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The Malik Report

The Hockey News names the Red Wings the league’s best franchise

According to The Hockey News’s Ken Campbell, in THN’s latest issue (which you can purchase/download/read via Zinio), the Hockey News’s experts have chosen the Detroit Red Wings as the NHL’s model franchise. Here’s an excerpt from his article:

Franchise Rankings: The more things change, the more they stay the same as Detroit reigns in our look at the top organizations in the NHL

Imagine a brand new arena in downtown Detroit. It would have been an outrageous proposition a year ago, but in case you haven’t noticed, the newspapers in Detroit aren’t running an endless parade of gloomy stories about hardworking people losing their jobs anymore.* In fact, it’s more difficult to find work in Miami than the Motor City these days.

Michigan will be lucky to get half the jobs back it lost during the great meltdown of the automotive industry, but things are looking good enough that multiple sources say Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch has quietly been lobbying the State of Michigan and City of Detroit to help him build a new facility to replace the Joe Louis Arena. You can probably expect an announcement within the next year.

Believe it or not, things are beginning to look up in Detroit. The Big Three are making money again and increased their market share for the first time in 15 years. The State of Michigan is expected to add about 60,000 jobs each year for the next three, which would bring the unemployment rate down from a shocking 14.5% to somewhere in the range of 9% by 2012. This year, the state coffers will have more than $400 million in unanticipated revenue. That’s about like finding $20 bucks in an old winter jacket, but it’s a start

That the Detroit Red Wings have managed to stay at the top of the league through some of the worst times the city has ever seen is a testament to how well they’ve been run. NHL superstars and Stanley Cup championships are no longer rolling off the Red Wings assembly line the way vehicles are at GM, Ford and Chrysler, but the Red Wings remain the class of the league. For the third time in four seasons THN has ranked NHL franchises, the Red Wings have finished on top. In fact, last season we decided not to do them simply because we knew the Red Wings would be first and we were getting tired of doing stories continually patting them on the back.

But the numbers don’t like. THN’s franchise rankings are based on largely on objective, statistical factors that take into account both past and present performance and the Wings are still the best. And while the gap between them and the rest of the league has narrowed a little, there is not a single facet of the game in which the Wings are lacking.

“Have we got issues?” asked Red Wings GM Ken Holland. “Sure we do, but so does everyone else. We have cap issues and there’s no doubt we’ll have to do something about our defense in the next 12 to 15 months.”

In order to be perennially competitive in today’s NHL, you need a committed, deep-pocketed owner (check), a top-level GM (got it), an innovative and creative coach (ye), a coulpe of superstars around whom to build (duh), scouts who can find players in the late rounds (duh…again) and a stead ystream of young players who can not only fill out roster holes cheaply, but make a tangible impact (oh yeah).

As long as the Red Wings have those elements, expect to see them at or near the top of our Franchise Rankings for the foreseeable future. With the Pittsburgh Penguins [#2] and Buffalo Sabres [#3] hot on their heels, the Red Wings have some company at the top. But it’s also interesting to note that despite a salary cap that is supposed to level the playing field, the same team has topped the rankings every year and the same half-dozen have been at the bottom.

The * involves the fact that hose jobs are slower in coming than Campbell would lead us to believe, and much harder to earn as there are so many over-qualified applicants that it’s still silly. Metro Detroit and Michigan’s real renaissance, on a worker-by-eligible worker basis, will take another five years to truly germinate.

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Comments

bezukov's avatar

The Wings continue to be a first class outfit.  Leta hope that goes for years to come!

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 06/02/11 at 04:43 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

THE best.  Simply THE best. 

Hockeytown and our Detroit Red Wings. 

Nice to see others acknowledge…

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 06/02/11 at 04:52 PM ET

Avatar

The Big Three are making money again and increased their market share for the first time in 15 years

Your Welcome.

  ~federal taxpayers

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 06/02/11 at 05:46 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

What about my welcome?

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 06/02/11 at 05:48 PM ET

Forlorn in VA's avatar

Metro Detroit and Michigan’s real renaissance, on a worker-by-eligible worker basis, will take another five years to truly germinate.

I really hope so, because I really want to move home within the next 5 years.

Posted by Forlorn in VA on 06/02/11 at 06:14 PM ET

calquake's avatar

The Big Three are making money again and increased their market share for the first time in 15 years

Your Welcome.

  ~federal taxpayers

What about my welcome?


So… you’re one of those 47 million who don’t pay federal taxes that they’re always talking aboot. cheese

Posted by calquake on 06/02/11 at 06:14 PM ET

Forlorn in VA's avatar

Posted by calquake on 06/02/11 at 05:14 PM ET

Or he’s snarking the fact that gretzky to lemieux doesn’t understand the difference between “you’re” and “your”.

