The Malik Report
from Beill Beacon of the CP at the Lethbridge Herald,
Coach Mike Babcock never forgot McGill University and his alma mater certainly never forgot him.
On Monday, McGill bestowed an honorary doctorate of laws of one of its best known graduates, who often wears a university tie behind the bench for big games with the Detroit Red Wings or Canada’s Olympic team.
Babcock was a star defenceman for the McGill Redmen from 1983 to 1987, earning a bachelor’s degree in physical education and doing some postgraduate work in sports psychology before going on to be one of the world’s top hockey coaches.
“I grew up in a family with three sisters,” the 50-year-old said before accepting the degree at the university’s fall convocation ceremonies. “I never had any brothers, but when I left McGill I had brothers for the rest of my life.
“The opportunity for me to grow as a human being and get a foundation – that to me is what McGill is. It provides a foundation and sets you up for the rest of our life. I’m thankful for that. I’m fortunate to be tied to the school ever since. I feel it’s important to give back as much as you can.”
Given the Forbes report regarding the Red Wings' and every other team's present valuations, as well as Crain's Detroit Business's Bill Shea's article about the "succession plans" of teams like the Wings given that Mike Ilitch is 83 years old, Sportsnet's Ryan Dixon offers something of a timely article about the ways in which Mr. I helped transform the Red Wings franchise from an $8 million investment into a $470 million powerhouse that will break ground on a $650 million rink-and-real-estate development sooner than later:
Ken Holland’s earliest understanding of the Detroit Red Wings’ organizational dynamic was enhanced by a visual aid. Now the team’s GM, Holland first joined the Wings as a journeyman goalie on a three-week call-up from the American Hockey League in 1983, about one year after local businessman Mike Ilitch had purchased the moribund club for $3 million and the rights he held to three Chuck E. Cheese’s franchises.
Holland quickly got the lay of the land in Detroit, including a strong sense of how much Ilitch was invested in the club beyond his initial stake. A proper owner’s suite was among the many things Joe Louis Arena lacked at the time, so Ilitch viewed the games from a makeshift box that was rolled into the Zamboni entrance. “He was right behind the net, on top of the action,” Holland says.
Via RedWingsFeed, MLive's Ansar Khan offers an update on Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk's status, and it sounds like Wings fans will have to wait until Tuesday's practice to find out whether Datsyuk has recovered from Jared Cowen's unpenalized and non-disciplined elbow to #13's jaw to the point that Datsyuk can pass his baseline neurological test and return to the lineup:
Detroit Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk feels "pretty good,'' but his status for Wednesday's game against the Boston Bruins will be determined Tuesday.
General manager Ken Holland said Monday that Datsyuk remains day-to-day but feels better after being elbowed in the chin by Ottawa Senators defenseman Jared Cowen on Saturday.
"We'll see what tomorrow brings,'' Holland said.
The Red Wings did not practice today and Datsyuk did not come to Joe Louis Arena for treatment. The club held him out of Sunday's game at Buffalo because he didn't feel good, raising concerns of a potential concussion.
Khan also reports that Todd Bertuzzi's "upper-body injury" is still bothering him, so Bertuzzi's back...I mean "upper-body" needs more time to heal.
Update: Here's the Free Press's Helene St. James on Datsyuk:
Amongst today's prospect news: The Grand Rapids Griffins appear to have a new video coordinator, but Griffvision's still trying new and intriguing ways of providing insights into the Griffins' players personalities.
Today, they send a very junior reporter into the Griffins' locker room...
The Griffins very literally had Mitchell Callahan, Triston Grant, Riley Sheahan and Ryan Sproul "play as themselves" during an NHL 14 "Showdown"...
Red Wings pro scout Mark Howe's been on something of a "book tour" promoting what the Utica Observer-Dispatch's Don Laible reports is a very revelatory memoir in, Gordie Howe's Son: A Hall of Fame Life in the Shadow of Mr. Hockey, and the Detroit News had reported that Darren McCarty's going to spend a decent chunk of December visiting Michigan to promote the memoir he and USA Today's Kevin Allen co-wrote, My Last Fight: the True Story of a Hockey Rock Star.
