The Malik Report
by George Malik on 06/04/11 at 08:48 PM ET
The Detroit Red Wings tend to do their homework and then some before the NHL Entry Draft, and the Detroit Free Press’s George Sipple reports that the Wings ended up interviewing 28 potential prospects at the draft combine this past week in Toronto…
“The guys we’re interviewing are probably going mid- to late-round and they might go early- to mid-second round,” [Red Wings assistant GM Jim] Nill said.
Nill said none of the players interviewed took themselves out of consideration with their responses.
“Of the 28 we interviewed, they are among the best in the world,” Nill said. “These guys have all, the last five years of their life, gone all over the world and lived on their own since they were 14 or 15. It’s amazing how mature they are now.”
And Nill tells Sipple that while the Wings have yet to make any serious progress in terms of re-signing unrestricted free agents-to-be, Ken Holland’s working on the big club’s roster and Nill’s ready to work on tweaking the Grand Rapids Griffins’ personnel:
Nill said there was nothing to report as far as potential signings. “Kenny’s touching base with most of the guys,” Nill said.
Nill said he planned to sit down this week with Griffins general manager Bob McNamara to discuss the Wings affiliate’s roster and what potential free agents they would pursue to help stock the American Hockey League club.
Also: The Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson reports that Red Wings assistant coach Paul MacLean has not interviewed for the Minnesota Wild’s coaching job, but the Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch believes that MacLean is the favorite for the Senators’ coaching job:
Current assistant coaches Paul MacLean, of the Red Wings, and Kirk Muller, of the Canadiens, have been interviewed, as has former Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish. Junior coaches Dave Cameron and Gerard Gallants have had their face-to-face sitdowns with [Senators GM Bryan] Murray, too. The GM will talk to Binghamton coach Kurt Kleinendorst after the AHL final.
While fans might feel [Murray has been dragging his feet and wondering what is taking so long, that’s not the case. Instead, he was waiting to see what the talent pool might hold once the dust settled on the NHL playoffs.
“Right now, if you’ve got a good coach, you’d better keep him,” a league executive said recently. “The pool in the coaching ranks is a little thin right now. A lot of the good, proven ones are taken.”
Paul MacLean: The Detroit assistant coach could be ready to make the next step. He has spent five seasons as an assistant with Wings coach Mike Babcock. MacLean was in the running for the coaching job with the Blue Jackets that went to Scott Arniel last year. MacLean, a former NHLer, has minor-league head-coaching experience. He was also an assistant with Babcock in Anaheim when Bryan Murray was the GM of the Ducks. There is familiarity there. If the Senators decide to go this route, MacLean would be a safe choice.
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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.