Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Trying to summarize a complicated day in Red Wings nation with video and Tweets

I'm still trying to make heads and tails of the David Legwand deal (for Patrick Eaves, Calle Jarnkrok and a 3rd round pick that becomes a 2nd rounder if the Wings make the playoffs) and why the Wings traded what TSN's Bob McKenzie suggested might really have been--as I'd been told--a Calle Jarnkrok possibly intent upon returning to Sweden but also standing as one of the Wings' top-of-the-tip-of-the-top prospects to Nashville; I'm still stunned to have heard that Pavel Datsyuk's been shut down for 3 weeks (basically the rest of the month), that Darren Helm's dealing with "concussion protocol" and that Stephen Weiss might not be back until next week; I'm honestly a little floored by Mike Babcock's comments regarding the Wings' youth movement (a change of philosophy for the coach?), and while today's practice was sedate, the Ilitches' statement about Mr. I's health was scary.

I'm a ball of emotions having witnessed the Wings smartly ducked out of the Kesler sweepstakes but having sent one of my favorite prospects south in what the Windsor Star's Bob Duff is deeming a "panic move," but Duff did at least capture Holland speaking with the press...

As did Fox Sports Detroit...


And the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness...

The Predators just posted a video of their GM, David Poile, discussing Legwand's exit and Eaves and Jarnkrok's additions...

But the point of Wednesday's activities at the Joe was supposed to actually talk about Nicklas Lidstrom's legacy, as Mike Babcock did after practice...

And, via RedWingsFeed, the Wings posted the entirety of Nicklas Lidstrom's 21-minute media availability earlier this afternoon:

While I was writing this, the Free Press's Helene St. James also posited the following:

You may also take these for what you will:

I'd heard repeated rumbles that a player who didn't take part in summer camps and took part in his first prospect camp last fall wanted to play for his hometown team after all, and there's also this...


And these:

Busy day, emotional day, complicated day, and there are no easy answers as to whether the Wings have made the "right" or "wrong" personnel moves.

We'll find out over the course of the remainder of this regular season, we'll find out if the Wings make the playoffs, and we'll find out as Jarnkrok either develops over here or develops somewhere else.

Was ALL of this worth the cost?

You and I won't know for a while. Nor will the Wings' players, coaches or management. That's just the way hockey works--and the way life works. It's *#$%@& complicated.


Update #2: Holland, quoted by Helene St. James:

Datsyuk has been bothered by an inflamed left knee since January. It didn't get better while he didn't play for five weeks spanning January and February, and it hasn't gotten better despite medication. A fourth specialist Wednesday again ruled out surgery - for now. Holland said the Wings will do some "aggressive" treatment on Datsyuk for a few days, after which he will be told to do nothing: Don't work out, don't skate on your own, don't get out of bed, really. If this doesn't help, Holland said there will be "a conversation" about surgery.

The decision on Datsyuk came after Holland found out Helm might be out for a while, too, came after Stephen Weiss' comeback from sports hernia surgery is as murky as ever.

"With Zetterberg, with Datsyuk, with Helm, and with Weiss, the uncertainty of where we're at, we felt it was important to get a bona-fide center," Holland said. "The news in the last 48 hours, that all factored into acquiring a center. The one we acquired is a local boy, so if we want to keep him beyond this year, we think it's reasonable that can happen, because he had to waive a no-trade clause to come here. He wanted to come home."

Legwand has 10 goals and 30 assists in 62 games this season. He's slated to center Johan Franzen and Gustav Nyquist, becoming the de-facto new no. 1 center in Detroit. The Wings considered Livonia's Ryan Kesler briefly, but Vancouver's asking price involved Nyquist, 2013 first-round Anthony Mantha, and a first-rounder this year. The Wings instead went with Legwand, and a dose of hope that maybe someone will get healthy.

"If we can win some games as we go along here," Holland said, "we're hopeful that we're going to get some people back. We're hoping this plan of attack with Pav will allow us to wake up in three or four weeks and have Pav practicing and thinking about getting back in our lineup. We were hoping to do something on the back end because if we have a healthy Helm and a healthy Pav and with the development of our kids, we'd have the ability to roll four lines."

