Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Red Wings off-day news: Ericsson’s broken wrist won’t affect Detroit’s deadline straategy

Updated 2x with good news on Ericsson at 6:13 PM: KH tells Pleiness that as soon as Ericsson’s able to play through pain/partially healed, he can return: Red Wings GM Ken Holland spoke to three Red Wings beat writers about his trade deadline strategy as it will be affected by Jonathan Ericsson’s broken wrist—and it won’t change his plans one bit. at present Holland told the Free Press’s Helene St. James that the Wings plan on allowing Jakub Kindl and Mike Commodore to battle it out for the #6 spot on defense while continuing to look for a depth forward (and the Freep’s repeated her comments on their sports page)...

Per Holland today: Ericsson (wrist) estimate still one month. Minutes for now will go to Kindl/Commodore. No plans at moment for Smith but..
...
#RedWings would like to see Brendan Smith get into a few more NHL games before playoffs.
...
Also, Holland talking away to colleagues. #RedWings would like to add forward, but not many sellers & prices are high.
...
“@NHLOn_The_Ice: I would LOVE to see Smith get a call up ....like to see him get a shot next year in NHL” He’ll be with #RedWings in ‘12-13

Holland confirmed his plans to MLive’s Ansar Khan...

Wings GM Holland said all quiet on the trade front. Not many sellers, few players available. Might change tomorrow.
...
Holland said he’s not looking for a depth defenseman in wake of Ericsson injury, only a decent-sized forward.
...
Wings don’t think Ericsson will need surgery for chip fracture in wrist. Should be back late March, early April at latest.
...
It’s Kindl’s job for now. They also have Commodore, and Holland said they have depth on defense in GR with Smith and Janik.

As well as the Macomb Daily’s Chuck Pleiness:

“I’ve had some conversations over the last three or four days, a couple more today,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said in a phone interview Sunday afternoon. “There’s not a lot going on. We’ll see what tomorrow brings. There aren’t a lot of sellers and even the teams that are out of it are in a lot of cases just re-signing their players,” Holland added. “Maybe something gives tomorrow. Right now I’d say there’s not a lot going on.”

Heading into play Sunday, Anaheim sat at 13th in the West, but was just six points out of eighth. It’s more of the same in the Eastern Conference as Tampa Bay (12th) and the New York Islanders (13th) were eight points out of the last playoff spot as well.

“You love size,” Holland said. “You love a center man that can win draws. We were involved in a three-way trade. (Sunday) a third goalie in St. Louis’ system is moved, not much is going on. I’m going to attribute that to parity. Teams might not be sellers, they might not be buyers, they may just keep what they have.”

Holland said the Wings are set on goaltending and defense, despite Jonathan Ericsson being sidelined for up to a month with a chipped fracture in his left wrist. He suffered the injury early in the second period of Saturday’s 4-3 loss to the Colorado Avalanche.

“We’ve (Jakub) Kind, we’ve got (Mike) Commodore and we’ve got Brendan Smith,” Holland said. “Kindl’s going in. If he doesn’t do it we’ve got Commodore and if he doesn’t do it then we’ll go Smith and if they all don’t do it we don’t have enough. That’s sports. We like our team,” Holland added. “We’re second in the West. We would like to get deeper, but a player has to be available that we think will help and at a price we’re prepared to pay. We paid a first-round draft pick for a 26-year-old defenseman. Ty Conklin has given up four goals in three games in Grand Rapids. He’s playing closer to the form that we thought he could when we signed him. Joey MacDonald has done a good job. We feel good about our goaltending. We feel we’re deep on defense. We’d like to get deeper up front but that might not be there.”

Holland also told Pleiness that the Wings’ losing record of late won’t yield a forced return for Pavel Datsyuk:

“From date of surgery you’ve got to give him three weeks until he’ll begin playing,” Holland estimated. “We haven’t played that good this past week. We haven’t been nearly as good defensively as we have been all year. We gave up about four or five breakaways in Chicago. We gave up 43 shots against Vancouver and gave up a lot of D-zone goals (Saturday) night on bad coverage. We need to get back to playing the type of hockey we’ve been playing up till last week. We’ve got the players. We’ve seen them do it. We know they can do it.”
...
“It takes you awhile to get back ramped up and playing,” Holland said. “You can’t fluke second in the West. We’ve played at a high level. We’ve played really good at home. We’d like to be better on the road, but in the Western Conference, other than Vancouver that has a tremendous road record, there are two or three teams over .500. It’s hard in our conference to win on the road.”

