Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Sign Filppula?

In a paid subscription article, Craig Custance of ESPN had this to say about Valtteri Filppula.

Regardless of the frustrations he causes Red Wings fans at times, if Filppula goes to the open market, he'll get paid. No doubt about it. There aren't many centers hitting the market, and even fewer in his age range (29). Keep in mind that he's represented by the same agency (Acme World Sports) that got Ville Leino a six-year, $27 million contract from the Sabres in free agency.

This certainly hasn't been a contract year for Filppula, but he's just one year removed from a 23-goal, 66-point season. Considering the lackluster free-agent class, the Red Wings' cap room and even the possibility of Datsyuk leaving down the road, I think Ken Holland finds a way to get this deal done. He has to.

Agree or disagree?

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Primis's avatar

But Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Helm, Abdelkader and Andersson are.

That’s five guys who can play centre.  And Franzen can, if need be.

Not to mention that keeping them means that you’ve likely got Miller, Andersson, Nyquist, Eaves, Tootoo, Emmerton and Tatar all fighting to play in the bottom six, which is ridiculous.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 02:30 PM ET

Z needs to be on Pav’s wing, or at wing period IMHO.  Babcock has tried and tried to get Z to be a top six C and it never seems to go well as a way to get 2 lines going, and then he reunites Z with Pav and magic happens and then he gets mad and tries Z at center again because he feels like he got clowned somehow and is stubborn.  This plays out over and over again it seems…

I also think Abdelkader is better-served on wing.  Shoot if you want, have Helm center Abby and Miller (who plays wing well) even.  There’s your 3rd line, and a good one at that IMO.

If you let Cleary expire, and buy out Sammy and Bert, you have 2 or 3 slots suddenly opened up.  Nyquist can work well on a wing.  Tatar is meant to play wing.  If Fil won’t sign for cheap enough, you then have another top six spot open still, shoot put Nyquist as the #2 center, he might actually be ready for that.  Franzen at #2 C isn’t a bad plan either, though I don’t know who you then play with Z and Pav I guess.  Brunner?  I know that line has no size but yeesh, the hands…  or play Brunner with Franzen and take a try with Tatar?

The point is there’s room, plenty of it.  There’s a lot of room actually if Holland is willing to suck it up and let guys go that he needs to.  If he doesn’t, it won’t matter anyways because guys like Nyquist and Tatar can’t use bottom six time at this point anyways I think.  Getting rid off Miller, Eaves, Emmerton, combos thereof…. is not going to get the young guys the playing time they need anyways.  Tootoo isn’t even a consideration in this for me because he can rot in the pressbox for all I care.

And when say Franzen, Helm (I know, shut whore mouth), and Abby go down to injury and Z tweaks his back again for week… you let those other guys go and your depth is toast.  You can’t just go it all youth, there has to be experienced support there still.  And I think experienced centers will be vital, especially if Fil walks.

Because let’s face it and get it out of the way right now:  Kenny ain’t going out and trading for or signing a #2 center.  So if Fil walks… it’s going to have to be filled from within.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 01:55 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

but only Sheahan is the big and skilled centerman the Wings have coveted for a long time

Odds are 50/50 right now Andersson is better than Sheahan will ever be.

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/26/13 at 02:55 PM ET

Actually meant to say that Andersson can project higher than Sheahan.  That’s because I’m not convinced Sheahan is as good as we hoped he would be, and Andersson is better

Posted by MoreShoot on 04/26/13 at 01:56 PM ET

Primis's avatar

BTW to clarify, Eaves and Emmerton are signed through next season.  Miller is a UFA.

Bert and Sammy are signed through next season.  Cleary is a UFA.

Andersson and Nyquist are RFA’s.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 02:00 PM ET

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This plays out over and over again it seems…

I see it the other way around.  If Babcock had his druthers Z would live on Datsyuk’s wing but the fact that Filppula keeps being pushed into the #2 centre role and it keeps failing means that Z has to centre the second line.

The worst thing about re-signing Filppula would be that they’re going to pay him top six money so he’ll have to be in the top six even if he shouldn’t be.

I don’t know who you then play with Z and Pav I guess.  Brunner?  I know that line has no size but yeesh, the hands…  or play Brunner with Franzen and take a try with Tatar?

You put the UFA shooting winger they sign July 1st on the line with Z and Dats or you put Brunner on that line and put the UFA shooting winger on the second line.

Or you put Tatar on one of those lines and the UFA shooting winger on the other and keep Brunner on a line with Andersson and Nyquist.