Instead the Wings will roll out a new center, a defense that could have used an upgrade among the top four, and see if this group can create enough of a headache for opponents to reach the playoffs.


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SYF's avatar

Brad Galli @BradGalli
Patrick Eaves’ agent had been calling Ken Holland, asking for a trade. He’s in the last year of his contract and wanted ice time.

I will miss Patty Eaves, but we will carry his words:  OUR two points.


Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 03/05/14 at 06:50 PM ET


Post Bob Duff’s article, please.

Posted by VitoLambruski on 03/05/14 at 07:00 PM ET


We gave up too much. So what if he goes to sweden. He can come back in a few years and from what I heard could be another Zetterberg. So much for NOT selling youth.

I love how the new motto is embrace the youth, we don’t want to get rid of the youth. We just want to bury it in the minors under the Samuelsson’s, Cleary’s and Tootoos of the world. Then after they say this trade a high pick and a prospect…

We need Stevie back.


Posted by callmedrw on 03/05/14 at 07:10 PM ET

Hootinani's avatar

No wonder Holland had to overpay, he was dealing against a cyborg.

Posted by Hootinani from the parade following Babs out of town on 03/05/14 at 07:14 PM ET


Not going to analyze the deal since its done, but making a deal with a former ‘rival’ might open the door to deals with say COL, STL, ANA, doors that had been shut for a long time. 

Also, interested to see what the asking price was on Ehrhoff once the dust settles.

Posted by maltby18 on 03/05/14 at 07:20 PM ET


Vancouver’s asking price involved Nyquist, 2013 first-round Anthony Mantha, and a first-rounder this year.

My god, I could only imagine how many heads would explode if this happened.

Posted by neffernin on 03/05/14 at 07:20 PM ET


standing as one of the Wings’ top-of-the-tip-of-the-top prospects

But is that true?

It really seems as though Jarnkrok had lost his tip-of-the-top prospect status.  It isn’t clear to me that he was still top-five.  I know RWC had him as #4, but if he were really ahead of Riley Sheahan, wouldn’t he be in Detroit?  Is it clear that he’s really ahead of Pulkinnen, based on productivity in Grand Rapids?  Is it clear that he’s a better prospect even than Athanasiou, who’s 3 years younger?  Is he really ahead of ALL our defensive prospects?

At the end of the day we are discussing an undersized skilled forward who was not expected to make Detroit’s roster out of training camp as a 23 year old next fall.  And like I’ve been saying all deadline, there’s only so many spots.  You can’t fall in love with every guy you draft.

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/05/14 at 07:23 PM ET

Bill from GR's avatar

What’s the over/under on number of games before Legwand gets hurt?

Posted by Bill from GR on 03/05/14 at 07:38 PM ET

Itrusteddrrahmani's avatar

Posted by Bill from GR on 03/05/14 at 06:38 PM ET

6. I’m taking the under.

Posted by Itrusteddrrahmani from Nyc by way of A2 on 03/05/14 at 07:49 PM ET

gowings's avatar

thank you for the clip of the perfect human…I sure miss him!

Posted by gowings from MTL on 03/05/14 at 07:53 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Is it Kenny and the Brain Trust or Kenny and the Brain Fart?

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/05/14 at 08:23 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

It’s gonna take time to figure out whether this was a good trade or a massive overreaction. I adored Jarnkrok, but I will also readily admit that the truth of prospect development is that half of the guys you sign—not just the guys you draft, but the guys who *sign* pro contracts—either find themselves engaging in a non-professional-sport for a career or wind up playing minor pro hockey, and that is equally true for the Jarnkroks of the world and of the Jesper Samuelssons of the world.

I don’t want to root against Calle, because I think he’s a hell of a player, but I hope he doesn’t haunt the Wings, and I hope that he finds himself where he needs to be, whether that’s with Nashville or Brynas.

Did the Wings *#$%@& up here? I dunno. They didn’t want a “rental,” and we know that Vanek’s testing the market, but with Legwand’s home ties, the Preds not wanting to re-sign him and the team saying goodbye (likely) to Cleary and Bertuzzi and Samuelsson etc., maybe Legwand will continue to put up the kind of numbers we believe Stephen Weiss will while healthy while greasing the wheels for the Sheahans, Jurcos, Tatars, Nyquists, maybe the Anderssons and now the Manthas, Jarnkroks, Callahans, Athanasious, etc.

