for-2 in 2:00 of 5 on 4 and 5 on 3 time, or 2-for-5 in 6:10 overall. The Avs went 2-for-5 in 6:55 of PP time.

Jonas Gustavsson stopped 38 of 40 shots; Semyon Varlamov stopped 24 of 28.

The 3 stars were picked by Altitude's Mike Hayes, and he picked Gabriel Landeskog, Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen.

The Wings' goals: Franzen (1) from Zetterberg (5) and Kindl (2), PPG;

Datsyuk (3) from DeKeyser (1) and Alfredsson (6);

Franzen (2) from Abdelkader (2) and Alfredsson (7), PPG;

Datsyuk (4) from Alfredsson (8).

Faceoffs 29-25 Colorado (Detroit won 46%);

Blocked shots 18-16 Detroit;

Missed shots 10-8 Colorado (total attempts 68-52 Colorado, with the Wings firing 28 shots on Varlamov and 24 wide or blocked);

Hits 24-13 Colorado;

Giveaways 6-6;

Takeaways 10-7 Detroit.

Individual stats, TMR style:

Faceoffs: Datsyuk went 11-and-12 (48%); Weiss went 5-and-8 (38%); Glendening went 5-and-5 (50%); Andersson went 4-and-3 (57%); Zetterberg lost his only faceoff.

Shots: Datsyuk led the Wings with 8 shots; Alfredsson, Andersson and Franzen had 3; Kindl and Abdelkader had 2; Miller, Lashoff, Zetterberg, Glendening, Ericsson, Cleary and Weiss had 1.

Blocked attempts: Kindl and Franzen hit Avalanche players 3 times; Alfredsson, Datsyuk and Cleary had 2 attempts blocked; Lashoff, Zetterberg, Bertuzzi and Ericsson had 1 attempt blocked.

Missed shots: Kindl missed the net 3 times; Alfredsson missed the net 2 times; Tootoo, DeKeyser and Weiss missed the net 1 time.

Hits: Ericsson led the Wings with 4 hits; DeKeyser had 2; Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Miller, Tootoo, Quincey, Glendening and Franzen had 1.

Giveaways: Quincey and DeKeyser had 2 giveaways; Zetterberg and Ericsson had 1.

Takeaways: Abdelkader and Datsyuk had 2 takeaways; Kindl, Alfredsson, Quincey, Ericsson, Cleary and Franzen had 1 takeaway.

Blocked opponent shots: DeKeyser blocked 5 shots; Alfredsson blocked 3; Quincey, Ericsson and Weiss blocked 2; Kindl, Miller, Lashoff and Franzen blocked 1.

Penalties taken: Miller took a manor and a minor penalty; Bertuzzi took 2 minors; Ericsson, DeKeyser and Weiss took 1 penalty.

Plus-minus: The Wings finished at a collective +10. Alfredsson, Datsyuk and Zetterberg finished at +2; Kindl, Quincey, Ericsson and DeKeyser finished at +1.

Points: Alfredsson had 3 assists; both Datsyuk and Franzen had 2 goals; Kindl, Abdelkader, Zetterberg and DeKeyser had assists.

Ice time: DeKeyser led the team with 25:54 played; Ericsson played 24:48; Quincey played 24:39;

Kindl played 22:56; Datsyuk played 21:31; Zetterberg played 20:22;

Alfredsson played 16:15; Cleary played 15:58; Lashoff played 15:58;

Andersson played 15:51; Franzen played 15:08; Bertuzzi played 14:11;

Weiss layed 13:43;  Abdelkader played 13:35; Miller played 11:25;

Glendening played 9:38; Tootoo played 7:21; Kronwall played 1:08.

 

 

 

In the prospect department: The Grand Rapids Griffins will raise their Calder Cup banner tonight against Milwaukee.

In the QMJHL, Anthony Mantha didn't register a point for the first time this season as his Val-d'Or Foreurs lost a 7-1 decision to Charlottetown. Yahoo Sports' Neate Sager named Antoine Bibeau, the Charlottetown Islanders' goalie, his first star for shutting down Mantha:

The Islanders' checkers also did a job on Quebec League scoring leader Anthony Mantha. The Detroit Red Wings first-rounder was minus-2 with one shot on goal after having 28 points (and 63 shots) in his first nine games.