Via MLive’s Brendan Savage, USA Today’s Kevin Allen is declaring the Wings to be a “deadline winner” because they’ve added Quincey:

5. Detroit Red Wings. Their defense was already strong, but the addition of veteran Kyle Quincey makes it deeper. At 26, he’s the youngest man among the Red Wings’ top six defensemen.

And while addressing a “hypothetical” scenario, Yahoo Sports’ Nicholas J. Cotsonika addressed the possibility of Rick Nash being traded at the deadline (which he believes is low in probability terms) or at a later date, even if the Red Wings were one of the teams on Nash’s list:

Let’s say the Detroit Red Wings are on Nash’s list. There is good reason to think they are. Nash won an Olympic gold medal for Team Canada under coach Mike Babcock, who loves him. The Wings are an Original Six team and perennial contender, and in Detroit – not too far from Nash’s home in suburban Toronto – hockey is important but not all-consuming as it is in Canada. Nash could win, fill the net and keep a relatively low profile. The Wings cannot make a bid now, unwilling to mess too much with a team that ranks second in the league.

[Blue Jackets GM Scott] Howson would be nuts to trade Nash to a division rival at any time for anything less than a premium on top of a premium, lest Nash come back to haunt the Blue Jackets multiple times a season. But he would be smart to wait until the Wings can make a bid and at least use them to drive up the price. Unless somebody blows him away before 3 p.m. ET Monday, Howson should let as many teams as he can bid against each other when they have all their ammo. Nash can make his list, but so can Howson. If Nash wants out, Howson has the hammer. He has to use it.

Update: Also of Red Wings-related note this afternoon:

• MLive’s Brendan Savage is asking Wings fans to weigh in via an MLive poll as to whether they believe that the Wings’ 23-game winning streak is all for naught if the team doesn’t win the Cup;

• Am I allowed to shake my head for this gabba from the National Post’s Bruce Arthur in the thumbs up/thumbs down portion of TSN’s The Reporters?

Bruce Arthur, National Post: My thumb is up to the Vancouver Canucks, who snapped Detroit’s league-record 23-game win streak at Joe Louis Arena this week thanks to a tying goal with 16 seconds left, and a win in the shootout. Now, the streak deserved an asterisk for the advantages conferred by the modern three-point game, and the Wings were missing Pavel Datsyuk. Sure, Detroit turned around and lost to Colorado at home a couple nights later, meaning the possibility of a different sort of streak is now mathematically possible. But last season the Canucks learned how a great regular season, and a deep playoff run, could feel empty at the end. When you’re climbing the mountain the second time around, it’s nice to prove to everybody - and to yourself - that you’re able to reach the highest available altitude on the way back up

Update #2: here’s a little more from Holland—including a note that Johnathan Ericsson won’t need surgery to repair his wrist—in a different version of Pleiness’s notbook:

“We’ve (Jakub) Kind, we’ve got (Mike) Commodore and we’ve got Brendan Smith,” Holland said. “Kindl’s going in. If he doesn’t do it we’ve got Commodore and if he doesn’t do it then we’ll go Smith. We also have (Doug) Janik. If they all don’t do it we don’t have enough. That’s sports.”

Holland doesn’t think Ericsson will need surgery.

“Once it’s healed partially and there’s no pain, he can play,” Holland said. “Hoping late March, early April we’ll have him back.

“We like our team,” Holland added. “We’re second in the West. We would like to get deeper, but a player has to be available that we think will help and at a price we’re prepared to pay. We paid a first-round draft pick for a 26-year-old defenseman. Ty Conklin has given up four goals in three games in Grand Rapids. He’s playing closer to the form that we thought he could when we signed him. Joey MacDonald has done a good job. We feel good about our goaltending. We feel we’re deep on defense. We’d like to get deeper up front but that might not be there.”

The Wings are winless in their last three games, going 0-2-1. All three of those games were played without Pavel Datsyuk, who is probably still two weeks away from returning to a game.

“From date of surgery you’ve got to give him three weeks until he’ll begin playing,” Holland estimated. “We haven’t played that good this past week. We haven’t been nearly as good defensively as we have been all year. We gave up about four or five breakaways in Chicago. We gave up 43 shots against Vancouver and gave up a lot of D-zone goals (Saturday) night on bad coverage. We need to get back to playing the type of hockey we’ve been playing up till last week. We’ve got the players. We’ve seen them do it. We know they can do it.”

