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The Malik Report

Red Wings-Sharks quick take: I didn’t need a concussion to know the Wings were in for a headache

I've been sidelined for the past week and may miss a bit more time as going through the spin cycle at 45 miles an hour (on my way to the Winter Classic, no less) has left me with a concussion. As such, I really didn't need to watch Thursday night/Friday morning's 4-1 Red Wings loss to the San Jose Sharks to be left with a pounding headache...But I watched anyway.

I'm just baffled as to how the Wings could've not known that they were walking into the trap they so brazenly trapised into after four full days off. You would think they had to have known that no Datsyuk, no Franzen (concussion buddies forever!), no Helm and no Ericsson meant that the team had much less margin for error than usual.

You would think that they had to have known that adding in a little rust would mean getting off to a strong start (no dice) and staying out of the penalty box (phantom calls and dives or no phantom calls or dives).

You would think that everyone from Jimmy Howard on out would know that the Sharks would work the cycle down low and try to pick the corners of the net, and you would most certainly think that the Wings of all teams would know that Joe Pavelski loves nothing more than playing teams wearing red.

Somewhere between practicing in Phoenix (I think that Datsyuk has either a sore left knee or a hip flexor injury, for the record) and flying to San Jose, maybe the Wings' younger players didn't get the message, because Jakub Kindl got walked around like he was a pylon on the Desjardins 2-1 goal and Tomas Tatar should've been checking Pavelski instead of playing goal on the 3-1 marker...

And sometime between the morning skate and the drop of the puck, the Wings' top line and top defensive pair must have forgotten how closely they would've been checked, because Henrik Zetterberg and Daniel Alfredsson were on for three goals against, Gustav Nyquist was a -2 and Niklas Kronwall was spared a -3 because the third goal he couldn't defend against was a power play marker.

From the drop of the puck--where the Wings were just dreadful in the faceoff circle--onward, the undermanned Wings were out-worked, out-hustled, out-skilled, out-willed, out-wiled (hey, the Sharks got away with some dives and a ton of hooking, holding, clutching and grabbing, but that's what smart teams do), and more or less dismantled by a team that's predictably dominated against the Wings at home in predictable fashion...

To the point that the third-period crap between Quincey and Kennedy was predictable, Toddd Bertuzzi getting punched in the face repeatedly by Wingels and Vlasic and having to go to the box for being cheap-shotted, or Daniel Cleary proving that the Wings' goat had been got by dirtily elbowing Hannan, all of that crap was just as expected as Tatar's pair of stumbles suffered thanks to a sticky blueline.

No Red Wing played well on Thursday night. The veterans, Alfredsson especially, looked like their timing was off; the key performers like Zetterberg, Kronwall and Howard worked hard but made telling, game-deciding mistakes; the support players and youngsters were either cheating toward offense and got caught on the wrong side of the puck, or they plain old didn't work nearly hard enough or smart enough to give the Wings the momentum they so desperately needed to generate when down a goal, or two or three.

And as encouraging as it is to see Drew Miller co-lead the team in shots and the now-visor-wearing Bertuzzi display physical panache from start to finish, there's just no excuse for the Wings to have all but stomped their foot on a bear trap, upset with themselves because they didn't cut off their own damn leg on the first try.

Things aren't going to get any easier against Darryl Sutter's trap-trap-and-trap-some-more-happy Kings on Saturday or those dastardly and cheap-ass Ducks on Sunday, and the Wings don't have the luxury of continuing to skid on the ice spinning their wheels given how tight the standings are--self-depreciating puns intended--or given how banged up this team remains as it attempts to regain its footing through fourteen remaining pre-Olympic games.

My absence may not be understandable if you haven't had a severe concussion, but I'm working on at least mild-to-moderate #3 here, and I didn't know what the road had in for me last Wednesday.

The hockey team I'm trying to rest and heal to follow doesn't have the same kind of ability to excuse itself from successfully out-competing its most familiar foes due to unforeseen circumstances. You could see Thursday's loss coming a mile away, but that doesn't make it any less unacceptable.

I hope to see you on Saturday and much more regularly by next week. It has sucked more than the Wings did tonight to not be able to follow hockey and to talk with all of you, supporters, detractors, beloved trolls and lingering lurkers alike, and I miss all of you--and doing this--very much. I've just been sleeping and trying to not have to try this hard to write. My Pacifica got banged up pretty badly and so did I, but at least nobody else got hurt, and I'm incredibly grateful to Paul and Monica for filling in and for your continued support. I sure as *#$%@& hope we get to watch a more solid Red Wings product together on Saturday and Sunday.