In the OHL, Jake Paterson also had a rough night, stopping 23 of 29 shots as his Saginaw Spirit dropped a 6-3 decision to the Sarnia Sting;

And Andreas Athanasiou didn't register a point in the Barrie Colts' 1-0 loss to Sault Ste. Marie.

Mantha still earned rave reviews from The Sports Forecaster--from a fantasy hockey perspective:

The current leader in CHL scoring is big winger Anthony Mantha of the QMJHL's Val-d'Or Foreurs, who has posted 16 goals and 28 points in just nine games so far in 2013-14. A first-round draft pick by Detroit this past June (20th overall), Mantha has tremendous upside as a scoring winger. He may still be a work-in-progress in terms of using his big frame as a power forward, but the 19-year-old has plenty of keeper-league value. The only possible downside here is Detroit's impressive stable of forward prospects ahead of Mantha on the depth chart, including 2013 Memorial Cup champion Martin Frk--a graduate of the Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL) and now member of the AHL's Grand Rapids Griffins. Still, keep an eye on Mantha. He seems like an ideal heir apparent to the likes of Johan Franzen and Todd Bertuzzi in Motown.

 

 

 

Red Wings notebooks: Do you want more warm Roy-Wings fuzzies? MLive's Khan and the Detroit News's Kulfan provide them, and Kulfan adds a note about Luke Glendening:

With each game, each shift, forward Luke Glendening (Grand Rapids/Michigan) is getting a bit more comfortable with the Red Wings. Babcock has Glendening centering Jordin Tootoo and Drew Miller on the fourth line, as well as doing some penalty killing.

“Every game, every practice you gain a little more confidence,” Glendening said. “I’ve been talking with the guys. They’ve been helping me out. I’m just trying to be a sponge here and learn everything I can.”

DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose penned a profile of Glendening...

“All you have to do is walk through his journey,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “He walked on at Michigan, he was their captain, signed an American League/East Coast contract here. He didn’t get to play in the American League. When they went to the East Coast League they didn’t let him play there either and he had to fight his way through, and ended up being an important player last year that won the Calder Cup. Now he’s on our team.”

The 24-year-old Glendening made his NHL debut last Saturday, but will continue to face adversity as he tries to break into the Red Wings’ line. Glendening’s time in Detroit will most likely be short, as Darren Helm is expected to rejoin the Red Wings early next week.

“I kind of knew that coming in here, that they’re just waiting on him to get back,” Glendening said. “I just have to play my best and I can’t control what’s going on on the outside. Obviously Helm is a great player and he’s going to be a great addition to this team when he comes back. Everyone is excited for him to come back, myself included.”

Due to a series of injuries, Helm has only played in one regular-season game over the last 19 months. After beginning a rehabilitation stint with the Grand Rapids Griffins, Helm could be in the Red Wings’ lineup for their home game against the New York Rangers on Oct. 26.

But knowing his time is limited only fuels Glendening’s desire to learn and make an impact on his team, especially as he prepared for his first NHL road trip.

“I’m just glad to be on my first road trip,” he said. “I think my mentality stays the same, try to watch and learn and be a sponge. Try to learn as much as I can when I’m here and hopefully moving forward I can find a way to stay.”

And he penned a profile of Stephen Weiss, too. Weiss is taking a little longer than Alfredsson to acclimate to playing with Detroit, but everybody including Mike Babcock knew that Weiss would have some difficulties adjusting to puck possession hockey as a center playing for an incredibly difficult-to-master defensive system--as Chris Chelios once said, he'd never seen a system of play in which forwards were under more pressure to skate up and down the ice than he witnessed the Wings endure adjusting to when Babcock took over--and a new team after spending 12 with the Florida Panthers.

Weiss spoke with Roose about scoring his first goal, the game-winner against Carolina, as well as his decision-making process in terms of leaving the Panthers to join the Wings. Weiss tells Roose that he's delighted to know that his new employer is a playoffs-or-bust team, unlike the Panthers:

“You come here and it’s the complete opposite,” Weiss said. “They’ve made the playoffs for such a long time it’s not even up for discussion here. So it’s different in that sense. There’s that quiet confidence here where there was always kind of a nervous tension in Florida to start the year. Those are the biggest differences right off of the bat.”

Stability throughout leadership roles in the organization is another reason Detroit was so attractive to Weiss. The Panthers employed six different head coaches, another six general managers and six team captains during his time in Florida.

