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“Very Little Reason For Hope In Detroit”

If this team misses the postseason, you have to think big changes are coming. In the end, though, that would be for the best. The way things are going now, there's very little reason for hope in Detroit.

Read more on the Wings from Ryan Lambert at PuckDaddy.

My comment, did you expect anything different?

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Heaton's avatar

“Big changes” - lol.

If this team misses the post season, nothing will change.  Maybe Babcock leaves, but he might have left regardless.  Holland and Jimmy D have been tempering expectations for years.  The Wings would have to fail for years before Holland makes ‘big changes’.

Posted by Heaton on 08/11/14 at 09:52 AM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar

The way things are going now, there’s very little reason for hope in Detroit.

I hope Kyle Quincey has the best birthday tomorrow! I don’t think that’s unreasonable.

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 08/11/14 at 09:52 AM ET

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It is going to be fun reading this column again next year after Detroit makes the playoffs again.

Posted by captaineclectic on 08/11/14 at 09:59 AM ET

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It is going to be fun reading this column again next year after Detroit makes the playoffs again.

Yeah, we can all have a “Laugh in Lambert’s Face Party” when Detroit squeaks into the playoffs and gets bounced soundly by their opponent.

Posted by Garth on 08/11/14 at 10:05 AM ET

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I know Lambert takes a beating on here, but I think he’s actually one of the best national hockey bloggers out there. As soon as you get past his shock value humor, you can see that the dude almost always knows what he’s talking about. And often times, his shock value humor is hilarious, even when it’s concerning a team that I love.

The points he makes are largely accurate. Nyquist will be lucky to hit 28 goals again, even if he plays all 82 games this year. He’s never been a goal scorer. It should be expected at this point that Datsyuk and Zetterberg play 60 games at best. It should be expected that Weiss is an absolute anchor. Anything else would be great and surprising.

Meanwhile, a lot of teams improved including Tampa and Montreal. Bubble teams like Columbus (once they sing Johansen), New Jersey, the Islanders, and the Panthers (who I still think are brutal) also improved. The Maple Leafs could be better with improvements from Gardiner, Reilly, and Kadri.

The bottom line is that the Wings are going to struggle to make the postseason. That being said, I think Tatar and Smith could breakout in a big way this year. I’m curious to see how Sheahan performs, and curious to see what Jurco can do if he gets a shot. There’s some reason for hope.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 10:06 AM ET

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He’ll be the one laughing.  He’ll just cut and paste the article—exactly as he’s done since at least 2011.

Posted by captaineclectic on 08/11/14 at 10:08 AM ET

tekjansen's avatar

Lambert isn’t wrong, but the Red-glasses argue that this is only the 2014 installment of the “Death of the Red Wings,” an annual tradition.

They have lots of pretty decent kids laying around — few to none of them anything resembling actual stars, which the team used to have in spades

I’m not sure who the “pretty decent kids” were that resembled actual stars, outside of too-obvious international superstars in Datsyuk and Zetterberg. I think it’s a stretch to say that Tatar and Nyquist don’t look to be at least as good as Jiri Hudler was, and Jurco is probably at worst similar to Tomas Kopecky…And even if “pretty decent kids” refers to the next generation, is that players like Helm and Abdelkader (the latter of which he later refers to Khan’s article discussing J-Bone’s role and reasonably refers to him as not-top-six material)...I just don’t know what the hell he’s saying here.

That said, for as legit as the regression talk might be, especially for Nyquist’s shooting percentage, he skirts a below-league-average season from Howard as working to bounce back, as well as completely ignores the potential of a healthy Weiss.

I think reasonable fans might agree that there’s just as much of a chance to slip into the (pardon the mixed divisional references) New Jersey/Philadelphia-middling type team circling the bubble of playoff relevance as there is to get back to Montreal/Tampa Bay level of competitive striking-distance. But as we know, Lambert writes to stir, even if he has facts on his side, that’s how he maintains his profile, just like Drew Sharp or other pundits.

Posted by tekjansen on 08/11/14 at 10:26 AM ET

Primis's avatar

I know Lambert takes a beating on here, but I think he’s actually one of the best national hockey bloggers out there.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 11:06 AM ET

You obviously need to read more hockey blogs then.  Lambert is fairly uninformed in general, and incredibly biased.  He also writes bait-y articles with little-to-no substance, knowing scores will take the bait.  If it were Facebook, links to his articles would say “What this rambling blogger says next will SHOCK you!!!”...