Which again brings up the problem of too damn many bottom six forwards.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 02:10 PM ET

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The point is there’s room, plenty of it.

There absolutely isn’t.

Beyond getting rid of the dead weight, Detroit still has needs that can’t be addressed in house.

Buying out Sammy and Bert (for the sake of argument) means that the Wings have the following forwards under contract (or as U/RFAs who will absolutely be back):
Datsyuk
Zetterberg
Franzen
Brunner
Nyquist
Andersson
Tatar
Eaves
Tootoo
Helm
Abdelkader
Emmerton

That’s already 12 forwards and they still need at least one genuine, proven top-six winger and preferably two.

Unless someone is traded or they decide not to carry enough defensemen or you decide Tatar should stay in GR, how does Miller fit in?

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 02:16 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Bertuzzi won’t be bought out and will play as long as his back will allow it. They love him and quite frankly need his size next year even if he’s slow as shat.

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 04/26/13 at 02:26 PM ET

Primis's avatar

You put the UFA shooting winger they sign July 1st on the line with Z and Dats or you put Brunner on that line and put the UFA shooting winger on the second line.

Which again brings up the problem of too damn many bottom six forwards.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:10 PM ET

Well there’s the difference then.  I just don’t see Kenny signing a scoring winger from the outside—especially with the way this season has ended.  No C, no W.  The scoring W market looks like it’ll be pretty thin, and I expect salary paring for teams to come from their bluelines (like a PHI, that currently has FIFTEEN d-men listed for NHL under Capgeek…, 8 of which are signed through next year—not counting Pronger, and 3 additional d-men RFA’s to go along with that) and goalies (VAN, w/ Luongo).  Keep in mind, one of the reasons Fil would be in such demand is because the forward market is going to be so thin it looks.

I still think if Holland’s going to try to make a splash move it’s going to be in the form of an experienced d-man to probably play with Kronwall.  Though I don’t know that this kind of deal will be there either necessarily.  Even with the drop in the cap I don’t see scenarios with great players available really, unless Weber reasserts his desire to leave NAS or something.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 02:27 PM ET

Hootinani's avatar

“sign and trade” scares me.  what if nobody wants him, then we’re stuck with him!
Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 04/26/13 at 02:38 PM ET

You typically have a trading partner lined up already before you do the signing part.

I really want to speculate on this mess, but 2 things are stopping me:

1.  My indefinite pucker status at the thought of the Wings playoff hopes coming down to one game

2.  The fact that no matter what we come up with here, Kenny will no doubt do something completely different, or just as likely, nothing at all

Posted by Hootinani on 04/26/13 at 02:28 PM ET

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Bertuzzi won’t be bought out and will play as long as his back will allow it. They love him and quite frankly need his size next year even if he’s slow as shat.

I would’ve agreed except that Babcock didn’t put him in last night and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him sit tomorrow night too.

Maybe actually having young, solid players on the team is showing them that they don’t need old and broken players.

I just don’t see Kenny signing a scoring winger from the outside

I think he sees that the team needs something that hasn’t been addressed and can’t be addressed from within.

As much grief as I give him, I know that he’s not stupid and therefore he has to see how close they are to missing the playoffs for the first time in over two decades—and if they do get it, in will be the first time in this streak that the Wings will have a seed lower than 5th—and that if he brings this team back, largely intact, after extended stretches of not being able to average two goals a game and with a lot of cap space, he will be in a completely indefensible position.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 02:34 PM ET

d ca's avatar

The Wings will carry 7 d-men (don’t look for them to add or trade anyone), 14 forwards, and 2 goalies.

Tatar will be on the Wings roster.

Miller can fit, but only if Emmerton or Eaves are part of a trade.

You’ve got to figure some trades will happen this off-season….otherwise the Wings are sitting on around $7M in cap space (Filppula eating 5M of that would be a huge mistake) at a time when other teams will have issues getting down to the cap.