Posted by Forlorn in VA on 06/02/11 at 06:20 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

amen Forlorn.. I got a renewed hope to move back home..

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/02/11 at 06:26 PM ET

Forlorn in VA's avatar

HockeytownOverhaul, I grew up in Lapeer and Genesee counties, then lived in East Detroit and Sterling Heights before moving to VA.  I still have trouble believing I’ve been here 20 years.

Posted by Forlorn in VA on 06/02/11 at 06:43 PM ET

calquake's avatar

Cali may have the best weather around and I’ve been here 19 years (that must mean something) it will never be home.  I would like to move back to Michigan but our daughter lives in AZ and mom doesn’t want to be across the country.  And if mom ain’t happy… I sure as hell won’t be. grin

Posted by calquake on 06/02/11 at 06:49 PM ET

thethirdcoast's avatar

amen Forlorn.. I got a renewed hope to move back home..

Me three.

I grew up in northern MI and went to school in A^2. I’ve spent the last decade in WNY and it still doesn’t feel like “home” at all.

I actually have my eye on a job in the Traverse area, but after my 12 month national job hunt from Nov ‘09 to Nov ‘10 I’m no longer certain I can pass a technical interview with flying colors.

Posted by thethirdcoast from Algiers, DZ on 06/02/11 at 06:57 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

The Hockey News obviously knows nothing. TPSH has NOT labeled this team as “elite.” It’s in the statistics somewhere. Oh, and they’re old.

As far as the federal bailout, it worked and has been paid back. I can’t imagine a pens fan getting uppity about public subsidies since that’s the reason they’re not the Kansas City Penguins.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 06/02/11 at 09:14 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

I really hope so, because I really want to move home within the next 5 years.
Posted by Forlorn in VA on 06/02/11 at 05:14 PM ET

Me three.
Posted by thethirdcoast from Rottenchester on 06/02/11 at 05:57 PM ET

Check it.  My daughter, about whom I’ve bragged about too much, was born and graduated high school here in Virginia.  She moved to OC, CA, last summer and attended Orange Coast College.  About a month ago she confirmed definitely what she’d talked about a couple of months;  She’s going to move to downtown Detroit.  No shit.  Possibly this is indicative of a returning tide that has been outgoing for 40 years.

She’s never lived in Michigan, visited my family’s home a few times, went to H2H2, and now is trading a year long Costa Mesa climate of 55 - 78 for Michigan. 

I half-heartedly tried to talk her out of it, at least for a year, but that is fruitless.  Besides, when I retire, again, in about five years I will have to face where to move to.  I don’t really love it here in VA, but it’s not bad.  I like the openness, like the midwest or southwest, and with my daughter having moved there the southwest was a possibility.  I always considered going back to live within driving distance of Red Wings home games, and 4 seasons.

If I have one daughter in Michigan, no telling where the other teacher daughter will be, then moving back to Michigan in five years becomes somewhat of a no-brainer.

I don’t know if I’m # 4 or #5 or #6 on this thread, but sign me up.


ONE OF THE NEXT WAVE OF THE NEW DETROIT

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 06/02/11 at 09:17 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

And oh HellsYa, right on for The Franchise being recognized for what The 19 already new.

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 06/02/11 at 09:25 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

knew.

Posted by RWBill from Brush Street cruising with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 06/02/11 at 09:27 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

We’ll have to have a coming home party in the next few years.. get a bunch of peoples from out of state who’re coming back or have come back and rock out AT HOME with other Wings fans.. gives me goose-bumps picturing it

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/02/11 at 09:29 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

  The Big Three are making money again and increased their market share for the first time in 15 years

Your Welcome.

  ~federal taxpayers

Don’t be ignorant. PNC Financial of Pittsburgh alone received $7.8B in federal money. How many jobs did that save? Times are tough everywhere, regardless of your stance on the bailouts, which ended up pretty much everywhere too. At this point, any good news should be applauded

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 06/02/11 at 09:40 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

In an effort to avoid nitpicking, I’ll correct my typo to $7.6B. Point still stands.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 06/02/11 at 09:43 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Somewhere, Tony is rocking in a corner, sucking his thumb, mumbling “no, no, no, no ...”

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 06/02/11 at 10:01 PM ET

dougie's avatar

The Red Wings are the league’s best franchise? Next, I suppose you are going to tell me the sky is blue, and Joe Thornton will never hoist the Cup.

Posted by dougie on 06/02/11 at 11:04 PM ET

RorSchach's avatar

Joe Whorton will never hoist the Cup. Grats on the Best Franchise in Hockey.. somehow.. we all knew that already. wink

Posted by RorSchach from Datsberg on 06/03/11 at 06:27 AM 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.