The Malik Report
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
Detroit Red Wings goaltender Jimmy Howard liked what he saw nearly 200 feet away at the other end of the ice Thursday.
His teammates peppered the opposing goaltenders with shots, which enabled them to equal a season-high goal total.
A team that was starved for scoring and struggled to get shots on goal has come alive. The Red Wings defeated the Arizona Coyotes 5-1 at Joe Louis Arena and have gained points in nine consecutive games (6-0-3).
The Red Wings outshot the Coyotes 44-27. They have scored nine goals and amassed 90 shots in their past two games.
"Early in the season we were having a little bit of an issue clicking offensively and getting shots on net," Howard said. "The last couple of games we've gone 40-plus, making other goalies work. When you're getting those opportunities, more often than not you're going to find the back of the net. That's going to lead to W's for us."
added 7:57am, Extended game highlights are below...
Of prospect-related note:
You expect a coach's challenge to change the face of a game, but just as strangely as the Wings have suddenly become a 14-8-and-4 team on a 9-game point streak, a lifted skate changed the tone of a predictably slow-starting Wings team getting bitten by a young, hungry Coyotes team into what ultimately became a 5-1 Wings rout of Arizona.
The big concern going forward is obviously that Teemu Pulkkinen (lower-body) and Drew Miller (upper-body) are injured and, to quote the coach, may be out "for a while," but those were the only negatives to take from the game.
For the record, ArizonaCoyotes.com's Dave Vest reports that the Yotes had no problem with the ruling:
As the Red Wings' 6-game home stand draws to a close, the Wings were presented with a good opportunity to push ahead in the Atlantic Division standings by defeating the Arizona Coyotes. Phoenix has given Detroit fits of late, but the Coyotes aren't yet elite, and without Shane Doan in the lineup, the Wings could at least rest a little easier about the states of their knee ligaments.
Regrettably, Detroit had other concerns--with Teemu Pulkkinen and Drew Miller leaving the game with lower and upper-body injuries, respectively--but the Red Wings did dominate on the scoreboard, parlaying the momentum bounce of a successful coach's challenge to a 3-0 lead and an eventual 5-1 win that was nothing less than dominant by the Wings.
Working with 10 forwards and a Larkin-Datsyuk-Zetterberg trio that all cleared 20 minutes of ice time, the Red Wings shot early, often, and by default as the Wings amassed a 44-27 shot advantage and a fast and furious scoring advantage against Mike Smith and Anders Lindback, with the Wings using speed, puck possession, consistent pressure and stout goaltending by a Jimmy Howard who was strong when needed to defeat Arizona--which never gave up, to its credit--in rousing fashion.
Both Teemu Pulkkinen (hit by Martin Hanzal, upper-body injury) and Drew Miller (hit to the head from Klas Dahlbeck) are out for the Wings:
As the Red Wings prepare to face the Arizona Coyotes tonight (7:30 PM EST on FSD/FS Arizona/WWJ 950), both teams are respectfully sizing each other up, as NHL.com's Paul Harris noted:
"The League is extremely tight," Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. "Every single night comes down to a play here and a play there. It's been well-documented we've gone into a lot of overtimes and had leads and things like that. We just got to keep grinding, keep getting better, and when we go into overtime try to win as many of those as we can."
The Coyotes know they can't give the Red Wings much room.
"They've got a lot of skill; skill and speed. They know what to do with the puck," defenseman Michael Stone said. "With that speed, we have to take away their time and space."
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
As Mike Green has adjusted to his new teammates, the points have started to rack up for him.
Green had nine points entering tonight's game between the Detroit Red Wings and Arizona Coyotes at Joe Louis Arena. Green had assists in two of the previous three games, and scored his first goal Nov. 20. That's the sort of production the Wings hoped for when they signed Green in July.
"He has done a really good job," coach Jeff Blashill said. "He has gotten more and more comfortable as the year has gone along. He has done a really good job of understanding the way we want to play, of being active with our defensemen, of being part of the breakouts, being part of the entries, and being a big part of the o-zone, and he has done an excellent job."
Green, 30, is tied with Niklas Kronwall for most points among the team's defensemen, but Green has played six fewer games than Kronwall because of a shoulder injury incurred late October.
The two were paired up about 10 games ago, when Blashill decided to use Danny DeKeyser on the shut-down pairing with Jonathan Ericsson. It wasn't difficult for Green to adjust.
"Nik is such an easy guy to play with, you know he is going to be there for you and he makes hard, smart plays," Green said. "It's been nice, really nice."
from Dana Wakiji of DetroitRedWings.com,
The Red Wings are not where they want to be but at least they're getting points.
After Tuesday's shootout win over the Buffalo Sabres, the Wings have gotten points in eight straight games, going 5-0-3 in that span.
It is their longest such streak since recording at least one point in 12 consecutive games (10-0-2) from March 11-April 3, 2010, when they were fighting to make the playoffs.
"I think we are starting to play really offensive hockey, we are over-shooting the puck, we have lots of shots on net at the end of the game," said Tomas Tatar, who has five goals and two assists in the eight games. "We just have to learn how to manage the score. We've been leading a lot but we let them tie the game so we know we have to be smarter to the end of the game and finish the game without going into overtime."
"Anytime you get a chance to get two (points) that’s obviously what you want to do regardless of how we get them," defenseman Niklas Kronwall said. "But in the long run you’ve got to find a better way to success, I think."
continued plus more Detroit topics...
From the Red Wings:
Competing for bell ringing bragging rights
Blashill, Holland, Lindsay, Murphy and four players to bell ring on Dec. 4
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings will compete for bragging rights on Friday, Dec. 4, to see which duo can raise the most money for The Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign, as four teams bell ring at different Metro Detroit retail locations. Fans are asked to make a $10 donation per autograph at all four locations.
Head Coach Jeff Blashill will join Executive Vice President and General Manager Ken Holland, who is serving as Honorary Chairman of the 2015 Red Kettle Campaign for the 10th straight year, at Kroger in Plymouth from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Fans visiting Hockeytown Authentics in Troy between 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. on Friday can obtain an autograph from forwards Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm by making a $10 donation per player. Forwards Luke Glendening and Riley Sheahan will also represent the Red Wings at Kroger in Farmington Hills from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Additionally, Red Wings Alumni Ted Lindsay and Larry Murphy will bell ring at Kroger in Birmingham from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Updated 7x at 1:49 PM: The Red Wings reported no lineup changes save Jimmy Howard opposing Mike Smith in the nets when the Wings face the Arizona Coyotes this evening (7:30 PM on FSD/FS Arizona/WWJ 950), and as the Wings' beat writers filed their game-day articles, the Arizona Republic's Sarah McLellan reported that the Coyotes "took an optional":
Looks like an optional skate for the #Coyotes this AM. Tippett not out there. Neither are Michalek, Gordon, Stone, Vermette and Boedker.
Smith first goalie off the ice for #Coyotes.
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.