Time will tell. I’m devastated because I thought Jarnkrok was going to be a successor to Datsyuk and Zetterberg, but I also was going on watching him in the 2012 Worlds and worrying about the fact that he kept skipping summer development camps and fall prospect tournaments to “stay home and work on his strength” while never really getting bigger or stronger in Gavle and having some very up-and-down seasons with Brynas. He came over and looked good this year, but the Wings’ supposedly most polished prospect was *just* getting things together and looked like he needed more than one year’s worth of apprenticeship in the AHL, and we don’t know whether he really wants to stay, really wants to go, or if he’s ever going to be big and strong enough to compete (kinda like Almquist, but with way higher expectations).

Time will tell, and that’s why all of this is…difficult. We’ve been told to believe in the kids, and one of the best of the bunch gets moved in what may or may not look like a panicked overreaction to no Datsyuk or Zetterberg until at least April.

I don’t know what I think about this trade yet. I will know more when I find out what Jarnkrok does with Nashville and how Legwand fits in here—and whether the Wings make the playoffs.

Today, I’m exhausted, I’m a bit confused and I’m…crossing my fingers for my Red Wings.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 03/05/14 at 08:32 PM ET


you called him the most polished and most NHL ready forward in the system for 3 years and now you’re backtracking as fast as holland. somehow I’m not surprised

Posted by jkm2011 on 03/05/14 at 08:42 PM ET

igrover's avatar

For all of the fans who have been screaming at Holland to move some of our prospect depth for a ready-to-go player now - well here you go.

No doubt about it, the Wings needed a center and needed one now.  If they are lucky, Helm and Weiss will be back next week although it too much to ask anything of Weiss for the remainder of this year.  And you can write off Pavel and Z for the rest of the season as well.  They simply are not in any physical shape to make a strong impact.

Heck, to show how bad things are with the Wings, Holland called me up yesterday here in Denver and asked me if I was interested in signing a contract.  I told him I already had my Datsyuk helmet, Kronwall gloves and stick, and Franzen pants so there was only a need for the jersey and socks.  Only if he had called me sooner I could have hopped a ride on the Avs plane to Detroit.  So take your pick, me or Legwand.

Posted by igrover on 03/05/14 at 08:54 PM ET

Chet's avatar

Jarnkrok was undersized and underachieving this year, no? Maybe his ceiling isn’t so high; I don’t pretend to know. The future will tell us.

Still: him Eaves, and a pick? For Legwand? That’s ridiculous. I understand we have a glut of forwards, so I can live with losing two, but the pick was too high.

My thoughts: Holland saw Legwand as a chance to maybe keep the playoff streak alive. Maybe he had pressure from ownership to do it, but I still think he overpaid.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 03/05/14 at 09:15 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Time will tell. I’m devastated because I thought Jarnkrok was going to be a successor to Datsyuk and Zetterberg

You and he may prove me wrong but I’d dare to bet that little fella is/was NOT going to be a successor to Datsyuk and Zetterberg.

I am by no means no Holland apologist but I like this move. Holland finally made a move that wasn’t completely useless and we really need some scoring talent up front to have a chance to make the playoffs. And just keeping the playoff streak alive is probably somewhat important to the Ilitch’s but me thinks making the playoffs is a bit more important due to revenue and trying to draw free agents this summer.

Now I would love for Holland to have landed a top 4 Dman but those players are highly sought out by nearly every team and the asking price is almost always nuts.

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 03/05/14 at 09:45 PM ET


Interesting (but useless) and very dismal stat…

Legwand has played more games this season than any other Red Wing at 62, just one ahead of Miller and Quincey.  That combined with him coming in as the second leading scorer behind Zetterberg tells the devastating story that is the Red Wings season.

