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The Malik Report

Red Wings prospect Ryan Sproul relates the tale of his first NHL appearance

The Sault Star's Peter Ruicci penned a catching-up article profiling former Soo Greyhounds defenseman, Red Wings prospect and Grand Rapids Griffins blueliner Ryan Sproul, and instead of chopping it up, I'll suggest you take it from here:

Showing up at the arena two hours prior to the afternoon start, Sproul saw his name posted among those in the lineup. He was about to live the NHL experience.

“I was just trying to turn my nerves into energy,” recalled Sproul, who starred for the 2012-2013 Greyhounds, eventually being named the Canadian Hockey League's top defenceman.

With Danny DeKeyser and Niklas Kronwall held out in order to rest up for the playoffs, and with Jonathan Ericsson sidelined with an injured finger, Sproul played alongside Ouellet on the Wings third defensive pair. Wearing jersey No. 48, Sproul, an outstanding skater with a lethal shot, didn't look out of place during a game that was broadcast nationally in the United States on NBC.

“I was pretty much pinching myself,” admitted Sproul, a six-foot-four, 205-pounder, who played three seasons for the Hounds. “This is my dream. This is where I want to be.”

Ruicci continues...

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Comments

RW19's avatar

I wonder if now that the Red Wings are seeing that they aren’t really ready for prime time when compared to the Bruins or the Hawks last year, if they might move some younger players into the line up slightly faster.

I can understand the reasoning for keeping guys down in GR for 2-3 years when you have a top end line up, but it makes less sense when you obviously have holes, especially on defense.

I look at the Kindl/Lashoff pairing and I ask myself why would they not gamble with inserting a more heady player like Ouellet or PP QB types like Sproul or Almquist?

If Ericsson was available, maybe they would have gambled and used one of the PP gifted kids partnered with him? Maybe not. I guess they figure that they have too much inexperience already.

We’ll see what happens but Marchenko, Sproul and Ouellet look like pretty solid players right now, good enough for 6/7 duty. They have to be happy with the play of Jensen down in GR. Almquist needs to go somewhere too. Nedomlel, Bachman, and now Mitch Wheaton is turning into a major prospect. GR is jammed packed too ...

Posted by RW19 on 04/25/14 at 09:23 AM ET

TreKronor's avatar

I look at the Kindl/Lashoff pairing and I ask myself why would they not gamble with inserting a more heady player like Ouellet or PP QB types like Sproul or Almquist?

I don’t know, I mean, it’s easy to say that in hindsight, but with a win last night we have a brand new series tied at 2-2.  That would be a huge risk. 

Being down 3-1, is it worth doing?  Maybe.

Posted by TreKronor on 04/25/14 at 09:50 AM 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.