Detroit has also been lucky when it has come to injuries this season until this month. They’ve lost Jimmy Howard, Ericsson, Danny Cleary and Datsyuk.

“It takes you awhile to get back ramped up and playing,” Holland said. “You can’t fluke second in the West. We’ve played at a high level. We’ve played really good at home. We’d like to be better on the road, but in the Western Conference, other than Vancouver that has a tremendous road record, there are two or three teams over .500. It’s hard in our conference to win on the road.”

: NHL.com’s John Kresier’s already looking forward to next Sunday’s Wings-Hawks game…

Chicago at Detroit (March 4; NHLN-US)—The Central Division rivals are meeting for the fifth time this season; both teams have won twice. They don’t see each other again until April 7, the final day of the regular season.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Comments

TheRealYooper's avatar

so, now we will see what the wings are like with out e52.

Posted by TheRealYooper from within sight of the edge of the Earth. on 02/26/12 at 08:18 PM ET

Neznarf's avatar

Positioning by Kenny? Or will he simply be SOL at the deadline?

Posted by Neznarf on 02/26/12 at 08:47 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Im guessing SOL

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/26/12 at 09:10 PM ET

Avatar

Updated 2x with good news on Ericsson at 6:13 PM: KH tells Pleiness that as soon as Ericsson’s able to play through pain/partially healed, he can return

Well thank God we’ll be getting one of our interchangeable #6 defensemen sooner…

Posted by Garth on 02/26/12 at 09:20 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

The sooner Big E is back, the more games he can get in before April, and that means building more familiarity with Quincey. That’s not a bad thing.

As for the deadline stuff?

I shit you not, Holland, Jim Nill and Ryan Martin are spending today and tomorrow in CONSTANT communication with other Gm’s and player agents, asking about the prices of EVERY player available simply for the sake of due diligence. That’s what they do—they kick every tire in the lot, even if they’re not particularly interested, just in case.They will continue to do so tonight and probably won’t get much sleep so that they can ensure that they examine every angle and try their damnedest to improve the team.

They just won’t overpay if they can’t find anyone who’s a “fit” at the right price. I can absolutely assure you that the Wings will do everything humanly possible to attempt to add to their roster if they are able, and if they don’t do anything, it won’t be for a lack of trying on behalf of KH, Nill and Martin.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 02/26/12 at 09:37 PM ET

Avatar

That’s not a bad thing.

Neither is allowing Kindl and/or Commodore play with Quincey to see what they can do, and how many games can we think that either Kind or Commodore would get in with everyone else healthy?  Ericsson didn’t sit a single game this season even when he was playing like shit, what are the chances he would sit while healthy in order to give Kindl or Commodore a chance?

And I have no doubt that Mr Holland is working the phones like crazy.  Having said that, whatever the reason, I’ll be concerned if no moves are made at all just for the sake of not wanting to “overpay” for a potential rental.

And people can talk all they want about Holland pulling a dump truck full of money up to Zack Parise’s and/or Ryan Suter’s doors on July 1st but neither one of those occurrences will do anything to help them in the playoffs this year.

I also know that, given the White signing and the Quincey trade, it’s very possible that Holland strikes some sort of deal that nobody sees coming and will have us all genuflecting at his feet come 3pm tomorrow.

Posted by Garth on 02/26/12 at 10:10 PM ET

Chet's avatar

i’m personally not interested in a pickup of a guy like moen or samuelsson. are they really what this team needs to compete for a cup vs. their likely prices of even a middling pick? we have plenty of checkers, and samuelssson just isn’t what he was in 2008. what’s the point?

i still think a guy like ryan malone is more likely to push us over the top, but his contract is a bitch and he too has declined. the dollars aren’t bad, but the cap hit is $4.5M until ‘15 and he has injury issues. then again, this is the type of player you win a cup with, IMO.

it’s interesting to think about shipping hudler. his playoff numbers are very close to his regular season numbers so if he’s not looking to break the bank, why not keep him around? he’s 28 and hasn’t really had injury issues despite his size, so if you can resign him for 2-3 years at a nice hit, you’d do it. i think, however, he’s going to ask for way too much…

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/26/12 at 10:21 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

shit I’d take Mike Knuble at this point.  Help the PP, net front guy, high compete level, soft hands on a big body.  CHEAP.  Classic veteran who’s “long in the legs” as Dr. Evil put it.  Fact he’d be a Wings retread is the cherry on top.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/27/12 at 12:17 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

utility guy as well, can play up and down the lineup

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/27/12 at 12:17 AM ET

Avatar

I have thought about knuble too; problem is the fourth line wingers would be knuble and holmstrom.  That would require a lot of protection by the coach against fast teams.

