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The Malik Report

Red Wings-Penguins live blog: this either goes very well or very, very poorly

If the preseason is about implementing systemic tweaks, trying out new line combinations, giving rookies and new additions time to acclimate, if not shine, and slowly but surely rounding into regular season form while attempting to avoid injuries, rounding out the exhibition season with a three-games-in-three-nights slate makes very little sense.

That is exactly what the Red Wings have done for the better part of the last decade, however, and today’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins (5 PM EDT, FSD/WXYT’s AM station only/PCNC) either tends to demonstrate that even a fatigued and splintered Wings roster is more or less good to go, or it’s a game in which fans pay full price to watch the Wings mail one in—or worse, get bit one more time by the injury bug.

If you’re not watching the Tigers game, or might flip channels from time to time, we’re gonna live blog this one.

Here’s the Red Wings’ lineup for today’s game, per MLive’s Ansar Khan:

Forwards: Johan Franzen, Valtteri Filppula, Todd Bertuzzi, Jiri Hudler, Patrick Eaves, Drew Miller, Cory Emmerton, Fabian Brunnstrom, Ryan Johnson, Tomas Tatar, Gustav Nyquist, Brent Raedeke.

Henrik Zetterberg and Landon Ferraro were originally slated to play but have been replaced by Filppula and Emmerton.

No word yet on lines.

Defensemen:

Nicklas Lidstrom-Ian White

Jonathan Ericsson-Jakub Kindl

Travis Ehrhardt-Logan Pyett

Goaltenders: Jimmy Howard, Ty Conklin.

And here’s a reason to press the “concern” button:

Pavel Datsyuk continues to nurse a sore back but hopes to return for the season opener Friday against Ottawa. Forward Danny Cleary (upper-body injury) and defenseman Mike Commodore (sore knee) also are out. Cleary appears more likely than Commodore to be ready for Friday.

Brad Stuart didn’t exactly look like somebody who’s recovered from a groin injury on Saturday night, either, and I’m guessing that the Wings aren’t going to mess with Zetterberg’s ever-present sore back today, either. If there’s even a single chance of Ferraro’s surgically repaired groin acting up, there’s no point in tweaking that, either.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Seth Rorabaugh provides the Penguins’ lineup...

Forwards - Pascal Dupuis, Mark Letestu, Jordan Staal, Richard Park, Chris Kunitz, James Neal, Matt Cooke, Steve Sullivan, Craig Adams (right), Arron Asham, Joe Vitale, Tyler Kennedy

Defensemen - Matt Niskanen, Zbynek Michalek, Ben Lovejoy, Paul Martin, Brian Strait, Kris Letang

Goaltenders - Marc-Andre Fleury, Brent Johnson

And Wings GM Ken Holland gave a very intriguing interview to The Fan 590’s Norm Rumack during either the first or second intermission of last night’s win over Toronto (yay!):

Download file

Here’s hoping that the Wings don’t mail it in—and stay healthy…

 

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Comments

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bezukov's avatar

Posted by RedMenace from A State of Insanity on 10/02/11 at 05:29 PM ET

Lol… I guess nothing is perfect eh?

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:33 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Well the usual “local connection” suspects in Neal and Kunitz are leading the charge as the Pens clearly want to refine their after-the-whistle game here…The Wings have to be careful here and try their best to inflict more pain than their opponents while both avoiding injuries and penalties.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:34 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

The funny thing is that Netflix streams like a champ—HD quality, no hiccups, rock solid..  I really think the problem is GCL using Flash Player, whereas Netflix uses Silverlight.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:34 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Lol… I guess nothing is perfect eh?

Posted by bezukov from Wings Fan in exile: Columbus, OH on 10/02/11 at 05:33 PM ET

It’s a case of “the grass is greener,” yet the green seems to be coming from some sort of fungus.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:35 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Posted by RedMenace from A State of Insanity on 10/02/11 at 05:35 PM ET

... or perhaps spray paint.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:35 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Big strikeout for Benoit to end the seventh inning.  4-0 Tigers.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:36 PM ET

SandysWingingit's avatar

Man, I hope Ericsson mutilates Kunitz… I absolutely hate that guy.

