Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Red Wings overnight report: Fil gone, Colaiacovo bought out, DET unlikely to pursue big-ticket UFA’s

Okay, let's get down to brass tacks here.

1. The Red Wings swung and missed on Vincent Lecavalier. Why? He wanted five years and a no-trade clause, and he apparently has little concern for the concept that a team that has a shaky defense and no starting goaltender also has no cap space, barring trading Braydon Coburn and putting Chris Pronger on the LTIR, anyway, so what the hell, chase the money and play for a team with some superb offensive talent even though you're going to need a name tag to know who your teammates are in six months, never mind a year.

The Wings had the money, but they didn't want to do anything stupider than already having to deal with the players we're going to talk about next, and as the Free Press's Helene St. James has been telling us from the start, the Wings think Lecavalier's too slow to keep up already, at 33, never mind at 38.

2. The Wings will buy out Carlo Colaiacovo because, according to MLive's Ansar Khan, Mikael Samuelsson is suddenly not feeling so well...

If Colaiacovo clears at noon Thursday, the Red Wings will use one of their two compliance buyouts to shed his $2.5 million salary-cap hit for 2013-14.

Colaiacovo's actual salary for next season is $2.85 million. The Red Wings will owe him two-thirds of that amount (roughly $1.9 million) over the next two seasons. He will become an unrestricted free agent.

The Red Wings do not plan to buy out forward Todd Bertuzzi, who has one year remaining at a cap hit of $2.075 million. Forward Mikael Samuelsson is not eligible for a compliance buyout because of his injury (pectoral muscle). If the Red Wings were to claim he is healthy and attempt to buy him out, Samuelsson could dispute it.

(Bert's staying, yay!)

So the Wings are alleviating a log-jam on defense, probably after finding that there was no interest in Colaiacovo (see: he may be made of glass), leaving the team with Kronwall-Ericsson, Kindl-DeKeyser, Quincey-Smith and Lashoff, unless...

They have no defenseman with the Grans Rapids Griffins who is ready to step into the NHL next season (except Lashoff), which could present an issue if there is an injury or two.

That's why the Red Wings likely will sign a low-cost veteran with NHL experience to a two-way deal, someone they can move back and forth from Grand Rapids.

The free-agent market for defensemen is thin, but the Red Wings might continue exploring trades for a top-pair D-man. They made an offer for Vancouver's Alex Edler at the entry draft but the Canucks didn't move him before his no-trade clause took effect on Monday.

The Detroit News's Ted Kulfan also confirms and notes the "made of glass" part...

Colaiacovo, 30, played only six games during the regular season because of a right shoulder injury with one point (an assist).

And the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness confirms while adding more context to the mix:

As for Mikael Samuelsson, he’s not eligible to be bought out because of his injured pectoral muscle. If the Wings deemed him healthy, Samuelsson, who will make $3 million in the final year of his deal, could dispute it.

With the buyout of Colaiacovo the Wings are in need of a veteran for Grand Rapids for insurance or they could try and swing a trade for a top four defenseman.

The move could also be to clear space so they can pursue Vancouver Canucks defenseman Alexander Edler. At the NHL Entry Draft on Sunday, Detroit was among several teams to make a pitch to the Canucks for Edler. The Canucks didn’t deal Edler and on July 1 he had a no-trade clause kick in. Edler, 27, begins a new six-year deal at a $5 million salary-cap hit a season.

The Wings were in need of a top four defenseman last offseason after losing Nicklas Lidstrom (retirement) and Brad Stuart (trade) this offseason. Detroit currently has six defensemen under contract for next season.

Brendan Smith is a restricted free agent and will get a deal done bringing the total to seven on the blue line heading to training camp.

The Wings have a number of defensemen coming up through the ranks, including Ryan Sproul, Xavier Oullett and Mattias Backman.

And Adam Almquist.

3. Valtteri Filppula is g-o-n-e gone. Ken Holland suggested as much to both the Macomb Daily's Pleiness...

“He's looking forward to July 5,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said in a phone interview Tuesday. “There's a significant difference. That's why it doesn't appear we're positioned to do a deal.”

The Wings made offers to Filppula in August and September before talks broke down. Filppula made $3 million last season and is believed to be asking for about a $2 million raise a year.

“It makes good sense for Fil and his agent to hit July 3 and see what's out there,” said Holland, who last spoke with Filppula’s agent on Monday. “I'll stay in contact with his agent. If it's time to leave, it's time to leave.”

On Wednesday, teams can begin talking to potential unrestricted free agents 48 hours before the official signing period begins on Friday at noon. This is new under the latest collective bargaining agreement, allowing potential free agents and teams time to decide what their best option is.

“When players hit the open market they're probably moving on,” Holland admitted. “Players usually get offers that are better because so many teams are in play. This year is different because of the reduced cap.”

And the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan:

Talks between general manager Ken Holland and Filppula’s agent have produced little traction, and Filppula likely will begin to field phone calls from other teams with the signing of unrestricted free agents starting Friday.

“One call can change everything,” said Holland, noting he’ll remain in contact with Filppula until Friday’s deadline. “I’ve been around long enough to know that. We’ll see what develops. Is Fil going to hit the market? I don’t know that.”

Filppula had a subpar season, playing in 41 games and finishing with 17 points (nine goals) and a minus-4 rating. He made $3 million last season and is looking for a contract that’ll get him close to $5 million per season.