Thursday's effort and result were all too predictable, and if this team hopes to make the playoffs, it's got to stop sticking to its mistake-prone, inefficient and underachieving script...

And minus Helm and Datsyuk, the team looks absolutely desperate for speed up the middle, even with Glendening in the lineup. I'd argue that the team needs to tap Riley Sheahan on the shoulder or finally see what Landon Ferraro can do for them.

Quick stats:

Shots 26-25 San Jose overall. Detroit out-shot San Jose 12-9 in the 1st, were out-shot 14-8 in the 2nd and out-shot San Jose 5-3 in the 3rd period.

Special teams: Detroit went 0-for-5 in 8:00 of PP time; the Sharks went 1-for-4 in 6:31 of PP time.

Goaltending: Jimmy Howard stopped 19 of 23 shots for Detroit, and Petr Mrazek stopped 3 of 3 for Detroit; Antti Niemi stopped 24 of 25 for San Jose.

The 3 stars were picked by Sharks radio broadcaster Dan Rusanowsky, and he picked Andrew Desjardins, Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski.

The Wings' goal: Tatar (9) from Glendening (2) and Smith (8).

Faceoffs 31-21 San Jose (Detroit won 40%);

Blocked shots 18-14 San Jose;

Missed shots 19-11 San Jose (total attempts 59-54 San Jose, with the Wings firing 25 shots ON the net and 29 wide or blocked);

Hits 19-19;

Giveaways 12-9 San Jose;

Takeaways 14-6 San Jose.

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Comments

Chet's avatar

skaters were sluggish and bad, but howard was absolute rubbish again. just unreal.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/10/14 at 02:27 AM ET

bleep bloop's avatar

All said, this performance was on Babcock most of all. The team was not prepared, gave up early, never tried to come back, and got undisciplined late. Exactly the opposite of what a coach is supposed to allow.

My prediction is Cleary will be suspended for 1 and the fishy won’t be suspended for the last-5 instigator.

Posted by bleep bloop on 01/10/14 at 02:28 AM ET

Alan's avatar

I was optimistic, but should have expected that letting the Wings sit idle for five days would only result in another listless loss.

Datsyuk, Helm, Franzen? Please, get better soon.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 01/10/14 at 03:02 AM ET

Gary A$$ SUCK !!'s avatar

I would say….  Gustavsson, Datsyuk, Helm, Franzen? Please, get better soon.

Posted by Gary A$$ SUCK !! from Fort Myers, Florida on 01/10/14 at 03:26 AM ET

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Blaming games like this on Babcock is pretty silly.  Howard sucked (again), two of Detroit’s 4 best offensive players were out (again), their #2 dman was gone, their #3 was just back, and you know… that San Jose team is sort of good.  There’s only so much coaching can do.  If the players are a mess, that’s pretty much it.  Even totally healthy Detroit’s nothing better than 50-50 to beat SJ in their barn, at best.

A few notes:

The Bad

-Nyquist has one goal his last 14 games, and after a hot start is barely a half ppg player.  Who could have foreseen such a thing.

-Tatar’s got some amazing goal-scoring potential.  Unfortunately, it’s for both teams.

-If Howard can’t follow up a great performance with something better than the atrocity he had last night… wow.  Just, wow.  He was nowhere for Detroit tonight.

-Lashoff’s a goddamned dumpster fire.  He’s completely useless on the offensive side of the ice, he can’t clear under any kind of pressure at all, and his ‘positioning’ is a function of being used like a defenseman in bubble hockey where you just sit him to the side of the goal and make sure his stick is pointing in the right direction so a shot doesn’t deflect in off it.  Ugh.

The Good

-Smith and Quincey were competent, and they’ve at least not sucked for most of the past few weeks.  This qualifies as ‘good’ in Detroit this year, sadly and amazingly.

-I liked what Miller’s doing lately.  There was a stretch a few years back when Detroit had a bunch of forward injuries and he was up on the second line for a bit and wasn’t tremendously out of place.  He’s like a mini Cleary, except not mostly done.  Hell, I think he’d be a better upper tier player than Abdelkader, who is a less-skilled version of McCarty.  Alas.