Posted by RedMenace from A State of Insanity on 10/02/11 at 05:33 PM ET

Me too!

Posted by SandysWingingit on 10/02/11 at 06:36 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by RedMenace from A State of Insanity on 10/02/11 at 05:35 PM ET

Indeed sir, indeed. haha.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:36 PM ET

Avatar

My experience with GCL was generally better last year during the regular season. FWIW, I’ve also found that FSD’s feed tends to be crappy quality. There were times that I actually watched the opposition feed because it was clearer.

To me, it’s plain embarrassing that cable providers don’t offer all games in HD when available and home/away feeds with Center Ice. If DirecTV can do it, why not InDemand?

Posted by RyanVM on 10/02/11 at 06:36 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Dunno how Bert found that extra half step he lost, but it’s back…and he remains superb defensively.

Bad Howard turnover as Ehrhardt and Pyett get caught again, Howard chips it to a Pen, skitters back and stops it. I’ll take it.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:37 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Man, that FNB line has some good instant chemistry.  Great puck movement, just need someone to shoot.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:37 PM ET

Avatar

It would also be nice if Samsung Blu Ray players had a GCL app for them. I can’t help but think that it would be better than Flash through a browser.

Posted by RyanVM on 10/02/11 at 06:39 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Too many odd-man rushes against. The Pens have had numbers on us when we’ve traded chances. Might be mental and physical fatigue and might be plain old hustle on the Pens’ part.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:39 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

OooOOO, Nick’s first hat trick game at 8 tonight on FSD.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:40 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Posted by RyanVM on 10/02/11 at 05:36 PM ET

Interesting… I’ll have to pay attention to that as the season goes on.

Sadly, I just got Dish over DIrecTV, and they only seem to have a couple of HD feeds for CentreIce as well.  My cable provider had 14 CI channels, only 2 HD (InDemand)—but they had the channel lineup duplicated so there were the same channels twice. Great use of bandwidth there.

The thing that kills me (besides bullets) is that people are trying to push 3D when HD isn’t even the norm yet.  Idiots.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:41 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Yes, Mickey, the whole, “Getting started on time” issue is huge for the Wings this year. Can’t spot the opposition 2-0 or 3-1 leads every third night. And the PK and team defense obviously have to be better, just as you suggest, Ken Daniels…

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:42 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Nice work by Emmerton to negate Asham, good clear by Emmerton as well. He’s gotta start out as a defensive forwar…Bert to Nyquist from the line, good shot good stop end of 1, 2-1 Detroit.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:43 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

I’ve gotta say, out of all the forward prospects the Wings have, Nyquist is the best so far.  Do you think that’s because he played a full college career?

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:44 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by RedMenace from A State of Insanity on 10/02/11 at 05:41 PM ET

I’ll be surprised if 3D tv catches on, especially as long as you have to wear special glasses for it.  Just seems like more money and more trouble for consumers than HD.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:44 PM ET

Avatar

George, good to see you back, BTW. grin

Posted by RyanVM on 10/02/11 at 06:45 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Stats after 1: Shots 8-7 Pittsburgh, and the Pens went 0-for-1 on a 2-minute power play;

Faceoffs 11-9 Detroit;

Blocked shots 9-3 Detroit;

Missed shots 3-2 Pittsburgh (total attempted shots 20-12 Pittsburgh);

Hits 10-5 Pittsburgh;

Giveaways 6-5 Detroit;

Takeaways 1-1.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:47 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Posted by bezukov from Wings Fan in exile: Columbus, OH on 10/02/11 at 05:44 PM ET

I have to agree, I’ve always maintained it’s a fad.  Sadly, it doesn’t really matter since I don’t make any programming decisions… heh.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 06:48 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

I’m working on it…These are “rehab starts,” if you will. Gotta get some seasoning in to shake off the writing rust and ramp up the energy level again…

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:48 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 05:48 PM ET

I’m pulling for you George.  The Malik Report is like my morning coffee, and I always look forward to your posts.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:50 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Nyquist just summed up his personality while talking about learning “little things” from Babcock—he’s out there trying to have fun. He and Smith are very energetic and outgoing guys and their enthusiasm tends to be contagious.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:52 PM ET

TeamDub's avatar

The Malik Report is like my morning coffee, and I always look forward to your posts.