Holland, however, isn’t going to overpay for anyone, especially with little room on the roster. He continues to negotiate with unrestricted free-agent forwards Damien Brunner (12 goals) and Daniel Cleary (nine goals).

“We have kids ready to play,” Holland said of forwards Joakim Andersson, Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Tatar and defensemen Danny DeKeyser and Brian Lashoff, who are likely to be on the opening-night roster after spending last season in Grand Rapids. “We have an internal push. You look at our roster, we’re set in goal, we have a good defense and we have 14 forwards (not counting Filppula, Cleary, Brunner).”

4. The Wings will explore the free agent marketplace during its wining-and-dining period from today until Thursday evening, as Holland told Pleiness...

The new rule in the CBA gives teams 48 hours prior to the start of free agency to make a pitch to potential free agents and allows players time to make up their mind is something Wings general maanger Ken Holland likes a lot.

“It’s an opportunity for every team to reach out to unrestricted free agents and make a case,” Holland said. “It’s good for players. In the past players get calls at noon on July 1 and have to make a decision within two hours. That’s a big decision for a player and club. From the club’s perspective, you’d like the opportunity to make contact and tell them about your program. It gives players a chance to hear from a number of teams. It’s a great part of the new CBA.”

And Fox Sports Detroit's Art Regner, who:

A) Clarified the states of the Cleary/Brunner negotiations...

“We’re talking. I think they want to be here,” Holland said of Cleary and Brunner. “We want to keep them."

...

Although it’s doubtful Filppula will return, the Wings feel they have a good shot of retaining Cleary. The biggest obstacle is the length of the contract. Detroit prefers a two-year deal, while Cleary is seeking at least a three-year contract. If the two sides can come to an agreement on the term of the deal, they each feel confident they can hammer out the money side quickly.

Brunner is an unknown. There really isn’t a market value set for him, so what he’s hearing from other team’s beginning Wednesday will obviously determine whether the Wings can sign the goal-scoring forward or not. It will come down to money with Brunner, and right now the Wings are clueless about Brunner’s asking price or what's a fair amount.

B) And dropped names:

The Wings are planning on contacting several UFAs. Their main objective will be signing a second-line center. At this point, Detroit’s main target is former Plymouth Whalers (OHL)star Stephen Weiss, who has played his entire NHL career with the Florida Panthers.  Weiss, 30, is a quality two-way center who's not physical; however, he’s creative, has terrific acceleration, is good on face-offs and has the ability to make players around him better.

There will be many teams after Weiss. If the Wings cannot persuade him to come to Motown, a couple of other names to keep on the radar are Matt Cullen and Mike Ribeiro, although Ribeiro may be too expensive.

...

Detroit is intrigued by future Hall of Famer Jarome Iginla. They like Iginla’s game a lot, but some in the Wings organization are concerned that Iginla, at 36 years old, will not be able to play the 200-foot game of going up and down the ice and checking. Of course, Iginla might have little interest in becoming a Red Wing if they reach out to him.

5. At the present moment, the Free Press's Helene St. James confirmed the Twitter reports that David *#$%@& Clarkson wants $6 million per season and that Nathan Horton wants more (think Pavel Datsyuk money; and free snow removal forever):

Vincent Lecavalier will not be joining the Detroit Red Wings, neither will David Clarkson nor Nathan Horton. Stephen Weiss, on the other hand, could be wearing a Wings sweater next season. And defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo will be bought out by the team.

As NHL free agency heats up Wednesday — any unrestricted free agent can talk to any team, although not sign until Friday — the Wings’ focus is shifting more to keeping two of their own guys than bringing in someone new.

Lecavalier, 34, wanted a five-year deal, and got it from the Philadelphia Flyers, at a rate of $4.5 million per season. Clarkson, of New Jersey, is pushing for seven years at a $6 million average; this for a guy who has one 30-goal season to his credit. Boston’s Nathan Horton wants to play in a warm climate. That makes Florida’s Weiss the likeliest new face on the team; he’s a four-time 20-goal scorer who should help the team’s offense.

In terms of the players the Wings want to keep?

General manager Ken Holland is continuing talks with his other two unrestricted free-agent forwards, Daniel Cleary and Damien Brunner, and the negotiations are close enough deals could happen. Cleary should come in around three years and $9 million, while Brunner is seeking in the $2.5 million range.

That's a problem, however...

The Wings already have 12 forwards under contract for next season, a number that will grow by two when restricted free agents Joakim Andersson and Gustav Nyquist get new contracts. Depending on what happens with Cleary and Brunner, the Wings may not buy out any forwards. Mikael Samuelsson, 36, and Todd Bertuzzi, 38, both were injured much of last season, but each has just one season left on his contract.

A player like Cory Emmerton is so cheap — $533,333 — that he’s not worth buying out, and he’s also good insurance given the uncertainty surrounding Darren Helm, who missed all of last season because of a sore back. If Helm can’t play, Emmerton would be the fourth line center, with Andersson in the No. 3 spot.

And St. James duly notes that the Grand Rapids Griffins' Calder Cup run has complicated the equation up front, too:

Part of what influences the Wings as they prepare for this coming season is knowing they’ll have three young players pushing for spots in 2014-15, when Tomas Jurco, Riley Sheahan and Landon Ferraro are all expected to be ready for the NHL.

