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‘Three Things’: On leadership, pucks and pumpkins and a mural at the Joe

Of Red Wings-related note:

1. The Red Wings' 5-2 loss to the Florida Panthers yesterday afternoon yielded some questioning of the Wings' leadership group after the game, but Wings coach Jeff Blashill insisted that his team's two-game losing streak doesn't mean it's time to panic, as the Free Press's Helene St. James noted:

“I have a 100% belief in the group in this locker room, so I’m not concerned, long term, at all,” Blashill said. “I’m concerned about tonight, which wasn’t good enough. But I don’t have any worries about the level of leadership or the level of character that we have, to a man, in this locker room.”

St. James continues...

2. Today is Halloween, and the Grand Rapids Griffins posted a...unique...video of the team "celebrating" Halloween by shooting the heck out of a set of pumpkins at Van Andel Arena:

Here's the video in YouTube form:

3. Goalie mask artist David Arrigo painted a mural on Joe Louis Arena's concourse wall this past weekend:

Update: The Hockey News's Jared Clinton weighs in on Thomas Vanek's absence from the Wings' lineup:

Vanek is four-for-13 in shooting right now, clipping along with a shooting percentage nearing 31 percent. While that’s a positive in the sense that he’s getting some puck luck early in the campaign, Detroit shouldn’t be banking on that continuing once he returns from injury.

Over the course of his career, Vanek has been a high volume shooter and that’s been primarily responsible for his strong goal totals earlier in his career. In his last 25-plus goal season, which game in 2013-14, Vanek put 248 shots on goal — more than three shots per game over 78 outings — and shot 10.9 percent. Vanek’s career shooting percentage is 14.5 percent, as well, so there’s very little chance he remains up above 20 percent, let alone 30 percent, when he returns to the lineup.

Regardless of the decline in shooting percentage that’s due, though, getting Vanek back sooner rather than later would be helpful for a Red Wings team that hasn’t been able to put the puck in the net with any consistency since Vanek dropped out of the lineup.

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It could be that the real leadership issue is emanating from the bench. Do the players truly have faith in their coach and trust him to make the subtle in-games adjustments that define great coaching from just average? When a team is slow and unprepared for a game two nights in a row, that may reflect how the coach adjusts his lineup and who should or should not dress.

Little things that NHL players should do well….. like making an accurate pass to a team mate or making a good decision in terms of passing the puck to an open guy rather than to one who is skating right into traffic….all of that is woefully lacking with this team at times. These are simple, fundamental, and correctable basics but the Wings are exceptionally poor at them in many games. Why has that not been addressed.

I do think there isa lot of pride and character on this team but there just seems to be a disconnect with the coach. I have nothing against Blashill and had felt, before last season, that he would be good for the Wings. After a full season and a bit, I have serious reservations!

Posted by NewfieWing on 10/31/16 at 02:41 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

Win 5 in a row, things are great with the team and Hollands/Blashs plan is working.

Lose 2 in a row and now the team is a distaster with no leadership.

There will be good and bad games but keep in mind - it’s a looooong season.

Posted by TreKronor on 10/31/16 at 02:57 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.