-While stupid and pointless, it was at least something to see the players getting fed up enough with being used like wet naps all night that a couple took exception and put themselves in a position to not have to worry about it for a game or three, because they’ll be suspended.  At least they’re aware of how undangerous they were as a team.

Man, I forgot how much I hate these late night West coast games.  Makes me cranky.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 01/10/14 at 04:17 AM ET

Chet's avatar

I would say….  Gustavsson, Datsyuk, Helm, Franzen? Please, get better soon.

Posted by Gary Bettman SUCK from Fort Myers, Florida on 01/10/14 at 02:26 AM ET

agree, but that’s so the detroit red wings can once again, ideally, sneak into the playoffs. that’s not what this team is about. whatever happens this season is def. more on holland and/or the pro scouting staff than anyone on the ice or behind the bench.

where’s the article about former wings players scouting their buddies, a clubhouse atmosphere that’s clearly not working, and holland asleep at the switch?

i’m just some LA lawyer who’s missed watching 3 of this team’s games over the past 6-7 years. what am i seeing that they aren’t?

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/10/14 at 06:32 AM ET

Chet's avatar

(“clubhouse” meaning behind the scenes, not with the players. i think the core all still want and know how to win. i think the team’s leaders know better than to sell out the players who aren’t doing well publicly. i think everyone on the team knows their trajectory, knows young players will always be coming in, knows management and the fan base will always be freaking out unless there’s a Cup.

still, where are the results? this used to be a team that reloaded at worst. now we re-limp into the 8 seed?

i think older guys like 13, 40, and even 55 don’t actually know how to react to a roster so full of holes. that, i maintain, remains on management. holland talks and talks about parity and the cap, then gets caught with his pants down on some of the deals this team is carrying? which is it, ken?)

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/10/14 at 06:37 AM ET

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Glad to read your recapture George. I knew that game would give you a headache. I went to bed after 2 periods but recorded it. It sounds like the third period was a doozy. I think we all expected a loss. I was excited when the first period ended in a tie. As for speedy Griffins who can help up the middle,  Tootoo is very fast and makes a difference every shift. Landon Ferraro is my favorite Griffin. He plays offense on penalty kills, and he plays really tough and fearlessly. He deserves a shot in the NHL. It stinks that these kids are being brought in to try to salvage a season, instead of being able to go and learn from the best and gradually work their way onto the team. Feel better George!

Posted by griffinsfan on 01/10/14 at 08:40 AM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Seems like something similar happened last season after the Wings had a little warm weather R&R in Glendale… I wasn’t surprised at all.  Disappointed, but sadly, not surprised.

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 01/10/14 at 08:57 AM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

It’s easy to get out worked in your own zone if you do almost nothing in the neutral zone to obstruct entries or perfect dumps that give D-men no time, cause you spend all your time there. That and the rock stupid play of our forwards just slapping the puck anywhere with barely a look. Smart team with attentive D will exploit that all night.

Posted by MoreShoot on 01/10/14 at 09:00 AM ET

Slumpy's avatar

Well on the positive side: Brad Stuart had an assist in 17 TOI and was a plus 2.
Oh Stuart isn’t on our team anymore and Kenny Holland hasn’t found a defenseman even remotely as physical to fill the void, sorry.
Been fun watching Kindl and Quincey and Lashoff play D though, ugh.
Surprised Vlasic cheapshot Bert last night and was hoping instantly the refs would get out of the way so he could get his fists into him…effing pickle boy being asked to Olympic squad by Stevie was a joke. He’s lucky Wingels (his dad) stuck up for him.
Another painful game to watch play. My dvr fast forward heavily used gratefully to get me through rubbish.
At least this game didn’t end in a shootout loss my favorite post lockout change in the NHL!
shut eye

Posted by Slumpy from Detroit on 01/10/14 at 09:40 AM ET

RW19's avatar

George, not sure I agree at all. This was a 1-1 game starting the second period. The latter half of the first the Wings controlled the play and they killed off Z’s penalty to start the second. They were playing decent up to that point. Then Howard deflated them with a horrible effort and they all sagged. Tats almost scored to make it 3-2 but missed a wide open net.

In the third the Sharks gave them nothing and the Wings never really were able to force the issue. The PP was also terrible, but Howard really killed them.

Hockey ain’t that complicated. To win they needed to play a tight defensive road game. The central component of that strategy is solid goaltending. They did not get it.

BTW the Sharks were also missing key players including Wing killer Logan Couture.