6. Oh yeah, by the way, you know about the Tom McCollum not being tendered a qualifying offer stuff?

Not so much.

8. And in terms of other prospects?

7. Why the confusing messages from the front office?

You know the guy who used to run the draft for the Wings? He's probably raided the cupboard.

8. And what are the Wings' messages given the fact that the vast majority of their cap space may be gobbled up by re-signing their 3 restricted free agents in Gustav Nyquist, Joakim Andersson and Brendan Smith, retaining Brunner and/or Cleary, and probably adding Weiss?

Well, Wings coach Mike Babcock offered this take on the cap going down from $70.2 million to $64.3 million to the AP's Larry Lage, who penned something of a free agency primer (so did WXYZ's Brad Galli)...

“It’s great to have players out there,” Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock told AP, “but you have to have money to spend.”

And then there's this:

Free agency won’t be limited to the bought-out bunch. In addition to Horton and Ribeiro, there are other unrestricted forwards such as Jaromir Jagr, Teemu Selanne, Jarome Iginla, Patrik Elias and David Clarkson — unless any of them sign with their old teams by the end of Thursday.

...

“It’s rare to find a star in his prime in free agency because those guys get signed to long-term contracts before they can hit the market,” Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said. “But there are some secondary players and some past-their-prime guys that are battling Father Time that can help you.”

 

Okay, so what the *#$%@& are the Red Wings thinking?

My theory goes something like this:

1. The team tried to leak that, "We're going to be aggressive with player movement! Goodbye Sammy, Bert, Tootoo, Emmerton, etc. etc!" stuff a couple weeks ago. It came to the draft and found out that the vast majority of teams wanted to wait until at least the start of free agency to go through the same-old-same-old, even if meant putting their teams in cap trouble;

2. The team was made wary of over-reacting to cover its own ass by last summer's moves + the surprising youth movement = "Shit, we have to buy out Colaiacovo and Sammy's suddenly sprained his ovaries, which is apparently legal in contesting a buyout, so we're still trying to dig our asses out from under that" stuff going on;

3. Given the success of the youth movement, given the Griffins' Calder Cup run, given the fact that the team's keeping Datsyuk, and given that it still doesn't know whether Helm or Bertuzzi will be healthy...

4. And given that the team is indeed loyal to its own players to a fault (Cleary, McCollum, Axelsson)...

5. A management team that is in flux has decided to go the safe route yet again, choosing to perhaps even exceed the salary cap to bring an over-built team reinforced with ONLY ONE free agent signing--essentially, finding Filppula's replacement--and a gaggle of forwards into training camp and the exhibition season, where it will allow the glut up front to work itself out via players out-performing each other, other teams in cap trouble suffering injuries that require cheap replacement players, and...

6. Going into the 2013-2014 season determined to minimize the expensive, stupid mistakes that will handicap it cap-wise or roster-wise over the long haul, if they make any stupid mistakes at all.

So the Red Wings' management will be over-cautious, over-loyal and will over-build its roster yet again. So the Red Wings' management will miss out on the big-ticket free agents because they want what the Wings have deemed to be too much money at players who are riskier investments than the players the team already has or has in the system.

They'll go hard after Weiss and maybe Jagr or Iginla, but that's it. They don't want to *#$%@& over the next five years for a quick fix.

I don't necessarily agree with this philosophy, but it appears to have taken hold as it usually does at this time of year...

And, honestly, folks, if Clarkson wants Filppula-desired money and Horton wants more + free snow removal service forever, well...

Throwing money at those guys makes as much sense as giving Lecavalier what he wanted, and the Flyers are never going to win a Stanley Cup because their personnel is a revolving door and no matter how hard they work, they never seem to address their glaring needs on defense or in goal.

Lecavalier chose money, and the Flyers throw money around like it's going out of style. The Red Wings don't do that, for better or worse, and that certainly doesn't make fans happy...

The team's trying to find as many in-house solutions to its problems as possible, and, unlike the Flyers, they actually made the playoffs this past season.

At least they try to be consistent more often than not.

 

Update: I am dippy.

Also of Red Wings-related note:

West Kelowna Warriors forward David Pope was drafted by the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday as the Wings made Pope their fourth round selection, picking Pope with the 109th selection at the draft.

Pope is the third Warrior in seven years of existence to be drafted to the NHL, joining Edmonton Oiler Justin Schultz, and Cam Reid who was drafted by the Nashville Predators and currently plays for the Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL.

“It really is a dream come true,” said Pope. “Detroit was my favorite team growing up, and (Pavel) Datsyuk is my favorite player. When you get drafted by a team like Detroit that really means a lot. I know I have to work hard, and hopefully become the player they envision me becoming.”

Pope was a dominating forward in the BCHL last season. At 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds, he will return for his third season with the Warriors this fall, already armed with a a scholarship to Nebraska-Omaha for 2014-15.

Pope notched 17 goals, and 22 assists on 42 games with West Kelowna last year.

I'm a bit ill this morning, so I'll be in and out today. The Paypal button will remain for a little while longer.

 

 

I would like to attend the Red Wings' summer development camp from July 9-16 in Traverse City, MI, but I am a blogger. My paycheck is not very big, and due to health crap, this is the only job I've got. As such, I do not have the funds to pay for gas to get me to Traverse City or 11 days of a hotel stay.

