The Malik Report
from Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News,
The Red Wings fought their way back from two three-goal deficits against a key opponent, the Bruins, on Wednesday to tie the game at 5.
Dogged on the three-on-three in overtime, the Wings nonetheless failed to score.
The point available in the standings for their dire pursuit of a playoff berth would have to come in the shootout.
In previous seasons, it was as if the Red Wings dreaded the skills competition the NHL uses to break ties.
They lead the league. By a lot.
After beating the Bruins 6-5 in the shootout, they are perfect for the season, 6-0.
The Flyers were the only team with five wins, and they had four losses.
from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,
A hopeful sign out of the Boston victory, for Blashill, was the play of Riley Sheahan centering Tomas Tatar and Dylan Larkin.
Larkin and Tatar both scored goals, and the line was arguably the Red Wings’ best throughout the game.
With the Henrik Zetterberg and Frans Nielsen-centered lines both playing well, if a third line can develop, it would make the Red Wings that much more dangerous.
“You need guys to do it not being with Z or not playing with (Thomas) Vanek, you need the other guys to produce offense and that was a real positive for us,” Blashill said. “It’s a huge thing to be able to get a third line. To me, that could separate us, and I’ve said that dating back to last year. Nielsen’s line has been consistently good and Zetterberg’s line, whoever he’s playing with, has been consistent good. We need a third and fourth line that can produce a little bit, or produce a lot.”
more, basically a look at the Wings who are close to returning from injury...
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
Coach Jeff Blashill said after Thursday's practice that Helm's status will be determined after Friday's pregame warmups.
"Right now we're shooting for tomorrow,but we'll have a final determination after the pre-game skate," Blashill said.
If Helm is cleared, forward Steve Ott will be placed on injured reserve to clear a roster spot. Blashill said Ott has been bothered by a shoulder issue since the Jan. 1 Centennial Classic in Toronto and reaggravated it in Dallas on Jan. 12. He hasn't played the past three games but has continued to practice....
Defenseman Niklas Kronwall (groin) also is close to returning. He is not expected back Friday, but might return on Sunday. The club would need to clear a roster spot before activating Kronwall.
"Absolutely (Sunday), but we'll see what the medical team says and go from there," Kronwall said. "But I feel pretty good."
via Ansar Khan tweets,
Jimmy Howard working with goaltending coach Jeff Salajko before practice. Not facing shots yet.
RedWings on ice for practice. Petr Mrazek in starter's net. Face @BuffaloSabres tomorrow at 7.
Brendan Smith (knee) practicing for first time since injury on Jan. 4.
Zetterberg not skating today. Likely maintenance day. Will know after practice.
Helm skating on line with Glendening and Abdelkader. Miller rotating in.
Other lines in battle drills for #RedWings:
Nyquist-Ott (holding Zetterberg's place)-Mantha
added 1:57pm, Ted Kulfan tweet,
Kronwall likely to play either friday or Sunday
ESPN's Craig Custance has spent this week assessing prospect progress across the NHL, and today, he penned an Insider-only article discussing the Atlantic Division's prospects. Here's what he had to say about the Red Wings' prospects:
Detroit Red Wings
Preseason ranking: The graduation of Dylan Larkin to the NHL dropped the Red Wings from No. 7 to No. 18.
Prospect making the most progress: Daniel Renouf, D, Grand Rapids Griffins (AHL)
Shawn Horcoff is in his first season with the Red Wings organization as director of player development and has spent a lot of time watching the growth of Detroit’s young players in Grand Rapids. The play of Renouf has stood out to him. The University of Maine product has nine points in 31 games for the Griffins.
“He’s a shut-down guy in the making,” Horcoff said.
from Will Burchfield of CBS Detroit,
Earlier this week, Red Wings GM Ken Holland laid down a hardline philosophy on ice time. In short, veterans can have off nights but young players can’t.
Coach Jeff Blashill elaborated on this on Thursday.
“I don’t know (about) the word ‘veteran,’ because veteran can be murky. I don’t know when you define yourself as a veteran,” Blashill told the Jamie and Stoney Show on 97.1 The Ticket. “Here’s what I’ll say. When you play good hockey, you earn what I guess I’d call credit, you earn trust. Sometimes, then, when you don’t play good hockey, that trust and credit that you’ve earned previously carries you through more ice time. But at some point, that trust and credit goes away and if you keep playing poor hockey then you end up in a spot where you are not playing. That’s kind of how it works.”
But it’s not as simple as dolling out ice time based on sheer results.
“The other side of it,” Blashill went on, “is the determination from me, who are our best players and will a benching by sending a message help that person? Is that person giving everything he has every day, anyways, and maybe it’s a confidence thing and so the benching doesn’t help? Does that person need a wake up call in a benching, whether it’s in a game or from game to game?
Blashill continues and mentions Mantha and Athanasiou...
Update: The interview can be heard below:
Tweet verbiage contains NSFW language, so it is posted below...
Because I am still half asleep, I posted the wrap up of Detroit's win over Boston in the KKH section.
Feel free to read it here.
Here is the view from the Boston side.
from Michael Vega of the Boston Globe,
Following Wednesday’s 6-5 shootout loss to the Red Wings, the visiting dressing room at Joe Louis Arena was not in good shape.
Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and Frank Vatrano conducted postgame interviews in the hallway, unusual because they usually take place in the room. By the time the room was open, one door was off its hinges. When asked what happened, Zdeno Chara said he didn’t know.
Whatever went sideways in the room did not compare to the meltdown that took place on the ice.
“We collapsed,” said Bruins coach Claude Julien, his team once in control of a 4-1 second-period lead. “Pretty obvious. It’s just one of those games. We didn’t get the saves when we needed it. We made some mistakes. Gave them some chances. A lot of things went wrong tonight after we took that lead.”
The Detroit Red Wings played an incredibly important game against the Boston Bruins on Wednesday evening, attempting to narrow their 7-point deficit on the Bruins as the Wings push to make a late-season run for a playoff spot.
Tonight represented the first of two games over the course of a week between these teams as well.
The Red Wings made a helluva game of this one, rallying from 3-0, 4-1 and 5-4 deficits en route to a 6-5 shootout victory that said quite a bit about this team's ability to overcome not only its opponents, but also its own struggles. This was a heartening comeback and a viscerally satisfying victory.
from Peter J. Wallner of Mlive,
In a series of comments Tuesday before an audience of some 400 at Van Andel Arena, Holland shared insight into his thinking about the Red Wings as they hover near .500 (currently 19-19-6). They are six points out of a playoff spot heading into Wednesday's game against Boston....
Now, with Zetterberg and Kronwall age 36, the Red Wings must wait for their young players to emerge as talents, Holland said, and have the chance to grasp the mantle of leaders.
"That's why it's so important to have a Henrik Zetterberg sitting beside an Anthony Mantha or a (Thomas) Vanek and Franz Nielsen playing on a line with Athanasiou, and a Jonathan Ericssen playing (defense) with Xavier Ouellet," Holland said. "... That's where the culture is that can make a difference.
"The culture won't make the difference if you're not good enough. The culture is not going to make the difference if you're just going to be a superstar. The culture can make a difference on those players that need a little time, a little guidance and a little more maturity. That's where the organization and Grand Rapids can make a difference for where we're trying to get to, and that's to be a Cup contender."
Holland believes there are "five, six or seven players" on the Griffins who will be playing in Detroit "in two to three years."
more, including what Holland said earlier to Nick Cotsonika, 'not ready to trade yet'.
About The Malik Report
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.