“When you have guys who have been here for such a long time, established a certain type of culture here,” he said, “all you have to do is come in and fall behind those guys. It’s a good thing to be a part of.”

Weiss definitely fits in to the Red Wings’ schemes. His acceleration alone makes him a dangerous two-way center who doesn’t skimp on his defensive responsibilities.

“He anticipates the game really well and he’s a good skater,” said Weiss’s linemate, Daniel Alfredsson. “But I think the biggest thing is just the way he thinks the game. He understands what the other team is trying to do and he anticipates that. Anytime you want to play good defense, you have to be smart.”

...
On most nights, the Panthers played in front of sparse crowds. But again, the culture is different as Weiss learned on his first shift during the season-opener against Buffalo.
“Just being in a hockey environment is a huge advantage,” he said. “I loved playing in Florida, but the buzz around the building on a game day, the packed building, the oohs and aahs over little plays like a finished check or scoring chance. You might not get those there, but those are the things that I notice the most here. My first shift here I had a body check and you hear the crowd roar. That was pretty cool, so it gets you fired up and makes you realize that you’re in a hockey town. For me, that’s really exciting.”

Weiss has only registered 2 goals over the course of 8 games thus far, but he's speedy, he is, as Babcock likes to say, very "heavy on the puck," he's very defensively responsible and his short stick makes slick passes and fires off accurate shots.

I firmly believe that he's going to prove the Wings' decision to re-sign Weiss over Valtteri Filppula, who's off to a predictably superb start (emphasis on start) with the Tampa Bay Lightning, a wise one, but it's not easy to deal with a rotating cast of linemates and to step in behind Datsyuk and Zetterberg knowing that you've got to match their defensive dedication, so Filppula's 6 points in seven games as "Not Vincent Lecavalier's replacement, except his replacement" isn't unexpected.

Otherwise, given what we're expecting to happen to Cody McLeod, Yahoo Sports' Nicholas J. Cotsonika's "Three Periods" column offers a little disciplinary context...

Two things need to be clarified after the Maxim Lapierre-Dan Boyle incident:

— One, when the NHL requests an in-person hearing, it reserves the right to suspend the player for six or more games. It does not commit to suspending the player for six or more games.

— Two, a player is considered a repeat offender under the collective bargaining agreement if he has been fined or suspended in the past 18 months. But that is only to determine how much money he will lose during a suspension. The NHL divides average salary by 82 games for repeat offenders. That’s a pricier penalty than it is for first-time offenders. The NHL divides average salary by the number of days in the season for them. This season it’s 195.

Bottom line: If the NHL’s department of player safety decides a hit is illegal, it then factors injury and a player’s entire history – especially with that type of infraction – into the length of the sentence. If it thinks six games or more is possible, it requests an in-person hearing.

...

— Why no hearing for San Jose’s Brent Burns for driving St. Louis’ Brenden Morrow into the boards? Because Morrow stopped up and initiated contact – pause this video at 0:14 – before Burns hit him in the back and sent him flying.

In the NHL’s view, Morrow put himself in a vulnerable position. He lost a battle to a bigger man. Morrow is 6-feet, 205 pounds; Burns 6-foot-5, 230. You can argue the standard, but not the consistency. The department of player safety has viewed similar incidents the same way.

And as Darren Helm will be embarking upon a 2-game conditioning stint with the Griffins tonight, joining Gustav Nyquist and Cory Emmerton...

— Huge news for the Detroit Red Wings: Darren Helm, who has played only one game in 18 months, is on a conditioning assignment with their American Hockey League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins. If all goes well, he could be back in the NHL next week. The Wings have sorely missed his speed. They feel they are a different team with Helm in the lineup.

And finally, as it's 4:30 and I've been sitting behind my computer typing about the Wings-Avs game since a little after 9:20 PM, I'm going to wrap things up with this footnote from Adrian Dater:

Who is the landlord for Avalanche winger P.A. Parenteau? It's former Avs player Kyle Quincey, who's now with the Red Wings. Parenteau rents the house owned by Quincey.

I started this entry 3 hours before clicking "submit." I need to get some sleep.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Comments

w2j2's avatar

You know, I am really happy about the Glendening story.
And some credit to Babcock, who identified him out of a crowd of minor leagers and gave him a chance.  Babs l think likes Glendening for the same reasons he likes Cleary.

