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Henrik Zetterberg and Landon Ferraro were originally slated to play but have been replaced by Filppula and Emmerton.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

Good afternoon everyone!

I have to agree with the consensus thus far, I really like what I’ve seen from Nyquist.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:12 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Sheeyit, per Khan:

Detroit Red Wings forward Patrick Eaves will not return to today’s game due to a lower-body injury sustained in the first period.

Eaves blocked a shot during the penalty kill with 7:15 to play. He labored to the bench but returned for a shift afterward.

The team might provide more details and update his status after the game.

I hope it’s just a sore foot.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:12 PM ET

SandysWingingit's avatar

uuuggghhh!

Posted by SandysWingingit on 10/02/11 at 07:13 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Staal and White seem to have some bad blood going. Offensive zone penalty to the Pens, Kunitz ACTUALLY CALLED for a hack!

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:14 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Who’s 47 in red, Ehrhart?(sp?) What a horrendous pass there, right onto a Pens stick.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:14 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:12 PM ET

Man, the Wings might be rolling the Griffins lineup if this garbage keeps up.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:14 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:12 PM ET

Here’s hoping they took Eaves out as a precautionary measure.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 07:14 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Who’s 47 in red, Ehrhart?(sp?) What a horrendous pass there, right onto a Pens stick.

Posted by Alzy from Innisfail, Alberta, Canada on 10/02/11 at 06:14 PM ET

I believe that’s Raedeke.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:15 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Franzen Bert and Nyquist on the 1st unit, didn’t do much.

Lots of Nick.

Now it’s Brunnstrom Hudler and Fil….Nick and White play catch, Fil fans, regains, wraps back to Nick center point to White good shot good stop, Hudler reverses rebound to Fil, down low Hudler, to FilHudler hacks back to Nick on right point, Hudler back to Nick, over to White pinching, no luck on the cross-ice pass, Pens clear, PP kaputski.

Halfway mark of the 2nd as Kunitz and Staal try to cycle vs Nick but Raedeke helps and Filppula clears, TV timeout w/ 9:50 left 2nd.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:17 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

27 is Ehrhardt, 32 is Pyett, 47 is Raedeke, 42 is Johnson, and I don’t know who the guy who’s wearing #5 is raspberry

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:18 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Sullivan and Letestu trying to bait Ericsson…

At least from Eaves’ reaction, it didn’t look like he broke anything. Hopefully it’s just a sore side of the foot.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:20 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Will the injury bug fuch off already? I think the Wings have more than filled your appetite in the past 2 seasons, jesus.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:21 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Why was Hudler taken off the Flip/Brunnstrom line?  Babcock, what are you doing?

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:21 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Unless it was just for the defensive zone draw.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:22 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Kindl bumped, it ain’t much but you can’t just run a guy.  PP coming..Sullivan’s temper against Detroit is getting the best of him again.

Bert Mule and Nyquist on the 1st unit, Franzen blocks Fleury, White left point to Franzen to Nyquist to White blocked by Martin who took it in the, erm…unfriendly confines.

2nd unit out Fil can’t do much on the boards…

Park and Asham were just brilliant signings by the Pens. Spare parts guys that do their jobs very well.

The Pens are sealing the Fil line to the boards pretty easily.

Come on, Huds, Nick is pulling the Steve Yzerman “sneak into the left faceoff dot” play…You’ve gotta get it to him when he does that (and yes, that’s who Nick learned it from).

Not much on that PP.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:24 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Kindl take that shot…

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:24 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

How can the Wings’ PP look so good last night, and so dreadful today?

Ericsson, you aren’t fuching Datsyuk, don’t ever try to toedrag the puck between your legs, just dump the friggin thing in.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:26 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Neal tried to do the old roflcopter across the blue line.

Man, I really can’t see paying Ericsson $3.5m to play the third pairing.  Perhaps he’d be a second-pairing guy on another team, but not here.  Not now.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:26 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Some of these injuries are inevitable as guys are both getting back to work and have a grueling exhibition schedule—and, thankfully, most of ‘em are minor. Sore backs for Pavel and probably Z, I’m guessing a tweaked shoulder or clavicle for Cleary, some groin pulls, a sprained MCL for Commodore and probably a bruised foot for Eaves…

At this point, and here’s knocking on wood as there’s about 40% of a game left, we’ve had nothing particularly serious happen, and for that I’m grateful. The minor s*** is just stuff you’re gonna run into.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:26 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Sorry Mick, Ericsson is NOT wearing the skate shields—at least, last time they showed his skates a few minutes ago he wasn’t.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:28 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

The problem with Ericsson is that at this point, if you’re a warm body who’s more than a minor-league call-up on defense, you can get three million bucks to be pretty mediocre. Especiaally given the marketplace and the fact that Rafalski’s retirement had the Wings scrambling, Ericsson’s agent had KH over a barrel.

Tatar and Raedeke taking some beatings but sticking with it, good rush by Ehrhardt.