Posted by RW19 on 01/10/14 at 09:45 AM ET

Avatar

Well at least we can hope for a suspension to Cleary.

Posted by godblender on 01/10/14 at 10:02 AM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Then Howard deflated them with a horrible effort and they all sagged.

Posted by RW19 from Kars-on-the-Rideau on 01/10/14 at 08:45 AM ET

This seems to be the painful recurring theme of this season.  Well, other than the injuries, of course.

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 01/10/14 at 10:14 AM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

I thought moving to the East was supposed to be a good thing…

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach on 01/10/14 at 10:18 AM ET

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I Watched the entire game last night. Was satisfied with the first period. I thought the Wings showed some energy. Then came the 2nd period… I will just say this, I know what it’s like playing on a team and being let down by just a couple of mistakes… Howard. Howard let in the softest freaking goal. That WEARS on a team, it brings your confidence down and it gets even hard to compete when confidence dwindles.. (This is where Babcock comes in - he didn’t though) And then when you think you MAY have a chance at coming back, you miss an open netter. But most of all, Howard just forgot how to be an nhl goalie. I say start Mrazek next game. Howard just needs to regain himself. I don’t know how you let in arguably 3 soft goals that game. Just awful, how can a team win when your goalie just lets you down? I mean it makes the wings look bad. If Howard was playing like a serviceable goalie in the nhl I GURANTEE we would have seen different scores. I mean, we probably would have lost in a shoot out, but I can easily see that game turn tides when your goalie makes big saves. When you goalie saves some nice ones, you get confidence, you feel better, relieved even, and it gives the team a chance to win. This could, would have been probably 2-2 by the end of 3rd. Not 4-1. Howard is just so bad these days…

Posted by Pasha1277 on 01/10/14 at 10:31 AM ET

topshelf14's avatar

Howard was bad last night no doubt, but the Wings have to score more than 1 goal. And it’s embarrassing to see Thornton destroy our captain all night.

Posted by topshelf14 from Detroit, MI on 01/10/14 at 10:45 AM ET

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I thought moving to the East was supposed to be a good thing…

It is.  In the East this mediocre team will make the playoffs, in the West they would be on the outside looking in.

Posted by Garth on 01/10/14 at 11:17 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

Until Howatd gets his positioning figured out , Sammy, Cleary, Eaves off the PP and preferably the team and Wings get a true #1 D man and a couple of real 5/6 D Men this fiasco is going to continue.

Howard just plain loses his net being too aggressive.  Miller is playing great, Tatar is a young talented kid with some D lapses, Mrazek is always fun to watch and Z/Kronner trying to hold things together and probably some other good things I missed.

A couple of horrid goals deflated the Wings who had a good Road 1st Period but they can’t win by getting into a shot out with this lineup.  The Ducks are one of the top 3 NHL Teams so it is not going to get better.

Had to watch Sharks NHL Center Ice feed and as much as I loathe Remenda from my Hometown it actually was interesting not hearing less hiding the Wings problems.

Hope Cleary gets suspended for the rest of the year, just a dream.

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 01/10/14 at 11:17 AM ET

Avatar

Who could have foreseen such a thing.

Coming from someone who predicted Sammy could dump 30 goals in this season, ha, Nyquist is looking just fine.

I think he’d be a better upper tier player than Abdelkader

Wow, you really aren’t watching the games are you. I guess since you are afraid to cross eight mile you can’t see much.

it was at least something to see the players getting fed up enough with being used like wet naps all night

That sounds like a coaching problem…

Man, I forgot how much I hate these late night West coast games.  Makes me cranky.

Sammy went to bed early.

Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 11:23 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

So Howard declined to talk to Media.  Maybe he should face the good with the bad and admit he is having problems. Not a Fan of declining to talk to the Media.

Personally I would sit his butt and let Gus/Mrazek play Saturday.

And while I am putting my neck on the chopping block.  Aby is either being used in the wrong situations or he is also having a rough year. He doesn’t have Bert’s excuse.  Love Bert even before his Wings stint but this should be his last season.

Maybe staying up past midnight was not a good thing.

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 01/10/14 at 12:04 PM ET

Avatar

Wow, you really aren’t watching the games are you.

You’re suggesting Abdelkader is better than Miller while accusing someone else of not watching the games?

Oh, the irony.

Posted by Garth on 01/10/14 at 12:24 PM ET

topshelf14's avatar

Who could have foreseen such a thing.

