The Malik Report
Darren Helm seemed to be happy, speedy and just relaxed as he engaged in the final practice at the Red Wings' development camp, and after he skated, MLive's Brendan Savage spoke with Helm to receive an update on the state of Helm's healing back:
"They went really well," he said Monday on the final day of the Development Camp at Centre Ice Arena. "I wasn't too sure how it was going to go. It felt good. I'm optimistic. Heading on the right path. It's a good start to summer training. I'm getting closer to the end of rehab so I can get closer to actually pushing it. I'm looking forward to getting on the ice a little more and working harder."
Helm said any discomfort he experienced in the last week had nothing do with the back injury. It was more of a case of reintroducing his body to the rigors of professional hockey.
"It's muscles I haven't worked in a long time," he said. "It's just muscle pain. It's not pain I haven't felt before. I felt it a little bit at night. Every time I got out on the ice, it worked out. I felt good. It's encouraging."
Detroit, MI… The Detroit Red Wings are set to host the 2013 NHL Prospects Tournament at Centre ICE Arena in Traverse City, Mich., beginning on Thursday, September 5. The eight-team tournament field includes the top prospects from the Detroit Red Wings, Dallas Stars, Minnesota Wild, St. Louis Blues, Buffalo Sabres, Carolina Hurricanes, Columbus Blue Jackets and New York Rangers. Tickets for the tournament are $10 per day (four games each day) and are currently on sale exclusively at Centre ICE Arena. For more information on tickets, visit www.centreice.org.
Today marks the last day of the Red Wings' summer development camp (yesterday's session yielded an uber-long entry), and to change things up a bit, I'm going to start this morning's entry by posting SEVEN videos from the Red Wings' website.
Red Wings TV profiled Zach Nastasiuk...
This is my third summer covering the Red Wings' development camp in Traverse City, and the location I stay at is almost directly under the flight path for the Coast Guard Air Station. It's a little after 5 PM EDT as I'm starting to write this, and a few straggler helicopters (probably choppers tasked with paroling the U.P.) are coming in late for "shift change."
The sound of Coast Guard choppers and my routine here have remained pretty constant. What I've witnessed at the Red Wings' summer development camp has not, and I'm still not sure whether the changes--on and off the ice--are the "good different" or the "weird different."
From the official Twitter account of the Red Wings' developmental camp, prospect tournament and main training camp at Centre Ice Arena:
Why fax sales? I'll quote the director of Wings activities on this one: "We don't want people who don't have technology to be left out." And yes, there are tons of people who've been going to camp forever who are not yet in the internet age. So the theory is that including everybody is worth being a pain in the butt on occasion, and I tend to agree with that theory.
The Red Wings switched things up BIG TIME today, holding a 50-minute set of skill development drills for Team Yzerman from 8-8:50, a 50-minute set of skill development drills for Team Lidstrom from about 10:20-11:10, and in between, ALL 30-something players who were participating in today's drills took part in a practice ran by Grand Rapids Griffins coach Jeff Blashill.
The schedule for tomorrow--the development camp's final day--reads as follows, per the Left Wing Lock's Sarah Lindenau:
8:30 am – 10:15 am Team Lidstrom practice (Admission $5)
8:30 am – 9:45 am Team Yzerman off-ice workout
10:30 am – 12:15 pm Team Yzerman practice
10:45 am – 11:30 am Team Lidstrom off-ice practice
Amongst the highlights of today's drills and practice:
As noted in the early overnight report, Red Wings GM Ken Holland spoke with both Red Wings TV and the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness about the long, long (emphasis on "long") road ahead of even the process that the vast majority of the prospects taking part in the Wings' summer development camp face, and this morning, MLive's Brendan Savage picks up that conversation:
"I've been in the game since 1975, pro hockey," Holland said. "I come and go to these camps. There's a lot of excitement. I know how hard it is to play in the National Hockey League. And how much work and where you've got to get these players. A lot of these players are coming along in a nice progression. We need more progression. Part of it is patience, part of it is maturity, part of it is going to next level and performing at the next level. "
The point of the summer development camp is to both prepare some prospects for the system of play they'll have to master heading into the prospect tournament (where AHL jobs and spots in the pecking order really will be on the line) and main training camp, and to provide as much information as possible to the players regarding the on and off-ice skills that they need to develop to become professional hockey players, and in some instances, to become better professionals.
While I was sleeping in after penning last night's post-scrimmage entry, MLive's Brendan Savage penned updates regarding Joakim Andersson, Gustav Nyquist and the exit of Damien Brunner, and the Red Wings' prospects, who will be taking part in morning practice sessions only on Sunday, spent their only "off-day" playing paintball and touring Camp Grayling:
This has to be the dumbest thing I've read this month. CSKA Moscow GM and former Red Wing Sergei Fedorov just hired an American-born coach in John Torchetti to helm the team, but The Score reports that Fedorov engaged in some typical summertime KHL bombast while speaking with Sovetsky Sport, made a downright
stupid (and I don't like to use the term "stupid" very often) [edit: let's say spurious instead] comment. The Toronto Star's Rick Westhead took note of it:
Hint: when someone says they're not trying to stir shit up, they're trying to stir shit up. Datsyuk told Championat's Sergey Gavrilov that even if he had the opportunity to choose between returning to the Ak Bars Kazan or playing for the Red Wings, he would have re-signed with Detroit, and that he's happy to be staying in Detroit for the next four years.
Updated w/ more Cleary/Nyquist/Andersson talk, and Paul noted the Brunner scuttlebutt as well: I kind of collapsed last night, so I apologize for the lateness of these updates:
MLive's Brendan Savage spoke to Red Wings GM Ken Holland about the statuses of restricted free agents Gustav Nyquist and Joakim Andersson, and Holland told Savage that he hasn't begun negotiations with either player yet (as he told me on Thursday, he's not concerned about Brendan Smith filing for arbitration), but he is confident that deals will be worked out with both...
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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.