Posted by chrispiannt on 03/05/14 at 09:55 PM ET

Jaromir Blogger's avatar

Regardless of whether Jarnkrok is leaving North America at the end of the season, people like Chet are right - that is a ridiculous overpayment in terms of raw assets. Why not some other prospect? Why not Ferraro or Callahan? I mean, Poile may have drawn a hard line that the deal wasn’t getting done without Jarnkrok, but that’s when you walk away. If Poile made that claim, you call his bluff because it’s ridiculous. This is an aging, unspectacular player at the end of his contract, a true depth rental. Can he play on a second line? Probably only on a middling team. Unless Holland is seriously concerned that this rash of injuries to his centers are career-threatening (and, well, some of them may be, I suppose) and sees Legwand as a possible contingency plan moving forward (assuming they can re-sign him), this is an unnecessary rental at that cost. But in all likelihood, this team is going to be overflowing with solid-to-great centers next season. Do we really need another logjam?

Who knows what’s really going on with Jarnkrok. Maybe Ken Holland is certain that he’s going to shun North American hockey completely and play in Sweden for the rest of his life. Maybe they all began to feel that he was never going to make it in the NHL. We, as outsiders, have no real way of knowing exactly what’s going on and exactly what is spin doctoring. But if all the guy wants is a shot at the NHL, give it to him and see. If he fails, then trade him elsewhere or let him walk. But given that he had begun to pick up his play recently in the AHL (not that struggling at first is necessarily a bad sign - look at Tomas Jurco), it seems unlikely that anyone would just write this guy off.

And let’s say the Red Wings ARE confident that he’s moving back to Sweden at the end of this year. Obviously the Predators don’t know that, or they wouldn’t have traded for him. This means, in all likelihood, that no other team would know that, either. So why not get a BIG return for this VERY highly touted prospect? The return just doesn’t match. And even if Jarnkrok busts, the guy’s been talked about as a near-can’t-miss prospect for some time and the return should reflect that. This deal doesn’t make sense to me. When I try to justify it in my head, I feel like I’m just doing mental gymnastics. And unless Jarnkrok gets a one-way ticket to Sweden in three months and/or Legwand becomes a far better player than he has ever been, I am going to be appalled by this incompetent display of negotiation and management.

Posted by Jaromir Blogger on 03/06/14 at 01:12 AM ET

NIVO's avatar

once all the cobwebs(Cleary, Tootoo, Sammy, Bert?, and any others i’ve missed) are cleared out for next year, take a look at what we have. All the “kids” with experience under their belts and brimming with potential. I’m looking forward to that kind of lineup.

But getting back to the here and now, I like the Legwand move. Very sound defensively, he is what we need in a center. With a large margin of the roster down and out he should(and hopefully will) provide what we need…...strength down the middle.

The biggest part of the puzzle of this year still remains the D. They have to lock it down night after night. A full 60 minutes and no excuses. I still have expectations to make the first round, but im not blind to the task at hand. Its gonna be a tremendous uphill battle. Thank god for not having to go beyond Minnesota the rest of the way as far as mileage goes west. The way I have it we need to go 14-7 the rest of the way just to squeak in. So its nail biters all the way from here. JUST WIN BABY.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/06/14 at 02:36 AM ET

alwaysaurie's avatar

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 03/06/14 at 01:36 AM ET

14-7-0 gets us to 96pts, which is more than enough.

I think we should set our sights on 93pts as the cutoff, which is achievable with something as mediocre as 11-8-3.

That we still be a solid accomplishment for our depleted team, but it’s not unreasonable(and neither is 14-7-0).

My worry right now is that I didn’t like the performance of the Kid-Line on Tuesday. They’re bound to have less-than-glowing games, but we really are relying on them to provide consistent secondary scoring, occasional primary scoring, and impressive defensive responsibility.

That’s asking a hell of a lot from them… fingers crossed.


Posted by alwaysaurie on 03/06/14 at 03:18 AM ET


As solid as Legwand is you don’t trade a future star to get him.

Somewhere, some guy named Hakan is doing a lot of cussing in Swedish.

It was a panic move for sure. Could be they had a deal with someone else and it fell through at the last minute.

Granting Patty’s wishes again shows what a classy organization this is. I’m sure a few pending UFA’s know how the Wings do things…...and I don’t mean Sammi and Cleary mad

I wish Eaves all the best. Class act all the way.