Me too. All 47 of ‘em.

cheese

Posted by TeamDub from The gratch. on 10/02/11 at 06:52 PM ET

Forlorn in VA's avatar

I switched to GCL this year too.  So far, so good, I don’t have any reason to complain about the quality yet.  Well, except for the game I watched yesterday on a friends wifi connection on her laptop.  That was laggy as hell.

I can’t wait for it to be available on my PS3.  I watched a few archived games and it looked smooth, but regular season will be the real test.

Posted by Forlorn in VA on 10/02/11 at 06:52 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

I’m pulling for you George.  The Malik Report is like my morning coffee, and I always look forward to your posts.

Thanks…I’ve missed it terribly and I wish that the whole thing was an exact science instead of guesswork, but it is what it is, I guess.

And this training camp footage stuff? If you’re actually at camp, you can’t hear what Babcock’s saying, so these videos are “new” to everybody.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:55 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Granderson just connected on a solo home run to make it 4-1, no outs, bottom of the eighth.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 06:59 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Pyett and Ehrhardt have looked VERY solid when paired with veterans, but together they’re a bit of a mess against an NHL-ready Pens lineup.

NICE chance by Hudler. Very opportunistic.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:02 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Ah, the nice part of having a right-shooting defenseman…Jordan Staal walks around Ian White and White just spins to the left and takes the puck off Staal’s stick via the backhand.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:03 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Good chance for Hudler… wonder why he went glove side instead of blocker.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:03 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Nice steal by Hudler to Brunnstrom, elects to pass instead of shoot and Fil fires it wide but this line is starting to look threatening another turnover Fil for Hudler to Fil backhand blocked with Brunnstrom in front…Good positioning by all involved, nice tenacity as well.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:04 PM ET

SandysWingingit's avatar

nice opportunity for filps from Brunnstrom, too.

Posted by SandysWingingit on 10/02/11 at 07:04 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Do you have to hold a gun to Hudler’s head to get him to shoot the puck?

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 07:04 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

What a hospital pass by Ericsson… jesus.  Almost got Flip killed.

Good work by the Hudler/Flip/Brunnstrom line.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:05 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Asham with the dangles and almost scores… sheesh.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:07 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Ryan Johnson, whose jersey has an “R” in front of the “Johnson” because the Wings just happened to have Jamie Johnson on their training camp roster (I don’t believe he played in an exhibition game) looks…Slow. He usually has another step.

Bad turnover yields another Asham chance but Howard is there, turnvoer at the other end and both Emmerton and Tatar fan, nice positioning by Ericsson in front of the net for once…

Things I missed about hockey:

Mike Babcock, who’s coached in the NHL for almost a decade and coached the Spokane Chiefs previously, asking his players, “Who’s on O-fence?” and Mickey Redmond, who is nothing less than an honorary Yooper, saying, “Ericsson, the first thing he does is say SORE-y to Filppula”...

it’s a good time in Detroy-it tonight…

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:08 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Nice play by Kindl from his knees, and Ericsson manages to not get the puck out of the zone.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:09 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Nice drop by Fil, too many drops by Brunnstrom to Hudler at the line, cut off, Pens go the other way and get a shot off.

TV timeout with 13:53 left in the 2nd, Pens continue to out-puck-possess the Wings and are more effective in terms of plays on the rush because they’re not trying to make that extra pass and we are.

Conklin on the headset on FSD after the break.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:10 PM ET

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About The Malik Report

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.