2013-14 Red Wings
Forwards
Henrik Zetterberg ($6.083m) / Pavel Datsyuk ($6.700m) / Justin Abdelkader ($1.800m)
Gustav Nyquist ($1.200m) / Johan Franzen ($3.955m) / Damien Brunner ($2.500m)
Danny Cleary ($2.000m) / Darren Helm ($2.125m) / Todd Bertuzzi ($2.075m)
Patrick Eaves ($1.200m) / Cory Emmerton ($0.533m) / Joakim Andersson ($0.900m)
Jordin Tootoo ($1.900m) / Tomas Tatar ($0.840m)

Defenseman
Niklas Kronwall ($4.750m) / Jonathan Ericsson ($3.250m)
Kyle Quincey ($3.775m) / Jakub Kindl ($1.750m)
Danny DeKeyser ($1.350m) / Brendan Smith ($1.750m)
Brian Lashoff ($0.725m) /

Goalies
Jimmy Howard ($5.292m)
Jonas Gustavsson ($1.500m)

Buyout: Mikael Samuelsson ($0.000m)
Buyout: Carlo Colaiacovo ($0.000m)

CAP PAYROLL: $57,952,879; BONUSES: $1,010,000
CAP SPACE (23-man roster): $7,357,121

Posted by d ca on 04/26/13 at 02:45 PM ET

Primis's avatar

As much grief as I give him, I know that he’s not stupid and therefore he has to see how close they are to missing the playoffs for the first time in over two decades—and if they do get it, in will be the first time in this streak that the Wings will have a seed lower than 5th—and that if he brings this team back, largely intact, after extended stretches of not being able to average two goals a game and with a lot of cap space, he will be in a completely indefensible position.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:34 PM ET

The UFA winger list is headed by Dupuis (*laugh*), Ryder, Jagr, Boyes (who maybe shouldn’t even count as a W), Iginla, Prospal.  I bet Iginla reups in PIT.  Jagr is just a bad idea at this stage.  None of the other guys qualify as proven scorers of any real sort that DET should feel comfortable bringing in.  Horton isn’t in the top list but is a somewhat-scary proposition with his concussion(s) and decreased value/productivity in BOS.

I know there’s a need, it looks like there’s not going to be anyone to fill it though.  There isn’t going to be a Kovalchuk or Hossa out there.  That’s why I expect Kenny to say something like “We like what we saw from guys at the end of the year in the push for the playoffs, and we’re going to build on that witht he young guys”.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 02:45 PM ET

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Miller can fit, but only if Emmerton or Eaves are part of a trade.

Pretty much.  The reason I see Miller as being the odd man out is that it’s easier to keep the two you have under contract and let the other one walk than it is to sign Miller and then try to trade Eaves or Emmerton.  Why create an unneccesary headache for yourself when you’ve got Eaves, who is essentially the exact same players as Miller, already?

Posted by d ca on 04/26/13 at 03:45 PM ET

You don’t really think Dan Cleary’s going to be on the team.

And I would argue that neither Nyquist nor Brunner are going to get such big raises.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 02:50 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

The Wings Brass/Media keep referring to Fil as the Heir of Datsyuk.  While he can make a pretty move from time to time and he’s not too shabby in the face-off dot, he’s not a mini-Pavel.  However, if I use their line of thought, I’m willing to pass that title off to Nyquist, who plays a very similar game but is younger, cheaper, and more consistently aggressive in all three zones.

I say, don’t pay Val over $3mil ($3.5 if he has a stellar Play-offs). If he accepts, great! Welcome back!  If he wants $3.1, let him walk.  Let Gustav take his spot and free up a roster spot for one of the Griffins or one of the precious few high-quality buy-outs this off-season.

And yes, please don’t mention Leino. smile

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/26/13 at 02:50 PM ET

Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

None of the other guys qualify as proven scorers of any real sort that DET should feel comfortable bringing in.

Ryder.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/26/13 at 02:51 PM ET

TKShreve's avatar

Plus, the Wings value forwards that don’t need a manual in their own zone, and Filppula has had that pretty much from the get go.

I really like his ability to retain the puck, swing back when the entrance isn’t there and more or less be all-around responsible with the puck. It is the remnants of our long lost puck-control days and a few of our players still have this mantra to their game.

Granted, he has to find a way to step up his offense. You can’t be a #2 center playing a one-way game (guess which way?)

Posted by TKShreve from East Uptown on 04/26/13 at 02:52 PM ET

Primis's avatar

None of the other guys qualify as proven scorers of any real sort that DET should feel comfortable bringing in.

Ryder.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/26/13 at 03:51 PM ET

He of 18-goal back-to-back efforts with Boston (09-10, 10-11) when he basically missed no games due to injury?

If you don’t like Franzen, you really don’t want Ryder.  He could get outscored on the season by Abdelkader, or he could get 35.  That’s not really a “proven” scorer any more than Franzen.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 02:55 PM ET

Son of Flying Pig's avatar

Yes, sign him.  Not like they wouldnt be able to trade him for some considerable value at a later date anyway.