He’s the real-life example of the “blogger” every coach, owner, sports beat writer, and athlete despises and mentally sees when they see the word.

Lambert is the guy that yells “Fire!” in a crowded theater after deciding he’s bored with the movie and doesn’t like it, instead of just leaving.  Or he’s the guy that buys all the pies at a Burger King so the crying kid behind him cant have any.

Posted by Primis on 08/11/14 at 10:41 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Well, there was a lot of reason to hope that this upcoming season would be at least an exciting one. But that all ended when Holland struck out on every quality free agent defenseman and then resigned both Quincey and Cleary. At that point, a large share of my personal “hope” for this season went down the drain.

What I find ironic is that the article right before this one is headlined: “The Future Looks Bright For The Dallas Stars.” Gee I wonder why that is? Is it because the city of Dallas is such a desirable destination for hockey players? Or is it because the guy who played a major role in making Detroit a quality team is now their GM? I’m guessing it’s the latter.

But I do have some hope for this season. First, I’m hoping that Buckets tears his knee up in a water-skiing accident (or simply by climbing out of the tub) two days before training camp starts. And, second, I hope Quincey actually plays like he knows what the hell a defenseman’s job is.

I know, I know. The chances of the first one happening are far greater than the second one.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 08/11/14 at 10:43 AM ET

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I know Lambert takes a beating on here, but I think he’s actually one of the best national hockey bloggers out there.

He actually is somewhere stuck beneath the bottom of the barrel.

I just happen to believe that this could be the first year that all of the “Detroit could finally miss the playoffs” articles aren’t exactly far-fetched.

Having said that…

The points he makes are largely accurate.

Well, first off, he didn’t actually make any points, he made assumptions with little basis in reality.

Nyquist was never a goal-scorer?  Well, he had 20+ goals in both of his full AHL seasons and was on a nearly 40-goal pace in his 15 games last year before finally being called up.  And here’s something: maybe he will be able to reproduce his shooting percentage and maybe he won’t, but after one year with a great shooting percentage, how about we wait to see if he’s actually that good a shooter rather than saying there’s no way he could possibly be that good?

Maybe he’ll be lucky to replicate his production, or maybe he’ll be good enough to, especially if he finds himself on a line with Datsyuk and/or Zetterberg

Datsyuk and Zetterberg shouldn’t be expected to play more than 60 games?  I love that Pavel Datsyuk misses significant time for the first year in his career, therefore he will never play a full season again.  Ditto for Zetterberg.  First time he’s ever played fewer than 60 games, therefore we shouldn’t expect him to ever play 60 again?

Weiss should be expected to suck?  He was signed because he’s good.  He played a quarter of the season and (admittedly because of his own stubbornness) played that time injured, therefore he’s never going to be anything but terrible.

Posted by Garth on 08/11/14 at 11:31 AM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

Things getting a little slow over at yahoo I see. Click Bate! Click Bate! .....don’t do it.  confused

Posted by Down River Dan on 08/11/14 at 11:31 AM ET

SYF's avatar

The fuch else is new?

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 08/11/14 at 11:33 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

What I find ironic is that the article right before this one is headlined: “The Future Looks Bright For The Dallas Stars.” Gee I wonder why that is? Is it because the city of Dallas is such a desirable destination for hockey players? Or is it because the guy who played a major role in making Detroit a quality team is now their GM? I’m guessing it’s the latter.

Or is it because their fanbase and ownership alllowed the team to suck puck for 5+ years, and be deadline sellers to beef up the talent pool they currently have, or used to trade for what they brought in? Kinda like the LA Kings, and the Chicago Blackhawks…

I don’t think Ilitch or hey hey hockeytown could stomach what needs to be done to make this team a contender again, and that is trading a Pavel and a Kronwall, and being deadline dealers for the next two years, miss the playoffs, and build up a deeper pool of picks and prospects to support the next generation.

 

Posted by MurrayChadwick on 08/11/14 at 12:04 PM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

They have lots of pretty decent kids laying around — few to none of them anything resembling actual stars, which the team used to have in spades


Other than Henrik Lundqvist, someone please point out the SuperStars on the rangers who went to the finals??

Martin St. Louis, Rick Nash, Brad Richards….......

Posted by Down River Dan on 08/11/14 at 12:04 PM ET

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Same dribble we hear just about every summer. While this season it may be closer to reality than some of those other summers where writer after writer was putting out “the Wings are too old to win”, there are a lot of factors not even mentioned in this article that may have a profound impact on the Wings future.