During previous years, I've asked you to lend a hand and you've come though in a big way. I need to ask, if it is at all possible, that you might consider tossing a few bucks into the Paypal tip jar. I've generally found that the smallest donations, $5, $10, stuff like that, end up paying for gas and a huge chunk of my stay, and anything more is a bonus.

So if you want to donate, that's awesome, if you don't want to donate, that's cool, and one way or another, I hope to get up there and provide you with in-person, every-day coverage.

My "ID" is my personal email address, rtxg@yahoo.com, and you'll need to use that as the person you're sending $ to.

Thank you again for your support!

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Comments

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Avatar

I really hope Detroit doesn’t buy out Colaiacovo.  First, I’ve just gotten fairly comfortable spelling his name.  Second, it’s dumb to waste a compliance buyout on a guy with one year oh his deal unless the plan is going to be to spend right to the cap.  Third, I guarantee you at some point next year Detroit’s going to need an extra defenseman.

I mean, nothing?  Detroit couldn’t get a 7th for Colaiacovo?  From anyone?  If true, that’s amazing.  You’d think the Isles or the Jets would want him just for the cap space.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 07/03/13 at 04:23 AM ET

Bugsy's avatar

So the Red Wings’ management will be over-cautious, over-loyal and will over-build its roster yet again. So the Red Wings’ management will miss out on the big-ticket free agents because they want what the Wings have deemed to be too much money at players who are riskier investments than the players the team already has or has in the system.

They’ll go hard after Weiss and maybe Jagr or Iginla, but that’s it. They don’t want to *#$%@& over the next five years for a quick fix.

I don’t necessarily agree with this philosophy, but it appears to have taken hold as it usually does at this time of year…

Good summary.
Okay, George, if you’re not too ill, what would YOU want to do? You’ve seen the debate still raging about their conservativeness. We know what the Wings are likely to do, tried and true, which has been their strength and weakness over the decades. I’m not saying that you have to proclaim your plan of attack is better, just curious. I’m still not sure what to make of the Carlo situation, as HockeyinHD noted, but as I threw out earlier, would you go more aggressively after a Coburn or Edler? Weiss for a contract similar to Lecavalier? Maybe Setoguchi rumored to be offered soon, at 3Mx 1 year? Would you trade one or more of the young Griffin/Wings now and go for it in the next year or 2 (and/or trade (a) draft pick(s)?). You’ve hinted several times you’re not thrilled with what they’re doing, just want more detail. Do you think they should say $2.5 M x 3 years or $3 M x 2 years max for Cleary as the bottom line, for example? (I tend towards the Wings’ philosophy now, especially in a cap world, but I’m definitely not married to it, e.g., take a few more chances).

By the way, are you within $100 now? Last thing I want to see is you get sick enough to miss the trip. Take care.

Posted by Bugsy on 07/03/13 at 04:42 AM ET

EDJ's avatar

I was convinced that they would hold onto Colaiacovo until the the preseason in case of injuries. He’s certainly a better player than Lashoff, and they’re not going to have cap problems if they don’t sign anyone.

I’m not pleased about Samuelsson and his booboo.

At this point with his no-trade clause I think Edler is a no go and I don’t know much about this Coburn guy so I’d just as happily go without him and see the defense mature. Even with all the injuries and the Smith mistakes the Detroit defense was fifth in goals allowed this past season, which is not bad at all.

I’m a pretty conservative armchair GM so as long as they sign Brunner I’d be content, and Weiss would be a bonus. But if they don’t get Brunner and don’t get anyone to replace him even I’ll be ready to burn down Holland’s office.

Posted by EDJ on 07/03/13 at 05:06 AM ET

Hockeytown Wax's avatar

First, who do some of these players think they’re going to get a contract from with the cap going down and their salary demands going up ??  Never in my weirdest dreams did I see Fil become one of those players but, sadly, he has, and he’ll be gone July 5.  Why players think it’s a smart move to ask for a long term contract with the cap going down confuses me.  I would want a short term deal while the cap is low and then get greedy in a couple of years when the cap goes back up.

Clarkson wants $6 mil. per ??  If I were KH, that would have made the coffee squirt right out my nose.  Horton wants $7 mil. + per year ... hearing that leads me to one question ... do these players think about the quality of players they’ll be skating with if their own salary demands are as obnoxious as they are ??  How do they expect GMs to surround them with good players when 15% of the teams salary cap goes to just them ??

When KH says the Red Wing philosophy is to develop their own players and promote from within, what he’s really saying is, we’re eliminating any bad attitudes and over active egos by not participating in the annual dog & pony show known as free agency.

Personally, I don’t have a problem with players like Lecavalier, Horton etc. going elsewhere but, some fans want popular names on their team so they can go out & buy their jersey.  Fuch that.  Sure it would be nice to see one or 2 of those high priced free agent guys sign here but, if Mr. I has to make the doorways bigger to fit their over inflated egos, forget it.  Messing with team chemistry is a dangerous thing… just don’t do it.

Posted by Hockeytown Wax from West Bloomfield, Mi. on 07/03/13 at 05:26 AM ET

Bugsy's avatar

do these players think about the quality of players they’ll be skating with if their own salary demands are as obnoxious as they are ??  How do they expect GMs to surround them with good players when 15% of the teams salary cap goes to just them ??