Posted by leftwing on 03/06/14 at 07:09 AM ET


Regardless of whether Jarnkrok is leaving North America at the end of the season, people like Chet are right - that is a ridiculous overpayment in terms of raw assets. Why not some other prospect? Why not Ferraro or Callahan? ... This is an aging, unspectacular player at the end of his contract, a true depth rental. Can he play on a second line? Probably only on a middling team.

I think this is a serious overrating of our assets and underrating of another team’s.

First—Eaves was a throw-in—part salary dump, part courtesy to a guy who’s been a warrior.  He’s been through waivers this season and gone unclaimed.  We need to stop acting like he’s a substantive part of this trade—he had minimal value.

Second—Jarnkrok is a 22 year old not expected to make Detroit as a 23 year old.  He was not called up when FOUR centers were injured.  Our brass for whatever reason does NOT believe he is ready for the NHL game.  Maybe they’re wrong, but Dave Poile is not going to get snowed here—“We think he’s the next Zetterberg, we just coincidentally don’t call him up and he just coincidentally isn’t dominating in the AHL.”  Henrik Zetterberg, at 22, scored 22 NHL goals and finished second for the Calder.  Valtteri Filppula, at 22, played 73 NHL games.  Jarnkrok’s development is closer to Cory Emmerton’s than it is to Valtteri Filppula’s right now—nevermind Zetterberg.

That aging, unspectacular guy actually can play second-line center—that’s what he’s done for 60+ games in Nashville this year.  He’s also their leading scorer among forwards (really, he’s behind Fisher because Fisher plays with Hornqvist rather than because Fisher is materially better—they both play on the first PP unit).  He’s in his second-best offensive season right now, so age doesn’t seem to be a problem—and he’s avoided serious injury since 2010-2011. 

I suppose it’s true that Nashville is only a middling team, but right now he’s a giant upgrade on our first line center from our last game (Joachim Andersson).  If you look at his possession numbers you’ll see that they’re middling but that he doesn’t get any kind of sheltering—he players tough competition night in and night out and starts more shifts in the defensive zone than the offensive zone.  As for offense, well, I bet a lot of guys would struggle with Gabriel Bourque and Craig Smith as their linemates.

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 07:36 AM ET


Why not some other prospect? Why not Ferraro or Callahan?

What?  So even if Jarnkrok was planning on leaving the organization and the continent, you would rather they trade someone who actually wants to play for the Wings?


Posted by Garth on 03/06/14 at 08:38 AM ET


The more I think about this trade, the more I think it was a good trade. I called it a panic move yesterday, and I still stand by that, but to an extent news on Pav and Helm forced Holland’s hand.
3rd rounder, possibly 2nd if we make the playoffs and a prospect is not a bad price to pay for Legwand. Eaves was a throw in and really traded as a favor to him so he can play.
Team needs an established good center and that’s what Holland did. I’m just happy they didn’t trade the 1st rounder.

Posted by George0211 on 03/06/14 at 09:28 AM ET

Tracy from T-Town Hockey 's avatar

me thinks making the playoffs is a bit more important due to revenue and trying to draw free agents this summer.

Agreed and for getting Alfie to sign again.

Posted by Tracy from T-Town Hockey on 03/06/14 at 10:10 AM ET


I can’t believe it is true, but I actually lost sleep over this. I was very excited to see Jarnkrok develop and be the center of our future.

If he leaves for Sweden and never comes back, it will feel much better. If he doesn’t, what a gigantic price to pay. Look at this deal compared to the Vanek deal! How is this price justified?

Ugh. This kills me.

Read Bob Duff’s tweets and blog. He feels the same way.

Posted by VitoLambruski on 03/06/14 at 10:41 AM ET


By the way, regarding Jarnkrok’s transition here. Look at his numbers this year compared to Tomas Jurco’s for the same period last year.

Jurco had trouble adapting in his first season in the AHL. He wasn’t scoring. Mid-winter, he started to get confidence and figure it out. By the end of the playoffs, he was one of the team’s most dangerous players and he scored some big goals.

Jarnkrok struggled on the scoresheet for the first 3-4 months of the season, but he played in all situations and EVERYONE in the organization thought he was better and more important than the numbers led us to believe. The past 16 games, he put up 19 points.