First and foremost, just because the Wings miss the playoffs (assuming that happens) doesn’t mean they’ll continue to decline. There are several prospects coming up that look quite good. NOBODY knows if they can be as good as Zetterberg or Datsyuk but at that early stage of their careers nobody was certain about Datsyuk or Zetterberg either.

To speak as if the cupboard is bare is ignoring what just about every knowledgeable hockey writer has said, namely that the Wings have one of the better pools of prospects and that they have coaching in place to develop those prospects.

If you are going to write an article like this, at least take the time to read a bit about the organization as whole, not just look at the players who defined the organization in the past. It’s undoubtedly a period of transition but it isn’t near as bleak as he’d and others would have you believe.

Posted by evileye on 08/11/14 at 12:06 PM ET

tekjansen's avatar

Other than Henrik Lundqvist, someone please point out the SuperStars on the rangers who went to the finals??

Well, Derek Stepan was on the US Olympic team and Ryan McDonagh led the Blueshirts in playoff scoring. Plus, they had some balance with Hagelin, Brassard, and Kreider, who aren’t really stars, but are a little more established than Tatar and Sheahan.

Posted by tekjansen on 08/11/14 at 12:08 PM ET

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Other than Henrik Lundqvist, someone please point out the SuperStars on the rangers who went to the finals??

Well, Derek Stepan was on the US Olympic team and Ryan McDonagh led the Blueshirts in playoff scoring. Plus, they had some balance with Hagelin, Brassard, and Kreider, who aren’t really stars, but are a little more established than Tatar and Sheahan.

I think that last part is key. The Rangers have a couple years head start with their you guys over the Wings, even more so on defense. They play as a team very well. Hopefully within about 2 years the Wings youngsters are playing that way.

Posted by evileye on 08/11/14 at 12:14 PM ET

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You obviously need to read more hockey blogs then.

Truthfully, I probably need to read less. I spend way too much time reading all kinds of hockey blogs.

But, I understand that Lambert writes in a provocative style that is meant to garner attention (a.k.a. click baiting). 

The fun part about Lambert to me is that behind his shock style writing, there is usually a great deal of substance. His What We Learned blog on Puck Daddy is to me, second only to Elliotte Friedman’s 30 Thoughts when it comes to content on an NHL focused blog (i.e. not a team specific). I get that a lot of people hate him, and I understand why, but he’s a good writer if you can look past the style.


As for Nyquist, I should have clarified. That was my mistake. I meant that Nyquist has never been known as a sniper or a shooter, but instead as a playmaker. I see him as 25-40 type of player. I’m sure he’s a great shooter, but his shooting percentage last year was unsustainable. I worry about fans expecting too much out of him and then being disappointed.

I still think it’s unwise to expect full seasons out of Datsyuk and Zetterberg. I can’t think of any stars their age, who play as tough of minutes and are relied upon so heavily to generate offense. They’re two-way superstars IMO. I’d be very pleasantly surprised if they can play full seasons. I can eat crow on that statement too though, and happily will do so.

As for Weiss, I’d argue that he was signed because he used to be good. The year before he signed with Detroit, he managed four points in seventeen games. He’s now played 43 NHL games in the past two seasons (granted the one was a lockout year). He’s 31. I don’t see him being able to outplay any of Datsyuk, Sheahan, or Helm at this point. So, his contract appears to be an anchor.  If he proves otherwise, great. But I’m not betting on it.

All that being said, I think Tatar could hit 30 goals this year. I think Smith could be widely recognized as a legitimate top 3 D by the end of the year. I think Jurco has star potential. Sheahan should grow.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 01:36 PM ET

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He’s the real-life example of the “blogger” every coach, owner, sports beat writer, and athlete despises and mentally sees when they see the word.

I don’t disagree with that statement. If Lambert had to regularly interact with people in the hockey world, I don’t think he could write the way he does.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 01:41 PM ET

tekjansen's avatar

The fun part about Lambert to me is that behind his shock style writing, there is usually a great deal of substance. His What We Learned blog on Puck Daddy is to me, second only to Elliotte Friedman’s 30 Thoughts when it comes to content on an NHL focused blog (i.e. not a team specific). I get that a lot of people hate him, and I understand why, but he’s a good writer if you can look past the style.

I think it’s provocative, but I don’t think Lambert says anything groundbreaking, at least in terms of any seeming substantial citation of CorsiRel or zone starts. I think comparing him to Friedman conflates a discussion Lambert as a hockey writer, and I think style has plenty to do with it. There are plenty of people on Twitter who are opinionated and snarky and biting, but don’t troll, whereas Lambert tries to walk the line between tweets like this: https://twitter.com/twolinepass/status/498843208424906752 (“hmm the red wings are bad now that is my conclusion on line”—followed by his link to the above article) and then writing a decent enough piece that it has us talking hockey in August.

