The Malik Report
Generally I wouldn't make this an entry in itself, but the inordinate amount of Red Wings injury doom of late seems to require a moment of levity, provided by the Detroit News's Gregg Krupa and one Red Wings executive, player mentor, Fox Sports One employee and warm-weather-enjoying Malibu summer resident:
chris chelios #Sochi2014 attended USA practice today. "we didn't know what to expect coming over as far as the accomodations and... 1/3
"everything. it's been great. the facility here, this whole (Olympic) park is amazing. the weather's been california weather, which... 2/3
"was probably not happy for the skiers and stuff. but it's better than i ever thought it would be." many agree, DESPITE SHOWER CURTAINS!
In post-Soviet Russia, shower takes you?
Red Wings mid-day news: on Sheahan, Tatar, Russian pressure, McCarty’s tales and Sweden’s Z-less win
Updated 5x at 12:43 PM: The Red Wings were engaging in salary cap calculus when everyone was healthy early in the 2013-2014 season, and given that the Long-Term Injured Reserve exemption can only be used if players spend both 10 games and 24 days off the roster, I have no idea how the Wings can accommodate all three of Tomas Jurco, Riley Sheahan or Luke Glendening on the 23-man roster or under the cap ceiling.
I am hoping against hope that Henrik Zetterberg won't miss much time, that Pavel Datsyuk will emerge from the Olympics with some sort of functioning skating stride and that Johan Franzen will recover from his concussion after the break--and until we know otherwise, any guesses really are speculation at best--but it certainly appears that Stephen Weiss's return from abdominal surgery won't result in a triple-prospect-demotion.
Updated 2x at 10:39 AM: Team Sweden played quite the squeaker against Switzerland, looking like a team of Red Wings fans dealing with the body blow that is losing Henrik Zetterberg to that damn herniated disc while battling an incredibly tenacious and defensively apt Swiss squad, but via 25Stanley on Twitter, Daniel Alfredsson and his old pal Henrik Karlsson teamed up for a "garbage goal" with 7:21 left in the 3rd period, and Henrik Lundqvist stopped 24 shots to make Sweden's 1-0 win over Switzerland stand up:
So the Swedes won a squeaker, with Alfredsson finishing with a goal on 3 shots and 12:31 of ice time, Niklas Kronwall wearing the "C" in Zetterberg's stead and playing 19:06, Jonathan Ericsson playing 16:25 and Gustav Nyquist mostly playing alongside Alfredsson and Marcus Johansson, playing only 6:32 as he was shuffled onto the fourth line late in the game.
Red Wings fans have been talking about this issue for a while now--long before Henrik Zetterberg turned out to be battling a herniated disc that will apparently sideline him for both the Olympics and some of the Wings' post-Olympic-break games...
And as we prepare to watch Pavel Datsyuk hobble around on what the Free Press's Helene St. James has suggested is a left knee injury and R-Sport reported is a groin injury (I've got bruised fallopian tubes in the pool, and lest we forget, Johan Franzen's still out with a concussion), USA Today's Kevin Allen ponders the Faustian bargain that is Olympic exposure and-or "altruistic" devotion to one's country's hocey achievements over loyalty to one's team--which is tinged with some irony given that Ken Holland and Mike Babcock are devoting their energies to Team Canada's Olympic efforts at present...
Red Wings prospect Luke Glendening is in Grand Rapids, and it was assumed that Glendening could at least practice with the Grand Rapids Griffins until he's allowed to play for the Griffins after the Olympic break, but that's not the case:
Glendening playing over 75% of the Wings' pre-Olympic games = he and every other Wing can't skate with NHL or AHL peers until February 19th; Stephen Weiss is skating with the Whalers because his surgery yielded missed time.
As such, he's simply resting up in Grand Rapids, and he spoke with Fox 17's Steve Amorose about his rookie NHL campaign and his currently-forced rest--as well as his status as a budding pest/instigator:
Updated at 7:12 AM: The news regarding Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg keeps getting worse and worse. After the Swedes announced that he would miss the remainder of the Olympics, Wings GM and Team Canada consultant Ken Holland delivered a grim prognosis to the Free Press's Helene St. James:
Detroit general manager Ken Holland told the Free Press Friday that Zetterberg, "is in a great deal of discomfort, so in fairness to Sweden, the Detroit Red Wings organization and himself, he is pulling out of the Olympics.
"He has to see a doctor, but he will not be ready by the time we come out of the Olympic break. Beyond that, I have no real time frame."
Holland continued, and again, the news is no good, but I will say this: I'm grateful that the Swedish doctors chose to work with the Wings instead of keeping him going for the sake of Olympic pride:
Updated 4x at 1:55 AM: Well, a few minutes ago, the news broke that Henrik Zetterberg would not be playing in today's game against Switzerland (7:30 AM, NBCSN/TSN), and now...Well, this is good news for Red Wings fans and bad news for Sweden. I think, per Aftonbladet's Hans Abrahamsson:
Raw translation: "Zetterberg has finished playing in the Olympics. Management confirms it now. [Coach Par] Mårts, [Swedish Ice Hockey Federation president Tommy] Boustedt and [team physician Bjorn] Waldebäck press conference now. Which setback."
At least he can rest until the Wings resume play on February 26th? Hopefully?
Quickie update: Aftonbladet is also reporting that Zetterberg will return to Detroit...
Updated 4x at 1:07 AM: Via Aftonbladet's Tomas Ros...
Raw Google translation:
No Henrik Zetterberg today against Switzerland, "He does not [warm up] in the morning and do not play today says doctor Waldebäck. # Osbladet
Thursday was the first day of Olympic hockey competition, and Mike Babcock is already playing games with the media (and/or having his press conferences--NHL.com posted Thursday's 11-minute'r, so it's easier to find than highlights on NBCOlympics.com in the U.S. [TSN is geoblocked, as is the CBC]--deciphered like they were Brad Meltzer novels by an entire nation as opposed to just us crazy Red Wings fans), Pavel Datsyuk is playing word games in both English and Russian regarding whatever lower-body injury is ailing him...
And while the Olympic teams have their "morning skates" at 3 AM, I'm just guessing that I can sleep in till 6 or 7 because Henrik Zetterberg and his still-herniated disc in his back will be a "game-time decision" when the Swedes play against Switzerland on Friday at 7:30 AM EST (on TSN and NBCSN; Babcock's Canadians will play the Norwegians at noon on CBC and USA, and that's it for Friday), regardless of what Gary Lawless says.
For me, it was a predictably crazy first day back, and while I'm far from 100%, I would like to at least tell you this in terms of setting up some serious-ass Olympic context:
This just pisses me off. Drive-by Tweet and a half.
So Twitter freaks out, I go check all of the "Swedish Media" sources I know of, I go and try to find out who the hell "Bo Rylander" is (not a journalist), and I find that nothing has changed since this morning. According to the "Swedish Media," Zetterberg's herniated disc is bothering him and he had treatment on Thursday, and Zetterberg's care is being coordinated between Team Sweden and the Red Wings' medical staff. He's iffy for tomorrow's game against Switzerland but the technical term for his status is "day to day."
The world has not ended as far as I can tell. If that changes, I will let you know, and in the interim, Stuffy McStuffinpants told me I have a date with Sammy Braddy on Valentine's Day.
Update: Speaking of which...
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.