Posted by w2j2 on 10/18/13 at 06:00 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

I don’t think any of this really pisses me off.  Besides the studio guys blaming Kronner, most of the above is accurate (including the idea of telling Mule that we’re playing Colorado every game).  McLeod is known to be a bit…um…destructive, so when he’s bringing that body of his with speed, there is going to be a big hit.  Kronner got too low on his turn and ended up getting his head hip-checked into the dasher. Sure, Cody should have let up a bit, but at the same he’s a player that doesn’t have a “let up” option.

Can you get mad at another team for initially celebrating Kronner getting hit hard?  We would if we were in their shoes, and they appropriately changed their tune once they had a chance to look at the replay (and as much as I hate to admit it, I do like the Avalanche in-game broadcast team).  And c’mon, do we expect anything less than those sort of responses from Roy?  That’s what makes Patrick Roy Patrick Roy.  That’s why we love/hate him.

Good for Big E for standing up for a teammate.  Great confidence building game for SixDfive and Mule. 

I could watch the Alfie/Z/Pav line all day long.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 10/18/13 at 09:27 AM ET

Avatar

nothing to be even slightly mad about let alone p’d off.

Posted by jkm2011 on 10/18/13 at 09:56 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

My response to the Avs media guys: Kronwall doesn’t hit people from behind, and all McLeod had to do was put his arm out and catch himself on the boards to give Kronwall a chance.  The idea that you “have” to finish that hit in any sense is ludicrous.  This is one of those situations in which McLeod should have to sit out for at least five games, or for the life of Kronwall’s injury, which ever is greater. 

I do have to say, although the Avs announcers were dicks for acting like Kronwall’s positioning excuses McLeod, Kronwall has to be smarter than that, especially given the hits he thrown over the years.  Guys are gonna be watching for a chance to get back at him, especially as he gets older. 

As for Matt Douchense bitching about the refs, I suppose he was upset about the slashing call Bertuzzi got that was all stick?  Or that it was borderline unconscionable that Ericsson got two minutes for giving McLeod what he deserved?  Or that John Mitchell got no time for the hit on Glendining?  Or how about the ridiculous extra two minutes Drew Miller got in the fight with Sarich?  So really, he can kiss my ass. 

On a bright note though.  Daniel *#$%@& Alfredsson?  If he is even half this good throughout the season, we’re in for a fun ride.  I hope it inspires him to play another season.  And do you think Pav and Z like playing together much?

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/18/13 at 10:16 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 10/18/13 at 09:27 AM ET

I tend to agree with you.  They Avs broadcaster went overboard.  I can’t say I’m mad about it.  And I don’t Patrick Roy said anything untoward, you can’t expect the guy to out one of his players.  I’m glad he is back in the mix, aside from what happened to Kronner, yesterday’s game was a lot of fun and Roy was a big reason for that. 

Thanks for the memories Patrick.  THE GOAL COUNTS!  THE GOAL COUNTS!

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/18/13 at 10:28 AM ET

Primis's avatar

I’m not mad, George.  I’m really not.  Had the Wings lost, I still wouldn’t be even.

This isn’t a “rivalry” anymore.  It just isn’t.  We all wanted to ruin things for Patty Waaaahhh but beyond that… there is nothing.  I don’t care what the Avs do, say, or think because they’re not even in our conference anymore, and no threat to anything.

And I think at the end of the day… “New Packaging, Same Product:  Losers”.  And I don’t say that in the hated rival way, I say that in the “The Avs picked #1 Overall last year” kind of way.


RE: Kronwall… it’s a slippery slope.  Look, it’s ENTIRELY POSSIBLE to get a minor head injury without involving a concussion.  He has a knot on his head?  That can happen without a concussion, and it’s hard to tell at first because when you get a knot on your head your head hurts.  In my younger days I was downright reckless playing sports and it wasn’t uncommon for me to come away with a knot on my head form something happening, but no concussion or anything concussion-like. 

It also possible to get a concussion with no other visible effects or injury.  It’s weird, and a bit scary.  Kid on my nephew’s football team got rung up last week.  Hit didn’t look bad in any way, he came back to the sideline, and just sat with his head down.  Trainer came over and asked him some questions.  He couldn’t answer what his last name was, and they took him to the room.  The hit wasn’t bad, or brutal, or anything, nobody saw any head contact anywhere, nobody lowered anyone’s head, and it was a run-of-the-mill hit that happens 70 other times a football game.

