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More observations from Day 6 of the Red Wings’ prospect camp: the most important check

In theory, anyway, the Red Wings’ prospects who participated in the sixth day of an eight-day marathon that is the team’s summer development camp told me that they’d hit their rock bottom in the physical fatigue department either on Sunday or on Monday, when Centre Ice Arena’s Huntington Rink got a little soupy in 86-degree weather. As Brian Lashoff told me, Grand Rapids Griffins strength and conditioning coach Aaron Downey and Wings prospect mentor Chris Chelios kicked the players’ butts in the gym and the team finally blew off some steam via a team-organized barbecue and beach-front bonding affair on Monday night, so, in theory, the prospects went back to work for their final days of “split sessions” refreshed and recharged.

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Red Wings GM Ken Holand’s discussion with Chris Osgood set for Thursday evening…or Friday…

Updated with a bit more from Holland at 7:46 PM: Red Wings GM Ken Holland became a U.S. citizen today, but he did so with one foot out the door. With Jim Nill watching over the prospects in Traverse City, Holland headed to his off-season home in Vernon, British Columbia, where the Macomb Daily’s Chuck Pleiness reports that Holland will meet with fellow Vernon off-season resident Chris Osgood to discuss Osgood’s future with the team:

“His initial reaction was he wants to play,” Holland said in a phone interview Tuesday afternoon. “Now he’s gone to Europe and had more time to think. I think the biggest thing is, time has gone by and you really start to decide what your priorities in life really are. I think it’s a good time now to sit down with him and talk about it.”

The two will meet Thursday night in British Columbia, Canada. Osgood, 38, returned Tuesday from a golf trip in Scotland with a number of his teammates. The trip was a gift they got him for recording his 400th career win last year. Holland said he has been texting back and forth with Osgood since he returned.

“We’re going to have a conversation face-to-face,” Holland said. “Sometime on Friday or Saturday, after talking to him, I’ll probably have a decision on what we’re doing.”

As we found out on Monday, the Wings decided to bring back Joey MacDonald as the team’s #3 goaltender, and as we found out this morning, Tomas Vokoun apparently approached the team before choosing to become the Capitals’ #1 goaltender. We know that the Wings have been talking to Ty Conklin as well, but what we don’t know—and what Holland doesn’t know—is what Osgood wants to do:

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Ken Holland had a very important appointment today

According to the Free Press’s Helene St. James, a certain Red Wings general manager was busy doing something not directly related to hockey this afternoon:

Time to send him a voter registration card: Canadian Ken Holland, gainfully employed in the U.S. by the Detroit Red Wings for nearly three decades, is taking the oath to become an American citizen this afternoon. Holland, 55, was born in Vernon, British Columbia. He just finished up his 15th season as general manager of the Wings, a promotion he received in July 1997. Before that, he spent 15 years working his way up from scout to director of amateur scouting to assistant general manager.

Holland will hold dual citizenship, just like former Wings captain Steve Yzerman and longtime goalie Chris Osgood, both of whom also were born in Canada. And Swedish-born forward Tomas Holmstrom is seeking a green card.

Update: Here’s MLive’s Ansar Khan’s report, if you will..

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Mid-day observations from Day 6 of the Red Wings’ prospect camp and Vokoun stuff: the grind

The Detroit Red Wings’ prospects are doing their absolutely best to keep up with the complexity and high-paced tempo of drills at the Red Wings’ summer development camp, but even after a Monday spent off-ice working out and then enjoying a barbecue, jet-skiing and a little “R&R,” they returned to Centre Ice Arena to participate in the last three days of on-ice activities, well…

With their butts dragging a bit, which is ironic given that today’s drills involved recovering pucks and generating offense on the counterattack, detailed positioning and, in the cases of the skill development coaches, conservation of energy and efficiency via employing proper skating and stickhandling techniques, and of course, a speedy pace of play.

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Red Wings play-by-play announcer Ken Daniels honored by Detroit Sports Broadcasters’ Association

In the, “Well, duh” category, from Fox Sports Detroit and the Detroit Sports Broadcasters’ Association:


The Detroit Sports Broadcasters Association (DSBA) is pleased to announce the winner of its special individual award. Ken Daniels, play-by-play voice of the Detroit Red Wings on FOX Sports Detroit is the winner of the Ty Tyson Award for Excellence in Sports Broadcasting for work in the sports year 2010-2011.

“We are so honored that Ken Daniels has won this year’s Ty Tyson Award,” said DSBA President Will Tieman. “Ken has demonstrated outstanding play-by-play professionalism not only this past season but throughout his long and distinguished career.”

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We’re on Osgood/Draper watch now

Update: For the record, for those of you who wanted to know, Teemu Pulkkinen is training with Jokerit Helsinki, which is the reason he’s not at the Wings’ development camp: Thanks to shoving most of the “evening” and “overnight” news in my late-evening missive, this morning’s crop of Red Wings-related stories is a little sparse, but they reinforce a bottom line: the Red Wings organization and Red Wings fans are going to be dealing with some “heavy” news in short order as Ken Holland will speak to Chris Osgood and Kris Draper this week to gauge the veterans’ physical conditioning and emotional reserves before deciding whether to part ways with the pair almost eighteen years after their NHL careers began.