Right now, nearly 40% of the cap goes to Datsyuk, Z, E, and Howard, but the money seems well spent. Anyone they sign you would hope won’t be reaching Z/Datsyuk’s salary #‘s, but we’ll see. One of the reasons I threw out Setaguchi and Coburn is that if some teams are going to go Philly crazy (they like big names) and blow up their cap room in a cap reduction year, this is when Ken Holland should go hat-in-hand to those teams close/over the cap and see if he can help take a good player off their hands, so to speak.

Posted by Bugsy on 07/03/13 at 05:57 AM ET

Avatar

For the fifth year in a row the Wings will enter the season with a worse roster than they had the year before.  Wonder how much longer Babcock is willing to bite his lip and play good soldier…

Posted by deanwerner on 07/03/13 at 06:52 AM ET

Avatar

Not a fan of Colaiacovo buyout. We are probably going to replace that spot with some other defenceman who is going to be worse. Oh, wait, we have Huskins available again! LOL  Yeah, Cola’s fragile, but he’s at least not a complete defensive mess and can come in and give some solid minutes if there’s an injury. With the cupboard so bare, why buy him out now with only one more year to go?

I don’t like bashing Holland. I am not the GM of an NHL team, obviously. But it’s frustrating to see just how conservative he has become. Signing Sammy was a disaster. We couldn’t have done worse by going with some one from GR. I am now worried he will point to Clarkson’s demands and re-sign Filppula for what he’s demanding. I don’t mind Fil, I like him. But he’s way too pricy, especially when we will need to lock up some of the kids that are going to be coming through in a couple years.

I am not sure what to make of all this. I don’t mind striking out on big ticket UFAs. But I do mind overpaying players who aren’t big ticket ala Sammy as they hamstring the team just as much as the big UFAs and often provide worse contribution.

Posted by Adi from India on 07/03/13 at 07:58 AM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

I’m cool with Tick Tock not going after Horton and Clarkson seeing they want the world, BUT…
So Vinny got 4.5 for 5yrs? Great job, Holland.
Samuelsson won’t be bought out because he’ll probably dispute it? Great job, Holland.
Weiss will probably be signed and the contract will be close to what Vinny got? Great job, Holland.
Can we just re-sign Meech and be done with this horse$hit?

The clock is very much broken….

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 07/03/13 at 08:03 AM ET

Avatar

Don’t you get sick on us George. Prospect camp is coming up soon.

Posted by lancer on 07/03/13 at 08:14 AM ET

Hootinani's avatar

Lecavalier chose money, and the Flyers throw money around like it’s going out of style.

How in the hell do you figure that?  He signed for 4.5 per, which is about a milliion less than everyone reported he was asking for.  Vinny chose location, term and personal stability, simple as that.

And Holland has become overly cautious because he has no idea how to operate in a cap world.  The Wings have been living off the pre-cap era legacy, and with the departure of Lids and Homer (not to mention Nill), that legacy has just about run out.

Now Holland swings and misses on pretty much any major deal that isnt gift wrapped for him, and we end up with a bunch of excuses and promises for the future instead of quality players.  And on top of that, the front office seems to be hemorraghing talented employees, especially if this scout rumor is true, so its only going to get worse from here on out.

Posted by Hootinani on 07/03/13 at 08:39 AM ET

TheFreak's avatar

Don’t forget Dustin Penner as an option.

Posted by TheFreak on 07/03/13 at 08:56 AM ET

Guilherme's avatar

I like how the Red Wings f*cked up the last five years so they wouldn’t f*ck up with the next five years.

Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 07/03/13 at 09:21 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Cleary back?  WTF.  Buying out Colaiacovo, while Bertuzzi and Samuelsson get to stay and… sit in the press box?  Tootoo as well?

F**k.  I said it last night and I’ll say it again:  Ken Holland has turned into Joe Dumars (or always was Joe Dumars maybe).

And Holland has become overly cautious because he has no idea how to operate in a cap world.  The Wings have been living off the pre-cap era legacy, and with the departure of Lids and Homer (not to mention Nill), that legacy has just about run out.

Now Holland swings and misses on pretty much any major deal that isnt gift wrapped for him, and we end up with a bunch of excuses and promises for the future instead of quality players.  And on top of that, the front office seems to be hemorraghing talented employees, especially if this scout rumor is true, so its only going to get worse from here on out.

Posted by Hootinani on 07/03/13 at 08:39 AM ET

This seems to be pretty bang-on at this point.  This is what it appears to be.  We point to the Hossa deal as the last major move Holland made, forgetting that it only happened because Hossa’s agent called Kenny at a gas station (which of course begs the question:  Kenny didn’t or wasn’t going to inquire himself?).  Kenny appears to have no confidence in the cap era.

The scout thing really concerns me.  I’m betting Hakan is gone, and if he is that’s all she wrote folks with drafting.

This has nothing to do with not gettting Lecavalier, or not getting so-and-so…. has everything to do with completely-baffling moves to keep players that don’t deserve it and even harm the team with their very presence, while shedding guys that maybe aren’t perfect but actually serve a purpose.