What I’m trying to say is:  I know we hate the Wings’ medical staff right now but, don’t jump to conclusions.  I don’t possibly think the Wings would fudge about a concussion for any reason, and I think that while those trainers are death to groins, they’re probably competent with the head and the NHL watches that all very closely anyways.

Posted by Primis on 10/18/13 at 10:56 AM ET

Avatar

You and I both know that the Wings continue to be out-shot by a ridiculous margin,

That’s a bit hyperbolic given the game to game situations.  Before the Avs game we’re talking about a difference of less than 2 shots per period.  That’s not ideal as you’d always prefer your team have more shots than the opponent, but ‘ridiculous margin’ is a silly way to describe it.

As far as the hit goes, I don’t quite get the agita… aside of course from being pissed Kronwall got hurt, which depending on the severity of the injury could be deleterious to the Wings.  MacLeod is going to get between 2-5 games most likely.  It was a reckless play and he’ll likely be punished for it, although I don’t have a ton of confidence in the NHL’s ability to get it right.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/18/13 at 11:21 AM ET

wedge56's avatar

McLeod did not continue in a straight line on his hit.  He swerved a the last second towards the head.  He is going to get games off for this.

Posted by wedge56 on 10/18/13 at 11:43 AM ET

Avatar

a difference of less than 2 shots per period

Man, I am sure now JJ is right about you. Where are you getting your stats?

As far as the hit goes, I don’t quite get the agita…

Clearly you didn’t have to listen to the Avs feed for the game. But, it must be difficult to get any feed from inside Sammy’s pants….or decent statistics.

Thank you for the write-up George. This was a great game. Alfie’s assist on Daytsuk’s goal was skilled and funny to watch two Avs slide past him.

Anyone have any thoughts on Monster’s positioning on both goals. It seemed he was out from the goal a bit too far and his angle on both shooters looked like he left big parts of the goal open.

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 10/18/13 at 12:10 PM ET

RW19's avatar

George,

IMO McLeod should be/will be gone 3-5 games ... he knew what he was doing. He saw Kronwall’s back and tracked him from even before crossing the blue line so maybe 70 feet but he never let up. It’s almost like the video of ‘what not to do’ they show midget players.

Anyway they won.

With everything you posted, its hard to take exception to anything but just a couple of things that I don’t agree with:

1. I still think Dekeyser is in a funk. You list two giveaways but he had at least a couple more along with some errant passes into skates and some awkward moments where he looked surprised by the speed of the forecheckers coming at him.

2. Gustavsson made some crazy saves and was outstanding 90% of the time, but man, no way you can be called reliable when you give up up those weak Johnson and Landeskog 40 foot unscreened wristers. Even Landeskog said during the intermission that he was surprised but happy it went in because he’s had way better chances to break his early season goose egg.

Last thing ... the one thing that did bother me from last night ... the Miller-Sarich fight. I did not get a good look at it, but did Sarich pull/push off Miller’s helmet and then keep fighting with his visor on? What about the honor of the fighting ‘Code’ ... that seemed pretty classless to me on Sarich’s part, especially since Sarish is no small boy.

Posted by RW19 on 10/18/13 at 12:17 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

I’m not worried about Gustavsson. Two squeaky goals over the course of three games’ worth of 35+ shots isn’t indicative of a liability. He’s earned the benefit of the doubt.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/18/13 at 12:23 PM ET

SnLO's avatar

Anyone have any thoughts on Monster’s positioning on both goals. It seemed he was out from the goal a bit too far and his angle on both shooters looked like he left big parts of the goal open.

During the broadcast, ozzie stated that monster was positioned correctly, the puck just “found a hole”. From my perspective watching at home, both goals (and another long shot in the 3rd that went off the mask) monster appeared surprised by the shots and seemed to be reacting late. On the third shot, I even stated to my wife, “I wonder if he needs glasses, because he is reacting to pucks from range as I would, were I not wearing my glasses.” Most likely not his eyes, but more likely that he was just not focused the way he need be because, I speculate, he was not expecting the shots, thus the late reacting.

Posted by SnLO from beyond the M-1 on 10/18/13 at 12:26 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

McLeod did not continue in a straight line on his hit.  He swerved a the last second towards the head.  He is going to get games off for this.