Coming from someone who predicted Sammy could dump 30 goals in this season, ha, Nyquist is looking just fine.

I think he’d be a better upper tier player than Abdelkader

Wow, you really aren’t watching the games are you. I guess since you are afraid to cross eight mile you can’t see much.

it was at least something to see the players getting fed up enough with being used like wet naps all night

That sounds like a coaching problem…
Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 10:23 AM ET

Put your raging bone for HiHD away for a minute and learn how to evaluate our team better.  The Red Wings roster last night was sad.  What do you expect to happen?  We’re playing a top 5 team in the league and our 2nd line consists of 3rd/4th/AHL players on most other teams.

Here’s whats happening this year for those of you that can’t see it.  The Red Wings with a completely healthy roster would finish in the top 4 of the Eastern Conference, and somewhere between 4-6 in the West.  Our team when healthy is good enough to compete for the Stanley Cup.  Right now, it’s not.  We are without Franzen, Datsyuk, Helm, Weiss, Ericsson.  Those guys change this team dramatically.  Now if Ken Holland wants this team to do more than qualify for the playoffs he will make the necessary moves required to win sooner than later.  That is the only thing up for debate in my opinion.  What will Holland do?

PS - Stop whining about HiHD’s posts, you sound like a burnt turd with hair on it.

Posted by topshelf14 from Detroit, MI on 01/10/14 at 12:38 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Landon Ferraro is my favorite Griffin. He plays offense on penalty kills, and he plays really tough and fearlessly. He deserves a shot in the NHL.

Posted by griffinsfan on 01/10/14

And because Holland and Babcock had man-crushes on Buckets, we may never get to see Ferraro play in Detroit. I can’t imagine he’d have played any worse than Cleary has if he’d been given that roster spot.

I thought moving to the East was supposed to be a good thing…

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach

I actually wish they’d stayed in the West for this season. They’d probably be 14-20-10 instead of 19-15-10 right now. They’d miss the playoffs and end up with a top-12 draft pick. And, most importantly, there would be pressure put on both Holland and Babcock to make major changes.

As it is, they’ll either make or miss the playoffs by a point or two and everyone will blame the lack of success on the injuries. Next summer, we’ll hear more of the “it’s a man’s game” nonsense and the Wings will resign Cleary and let guys like Ferraro go for nothing.

And Jimmy Howard? I don’t think more work with Jim Bedard will help him. He needs to see a sports psychologist because his head is all screwed up.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 01/10/14 at 12:46 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

My give a damn for this season and team just isn’t there. I didn’t watch last night, but I’ve seen “this” game all too many times the last couple of years. Regardless of what the #‘s or names on the sweaters, there’s just something broken here and has been for awhile.
There’s more effort in the bickering here than the Wings put on the ice most nights. Losing when you deserve to lose if acceptable, the excuses we hear as “reasons” for why this team is lifeless is not.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 01/10/14 at 12:55 PM ET

Gary A$$ SUCK !!'s avatar

Trade Howard and Quincey for Miller and Tallinder… I know thats never going to happen..but it’s a fun thought. Let’s Go Red Wings !!!!  LOL

Posted by Gary A$$ SUCK !! from Fort Myers, Florida on 01/10/14 at 01:10 PM ET

Avatar

The Red Wings with a completely healthy roster would finish in the top 4 of the Eastern Conference, and somewhere between 4-6 in the West. 

FYI, the 4th place team in the East would be 8th in the West right now. The 5th place team (Detroit) would be 10th in the West right now.  Even if healthy all year (a big if), they’d be in a huge battle with several teams for the last playoff spot out west.  Don’t try to sugarcoat it.  The East is THAT bad and the Wings are not that good.

Posted by jkm2011 on 01/10/14 at 01:22 PM ET

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I would trade Howard, Quincey abby for Miller and tallinder. discuss.

Posted by Pasha1277 on 01/10/14 at 01:30 PM ET

maltby18's avatar

Oh no, the sky is falling. 

Wings have 22,320,000 in salary injured.  Are they in last place?  No.

Cleary getting suspended wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen.  Unless they recall Tootoo.

Chances are Holland will throw out his usual “injured players returning is like a trade” line sooner or later. 

Posted by maltby18 on 01/10/14 at 02:17 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Chances are Holland will throw out his usual “injured players returning is like a trade” line sooner or later.

Posted by maltby18 on 01/10/14 at 01:17 PM ET

March 5th is the trade deadline.  If Babcolland still believes this lineup will get healthy by then, we’re gonna be hearing that on endless loop.