That process began to reach its final stages as the Wings re-signed Joey MacDonald to a 2-year contract worth $550,000 at the NHL level and $105,000 at the AHL level, with the contract becoming a one-way, NHL-salary-only deal for the 2012-2013 season (which means that MacDonald would be subject to re-entry waivers). Holland told the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan that the Wings are happy to have brought back a superb #3 goalie to both spell any injured Wings goalie and serve as a mentor to Thomas McCollum and Jordan Pearce in Grand Rapids:

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Red Wings evening report: on Nicklas Lidstrom’s Swedishness, Osgood/Draper and Datsyuk’s watches

While we’ve been talking about Chris Osgood’s future given that Joey MacDonald’s been re-signed today, and we know via the Windsor Star’s Jim Parker that we should put ourselves on notice as Ken Holland plans on determining both Osgood and Kris Draper’s fates with the team this week, I’ve been doing…

Let’s call it double duty, watching the Red Wings’ prospects take part in their summer development camp. The fact that today’s on-ice sessions were canceled due to coolant issues with their rink—for the second year in a row—was a relief to the players and allowed me to watch the off-ice drills the players who weren’t on the ice were doing while the skaters had my attention, so you can thank a certain Paul Kukla for telling his blogger to stay at the rink instead of heading back to the hotel to nap.

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The great Joey MacDonald freak-out clarified: He’s not succeeding Osgood as the Red Wings’ back-up

Updated 3x with more from Holland and a bit from Joey MacDonald himself at 8:50 PM: This would usually into “unnecessary post” territory, but given that we’re talking about Red Wings free agent signings in July and Chris Osgood’s future, both KK’s comments and Twitter are blowing up like a hot air balloon fueled by a Brian Burke since the Red Wings signed Joey MacDonald to a two-year contract this morning.

Let’s clarify the situation: Yes, the Wings signed MacDonald to a 2-year contract worth $550,000 at the NHL level and $105,000 at the AHL level. He is not, however, going to succeed Chris Osgood as Jimmy Howard’s back-up. If you don’t believe me when I can tell you that Jim Nill informed me MacDonald’s, “Just a little insurance policy,” here’s what GM Ken Holland had to say to the Free Press’s Helene St. James about the team’s plans for MacDonald…

“He’s going to be our third guy,” general manager Ken Holland said. “He had some options in Europe, but he wanted to stay in North America. He did a nice job for us when called up. He understands that he’ll open the season at the American league level. He’s a good veteran.”

As well as what Holland told MLive’s Ansar Khan: about the goaltender, who Khan reports will earn a one-way contract for the 2012-2013 season:

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Impressions from day five of the Red Wings’ develompent camp, mid-day news & Datsyuk, watch salesman

Update #2 at 4:24 PM: According to Jim Nill, Teemu Pulkkinen’s training with Jokerit Helsinki: At 8:05 this morning, I arrived at Centre Ice Arena and read a message that was eerily similar to something that happened a year ago—the Red Wings’ prospects’ on-iace activities had been canceled for the day due to issues with the ice. Give or take a day, the same thing happened at Joe Louis Arena thanks to an utterly all-too-predictable Detroit Water and Power line blowing out, necessitating a shift to Detroit’s City Sports Arena as the Joe’s ice turned to slush.

Here at Centre Ice Arena, they apparently suffered some sort of failure in the cooling system, and while the Red Wings are the Red Wings, the fact that Huntington Rink got goopy and David’s Rink was working just fine did not give the Wings precedence regarding the use of a rink that’s being used to host girls’ hockey tournaments all day long.

So the Wings’ staff improvised and chose to do some off-ice sessions, forcing a bleary-eyed blogger to make a decision: do I stay at the rink and hope for something to happen, or do I just go back to the hotel and catch up on some desperately-needed sleep?

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A Commodore 64 update and a little dissent

As noted on Saturday, the Red Wings and equipment manager Paul Boyer are completely fine with new defenseman Mike Commodore, a.k.a. @commie22 on Twitter, may wear the number 64 in tribute to the late 80’s computing…erm, kind-of-sort-of-decent machine…if he wishes. Yahoo Sports’ Greg “Puck Daddy” Wyshynski has been championing the idea via a charitable drive, and he offers a superb update this morning:

Along with our request for a “COMMODORE 64” jersey came a plea: We’d donate $64 to the charity of Mike’s choosing if he wore that sweater with the Wings next season. We mentioned the possibility of Puck Daddy readers matching that pledge, and it’s been an honor to witness the response.

We’re happy to report that the campaign has $6,656 currently pledged. If you’re interested into making a pledge of your own and haven’t yet, email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

(We’d also like to thank the Detroit News and others for giving this story some spotlight. And yes, thanks to The Chief at Abel To Yzerman for his coverage too, the myopic dissent that it was.)

Yeah, about that…

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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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