Posted by wedge56 on 10/18/13 at 11:43 AM ET

This.  McLeod had the presence of mind to turn into him, so the lack alternative conduct has to be considered.

As for the shot differential, its worth mentioning that although teams have been out shooting the Wings, the Wings have been making it hard down low.  A lot of those shots, especially against Columbus, have been lobs, not quality scoring chances.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/18/13 at 12:55 PM ET

Avatar

Man, I am sure now JJ is right about you. Where are you getting your stats?

From, you know, the box score.

The last 3 games (prior to the Avs), the Wings were outshot by 5, 3 and 4.  That’s not being ‘ridiculously outshot’, and it’s also being outshot by… less than 2 shots per period.

Last night the Wings were playing a) ahead and b) without their best dman for huge parts of the game.

In Boston they just got hammered.  In Phoenix they played terribly.  When you’re 8 games in a couple bad games and a lack of understanding about the specific game situations can lead to poor conclusions about stat lines.

Clearly you didn’t have to listen to the Avs feed for the game.

So you are getting annoyed because of something the other teams home announcers said?  Seriously? 

You need a little more in your life if stuff like that cracks your shell, brother.

But, it must be difficult to get any feed from inside Sammy’s pants….or decent statistics.

Look, I realize it’s going to be hard to have certain people understand rather obvious things.  That’s part of the deal with posters like you.  I don’t take your inability to either comprehend or craft a joke personally, I’m aware you’re functioning as well as you can within your own limitations.

 

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/18/13 at 12:57 PM ET

Avatar

I still think Dekeyser is in a funk.

DeKeyser is suffering from the same malady that plagues all new Wings:  Expectationitis.

The reality is that he was a second team All-American a couple times and a very solid defensive dman at the CCHA level for 3 years.  He’s not going to put up a lot of points, he’s mostly just going to be a minute-sponge and (hopefully) pick up some slack on the PK.

There’s not a lot there for ‘wow’ factor.  He’s essentially Brad Stuart… the only time you’re going to really notice a player like him is when he’s screwing up.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 10/18/13 at 01:03 PM ET

RW19's avatar

He’s essentially Brad Stuart

Well i don’t think there is much Brad Stuart in Danny DeKeyser. Stewie is a nasty d-man that gets physical and hits hard. Sometimes clean but always hard. Doesn’t mind the occasional stick work. There is no wow factor offensively, but there is one physically.

Dekeyser is your steady and heads up puck moving defenseman. The guy that makes the safe play and makes the crisp passes. My view is that right now the passes aren’t so crisp and the plays aren’t as safe as they could be. Not saying he’s horrible or even saying that I expect more - just saying that he might be going through some NHL growing pains. He’ll be a pretty good player though when he adds expoerience.

I just thought he had a rough game.

Posted by RW19 on 10/18/13 at 02:32 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

My favorite part of the Alfie….........to Datsyuk goal was something I only saw on the wide angle replay (which I think they only showed once).  While Alfie was waiting for the Av players to slide by, there was one D-man holding his ground with Pavel just behind him and to his left.  Pav stuck his stick out and beaver-tailled off to the left, even farther back from the defender, which of course, froze the guy’s legs and made him look left.  As soon as that happened, Pav jumped into the middle and you know the rest.  The man is simply brilliant.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 10/18/13 at 06:46 PM ET

Avatar

The last 3 games (prior to the Avs), the Wings were outshot by 5, 3 and 4. 

You should cite Sammy for those stats or, did you finally look something up? Sure when you cut off stats where they make you point look good you only come out looking like an idiot. After the three games you you pointed out the wings then were out shot 8 and 9 but then out shot their opponents 14 and 13.

So you are getting annoyed because of something the other teams home announcers said?

You haven’t even read what other people have posted in any detail. Take a reread without your Sammy sperm in your eyes and you will see that most of the people who are aggravated with the hit make comments about the Avs broadcasters. Seriously.

You need a little more in your life if stuff like that cracks your shell

Owe! Ohhh! Owe! That smarts. Do you come up with your own material or is Sammy whispering it in your ear?

I’m aware you’re functioning as well as you can within your own limitations.

the first proof of a lower life form being aware of a higher form of intelligence. Folks we are witnessing evolution.

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 10/19/13 at 05:06 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.