No matter how much people here dont appreciate him, there are other teams that would love to see him hit the open market and pay him for more than Holland would.

Keep him for the $5M per he wants

Posted by Son of Flying Pig on 04/26/13 at 02:57 PM ET

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The UFA winger list is headed by Dupuis (*laugh*), Ryder, Jagr, Boyes (who maybe shouldn’t even count as a W), Iginla, Prospal.

Every single one of those guys would be an upgrade for the top six as it is now. 

Every single one.

They don’t have to bring in a Hossa or Kovalchuk, they just need to bring in someone who would be an upgrade over having Cleary, Abdelkader or Bertuzzi in the top six.

Why does it have to continue to be “go big or go home”?  We know, in those situations, what Detroit does.  Since winning the Cup they’ve gone big once (Hossa) and gone home every year since.

Making your team better incrementally is preferable to either standing pat or letting the team get worse incrementally as they have the last few years.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:00 PM ET

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Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/26/13 at 03:51 PM ET

This.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:00 PM ET

Chris in Hockey Hell's avatar

He of 18-goal back-to-back efforts with Boston (09-10, 10-11) when he basically missed no games due to injury?

Yes. That Ryder. Also a 3-time 30+ goal scorer who had 17 points in 25 games the year that Boston won the Cup. I’ve always liked Ryder. I think he’d be a great fit on the wing with Z or Pav. His wrister is ridiculous.

Posted by Chris in Hockey Hell from Ann Arbor, MI but LIVING in Columbia, TN on 04/26/13 at 03:05 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

You don’t really think Dan Cleary’s going to be on the team.

 

I love Danny Cleary.  He grinds in the corners, he fights for the puck in all three zones, he stands in front of the net and takes a beating, and he’s all heart.  This year, the puck has no interest in being his friend and it does all it can to avoid spending any time on his stick… which makes him mostly useless on the ice.

Sadly, Danny doesn’t have a lot of hockey left in those skates. Sadly, I think he’ll play out the last couple years of his career in the Winged Wheel. he’s got one more year on his contract and, if his body is up for it, he’ll get another 1-to-2 year deal after that.  He’s a Kenny-Babs Co. investment and I don’t think they will ever trade him away.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/26/13 at 03:07 PM ET

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He of 18-goal back-to-back efforts with Boston (09-10, 10-11) when he basically missed no games due to injury?

No, he of 16 goals in an abbreviated season.

He of 18-goal back-to-back efforts with Boston (09-10, 10-11) when he basically missed no games due to injury?

It’s funny that, in an eight-season career in which he has had 25, 27, 30, 30 and 35 goal seasons (along with the equivalent of a 29 goal season this year), you would cherry pick his two worst full season totals.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:08 PM ET

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he’s got one more year on his contract

No, his contract is done at the end of the season.  If he were still under contract I would definitely assume he would be back (and while I love the guy’s heart, I would hate to see him back), but his contract is up and I can’t see any way in hell that they could ever justify bringing him back.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:12 PM ET

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[quotePosted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 04:08 PM ET]

No idea why I quoted that twice…

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:14 PM ET

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Or why how it is that I’ve unlearned how to quote text…

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:15 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

  he’s got one more year on his contract

No, his contract is done at the end of the season.  If he were still under contract I would definitely assume he would be back (and while I love the guy’s heart, I would hate to see him back), but his contract is up and I can’t see any way in hell that they could ever justify bringing him back.

My bad. I misread the chart.  But I stand by my “they’ll never let him go” stance.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/26/13 at 03:16 PM ET

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Primis, re: Abdelkader and 20 goals.
Only because he plays with Datsyuk.
Good point in that not s whole lot of great players well be available. I agree.

I would not be at all surprised to see flip signed and traded at some point for someone eh wants to score.

Posted by teldar on 04/26/13 at 03:19 PM ET

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But I stand by my “they’ll never let him go” stance.

I hope and pray that you’re wrong…

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 03:21 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

  But I stand by my “they’ll never let him go” stance.

I hope and pray that you’re wrong…

So do I.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/26/13 at 03:26 PM ET

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Cleary has no business being on this team now, let alone next year unless they trade 3-4 forwards, use 2 buyouts on forwards and offer him 1 year at 500k.

Posted by jkm2011 on 04/26/13 at 03:37 PM ET

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Still standing by my Tatar, Andersson, Nyquist line.  Maybe it isn’t a 2nd line yet, but after 20-30 games I think they will have proved themselves.