Is it because Lambert isn’t necessarily a reporter? Maybe, but if that’s the case, I think you should remember that Down Goes Brown exists, Harrison Mooney is better than everybody at Puck Daddy when he talks hockey (regardless of one’s opinion of his music or Hockey Hugs, both and all of which I love), and Justin Bourne has put together a nice team on The Score (which, yes, does include Lambert).

If you’re going to compare Friedman and Lambert favorably, I’d suggest checking out James Mirtle and Jonas Siegel in Toronto and Michael Russo in Minnesota, beyond even Nick Cotsonika from Yahoo.

Posted by tekjansen on 08/11/14 at 01:49 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

I would have posted this as well, but I would have also stated that Lambert is a brilliant,  incredibly-talented writer who is also a total asshat, and that nothing gets his rocks off more than his pathological hate for the Red Wings and their fans. He’s probably had to change his pants several times today based upon the way he gets his jollies trolling fan bases and giggling at the negative reactions to his fan baiting.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/11/14 at 01:53 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Put more bluntly: brilliant writing abilities don’t make him any less of a vicious self-and-other-hating weirdo who gets off on his trolling fetish (and yes, he’s that sick and twisted).

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/11/14 at 01:58 PM ET

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If you’re going to compare Friedman and Lambert favorably, I’d suggest checking out James Mirtle and Jonas Siegel in Toronto and Michael Russo in Minnesota, beyond even Nick Cotsonika from Yahoo.

I’m sorry, once again I didn’t clearly make my point. My focus in slipping.

I wasn’t trying to compare Friedman to Lambert. I was trying to compare their columns, “30 Thoughts” and “What We Learned” respectively. Both columns usually have a bevy of stuff about many teams.

Obviously, Friedman is the best in the business. And his stuff is all insider stuff.

I like Lambert’s column a lot though, and think he backs it up well with stats and facts and enjoy the news he collects for all thirty teams. I always forget about Cotsonika’s because I can’t get an RSS of it.

Also, Russo is my all-time favorite beat writer. And I do love James Mirtle and Jonas Siegel.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 02:03 PM ET

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Put more bluntly: brilliant writing abilities don’t make him any less of a vicious self-and-other-hating weirdo who gets off on his trolling fetish (and yes, he’s that sick and twisted).

His style isn’t for everyone, and he’s made a brand of himself by trolling fan bases of every team (except for his new found love for the Nashville Predators).

I get that. I just wanted to say that his “What We Learned” column is really solid for what it is, and that his writing is actually good once you get past the shock value.

Anyway, back to trying to write a novel for me. And here’s to having September here and actual hockey news.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 02:06 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

THN’s yearbook just arrived, and they picked the Wings to miss the playoffs this year, fwiw

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 08/11/14 at 02:11 PM ET

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I would have also stated that Lambert is a brilliant,  incredibly-talented writer who is also a total asshat, and that nothing gets his rocks off more than his pathological hate for the Red Wings and their fans. He’s probably had to change his pants several times today based upon the way he gets his jollies trolling fan bases and giggling at the negative reactions to his fan baiting. ...

Put more bluntly: brilliant writing abilities don’t make him any less of a vicious self-and-other-hating weirdo who gets off on his trolling fetish (and yes, he’s that sick and twisted).

I was hoping you’d come back from your well-earned vacation on a positive note.  Despite almost always being the first to point the finger at someone else, you are still the most egregious and vile poster on this site.

Posted by jkm2011 on 08/11/14 at 02:12 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

he’s a good writer if you can look past the style.

That’s a little like saying a guy is a good painter if you can live with his obsession over painting seeping buttholes.

Ryan Lambert does have a better grasp on hockey than the average national writer. He does. There’s really not too much that’s altogether objectionable about this piece, either. It’s not a terribly challenging opinion.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 08/11/14 at 02:16 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Jkm, I’ve said it before: if you don’t like what you read—and you sure seem to hate everything Paul and I say—go somewhere else. I’m nit going to let you get away with continuing to personally attack members of this community, myself included, and that kind of continually “vile” commentary twisted toward the messenger…is nit going to stand.

