The Malik Report
The Red Wings are taking the day off to recharge for tomorrow night's tilt against San Jose (10 PM EDT on FSD) and recovering from a 3-games-in-4-nights slate, so both the team and the beat writers appear to be enjoying the sunshine in San Jose this afternoon.
Fox Sports Detroit color commentator Mickey Redmond appeared on Detroit Sports 105.1's Drew and Marc show to discuss Jamie Benn's unpunished punch to Henrik Zetterberg's face (goal against, "cheap," the Stars' captain says, punch to another captain's face, "justified," suggests the NHL's silence--and Kerry Fraser tries to "explain" it on TSN) and the Wings' 1-1-and-1 record over the past three games (technically, the Wings are actually 2-1-and-1 on their 5-game road trip), the youth movement and more over the course of a 20-minute interview...
I really wasn't surprised by Jimmy Howard's hiccups in Dallas or Anaheim--I simply didn't expect a goaltender who'd missed the better part of a month to be at 100% after three up-and-down outings. The Free Press's Helene St. James, in evaluating Howard's particularly rough outings against Dallas and Anaheim, suggests that the Wings may end up leaning on Jonas Gustavsson a little more regularly if he delivers the kind of performance he did last night against Los Angeles:
[Jonas] Gustavsson has, in fact, only appeared in five games this season and, before Tuesday, hadn't started since dislocating his left shoulder in early November. That's not much work to build on in case he's needed regularly, but Gustavsson said, "I'm just going to do whatever I can when I get a chance and show that I can be out there. Then we'll see how many chances I get. But in the end, it's all about the team getting points and getting in good position to get a good playoff run going."
That is where Howard comes in. Saturday's 7-6 overtime victory at Dallas was a farce on many levels, but the Wings had a great game going in Anaheim until Howard let in two soft rebounds. That's what needs to change. "Howie gives us a swagger," Babcock said. "When he is on top of his game and feeling like he can feel, it's ... contagious. It helps us feel good about who we are. We need him to find his consistent form, and I have no doubt he will."
The Wings are in the fortunate position that they've got a third stringer in Petr Mrazek who did a solid job filling in when both Howard and Gustavsson were hurt midseason. The ideal scenario, though, is a confident Howard and a healthy Gustavsson atop the depth chart.
I don't see the Wings going back to the three-headed goalie monster for fear of Howard or Gustavsson slipping. Do you?
added 2:16pm, a bit more via Ansar Khan of Mlive...
Quincey has missed the past three games after leaving practice Friday after only a few minutes due to pain. He's been taking anti-inflammatory medication. Surgery would have sidelined him for approximately six weeks.
"It started in about August and acted up a few times in the preseason but is kind of an ongoing thing," Quincey said on Tuesday. "We knew we needed surgery back in October but it was hopeful we could get through the rest of the year. That's still the plan."
Elliotte Friedman posted this Detroit related topic in his 30 Thoughts today...
- One GM on the Red Wings: “They’ve got cap room and a good team. Dangerous combination.” Ken Holland said earlier in the season he wanted to wait and see what he had. Well, he’s got a team good enough to win the Eastern Conference.
- This is me spitballing, but if you’re Detroit and Toronto, would you do Dion Phaneuf for Stephen Weiss and Jakub Kindl? The Red Wings gain on the money (but just a little bit, unless some of Phaneuf’s salary is held back), the Maple Leafs gain on term.
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
"I'm just going to try and take advantage of the opportunities I get and work hard in practice," Gustavsson said. "It's only six weeks or so left in the season, so we'll see what happens. I'm just going to do whatever I can when I get the chance and show that I can be out there.
"But in the end it's all about the team getting points and getting a good position to get a good playoff run going."
The Red Wings' top-rated power play managed only five shots in almost nine minutes.
"Our entries, we didn't do a good job of executing there," Abdelkader said. "In turn we didn't create much momentum off our power play and get quality chances.
"We kept pucks on the walls, which L.A., they're a big team, so that's where the want the puck, along the wall. We need to communicate better. In turn, our power play has won us a lot of games this year."
more on the game...
Watch Mike Babcock post-game below...
It's hard to split heads and tails when the Detroit Red Wings drop all of a 1-0 decision to a playoff-desperate Los Angeles Kings team that had won 7 in a row going into Tuesday's tangle (now that's 8 for LA), and it's hard to argue with the Wings' effort given that they were playing their 3rd game in 4 nights and had gone to overtime in the previous 2...
But the Red Wings were absolutely mauled by the Kings en route to that 1-0 shutout loss, and while the Wings were without Henrik Zetterberg's space-creation and Kyle Quincey's steady play, getting all of 20 shots on Jonathan Quick--including 5 power play opportunities, to the point that Drew Miller's 4 shots led the team--that's not acceptable for a Big Red Machine that got stopped in its tracks by a bigger, meaner and hungrier Kings team.
The fact that the NHL allows wrestling on ice these days didn't help, but the Kings' play happens to have set something of a blueprint for the Wings' Eastern Conference opponents and possible Atlantic Division playoff rivals to employ, and when you get so thoroughly beaten and beaten up when you take the 1-0 margin of defeat out of the equation, that at least has to get you concerned about your ability to get "Anaheim'ed" or "King'ed" come April.
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
Detroit Red Wings defenseman Kyle Quincey is hoping he can postpone surgery to remove bone chips in his ankle until after the season.
"Oh yeah, for sure," Quincey said Tuesday morning at Staples Center. "Then get the surgery after we win the (Stanley) Cup in June. That's the plan."
He was scheduled to see a second specialist this afternoon.
"I can't really answer anything until I have that opinion," Quincey said. "Once I see him then all the questions should be answered."
from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,
"I have some symptoms that I don't have when I'm 100 percent. Until those symptoms go away, I'm just going to take it easy."
General manager Ken Holland said Monday the Red Wings will not rush Zetterberg until he is free of any symptoms and feeling well enough to go on the ice.
Zetterberg and the Red Wings aren't calling the injury a concussion, although there appear to be some similarities.
Holland said Zetterberg had a headache Sunday, and Zetterberg wanted to avoid any light when doing Tuesday's interview.
Zetterberg didn't delve into what "symptoms" he has but playing right now is out of the question.
"Obviously, I'm not 100 percent and until the symptoms go away, I have to take it easy," said Zetterberg, who added he's never had a concussion before. "The symptoms have to go away before I can do any more heavy (training) stuff, and until then, I have to take it easy.
"I rode the bike a little bit (Monday). Hopefully I can do the same today."
via Ansar Khan tweets,
Babcock confirms Zetterberg not playing tonight. He hopes Andersson can play.
Kyle Quincey said he's seeing specialist this afternoon about bone chips in his ankle. Hoping to avoid surgery until off-season.
added 2:44pm, via Helene St. James tweet,
Henrik Zetterberg says he has daily headaches, but he didn't label head injury concussion. Said not upset no punishment for Jamie Benn.
from Kerry Fraser of TSN,
While you may want to debate that Zetterberg was 'unsuspecting' of the glove punch from Benn, the fact that Hank engaged and significantly restrained Benn created a "confrontation" between the two players. This engagement all but eliminates a more severe penalty assessment from the equation. At the present time, a play such as this will not be reviewed by the Player Safety Committee.
Watch the incident below...
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.