This season is going to suck sooooooo much.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 09:45 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

Somebody loan Sammy their dog-sled.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 09:48 AM ET

Mandingo's avatar

I’m betting Hakan is gone

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 09:45 AM ET

Posted by Mandingo from The Garage on 07/03/13 at 10:06 AM ET

The_Firebird's avatar

New to KK, long time Wings fan and recent inductee to the deeply concerned Wings fans interest group

As it would appear that both the talent pool and management of the Red Wings is busy disintegrating under Ken Holland’s leadership, the real question seems to be:

If Ilitch Holdings and the Wings decide to part ways with Kenny Holland, who do they go to for the GM position? The opportunity with Yzerman came and went, after which there was hope that Nill might be groomed for the position. Now he’s sitting on a beach in Texas sipping Corona.

It doesn’t seem like there is anyone with even a marginal level of experience with both the familiarity with hockey that is required of the GM post, or the experience with team management needed of the position anywhere in the ranks behind Holland.

Before everyone suggests him as the go-to-guy, Ryan Martin is a capologist, I would be really, really surprised if he had even half the chops necessary for the job.

Honestly, who do they get to replace Kenny now that he has run his successors out of town?

Posted by The_Firebird on 07/03/13 at 10:12 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

I think the hope there is that Mr. I throws a bunch of money at Tampa Bay in order to buy out Yzerman from them.

Otherwise, that genius from Columbus, Scott Howshisnamego, isn’t doing anything right now… smile

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 10:14 AM ET

Avatar

We point to the Hossa deal as the last major move Holland made, forgetting that it only happened because Hossa’s agent called Kenny at a gas station

And I’ll add this.  The last major acquisition he made before that was Brad Stuart, and does anyone think that if a similar player came up this year at the deadline that 2013 Ken Holland would even [strongconsider] parting with a 2nd and a 4th round pick for him, knowing that it could ended up just being a rental?

I don’t believe for a second that 2013 Ken Holland would make that deal today.

Posted by Garth on 07/03/13 at 10:21 AM ET

SnLO's avatar

Mikael Samuelsson is not eligible for a compliance buyout because of his injury

He is a perfect candidate to spend the final year of his contract on LTIR = more roster / cap space.  shelf this guy

Posted by SnLO from the sub great-white north on 07/03/13 at 10:25 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Before everyone suggests him as the go-to-guy, Ryan Martin is a capologist, I would be really, really surprised if he had even half the chops necessary for the job.

Honestly, who do they get to replace Kenny now that he has run his successors out of town?

Posted by The_Firebird on 07/03/13 at 10:12 AM ET

Here’s why my outlook is bleak:

Martin, as capologist, is the guy advising Holland.  Holland is lowballing guys and not willing to be aggressive enough.  Holland is scared.  If Martin is the capologist, he’s the one making Holland timid with the cap, no?

Knowing nothing else about the situation, that makes me think Martin probably isn’t going to be any different in that situation.  In fact, he may be the biggest part of the problem.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 10:46 AM ET

SYF's avatar

Red Wings Central @RedWingsCentral

And Hat Trick Dick (Axelsson) ... The #RedWings have his rights for another year. Hakan Andersson will keep an eye on him this season ...
12:53 PM - 2 Jul 2013


Fuch that guy.

Posted by SYF from the team that re-signed KFQ and DFC by KFH on 07/03/13 at 11:02 AM ET

Avatar

Holland is not being aggressive because the status quo is just fine with the local beat writers and the “Hey Hey Hockeytown” fans on certain fan sites.  As long as they don’t turn into Calgary, which this organization is too deep to do, then he’ll never feel any accountability or heat.

Posted by bababooey on 07/03/13 at 11:05 AM ET

Avatar

By the way, you heard it here first.  Samuelsson will come back healthy sometime early in the season and Holland will work on re-upping him for a few more years

Posted by bababooey on 07/03/13 at 11:07 AM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar

Cleary should come in around three years and $9 million

WTF this guy looked like he was on his LAST LEGS until he had a good showing in the second round this year. And NOW we’re willing to give him that much over that term while publicly stating we don’t like Vinny because he is slow?  Wait and see how slow Cleary becomes in the third year of his contract..

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 07/03/13 at 11:29 AM ET

RWBill's avatar

Again I ask as I have for days already, although it seems to be overcome by events in that the Wings don’t appear willing to put up a fight…

Suppose Wings put Sammy on waivers with the intent of buying him out, because he’s not bad enough to be on LTIR.

Samuelsson says “you can’t, I’m injured, take a look at my peck, I mean, pec.”

Seems like the burden of proof is on Samuelsson.  Who is the deciding authority?  Someone at NHL?  Team doctor?  Apparently it’s Sammy’s agent who has the last word.

If this Douche is not on LTIR his salary is going to count against Detroit’s Cap.

Ending the series with Chicago he was only listed as a scratch, but now he’s too injured to be bought out?

Detroit should say, ” you’re on waivers, bitch, now go home and collect $2M over 2 years for doing nothing.”

The worst that could happen is that after some lengthy appeals process he is reinstated to the roster with a $3M cap hit.  Sure that could have consequences, but so does not buying him out now.

I ask again, who or what is the final authority on determining a player’s health staus for purposes of compliance buyout??  Looks like this may be something that slipped through the CBA cracks.  If that status = LTIR then it would be easy to figure out.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 07/03/13 at 11:30 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

I notice there are lots of contrasts between certain leaders in the office.  Like Babs insistence that you have to stay fresh, keep pushing yourself, stay hungry.  Seems like Nill had that, Stevie had that, Jimmy Develano had that.  KH does not, at all.

he’s already been GM for almost half a decade longer than Develano was.  Someone made good points about, who do we have left to succeed him.  While we were so busy holding onto prospects we were developing, we let every front office GM prospect worth developing go.  Sounds like we’re losing more?