I think colo proved himself a good enough defenseman as did White; at least enough to trade for a pick to a team who needs defense.  If not, we eat the roster spot and cap hit.  The same thing we can do with sammy. 

I really do dream of a helm/abdel/tootoo 3rd or 4th line.  The amount of energy and speed in such a line…

When you look at detroits lineup, they have tons of cap space to use up on a rental if they wish… BUT they could also choose to continue the transformation.  Who would have ever bet andersson would be full time for most of this season?  It would be great to see 1-2 players graduate into top 2 lines to stay there (Brunner/Nyquist/Tatar/Flippula).  Likely a pipe dream.

And last for the love of god let cleary go.  We have 10+ players on the team and in the system who are faster, play harder, and can score more.  I think last year cleary was already invisible due to his knees, this year at times I’ve nearly forgotten he’s played for the team and he’s in there every night.  Yeah he’s put up a handful of goals, but I imagine his production will only continue to drop off like it has been.

/ramble off

Posted by neffernin on 04/26/13 at 03:43 PM ET

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To add to my last comment, maybe it is time to let Flippula go.  I’ve always thought he would be more. He’s really taken the same exact path as Hudler.  Never broke past the barrier of being good enough in the top yet wanting to command that kind of money.  He’s the perfect player to be playing for a team that has a really weak top 6.

Posted by neffernin on 04/26/13 at 03:46 PM ET

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To add to my last comment, maybe it is time to let Flippula go.  I’ve always thought he would be more.

Absolutely agree, except that I would say it is definitely time to let him go.  I think both he and the Red Wings would be better off if he had a change of scenery.

It’s entirely possible that he goes somewhere else and proves to be a #1 or #2 centre there, but I think that it has been well documented that he isn’t that in Detroit.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 04:07 PM ET

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I wouldn’t be sad to see him back at a manageable cap hit but really can’t help but such a move is just continuing to chase the dream of what CAN be.

That and I just realized I was spelling his name Flippula not Filppula.  That doesn’t happen with datsyuk or zetterberg.  I always get their names right.  FIRE HIM!

Posted by neffernin on 04/26/13 at 04:18 PM ET

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I think Fil’s worth around 3 mil a year.  Thinking a 3 year, 9-10 mil deal would be fair, considering his real value.

His percieved value, though, means that if he wants more money it’s there for him.

Holland’s already erased a goodly bit of his leeway with the Howard deal.  If he goes high on Fil as well, Detroit’s going to be in a tight spot capwise for quite a while.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 04/26/13 at 04:34 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

He has the potential to easily be a #2, but just doesn’t get there

So is he just not trying hard enough?  I mean, if it were easy for Filppula to be a #2 center and he still isn’t accomplishing it, then what choice do you have but to dump a guy who is either the unluckiest mofugger in the league, isn’t trying hard enough to reach his potential, or simply has less of that potential than thought.

I say, don’t pay Val over $3mil ($3.5 if he has a stellar Play-offs). If he accepts, great! Welcome back!  If he wants $3.1, let him walk.

You could have just said let him walk without wasting everybody’s time throwing out a figure that Filppula would rightly laugh at.

I’m wondering if Filppula is being near-criminally misused in Babcock’s system.  I don’t know if I’d be willing to bet an extra $1M in cap space on it over it, but why in the hell does it work out that when Valtteri Filppula, Johan Franzen, and Danny Cleary are on a line together, that the “cherry-picking” winger with the first step out of the zone is always Danny Cleary? 

Filppula is not an heir apparent to Datsyuk. He is not Sergei Fedorov at speed. Hell, Taylor Hall is significantly better at getting the puck up ice with smooth skating at full speed.  Despite those shortcomings, Valtteri Filppula is really goddamn good at moving through the neutral zone with the puck while skating full-stride.

I know Flip is supposed to be better defensively than Cleary and the Wings’ system specifically creates room for the right winger to exit the zone*, but really you just need your wingers to not lose the defensemen in their own zone and to be able to tie up well on the boards. Why can’t Flip be the first guy to take a step towards center ice when he anticipates a turnover?

I’m also wondering if it might help if the guy played more on the right wing.  Not only would he get more chances to rush up ice, but he’d also get more chances to be the first guy turning back in on neutral zone possession changes.  He’d also be a left-shooter coming down the right wing, which gives him a few more options for shots (meaning he might actually take more). 

Defensively, the left-shooter on the right wing has to be strong on the backhand.  Fortunately, Filppula is a very good backhand puck controller and passer. He’s also got above-average vision so I think that when the puck gets tied up high on the boards in the Wings’ zone, he’d be better at actually hitting guys on those short passes to the middle for zone outlets.

