The Malik Report
by George Malik on 08/28/11 at 09:56 PM ET
The Oakland Press’s Pat Caputo delivers a Sunday night treat in an in-depth article about Red Wings color commentator and soon to be Hockey Hall of Fame honoree Mickey Redmond, whose premature retirement due to a back injury yielded a career in broadcasting which has yielded living legend’s status for perhaps the conscience of Hockeytown:
“I had a ruptured disk,” Redmond said. “In those days, those weren’t taken care of like they are today. I played with it. A lot of damage was done. When I was done playing, it was tough. I went home for awhile and lived with my mom and dad and did some soul-searching. But I also knew that it was just the way it was. There was nothing I could do about it, and that I would have to find something else to do with my life.”
How did Redmond start broadcasting?
“Totally by accident,” he said. “I tried to come back as a player and was in Glens Falls (N.Y.) for training camp (where the Red Wings had their minor league team at the time) in 1979. The comeback didn’t go well. I couldn’t play. But I was contacted about doing hockey games for ON-TV — 15 games. It went well.”
ON-TV was the earliest pay telecasts for the Red Wings and Tigers games. Redmond made the most of the opportunity. He was hired by Hockey Night in Canada and eventually found his way back to Detroit as the Red Wings’ emerged as an NHL power.
“Mick was natural,” said Redmond’s broadcast partner on FS Detroit, Ken Daniels, whose roots were also planted with Hockey Night in Canada. “The thing about Mick, he doesn’t tell you what happened. He tells you why and how it happened.”
Redmond does have trademark calls (“Bingo-B[a]ngo,” “B.C. two-hander,” are a couple examples) but it’s the way he breaks down plays that is his greatest strength.
“Mick sees things before anybody else,” Daniels said. “He has a great eye for the game. He’ll see that bad line change or somebody caught out of position before anybody else. He’ll tell you exactly why that goal was scored or wasn’t.”
Continued, and Caputo conducted a video interview with the honorary Yooper (see: his summer home near Newberry, his incessant references to the U.P., his love for camouflage clothing and his big Ford F-350 diesel which he attaches a snowplow to every winter) as well…
• For the record, the Guelph Mercury’s Tony Saxon reports that Wings prospect Thomas McCollum’s currently working out with the OHL’s Guelph Storm...
• And I’ve emailed Marie Hallman to ask for assistance in translating her interview with Niklas Kronwall, who does his best to suggest that he won’t replace Nicklas Lidstrom when Lidstrom retires, but he does admit that he plans on emulating Lidstrom’s status as a player who can make the “simple play” as Kronwall believes he has to step up—big time—given that Lidstrom’s career is slowly coming to a close.
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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.