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The Malik Report

Red Wings mid-day news: Chris Ilitch on WDFN; ‘all-State’ Wings and Athanasiou talk

Updated at 3:30 PM: Red Wings and Olympia Entertainment CEO Chris Ilitch gave a long interview to WDFN's Matt Sheppard this morning, discussing the Wings' arena project and Ilitch Holdings' plans for the surrounding economic development at significant length:

The most important part of the interview for me as a Wings fan? Chris states that his father is the one who's still quite active in the workings of the Tigers and Red Wings, and that Chris deals with other matters. That certainly changes the, "Why things are the way they are" equation.

Otherwise...

In an ironic timing twist, the Metro Times' Ryan Felton explains how the bonds used to pay for and maintain the follow-on rink will "work"...

Michigan Hockey's Michael Caples noted that TSN's BarDown blog has named its all-"State" teams...

And I jammed it into the overnight report, so if you missed it, MLive's Brendan Savage posited an emptying-out-the-notebook article about Andreas Athanasiou:

"He's unbelievably fast," said fellow Red Wings prospect Tyler Bertuzzi, who played against Athanasiou in OHL.

Like Mantha, Athanasiou is destined to begin his pro career full-time in Grand Rapids of the AHL this season.

But doesn't mean the highly confident forward won't have an NHL roster spot on his mind when training camp begins in September.

"I think that's everyone's expectation no matter how far or how close it is," said Athanasiou, who scored 49 goals for the OHL's Barrie Colts last season. "Everyone's expectation is to become a National Hockey League player. That's what I'm going to strive for. If I come up short, I'm going to be ready for wherever I go next year. I think I have the ability to play in the NHL. It's just a matter of how soon."

...

"Andreas has great ability," [Grand Rapids Griffins coach Jeff] Blashill said. "I thought he was great in the development camp and he was great in the prospects tournament. He just needs to continue to learn all the little things it takes to be successful at the pro level. He has flashes of brilliances but it can't be just flashes. It's got to be consistent every day and I think he's getting better at that. But that's just part of the maturation process."

Savage continues and speaks with Red Wings director of player development Jiri Fischer about Athanasiou.

Update: Octopus Thrower's Peter Fish has posited the second part of his conversation with Dylan Larkin:

In the scrimmages, Dylan Larkin was able to show off his passing by putting two or three pucks through traffic and directly on the tape of his teammates’ stick. More than a few of his passes led to scoring opportunities, but none of the chances produced a goal for his team.

In the face-off circle, Larkin was one of the better players on the ice; even up against Andreas Athanasiou – who was one of the better face-off winners during the drill – Larkin won the majority of his draws, including a few important ones.

Although thought of as more of a playmaking forward, Dylan Larkin proved during the scrimmage that he has a quick release and a hard shot to go with it. He was not able to beat the goaltenders, but it showed there was more in his toolbox he can work with moving forward.

...

When asked about the scrimmages Larkin said, “It’s good to get game time in and feel the intensity of the game.”

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Comments

perfection's avatar

Dylan Larkin was able to show off his passing by putting two or three pucks through traffic and directly on the tape of his teammates’ stick. More than a few of his passes led to scoring opportunities, but none of the chances produced a goal for his team.

In the face-off circle, Larkin was one of the better players on the ice; even up against Andreas Athanasiou – who was one of the better face-off winners during the drill – Larkin won the majority of his draws, including a few important ones.

all of the leadership and projected intangibles aside, they clearly drafted Larkin to grow into Mantha’s eventual center. How many guys have we seen, like Rick Nash, who went so long without ever being able to find the right center. The Wings went high risk/high reward last year in the draft and it may have nabbed them the steal of the decade so far, it was really smart to focus this year’s #15 on getting a sure-fire NHL playmaker who’s hopefully going to be feeding Mantha for the next two decades or so while they both sport letters on their sweater. Can’t wait to see some Michigan games this year.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 07/23/14 at 03:40 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.