I don’t like Filppula as a center because he tries to play the stick more often than the body. If he remembered how to hit like Datsyuk, I’d like him more in that position.

All that said, I think Filppula is still good for four years or so of 50-60 point output that can drop into the 40s or raise into the 70s randomly (and I know about his pace this season, but a guy’s pace can change pretty significantly in an imaginary 34-game span that got cut off the calendar). 

It’s not really about what Filppula isn’t; it’s about what he is.  This is what he’s going to provide you. The question is what that kind of output is worth or whether that kind of output is something you want to try and gamble on with one of your below-market-value RFAs (which are fairly damn important in creating a good team in a capped system… you simply can’t have a team full of guys making exactly their market value and expect to be a very good team).

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 04/26/13 at 04:37 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

The ONLY reason Bertuzzi was not inserted last night was because it is at the critical end of season, and he cannot be assumed to be in 60 minute (or 15:00, really) game shape.  If this game #47 were in mid-season like most game #47s he would have been back in in a heartbeat.

Babs absolutely could not break up a set of players that has won 7 / 8 points and been playing hard together for someone who potentially could offer more offense IF he was in game shape. 

It should not be seen as an indicator that the Wings consider him on the outside of next year’s roster, unless there evolves a lingering health issue.

Hopefully, one cannot say the same about Sammy.  Thank you, but we must move on.  Please accept this check as a sign of our appreciation.  (Having said that, does anyone else have the suspicion that come September Samuelsson will be one of those Draper/Maltby come and see if you can make the roster if you really insist offers?)

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 04/26/13 at 05:43 PM ET

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Babs absolutely could not break up a set of players that has won 7 / 8 points and been playing hard together for someone who potentially could offer more offense IF he was in game shape.

He was perfectly willing to insert him into the lineup on Wednesday though, as he seemed pretty nonplussed that Bert took himself out.

AKA I can hope, can’t I?

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 05:53 PM ET

Primis's avatar

It’s funny that, in an eight-season career in which he has had 25, 27, 30, 30 and 35 goal seasons (along with the equivalent of a 29 goal season this year), you would cherry pick his two worst full season totals.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 04:08 PM ET

I wasn’t cherry-picking, I was using them for pointing out that for all the hate Franzen gets and all the people that want him gone, it seems incredibly-stupid to pay Ryder as much or more than Franzen makes when he’s even more-volatile (Franzen, while streaky game-to-game, produces a pretty steady number year-to-year.  Ryder really doesn’t at all).

Seriously, if anyone at any point has sh*t on Franzen for not doing enough and being overpaid, I don’t want to hear a single thing about Ryder.  Not one bit.  It’s hypocritical.

Of course I’d like 35-goal Ryder.  I don’t want anything to do with the 18-goal Ryder though (and it wasn’t a fluke, he did it 2 years in a row on a good team w/ a full slate of games played), and you simply don’t know which one you’re getting.  18 goals Ryder would probably make you long for the return of Jiri Hudler.

It’s not really about what Filppula isn’t; it’s about what he is.  This is what he’s going to provide you.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 04/26/13 at 05:37 PM ET

I wish more people could understand that idea.  Saying so-and-so SHOULD do this or that does no good if he has 4 or so years of sample size with a full enough slate of games played that shows otherwise.  Fil is what he is at this point.  To continue to expect more is setting things up for failure.  We as fans seem to always think these guys have higher ceilings than they probably do.

Posted by Primis on 04/26/13 at 05:58 PM ET

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Of course I’d like 35-goal Ryder.  I don’t want anything to do with the 18-goal Ryder

Well, he’s scored 30 or more three times and 25 or more two more times versus two 18-goal campaigns.  Stop pretending that there is anything suggesting he’s more apt to be 18-goal Ryder than 30-goal Ryder, because there’s nothing suggesting that.  Those tow years are more of an abherration than the 30-goal years.  Since his two 18-goals years he has scored 35 in a full year and 16 in a half-year.

And guess what?  There are no guarantees.  If you want 35-goal Ryder (or 35-goal anyone) you have to take the chance at getting 18-goal Ryder.  Not taking chances on anyone is why the Wings are fighting for a playoff spot on the final day of the season.

I wish more people could understand that idea.

Most people do understand that, which is why most people are so against him getting a raise, much less a significant one.  It appears to be the organization who keep trying to make him something he isn’t.

Posted by Garth on 04/26/13 at 06:29 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.