I am very nervous about tomorrow.  We need a forward to help us match up better against the San Jose’s, LA’s, and Anaheim’s (second half not first half of this season).

Posted by 11B3PF7 in MN on 02/27/12 at 12:42 AM ET

Avatar

Remember last year when we schooled BOS in consecutive games? BOS realized that they had some holes after those losses and filled them.  Well we were just schooled in our lack of depth after Dats went down.  Bos gave up a lot last year, but they got a lot.  Kind of need that top 6 guy.

Posted by 11B3PF7 in MN on 02/27/12 at 12:50 AM ET

Chet's avatar

i would not be surprised to see holmstrom benched in the playoffs. he cannot keep up anymore.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/27/12 at 01:26 AM ET

Avatar

Holmstrom may sit a couple of games depending on the matchup, but he won’t be benched for the playoffs. He fills a role.

Posted by Mike on 02/27/12 at 02:22 AM ET

Avatar

There’s a reason the Red Wings have had a chance to win the Stanley Cup every season for the past 18 years, and that’s because Holland won’t do anything crazy to win the Cup now if it will hurt the team’s chance to win next year and the year after that.

Posted by bleep bloop on 02/27/12 at 02:26 AM ET

Avatar

Posted by bleep bloop on 02/26/12 at 11:26 PM ET

He’s also proven that he’s absolutely willing to give up prospects and picks to bring in what he thinks could be a final piece to the puzzle.

Posted by Garth on 02/27/12 at 02:50 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

You love size,” Holland said. “You love a center man that can win draws.

Sounds like either Pahlsson or Gaustad. Personally, I’d like to see Gaustad, if only because it would be nice to play the Sharks just once with a 6’5” forward on our side.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 02/27/12 at 03:00 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

Holland has to ride a razor’s edge there. He absolutely positively has to do the most he can to win with his current team, but he can’t fundamentally damage what he believes are his team’s foundations for success down the line in terms of sustaining his blueprint of rebuilding on the fly each and every season by folding overripe prospects into a core of players in their early 30’s and support guys a little older than that, and then he also has to worry about the CBA’s uncertainty going forward, what Brad Stuart and Nicklas Lidstrom and Tomas Holmstrom are going to do, what happens if Jakub Kindl doesn’t win his job back or Mike Commodore wins it instead, whether Joey MacDonald will be the team’s back-up next season, which players might be available to sign or to trade for the rights to sign come the entry draft or July 1st, which players might also be available in July to help the team, which prospects the team will choose to sign before their rights expire in June, which prospects the team will ask to join the Griffins or Walleye, which prospects will stay where they are, which prospects will go bye bye and how the team will ensure that the Grand Rapids Griffins are also built to both serve the Wings’ best interests and win at the AHL level, and how he can manage the team’s salary structure regarding all of the aforementioned moving parts.

That’s what he’s balancing as he looks for reinforcements—never mind the fact that asking prices are just insane right now, all across the board—so you’re gonna have to trust that he, Jim Nill, Ryan Martin, Kris Draper, the coaches and the team’s pro and amateur scouts and player mentors, as well as Griffins coach Curt Fraser and assistant coach Jim Paek, are all involved in trying to make this team and its developmental arm the best they can possibly be, and that they’re gonna work their asses off to try and find some reinforcements if they can.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 02/27/12 at 03:09 AM ET

RorSchach's avatar

Fack. I hope that something happens when I wake up. Big guy. Top Six guy. Whatever I don’t mind the D as long as they stop looking like monkeys humping a football. But man.. With all this… “Talent” they have up front.. Personally.. I’d like to see Nyquist full time. Conner to for that matter. They are capable of doing well. Not impressed with Mursak.. or Emmerton for that matter. But hey, I’m just a fan. I appreciate the hard work, G-Money. Hope that the sickness and whatnot is all good on your ned. Here’s to hoping I wake up to some good news.

Posted by RorSchach from Datsberg on 02/27/12 at 03:40 AM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

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.