Penalty Pens again, probably a make-up but Dupuis lets the Wings go to the PP again. 4:26 left 2nd.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:29 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

What does it take to get a cross-checking call? Tatar must’ve been hacked 6 times there.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:29 PM ET

Gary A$$ SUCK !!'s avatar

I woul love to se Nyquist to make the team…!!

Posted by Gary A$$ SUCK !! from Fort Myers, Florida on 10/02/11 at 07:30 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

WOW NYQUIST TOP SHELF OFF A GIVE AND GO WITH FRANZEN!

3-1 Detroit, 3:57 left 2nd.

Win the faceoff, give it to the defensemen, go side to side, get it back, Nyquist takes from White, gives to Franzen at the LW half boards, receives the pass at the left faceoff dot and RIPS it top shelf with Bert lurking at the goal mouth.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:30 PM ET

Avatar

NYQUIST!

Posted by RyanVM on 10/02/11 at 07:30 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Holy shit what a shot!!

Nyquist’s gotta stay on the team, he and the Mule have a good thing going.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:31 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:29 PM ET

Well, if Commodore comes back and continues his rock solid play for $1m, Ericsson becomes trade-bait.

Nyquist with a ill-tempered-bass-mounted LASER past Flower.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:31 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Emmerton’s definitely faded a bit as the exhibition season has worn on…Gotta pick it up, young man.

Nice work by Pyett to avoid Kennedy.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:32 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Yeah, great miss there, Manbearpig.  Eat glass.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:33 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Kennedy hammers the boards lol.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:33 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Easy call as White spins around and slashes a Pen. PK w/ 1:18 left in the 2nd.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:33 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

What was the penalty? Probably a make-up call.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:34 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Howard looks calmer in the crease tonight. he’s moving around less on shots and his stick is more active. His torso’s staying upright and square to the shooter, too. He looks very, very good fundamentally speaking and he’s just…chilled out instead of scrambly.

Decent PK, good goaltending, 3-1 after 2 with a bit more of a PK to start the 3rd.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:35 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Emmerton’s definitely faded a bit as the exhibition season has worn on…Gotta pick it up, young man.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 06:32 PM ET

Yeah, on that last rush down the ice he had, it looked like he was just moving at half speed.  Maybe he knows he’s got a spot on the roster and is phoning this one in.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 10/02/11 at 07:36 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Or not lol. Thanks for the clarification George.

JIMMAH was down pretty early on the Pens initial possession on this PP. Sullivan could’ve roofed it over JIMMAH’s shoulder, thankfully he didn’t think of it.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:36 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Khan updated his story:

Eaves blocked a shot by Steve Sullivan with his right knee during a penalty kill with 7:15 to play. Eaves labored to the bench but returned for a shift afterward.

The team might provide more details and update his status after the game.

Here’s a tally of the team’s injured list:

—Jan Mursak (broken ankle), out three months
—Mike Commodore (knee), 1-3 weeks
—Danny Cleary (upper body), day to day
—Pavel Datsyuk (sore back), day to day
—Henrik Zetterberg (undisclosed), day to day

A bruise is a bruise. As long as he didn’t break anything, Eaves should be good to go for Friday.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:38 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

Here’s a tally of the team’s injured list:
—Jan Mursak (broken ankle), out three months
—Mike Commodore (knee), 1-3 weeks
—Danny Cleary (upper body), day to day
—Pavel Datsyuk (sore back), day to day
—Henrik Zetterberg (undisclosed), day to day

Those three are the ones concerning me. I want everything to be hookers, firetrucks, pupies, sunshine and rainbows come Friday.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 10/02/11 at 07:42 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Shots in the 2nd period 7-7, shots 15-14 Pittsburgh overall.

The pens have gone 0-for-2 in 3:18 of PP time and White’s penalty will expire 42 seconds into the 3rd period; the Wings have gone 1-for-3 in 4:29 of PP time.

Faceoffs 23-17 Detroit, with Emmerton going 7-and-2 and Johnson going 6-and-3;

Nyquist obviously leads the team with 5 shots;

Blocked shots 12-8 Detroit, and White’s blocked 3;

Missed shots 10-3 Pittsburgh (total attempted shots 37-25 Pittsburgh, which ain’t great);

Hits 15-11 Pittsburgh;

Giveaways 11-8 Detroit;

Takeaways 3-2 Detroit.

Lidstrom, Nyquist, White, Bertuzzi and Franzen (he has 3 points, 1 goal and 2 assists; Nyquist has 2 goals and an assist; Bert has 2 assists) are all +2, but Miller, Tatar, Ehrhardt, Pyett and Emmerton are -1;

At this point Lidstrom leads the team in ice time with 16:22 played, and white and Ericsson are tied for second with 15:35 played; White’s “fourth” with 15:32 played. Filppula leads the forwards with 13:44 played, and Brunnstrom (11:23) and Emmerton (11:12) are close behind.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 10/02/11 at 07:43 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Tigers win 5-1 after a nail biting ninth.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/02/11 at 07:43 PM ET

tkfergy's avatar

tigers win 5-3

Posted by tkfergy on 10/02/11 at 07:43 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.