The Windsor Star's Bob Duff posited something of a pre-review of the book:
Red Wings off-day news: Forbes says Wings 9th-most-valuable NHL team; on Z, Mule, Gustavsson & Alfie
The Red Wings aren't practicing today and Wings coach Mike Babcock's heading to Montreal to receive an honorary doctorate from McGill University, so we're likely to hear very little about Pavel Datsyuk's status until tomorrow's practice and team visit to Children's Hospital.
On the heels of the Red Wings' 3-2 win over Buffalo yesterday afternoon, there is some Wings-related news this morning, and the biggest news comes in the form of significant figures from the Free Press's Helene St. James:
Nice Jared Cowen elbow to Pavel Datsyuk’s jaw Saturday that on-ice officials overseeing the Ottawa Senators-Detroit Red Wings clash somehow missed. “He had the puck, kind of strange no one saw a star player like that,” said Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg. You think? Datsyuk has concussion-type symptoms as a result.
And while we're shaking our heads at rife incompetency, there's this:
This Red Wings team is engaging in something of a from-the-ground-up November rebuild--or at least that's what I'm telling myself given that the Wings' 3-1 win over Buffalo leaves the Wings at 4-3-and-5 for the month.
Howevver! Minus Datsyuk, minus Todd Bertuzzi (upper body something-something) and Danny DeKeyser (out for a while with a separated left shoulder), the Wings have won 2 of their past 3 games, and the team won't play again until Wednesday's barometer game against the Bruins.
From the Detroit News:
Former Red Wings captain Nick Lidstrom and former Lions kicker Jason Hanson head the list of inductees for the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame, announced Sunday.
Lidstrom was a 12-time NHL All-Star and seven-time Norris Trophy winner. Hanson kicked 19 winning field goals.
Also to be inducted are Dorne Dibble, an Michigan State All-American and NFL champion with the Lions; former Olympic and World Cup soccer player Alexi Lalas (Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook); Tom Mach, Detroit Catholic Central football coach and winner of four state titles and 17 Catholic League championships; former Cy Young winner John Smoltz (Lansing Waverly), an eight-time All-Star with the Braves; Percy Show, an All-America linebacker at MSU who also won Butkus and Lombardi awards and is in the College Football Hall of Fame; and longtime U-M/Lions broadcaster Jim Brandstatter.
It wasn't pretty, but no DeKeyser, no Bertuzzi, no Datsyuk and a pair of games starting within 22 hours of each other against a team that clearly tried to emulate the Nashville Predators in terms of both their, "Party in the front, something something in the back" 3rd jerseys and their attempts to lull Detroit to sleep defensively all added up to one ugly puppy...
But the Red Wings rallied from yet another 1-0 first period deficit this time around, they received a penalty shot save from a very, very solid Jonas Gustavsson, and the Wings managed to grind out an ugly road win while wrapping up a slate of 4 games played over the course of 6 nights, defeating Buffalo 3-1.
Given the Wings' moribund performance against the Senators on Saturday, and especially given the sudden absence of Alfredsson, the Wings needed their "secondary scorers" to step up, and they did so in a big way.
The beginning wasn't pretty. Seven-and-a-half minutes into the first, Darren Helm whiffed on an attempt to clear the zone, and the Wings' top defensive pair and "third line" simply stood and watched as Drew Stafford slid the puck to Cody Hodgson, who stuffed the puck past Gustavsson at 7:47...
Bruce Garrioch, totally not rubbing it in:
Jared Cowen was back in his familiar spot on the Senators’ blueline against Carolina here Sunday night.
Much to the displeasure of the Detroit Red Wings. The Wings wanted the book thrown at the club’s defenceman after they claimed top centre Pavel Datsyuk suffered a concussion on an uncalled elbow to the head in the third period of Ottawa’s 4-2 victory Saturday in Detroit.
NHL spokesman John Dellapina said VP of safety Brendan Shanahan had a thorough look at the elbow by Cowen with seven minutes left in the game and deemed that the contact was “accidental” and “inadvertent”.
“The NHL reviewed it and said there was no penalty for it so he’s playing,” said coach Paul MacLean before the game against the Carolina Hurricanes.
It helped Cowen had no past history and Shanahan felt the incident was similar to the one last week when Dennis Seidenberg caught Ottawa winger Bobby Ryan with an elbow and didn’t give the Boston defencemen any discipline.
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