I can only wonder what Jarnkrok might have done the rest of the year and in the playoffs had he not been traded.

Posted by VitoLambruski on 03/06/14 at 10:47 AM ET


And yet Jurco—who is 9 months younger—made the Red Wings, while Jarnkrok won’t even get a sniff with the Predators until next year at the earliest—when he’s 23.

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 10:49 AM ET


Jarnkrok needs to add some weight and strength. And, you know, finish his first year in North American professional hockey. He’d have been ready mid-2014-2015 (i.e., December-January 2014/2015).

Posted by VitoLambruski on 03/06/14 at 11:06 AM ET


If he leaves for Sweden and never comes back, it will feel much better. If he doesn’t, what a gigantic price to pay. Look at this deal compared to the Vanek deal!

That’s an awful way to look at a trade, though.  It’s like looking at every draft pick by going down the list and seeing other guys taken 10-100 picks later who end up being better and complaining that they didn’t get picked by Detroit.  You can’t judge one player have a two point night against another player who had a 5 point night and then say the first player had a bad game.

You also can’t judge a trade compared to outlier trades made by lunatics trying to save their jobs.

First off, there’s a decent chance Legwand will re-up in Detroit past this year.  There’s no chance Vanek will.

Secondly, Vanek’s not a center.  With D and Z and Helm and Weiss all out Detroit needed a center.

Thirdly, if Jarnkrok was going to leave for Sweden then moving him now cost Detroit absolutely nothing.

Fourth, even if Jarnkrok stays it’s far from a sure thing he’s more than a second-third line forward.

Fifth, Detroit has a load of forward prospects.  Moving their #4-6 forward prospect isn’t a big deal.

If it’s me, I don’t make the move… but that’s because my priorities are different than Holland’s.  He wants to make the playoffs again and keep the streak going and I’m more sanguine about the benefits of occasionally having a higher pick.  I get it, I just disagree with the premise.  If Holland was going to make a move, though, I much prefer one on this tier that involves, at worst, a #2 and a prospect from an area where Detroit is deep with them than ones that involve #1’s and roster players.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 03/06/14 at 11:16 AM ET


He’d have been ready mid-2014-2015 (i.e., December-January 2014/2015).

So we’re talking about an undersized skilled forward who may or may not be ready to fill a third line role by the middle of his Y23 season, 11 months from now, and who may or may not have been willing to wait for that.  And that’s the upside.

I really think the Zetterberg comparisons have blinded people here.  He’s way behind Zetterberg’s development curve.



Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 11:17 AM ET


I too agree, some people are over-reacting about Jarnkrok.
When everyone is healthy, a big IF of course) Wings are extremely deep down the middle. So even if Jarnkrok was ready sometime next season, what role would he play?
If he is as good as he is, he needs to play top line minutes and that wasn’t going to happen.
Truth is, he was expendable, and Wings got immediate help.

Posted by George0211 on 03/06/14 at 11:23 AM ET


What is the obsession with making the playoffs this year? It’s not our year, so why waste our best center prospect not playing in Detroit to do so? That’s the origin of my beef with this. We still have a big hole on the blueline. So David Legwand fills in for our top 3 centers being out for potentially one month. And what happens beyond this year? Does Legwand re-up and move to wing? With Pavel and Weiss healthy next year, we’ve got like 7 centers. How does this work?

The other problem is the pipeline. So we’ve got Andersson and Glendening as future 4th line centers. Sheahan looks like, for now, a good 3rd line center. Does he go back to GR next year so we can play Datsyuk, Weiss, Legwand and Helm? If so, where do Andersson and Glendening go. At the end of the day, aside from Sheahan, there’s no prospect with a high ceiling for skill (except the wild card of Janmark, but he’s not even in North America). Who are the Red Wings’ skilled centers going to be in 4 years? With the Wings’ development process that takes 3-5 years, that doesn’t give Holland much time to get a skilled center in the system. That’s a huge problem in my eyes.