It’s my blog and Paul’s site, not yours, and you’ve been on thin rhetorical ice for a while now. Quit *#$%@& with this communiry assuming you’re bulletproof.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 08/11/14 at 02:28 PM ET

Paul's avatar

jkm2011, It is George’s opinion and agree or disagree, what you wrote really is not suitable for the comment section.

If you have a problem, email me, George or both of us. 

There is a right and wrong way to comment here, please do it the right way, thanks.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 08/11/14 at 02:30 PM ET

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you are still the most egregious and vile poster on this site.

I can think of at least one who’s worse.

It’s kind of too bad that you didn’t attempt to be a little more positive while George was gone…

Posted by Garth on 08/11/14 at 02:42 PM ET

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There is one team in the Eastern Conference that scares me as a Wings fan. That team is the Boston Bruins. I think the Wings can go toe-to-toe with any Eastern Conference team not named the Boston Bruins in a best-of-seven.

Really, I feel much worse for a great many Western teams. That conference is an unholy nightmare. We got out just in time.

Posted by Dont Toews Me Bro on 08/11/14 at 02:45 PM ET

Chet's avatar

I didn’t even really think the tone of this piece was his usual harshness toward try to. It seemed pretty well reasoned to me, and I for long agree with most of what he says.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 08/11/14 at 03:35 PM ET

Chet's avatar

and it’s not just aging stars and questionable young players. There is indeed a brain drain going on in the front office. By this point, it is undeniable.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 08/11/14 at 03:35 PM ET

@TheJimP19's avatar

His love for the Predaturds just shows that he’s just another blogger who happens to have a spot with a national sports site.  Americas team is so damn popular they only get 1 or 2 games with NBC this season.  Nashville will never come close to achieving what Detroit has over the past 25 years, not sure why Lambert has gone slobberjaw over that money drain of an organization.

Posted by @TheJimP19 from transplanted in Nashville on 08/11/14 at 04:42 PM ET

@TheJimP19's avatar

As someone said earlier, he is not very knowledgeable , his league sources are up there with Eklunds…  cut and dry, he tends to want to draw attention to himself with comments intended to fire up someone and get the “click” (radio calls it a shock jock) he’s just another douche bag, for all we know he’s a love child of Stan Fischler.

Posted by @TheJimP19 from transplanted in Nashville on 08/11/14 at 04:46 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

I skimmed through it and have never read it before. He said one thing I agreed with , Howard is average and he should have added D is average.  Until that changes it will be a rebuild for 2 to 3 years.  Playoff streak is getting less important when it just means one and out.

Cleary, Kindl, Lashoff, Quincey…should be gone by then, LOL

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 08/11/14 at 05:02 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

I would have posted this as well, but I would have also stated that Lambert is a brilliant,  incredibly-talented writer who is also a total asshat, and that nothing gets his rocks off more than his pathological hate for the Red Wings and their fans. He’s probably had to change his pants several times today based upon the way he gets his jollies trolling fan bases and giggling at the negative reactions to his fan baiting.

After Reading Lambert’s article I figured he was a Slackhawk or Pittsburgh fan. From what I read he is a Nashville fan. Ironically Nashville is my second favorite team (when they are not playing the Red Wings). I have relatives in Nashville and liked Barry Trotz’s coaching style. Going back to Lambert he is just another Anti Red Wing writer who should be ignored.

Posted by bigfrog on 08/11/14 at 07:27 PM ET

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After Reading Lambert’s article I figured he was a Slackhawk or Pittsburgh fan. From what I read he is a Nashville fan. Ironically Nashville is my second favorite team (when they are not playing the Red Wings). I have relatives in Nashville and liked Barry Trotz’s coaching style. Going back to Lambert he is just another Anti Red Wing writer who should be ignored.

He doesn’t have a team that he actually roots for. I believe the Nashville shtick was from losing a bet with one of his friends on Twitter (@jrlind maybe?). He’s not anti Red Wings or anti any team. He just likes to shock people with trolling antics.

If anything, he’s a fan of advanced stats. He’s always quick to congratulate when teams do things that make sense from that perspective.

Posted by dmorley21 on 08/11/14 at 07:52 PM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

The way things are going now, there’s very little reason for hope in Detroit.

Yawn. I guess to some,  this story never gets old. wink


Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 08/11/14 at 08:10 PM ET

Dakkster's avatar

Lambert is a Wings troll. I have never seen him write anything positive about the team or any of its players. He even wrote a hit piece on Nick Lidstrom after he retired. Let’s not give him any clicks. That idiot doesn’t deserve it.

Posted by Dakkster from Southern Sweden on 08/12/14 at 11:53 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.