That’s also hilarious to me, because KH in a recent interview (state of the Wings I think?) said that one of the great advantages Detroit has is it’s scouts have all been together for 20+ years and all know what eachother are looking for etc…  FUNNY.

He always said he should retire when Lidas does.  I think he should have.  I’ve never advocated he move on but, damn, after 4 years of nothing, 5 if you count the fact he literally did no work to get Hossa,  Literally, and all the promises to the season ticket holders and all these ideas and giving us a year of “we’re waiting for the buyout pile” then saying the pile’s too expensive… He’s really just full of shit and realizes he’ll keep his job as long as he saves money and makes the playoffs (e.i. makes money)  Just one round is worth the money for the owners.

KH doesn’t take risks because he’s worried about his own self and his own self is worried about the playoff streak and revenue dollars from it.  Not the Cup or Winning for the pride of winning.  It’s a dollar thing.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/03/13 at 11:36 AM ET

Avatar

It appears to me that the Wings have never had the intention of buying out Samuelsson.  WE can all speculate all we want about his being injured and raising a fuss or whatever but really, if the Wings were going to even entertain it don’t you think they would have approached his agent about it?  I guarantee you they have not up to this point, maybe because they knew it would cause a fight, maybe because they want to keep him.  Either way, knowing Holland’s MO, I can’t see them buying out Samuelsson, I never believed they would and I have yet to believe they intend to now.

Posted by bababooey on 07/03/13 at 11:41 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Also find it odd, if KH and the Red Wings are such gems, why is everyone jumping ship?  How can Nill pull our scouting staff?  Probably just the good Euro part as it was recently noted how bad Detroit is at drafting and developing North American talent, so if Hakan leaves, expect those prospect cupboards to go bare.

What do all these names have in common.  Kronwall, Filpulla, Hudler, Ericsson, Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Franzen, Fleischman (I know, we traded him) Kopecky, Nyquist, Tatar, Andersson, Kindl, Mrazek..  exactly compared too…

Howard (ran out of options, thrown in the fire, turned it around for himself), Smith (was supposed to be the cream of the crop of all those recent Badger D and while McDunaugh over in NY was tearin up the playoffs 2 years ago, Smitty looked like a lost puppy most nights.  Of course, did ruin his confidence leaving him in the minors as long as possible instead of bumping him up when they should have.  Then again they were gonna let Kindl go because they mishandled his development, luckily injuries gave him another shot, because the in tonight, out a week regardless of play never brought out his best, weird), Helm, Abby…. oh Emmerton.. there’s emmerton….

If Nill takes Hakan, where do you think DRW is headed?

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/03/13 at 11:46 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

By the way, you heard it here first.  Samuelsson will come back healthy sometime early in the season and Holland will work on re-upping him for a few more years

Hey, maybe if his “pec muscle” heals up and with a decent off-season training effort,maybe he finds his accuracy again.  Maybe he scores ~15 goals for us.  I mean the guy loves to shoot the puck, right?  Maybe he earns that inevitable 4yr extension…Maybe I’ll win Powerball…

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 12:10 PM ET

SnLO's avatar

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 12:10 PM ET

Don’t forget that Sammy gives the Wings a right-hand shot from the point on the power play. That alone is worth some years and dollars.

Posted by SnLO from the sub great-white north on 07/03/13 at 12:20 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

He’s got a booming RH shot from the point.  I love it (when he’s on the ice for it to happen).  However, once the puck bounces past him, he’s a 2-minutes-for-Hooking waiting to happen. 

And in complete honesty, I was happy when they resigned him last summer.  For all the “he loves to shoot the damned puck and we’ve got a lack of guys who enjoy shooting the damned puck” reasons.  He may still work out for us, time will tell (but I’m not holding my breath.)  Prove me wrong, Sammy!

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 12:26 PM ET

Bradley97's avatar

If Nill takes Hakan, where do you think DRW is headed?

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/03/13 at 11:46 AM ET

I don’t think Hakan will leave. I think he’s happy where he is. However, I think half the scouting staff will follow Nill for the same reasons Nill left: complacency and lack of commitment to a plan.

My problem with Holland is under his recent leadership (since the Cup runs) the Wings have begun looking like the Blues towards the end of their playoff streak. What is the direction of this team? What is the identity of this team?

Babcock has not been happy. However, I think he likes the kids and to wants fully commit to them or blow up the youth to get the key players he needs to go for it now. Holland refuses to do either.

Maybe Martin is the problem, but maybe not. Maybe the problem is the way Holland uses the information Martin provides. Yzerman wanted Martin to be his assistant GM, so that says something to me about his potential.

I agree with the sentiment that Holland should have retired with Lidstrom. Nill was ready to take over, and Holland should have given up control and stepped aside to enjoy the next era the same way Devellano did with Holland.

As to the question of who is left if Ilitch decdided Holland’s time is up, I’d look to Anderson if he’d be willing to come to the states for the top job. Unfortunately, I don’t think Holland has the humility to know when it’s time to step down, and I think Ilitch is comfortable with what he has left as along as the team keeps making the playoffs now that his Tigers are a closer away from potentially winning the World Series he so desperately wants.

