The Malik Report
by George Malik on 08/15/13 at 11:27 AM ET
Among this morning's Red Wings-related news stories:
- According to 97.1 the Ticket, Ken Kal will be calling tonight's game between the Detroit Tigers and Kansas City Royals. The game begins at 7:10 PM EDT;
- In charitable news, Herm to Hockeytown 3's pledge page is up (as is their Twitter page), and Winging It in Motown's J.J. From Kansas worked with Ken Daniels' booking agency to encourage Wings fans to pledge to the cause:
- In the Twitter department...
- Rather annoyingly, The Score's Daniel Wagner penned a list of 20 things that he wanted to see during the Alfredsson presser, and the Hockey News's Adam Proteau's insisting that Alfredsson's departure has "left" the Senators "in a better place"--coming off sounding arrogant while telling the fans that they're not allowed to be angry:
Allowing your personnel decisions to be based on romantic attachment between team and player rarely results in a storybook ending. Sometimes you need to read the book like a roadmap and not swoon over it like you were leafing through an old scrapbook. Smart NHLers recognize the wake-up call Father Time provides and put themselves in the best position possible to win when they’re greybeards. That’s what Alfredsson has done. In choosing Detroit, he’s gambling the Wings will (a) have an easier go of things now that they’re an Eastern Conference squad; and (b) are as much of a lock to make the playoffs as any team in the league.
Just as importantly, Alfredsson knew he was going to a team that has no issues spending to the salary cap ceiling in pursuit of a Stanley Cup. That was not an option in Ottawa, as Senators owner Eugene Melnyk recently said. It came down to Bobby Ryan or Alfredsson – and if I had a choice between those two players, give me Bobby Ryan all day, every day, all of the days.
At 26 years of age, Ryan will be a productive and dependable teammate of cornerstone Erik Karlsson longer than the soon-to-be 41-year-old Alfredsson would’ve been. We know sports are a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately business, so that’s all that matters. And ask yourself this: would a straight-up Alfredsson-for-Ryan trade been praised or panned? I’m willing to wager most fans unencumbered by an emotional attachment to Alfredsson would say Ottawa wins that deal hands-down.
With Ryan on board and good luck with the injury bug, Ottawa could just as easily finish ahead of the Wings in the regular season and go further than Detroit in the playoffs. Not much separates the two teams. And tell me there’s not a little more fire in the bellies of veteran Senators such as Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek. Rejection can serve as a powerful motivator and I’m sure they’d love nothing more than to prove Alfredsson was wrong in thinking Detroit gave him a better chance to win a championship.
Come on, Ottawa fans. Even now, you can’t seriously tell me you hate Daniel Alfredsson. You’ve got more than three months to be honest with yourselves about where he was in his career and where the organization needed to go. And you’ve got an opportunity to set yourselves apart from other fan bases that went the knee-jerk raspberries route in the wake of a legend leaving them.
- And MLive's Ansar Khan "scouts" one of the Red Wings' new Eastern Conference rivals in the Philadelphia Flyers:
Flyers' strengths: They are strong up the middle with two established centers, Claude Giroux and Vincent Lecavalier, and two promising centers, Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier, former top-10 picks. Giroux is one of the premier players in the game, and he's only 25. Lecavalier, 33, is in decline, but still has some productive years. They have good, young wingers who can score in Jakub Voracek, 23, and Wayne Simmonds, 24. Kimmo Timonen and Mark Streit are mobile defensemen who can provide offense. The were the only team whose power play and penalty killing both ranked in the top five.
Flyers' weaknesses: Scrappy veteran forward Scott Hartnell's production declined sharply (from career highs of 37 goals and 67 points to eight goals and 11 points), in part due to missing 16 games with a foot injury. He must rebound, especially since he has six years and $27.5 million remaining on his contract. Their goaltending was a mess with the disastrous signing of Ilya Bryzgalov two years ago. Ray Emery should fare much better, and at a fraction of the cost, after excelling as Corey Crawford's backup with the Blackhawks.
Flyers outlook: Holmgren is feeling some heat after some bad signings, none worse than Bryzgalov. The Flyers have a tendency of throwing money at the wrong players. Time will tell if they made the same mistake with Lecavalier. But, they have promising young talent up front and on defense. They should make the playoffs.
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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.