I was really hoping the type of move that he made yesterday would have been flipping some prospects to get a higher-end guy. Even if he moved Jarnkrok and Almqvist, let’s say, to get a premier, blue chip type guy. Something like that would have been ideal. Now, we Datsyuk on a suspiciously bad knee (and he’s over 35 - how will a bad knee and age shape the rest of Datsyuk’s career?). Helm is a china doll, can’t stay healthy. Z can play center if needed, but he’s getting older. Franzen’s a year behind Datsyuk in terms of age and he’s a concussion or two away from maybe being gone. Is Sheahan a future first-line center for a championship contender? Doubt it. Is Helm? No. Is Janmark? Who knows? At least Jarnkrok seemed to have a lot of people thinking he was a top-2 center. It’s going to be interesting to see if they accelerate the development process or somehow do something to get a premier prospect at center. Otherwise, I am worried of what the future looks like.

And HiHD, it is possible to compare trades. It might not be a perfect science, but Vanek was the best player available, maybe aside from Kesler. Vanek sold for next to nothing. If he had more value, why was the return so skewed compared to this?

Posted by VitoLambruski on 03/06/14 at 11:56 AM ET


What is the obsession with making the playoffs this year? It’s not our year

May have something to do with beating Anaheim and taking Chicago to the wire a year ago.

nd what happens beyond this year? Does Legwand re-up and move to wing? With Pavel and Weiss healthy next year, we’ve got like 7 centers. How does this work?

Well, Andersson or Glendening are disposable/scratchable.  Zetterberg and Franzen are more effective on the wing.  You’re really talking about Datsyuk, Weiss, Legwand, Helm, and Sheahan down the middle, which fits my definition of “good problem to have” with the injuries we’ve sustained the last two seasons.

I don’t think anyone in hockey other than Red Wings fans on the internet thought Calle Jarnkrok—unable to outscore Cory Emmerton in the AHL as a 22 year old—was a future first-line center on a title team.

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 12:01 PM ET


What is the obsession with making the playoffs this year?

Because if we make the playoffs, would could make a run.

Last year the Red Wings took the Blackhawks to OT in game 7 (and might have even won if not for the BS officiating).  The defense this year is exactly the same defense that did that and, theoretically, the forwards are better.  Alfredsson is an upgrade over Brunner, Tatar is an upgrade, Nyquist is better than he was last year, Weiss for Filpulla is probably a push if Weiss is healthy, and the additions of Legwand and Jurco mean that if they can get healthy, they’re better up front.

Oh, and there’s nobody in the East that is as good as Chicago last year (or, frankly, Anaheim last year too).

So if the Wings can get healthy for the playoffs there’s no reason at all to think they can’t make a run, unless you’re ignoring reality.

It’s not our year, so why waste our best center prospect not playing in Detroit to do so?

Just because you’ve already written off the Wings, try not to present it as fact, huh?

And yeah, “best centre prospect not playing in Detroit” is quite the qualifier, huh?  If he was as pants-creamingly amazing as you think then he wouldn’t be behind Sheahan and Glendening, a guy who isn’t ever projected to be anything more than a fourth liner.

Even if Legwand doesn’t re-sign, the Wings have Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Weiss, Helm, Andersson, Abdelkader, Sheahan and Glendening ahead of him on the depth chart in the centre position.

aside from Sheahan, there’s no prospect with a high ceiling for skill

Anthony Mantha just pulled a stomach muscle laughing in your face.  Thomas Jurco and Teemu Pulkkinen also rolled their eyes.

Posted by Garth on 03/06/14 at 12:49 PM ET


Vanek sold for next to nothing.

So did Legwand.

A third (or second), a guy who was waived multiple times and had no future in Detroit and a guy who apparently wants to go back home.

Jesus, you’d think they traded Pavel Datsyuk for him the way you’re crowing about it.

Posted by Garth on 03/06/14 at 12:51 PM ET


Anthony Mantha just pulled a stomach muscle laughing in your face. 

Do not joke about such things!

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 12:52 PM ET


I really think the Zetterberg comparisons have blinded people here.  He’s way behind Zetterberg’s development curve.

Really?  Zetterberg came to Detroit when he was 22.  He was a smallish center with good hands, hockey sense, and very good defensive instincts.  Z played on the 3rd and 4th lines as a rookie and saw limited action on the PP and PK.  He was the best player on his SEL team.