The real question is how much longer will Babcock sit and stew while this continues before things come to a head? And would Babcock perhaps be someone to take on the hats of coach and GM like Bowman did for a while when Devellano only wanted to handle contracts and Holland was not yet ready? Babock has Martin for contracts and McDonald(?) for drafting. He knows what he wants and he’s not afraid to go after it, so maybe that’s the solution to the leadership problem.

Putting that aside, I’d like to see a commitment to youth now, even if that means missing the playoffs next season. I don’t care about the streak, I care about coming back strong. I think these kids on defense and offense have the chance to do that, but they need certain veterans to stay out of the way so they can play and adjust faster. And I think Babcock is the right coach to show them the way. So at least the Wings have that, for now.

Posted by Bradley97 on 07/03/13 at 12:48 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

The real question is how much longer will Babcock sit and stew while this continues before things come to a head? And would Babcock perhaps be someone to take on the hats of coach and GM like Bowman did for a while when Devellano only wanted to handle contracts and Holland was not yet ready? Babock has Martin for contracts and McDonald(?) for drafting. He knows what he wants and he’s not afraid to go after it, so maybe that’s the solution to the leadership problem.

Coach Babs is a Bowmanite.  He might relish that sort of challenge.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 07/03/13 at 12:54 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Babcock as a GM is….. I don’t know.

That’s something nobody has ever raised the possibility of.

Putting that aside, I’d like to see a commitment to youth now, even if that means missing the playoffs next season.

Posted by Bradley97 on 07/03/13 at 12:48 PM ET

I don’t think fans even care what the commitment is, we just want one instead of being a wishy-washy, waffling double-talker.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 01:07 PM ET

Bradley97's avatar

Babcock as a GM is….. I don’t know.

That’s something nobody has ever raised the possibility of.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 01:07 PM ET

I know. I just did.  zipper

I don’t think fans even care what the commitment is, we just want one instead of being a wishy-washy, waffling double-talker.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 01:07 PM ET

That was what I was trying to get at with my analysis of what’s been going on and who we have left and the seemingly inevitable fist fight between Babcock and Holland because of that very problem. Babcock knows what he wants, but he’ll go with now if that’s what Holland commits to. He just wants a team that he can work with, be it to build for a run in a few years or reload for a run right now. Babcock wants to win, period. He can’t win with Holland’s waffling.

I just want to make it clear that I respect Holland for what he has done, but just like players past their prime, I question if Holland still has what it takes anymore. I’m leaning towards thinking that he’s done like Hasek when Ozzie took over to win the Cup, but Nill is no longer here to take the reigns, so that’s when I took a hard look at the other options and came up with either the brilliant Swedish scout of the hard nosed coach.

I think both are good options, but again, Ilitch doesn’t seem to be paying attention right now, and that’s the real problem.  downer

Posted by Bradley97 on 07/03/13 at 02:04 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Forward Mikael Samuelsson is not eligible for a compliance buyout because of his injury (pectoral muscle). If the Red Wings were to claim he is healthy and attempt to buy him out, Samuelsson could dispute it.

[T]he Wings feel they have a good shot of retaining Cleary. The biggest obstacle is the length of the contract. Detroit prefers a two-year deal, while Cleary is seeking at least a three-year contract.

Cleary should come in around three years and $9 million

There may be some significant changes coming in the RedWings scouting staff as well. Stay tuned…You know the guy who used to run the draft for the Wings? He’s probably raided the cupboard.

big surprise 

Fuch. We’ve got McClellan as our GM when we really need Sherman.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 07/03/13 at 02:47 PM ET

Avatar

I really hope Detroit doesn’t buy out Sammy.  First, I’ve just gotten fairly comfortable spelling his name.  Second, it’s dumb to waste a compliance buyout on a guy with one year oh his deal unless the plan is to continue to claim that a guy 35 years old isn’t aging out of the game and is still capable of putting together a whole season and score 20 plus goals when only doing twice in the prime of his career.  Third, I guarantee you at some point next year Detroit’s going to need an extra winger—wait they have a lot of them but younger.

I mean, nothing?  Detroit couldn’t get a nickle for Sammy?  From anyone?  If true, that’s amazing.  You’d think the Isles or the Jets would want him just for the cap space.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 07/03/13 at 04:23 AM ET

Posted by howeandhowe on 07/03/13 at 02:52 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Cleary possibly getting $3 million for another 3 years while Brunner asking for $2.5 million?

Is this a Monday? Dafuq?

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 07/03/13 at 03:02 PM ET

Primis's avatar

either the brilliant Swedish scout of the hard nosed coach.

I think both are good options, but again, Ilitch doesn’t seem to be paying attention right now, and that’s the real problem. 

Posted by Bradley97 on 07/03/13 at 02:04 PM ET

Hakan has said he has no desires to do more than he is now.  He basically stays based in Europe scouting, and that’s that.

Posted by Primis on 07/03/13 at 04:04 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Lotta talk deviating from the issues at hand, like what is the preferred diameter rope for a noose?

Yesterday some prophetic A-Hole on here said the roster would end up with Cleary and Samuelsson and by night time that hand writing was on the wall.

Where we at, giving in to Cleary’s demands for three years, giving us 14 forwards without NyQuil and Andersson and Tatar?

Jeebus.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 07/03/13 at 04:52 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.