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The Malik Report

Red Wings-Devils game-day updates: Wings sign Sheahan, will start Howard, and Helm skated today

According to MLive’s Ansar Khan, the Red Wings have officially signed Riley Sheahan to a 3-year, entry-level contract, and they summoned the power forward to Detroit for the move, but that doesn’t mean he’ll play against the New Jersey Devils tonight (7:30 PM EDT, FSD/MSG/97.1 FM)...

“I’m not going to take a look at him,’’ [Wings coach Mike] Babcock said. “ I’d love to put him in the lineup. I always like to put big people in the lineup. And he looks like he’s going to be able to play. He’s going to decide with his play over time, how soon that’s going to be. If he’s a regular every day Red Wing, or a just guy who plays in exhibition and ends up in Grand Rapids, I don’t know the answer to those questions.’‘

And Khan reports that both Jimmy Howard will start tonight opposite Martin Brodeur (per the Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti), and that Kyle Quincey will rotate back into the lineup after serving a one-game suspension…

Jimmy Howard will start in goal tonight for the Detroit Red Wings against the New Jersey Devils at Joe Louis Arena (7:30 p.m., Fox Sports Detroit).

Howard also is expected to start Saturday’s regular season finale against the Chicago Blackhawks at JLA (1 p.m., NBC). That would give him four starts, following his latest return from a strained groin, heading into the playoffs.

Overall, Howard has played only 11 of the team’s past 28 games, missing 15 games due to injuries (broken finger, strained groin).

The Red Wings, with Howard, are coming off back-to-back shootout wins, 2-1 vs. Florida and 3-2 at St. Louis. Detroit has a one-point lead over Nashville in the battle for the fourth playoff seed in the Western Conference and home-ice advantage in the first round.

And perhaps the best news of the day comes from the Detroit News’s Gregg Krupa, who reports that Darren Helm (sprained knee) at least skated on his own today, which means that he’s on track to return sometime during the first round of the playoffs:

“Before I came in today, I wasn’t even sure when I could get back on the ice,” Helm said.

But when he met with doctors and the training staff, they told him to suit up and give it a shot.

“You know, they wanted me to get on there, right now,” said the speedster, who contributes heavily to the Red Wings’ defensive efforts and penalty kill, as well as the secondary scoring from the third and fourth lines.
“I’m still a ways a way, I think,” Helm said. “But it definitely helps a lot, mentally.”

Helm sprained a left knee ligament against the Sharks in San Jose on March 17, trying to deliver a heavy, open-ice check. He has missed eight games.

“I thought it was great, and it’s always good for the player to get back on the ice,” said coach Mike Babcock, who watched Helm a few other Red Wings participate in the optional skate, between consecutive games with the Blues and Devils. “We could really use Helmer, as everyone knows who’s been watching us,” Babcock said. “We’re not near as good a team without him. We don’t have anywhere near the depth. We don’t come at you as hard.”

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MOWingsfan19's avatar

Glad to have ya back George.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 04/05/12 at 02:28 PM ET


George, Nice to have you back.  I’m ready for the Playoffs!

Posted by Jason on 04/05/12 at 02:35 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Just trying to get my feet wet…I’m not at 100% by any means but I’ll be getting back into action over the next three days. Hope to be up and running regularly by Saturday or Sunday. I’m REALLY sorry about my absence. :(

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 04/05/12 at 02:42 PM ET

stonehands-78's avatar

Good to “hear” from you, GJM.

and good to hear the news on Helm


12 in ‘12

Posted by stonehands-78 from the beginning ... a WingsFan, on 04/05/12 at 02:45 PM ET


Quincy in hopefully means Kindl is out. He had a great 1st period, but he was down right awful in the 3rd.

Posted by Chuck_Fletcher on 04/05/12 at 03:22 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Yayyyy!!!!! George is back!

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 04/05/12 at 03:24 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Quincey will indeed replace Kindl. I forgot to mention that, sorry.

I’m gonna take things slow in terms of ramping stuff up, but it’s time to come back. I wish it hadn’t taken this long but that is what it is.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 04/05/12 at 03:32 PM ET

42jeff's avatar

Anybody hear if Reaves is getting a phone call from Shanny?

Posted by 42jeff from The greater Howard City, MI metroplex on 04/05/12 at 05:36 PM ET

DocF's avatar

Most of the time, Kindl has played responsibly and been a consistent and effective player.  I do not know if he suffers from brain farts or what, but he shares 30% responsibility for the first St. Louis goal (Filppula really was the long green weenie on that one) and full responsibility for the second.  When he has a bad game, he really has a bad game.  I suspect he gets flustered and then tries too hard.  This is not an uncommon thing with young players.

On a more important topic, it makes my ancient bones feel better to see you posting again, George.  I have missed the depth of your reports and your insights too.


Posted by DocF from Now: Lynn Haven, FL; was Reidsville, NC on 04/05/12 at 05:38 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

It’s good to have you back, George.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/05/12 at 05:54 PM ET

joedaiceman's avatar

Here’s to ya George !

Posted by joedaiceman on 04/05/12 at 05:56 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

George, great to see you! 

I think Kindl is just making rookie mistakes.  He didn’t benefit from being paired with Lidstrom like Jonny Ericsson did when he first came up.

And as for Quincey - I believe he will be fine.  He’s getting back into the Red Wings style of play and that takes some adjustment after playing for the Avs.

Really excited about Sheahan being signed.  Holland said in Ken Kal’s game day preview that he’s not playing tonight but there’s a chance he’ll be in the line up against Chicago.  Welcome aboard to Riley - I’ll even forgive him for having played for Notre Dame.  wink


Posted by MsRedWinger from the State where Tigers roam in the Spring on 04/05/12 at 05:57 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

.    - I’ll even forgive him for

having played for Notre Dame.


Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 04/05/12 at 07:08 PM ET

cowboycoffee's avatar

glad to see you back at it, George.

Posted by cowboycoffee from San Francisco, CA on 04/05/12 at 07:47 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.


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