Jarnrock came to GR when he was 23.  He is a smallish center with good hands, hockey sense, and very good defensive instincts.  Jarnrock is playing on the top line on first-place Griffins, playing on the PK and PP.  He was the best player on his SEL team.

Yet one is way behind the curve of the other?  You’re telling me that he’s not as good as Glendening, a 3rd-4th liner in GR and 4th liner in Detroit right now?  Give me a break.  How about giving the kid 10 games in a “man’s league” before you decide his development curve.

If Holland had his way and a healthy roster, Jurco and Sheahan would be in GR right now.  Holland was loathe to call up Jurco in December and so were many on this board (George included).

Posted by jkm2011 on 03/06/14 at 02:05 PM ET



Yes, really.

Zetterberg made the roster of the reigning Stanley Cup champs out of training camp.  He proceeded to lead the rookie scoring race and register 22 goals.  Jarnkrok hasn’t earned a callup despite injuries to 4 roster centers. 

  Z played on the 3rd and 4th lines as a rookie and saw limited action on the PP and PK. 

False.  Z was 5th among Detroit forwards in average icetime as a rookie, reflecting second/third line status.  By the end of the season he was part of the “Two Kids and a Goat” line that was our second line at even strength behind the Fedorov line. 

In getting there he passed several veterans for icetime, including two Hall of Famers (Robitaille and Larionov).  He was sixth on the team in PP goals showing regular use there and recorded a shorthanded goal, so he was used in that situation too.  Jarnkrok, again, hasn’t earned a callup and was not expected to make the team out NEXT year’s training camp—when he’ll be 23.  He may not make the Predators next season. 

Forcing your way onto a 50-win roster as a 22-year old, making the second line, and leading rookies in scoring isn’t just a little bit ahead of having 36 points through 57 games in the AHL at the same age—it’s miles ahead.  As a 22 year old Zetterberg outplayed Hall of Famers—Jarnkrok isn’t outplaying Cory Emmerton, either as a scorer in GR or as a defensive player at the NHL level.  There is NO comparison.

Now, maybe, as you allude, poor Jarnkrok is just held back by Holland’s stubbornness.  I guess Dave Poile must have the same stubborn streak, because if Jarnkrok is close to as good as Zetterbeberg was at the same age Nashville could sure use him in the lineup tonight.  They’ve only got 2 guys on a 20 goal pace.

(Of course, if Jarnkrok were that good it would be hard to understand how he’s been beaten out by Sheahan and Jurco—who aren’t producing at Zetterberg’s-rookie-year levels either—and how he was a healthy scratch for the Griffs last postseason.  Maybe it’s Holland AND Poile AND Blashill who’re ALL being unfair to him?)

Posted by captaineclectic on 03/06/14 at 02:32 PM ET


He didn’t get to play in the playoffs because he was the key to the Swedish Hockey Federation’s World Championship hopes last year.  They loaned him for the balance of the regular season, not the playoffs.

Also, I suppose this is Blashill being unfair to him?

“He’s such a complete player, so, so well-rounded in his game, that he never cheats at all offensively,” said Griffins head coach Jeff Blashill. “When you’re going from a bigger sheet (of ice) to playing on a smaller sheet and the NHL style, you have to learn to create the same offense. But because he’s such a complete player, he’s not willing to do it without sacrificing the defense. That makes the transition for those well-rounded offensive guys a little bit longer. But it’s just a matter of time, in my opinion.”

The 6-foot, 180-pounder’s NHL upside lies somewhere between a Valtteri Filppula and a Henrik Zetterberg. He works hard and plays a 200-foot game, but also skates well, is strong on the puck, has quick hands and high-level hockey sense.

Blashill said Jarnkrok has shown “flashes of real, real high-end skill.”

“He’s extremely talented with a very, very good brain for the game,” Blashill said.

One thing that will help Jarnkrok be more impactful in North America is added strength. Red Wings director of European scouting Hakan Andersson said in early January that Jarnkrok could stand to gain 10 more pounds and Blashill concurs.

“It’s a matter of learning to create the same space here that he had naturally on the bigger sheet,” Blashill said. “That’s going to be done with his brain, and also with his off-ice work, getting stronger, getting bigger, getting thicker.”


Posted by jkm2011 on 03/06/14 at 02:46 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.