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The Malik Report

Red Wings afternoon news and/or Griffins-Stars open post: on Tatar, Babcock and the Griffins

I'm rather aggravated at present, so exuse my bluntness:

Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar registered a goal and an assist as Sloakia defeated Norway 5-2 at the World Championships on Wendesday (he finished at +2 in 17:07 of ice time and was named Slovakia's best player; Jakub Kindl also played quite well for the Czechs in their 2-0 win over Italy).

It's very good to see Tatar earn huge minutes on the power play, penalty-kill and at even strength, but the Slovaks are a top-heavy team even when Marian Hossa, Zdeno Chara and Michal Handzus are on the team. While Tatar's playing the kind of go-to-the-front-of-the-net-and-stay-there game that he needs to harness in Detroit, with a thin defense and Jan Laco in the net, it's hard to believe that the Slovaks will make a dent come the quarterfinals.

Regarding the percolating talk regarding Mike Babcock's availability to Toronto, Pittsburgh, et. al., I only have one thing to say: either the coach has repeatedly and enthusiastically stated that he's quite happy in Metro Detroit for a reason, or if the scuttlebutt's true, he's repeatedly lied to Wings fans for the sake of holding his ambitions to himself, and the latter option would speak quite poorly of his character.

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Former Wing Brent Gilchrist’s picked an unusual post-hockey career…as a miner

This is, by far, the "most interesting" version of a, "Where are they now?" article about a former Red Wing that I've read in ages. Most of the Red Wings' alums tend to fall into predictable post-hockey-career categories: if they don't become player commentators, coaches or trainers, they tend to go to business school and become player agents, certified financial planners, accountants, real estate developers, stock-brokers.

Around here, they often cash in on their celebrity cachet by working for auto parts suppliers or other local businesses who quite happily employ former professional athletes as sales representatives, because even high-profile clients don't mind rubbing shoulders with an ex-Wing.

According to the Williams Lake Tribune's Monica Lamb-Yorski, Brent Gilchrist, the player who famously played through massive, massive groin issues to help the Wings win the 1998 Stanley Cup championship, may live in golf-friendly Vernon, BC, but he's spending his time a few hundred miles north of Vernon...Mining for magnetite?

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Red Wings mid-day news: on Jurco, Khan questions, a Subban offer sheet’s feasibility and more Mantha

Updated 3x at 2:17 PM: As I'm writing this, Jakub Kindl's Czechs wrapped up a 2-0 win over Italy (no points for Kindl, but he finished at +2 in 19:07 of ice time), and Tomas Tatar's Slovaks will battle Norway at 1:45 PM EDT...

And much of Red Wings fans' focus has involved the exploits of Anthony Mantha--quick update, the Val-d'Or Foreurs open the Memorial Cup on Friday against London, not Thursday, sorry about that--to the point that the Red Wings posted an article in which Jiri Fischer discussed his progress, and Michigan Hockey posted Mantha's game-and-series-winner from last night's game (so did I, FTR), the Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner and Michigan Hockey's Pat Evans want us to set our sights a little closer to home.

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Jiri Fischer On Anthony Mantha

from the Detroit Red Wings website,

“He's taken over the Quebec League,” said Jiri Fischer, Detroit’s director of player development. “In Val d'Or, they have a fantastic power play. In the Subway Series, he played for Team Quebec. He was on the bubble for the Canadian World Junior team, even though he led the Quebec League in scoring by 25 percent more than the next guy at the time.

“I saw him play in the Subway Series. In the first game, he had a goal and an assist. The next game, he scored another goal on the power play. Then he makes the World Junior roster and he leads Team Canada in scoring in the tournament.”...

“He's just a big, strong, 6-foot-4 guy who holds on to the puck under pressure in the offensive zone,” Fischer said. “Month after month, week after week, he just keeps proving that he is a dominant offensive power forward. I'm really excited about him turning pro next year.”

more about Mantha...

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Red Wings overnight report: on the Worlds, prospects, Renney and an inspirational workout partner

The Red Wings' prospects and scouts are most definitely busy bees at present. Anthony Mantha's Val-d'Or Foreurs won't have much time to celebrate their QMJHL championship as they'll haul tail to London, Ontario to open the Memorial Cup with a game against the London Knights on Thursday (Tyler Bertuzzi's Guelph Storm will play the Edmonton Oil Kings on Friday);

The Grand Rapids Griffins hope to build upon last night's win over Texas as they host a back-to-back affair tonight at Van Andel Arena;

Over on the other side of the Atlantic, at the World Championships, Jakub Kindl's Czechs play Italy at 9:45 AM EDT, and Tomas Tatar's Slovaks hope to bounce back from Monday's 5-3 loss to France (and Tuesday's tumble) when they battle Norway at 1:45 PM EDT...