Posted by SYF from Zata's Epic Viking Beard on 01/10/14 at 02:29 PM ET

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Put your raging bone for HiHD away for a minute and learn how to evaluate our team better. 

Can’t do it. I’m trying to lure him away from Sammy.

The Red Wings roster last night was sad.  What do you expect to happen?

No doubt about that. That’s pretty much the story all season (or at least since Dats took one the the head). I expected the Wings to lose to San Jose last night. They haven’t had a winning record since 2009-10. Every time I watch them play San Jose they lose and look like boys playing against men. San Jose has had the Wing’s and Babs figured out for too long now. I absolutely dread it when the Wing’s play San Jose. They never seem to show the “I’m tired of losing to these guys” feeling until closing minutes of last nights game. Thanks for showing up four years late.

Here’s whats happening this year for those of you that can’t see it.

Except, as you point out, what is “happening” isn’t. They aren’t healthy, they aren’t in the West and they aren’t in forth place. By the grace of being in the East and getting a point for getting into overtime keeps them in the playoff hunt. They are beating the teams they should beat more often than not but not beating teams better than them (Boston being the exception) enough. I’d say they are doing pretty well for a middle of the pack team but they need improvement. Sammy’s not helping, neither is Weiss, nor is Cleary. All three people signed to make the team better over bringing in younger prospects.

Franzen, Datsyuk, Helm, Weiss, Ericsson…Those guys change this team dramatically.

Absolutely agree. But they still don’t make the team that much less schizophrenic.

Ken Holland wants this team to do more than qualify for the playoffs he will make the necessary moves required

Absolutely agree. He’s the only one who can make roster moves as I understand how the NHL works.

Is that enough talk about the team and Hockey for you?

Oh yeah, You don’t know me quite as well as you know the wings…I am actually a hairy, brown turd, but I’m not burnt I’m actually a bit squishy and moist. There’s a little blood mixed in too.

Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 03:28 PM ET

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Oh, the irony.

Posted by Garth on 01/10/14 at 11:24 AM ET

I know, right?

But I still think Abs brings more than Miller. I like Miller better right now but his career is trending down while Abs is improving. Miller is becoming a more one dimensional defensive player (which is good) but Abs is showing he’s got some offensive skill beyond being a someone who gets a goal because Dats and Z shoot the puck off his body.

 

Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 03:36 PM ET

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They’d miss the playoffs and end up with a top-12 draft pick. And, most importantly, there would be pressure put on both Holland and Babcock to make major changes.

I think I can agree with this. Change can be a good thing.

He needs to see a sports psychologist because his head is all screwed up.

This i can agree with too. A while ago I mentioned that playing in goal is a lot of responsibility. Even if your D messes up and creates a great chance to score it’s still the goalie’s responsibility to keep the puck from crossing that line. That has a lot of impact on one’s mentality. I know, I play that position. Yes at higher levels it is a different mentality but I guarantee it has an impact when you let your team down by not making up for their mistakes.

Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 03:42 PM ET

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I would trade Howard, Quincey abby for Miller and tallinder. discuss.

I’ll bite. I’d keep Howard for one more season. See if he can shake this past one off and come back strong next season motivated by having Mzarek as a backup and future of the team’s goal.

No one will take Quincy in trade. He’s a UFA after this season and won’t make any team better and anyone wanting him will wait to sign him for less. The Wing’s should not re-sign him and use his salary to bring in another d-man.

That leaves Abby. I kind of thought Babs and Holland were playing him on the first line to make teams think he was a better player than he actually was thus raising his trade value. With Toots in GR he can come up and play the role of enforcer better. There are other Wings who play as good or better defense and, err, offense. I can see him being traded more then the other two even though I wouldn’t shed a tear to see Q shipped off (no offense Q - you just didn’t pan out).

I’d like to see shipping off someone (or two) in GR plus Franzen (if he were healthy - yes I know everyone loves him but his contract worries me) or Nyquist/Tatar (potential to be another Huddler type player) for a first line player if available. But, it’s all about netting the salary cap correctly. That’s difficult to do right now. Because of this, I doubt the team makes any moves unless the Wings can move players for draft picks and move in some GR players to see how they do in the NHL to build on and use the extra cash to buy some decent UFAs. I don’t see that happening either which means the Wings are who they are right now.

Posted by howeandhowe on 01/10/14 at 03:58 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.