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Red Wings playoff prospect news: Mantha helps Val-d’Or win QMJHL title; Jurco trio powers Griffins

Updated 5x at 1:08 AM with oodles of content:

At the World Championships, Gustav Nyquist registered an assist in 14:26 of ice time as Sweden defeated Norway 2-1;

In the QMJHL, Anthony Mantha scored the series-winning goal and had 2 assists as the Val-d'Or Foreurs staked out a 3-0 lead, surrendered it and won the QMJHL champinship via a 4-3 decision over Baie-Comeau in Game 7 of the QMJHL's President's Cup series, with Mantha scoring with 52 seconds left in the 3rd period.

The Foreurs will now take part in the Memorial Cup in London, ON starting on Friday, and Mantha now has 24 goals, 14 assists and 38 points in 24 playoff games played.

And in the AHL, the Grand Rapids Griffins defeated the Texas Stars 5-2 thanks to a Tomas Jurco hat trick, 3 assists from Cory Emmerton, a 3-point performance from Teemu Pulkkinen and a 35-save performance from Petr Mrazek. The Griffins now trail Texas 2 games to 1 in their second-round series, with Game 4 scheduled to take place tomorrow night.

Update #1: Mantha's game-winner + French interview on TVA Sports here, RDS highlight clips here and here, and MLive's Ansar Khan weighs in:

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Grand Rapids Griffins Announce Television Broadcast Deal

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins on Tuesday announced a landmark three-year television broadcast agreement with Michigan Entertainment Sports (MES).

MES will televise a minimum of 40 Griffins games – including a minimum of 10 home games – during each of the next three seasons. All games will be shown live in HD and will be available through an expanding network in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana.

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Red Wings afternoon news: gearing up for the Griffins game and tidibits about Larionov and Boyle

The Red Wings' scouts will be watching two very important games this evening: Anthony Mantha's Val-d'Or Foreurs will battle the Baie-Comeau Drakkar in the seventh and deciding game of the QMJHL championship tonight at 7 PM. If Mantha and Val-d'Or win, they'll head to the Memorial Cup in London, where Tyler Bertuzzi's Guelph Storm will be waiting. If not, we'll get to that in a minute.

Closer to home, the Grand Rapids Griffins rather desperately need to rally from a 2-games-to-none deficit against the Texas Stars when the team hosts second-round games tonight, tomorrow and Friday at Van Andel Arena.

The AHL's website posted a Griffins-Stars game preview in its "AHL Morning Skate"...

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Red Wings’ Tomas Tatar takes a tumble, in TSN Play of the Year semifinal, too

Ahead of tomorrow's game between Slovakia and Norway (Gustav Nyquist's Swedes will take on Norway today at 1:45 PM EDT, but tomorrow's slate includes Czech-Italy at 9:45 AM and Slovakia-Norway at 1:45 PM), the Slovakian World Championship team's still stinging from yesterday's 5-3 loss to France, and Tomas Tatar's criticized both himself and his team's inability to put forth a sixty-minute effort while speaking with the Slovak press...

But today, Tatar accidentally lightened the mood, per The Hockey House's Steven Ellis:

Tatar told Hokejportal.sk that he's okay, but he said that he felt bad for the team trainer as he wasn't wearing any equipment.

Update: Per TSN:

The NHL Play of the Year showdown's second round resumes today with two creative ways to shake a defender.

Today's Round of 16 match-up features Ottawa Senators captain Jason Spezza taking on Detroit Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar.

This play from Tatar...

Is facing off against this play from Spezza:

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Red Wings’ scouts, front office are busy building the 2014-2015 team behind the scenes

The Red Wings' front office has probably wrapped up its exit meetings with the Wings' players by now, and as the Under-18 World Championships wrapped up, the amateur scouts may have a finalized their list of draft picks...

But the Wings' scouts are still very busy. Some of the European scouts are doubtlessly in Minsk, Belarus, watching Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar, Danny DeKeyser, Justin Abdelkader, Jakub Kindl and possibly the next Damien Brunner-style free agent at the World Championships;

Tonight, at least one or two of the team's amateur scouts will be in Baie-Comeau, Quebec to watch Anthony Mantha's Val-d'Or Foreurs play in Game 7 of the QMJHL's President's Cup Final, and then said scouts will head to London, Ontario to watch Tyler Bertuzzi's Guelph Storm and prospects from the Edmonton Oil Kings, London Knights and whoever wins tonight's Drakkar-Foreurs match-up play for the Memorial Cup;

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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.



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