The Malik Report
The Red Wings and their fans worked hard to spread the word regarding the only NHL player that literally makes video game plays in real life, but the NHL and EA Sports report that Pavel Datsyuk didn’t win his semifinal against John Tavares in EA Sports’ NHL 13 cover athlete vote:(
Giroux Faces Malkin, Tavares Meets Rinne in EA SPORTS NHL 13 Cover Vote Semifinals
Sponsored By BlackBerry And Hosted On NHL.com, More Than 19.5 Million Fan Votes Cast To Date in the First Ever EA SPORTS NHL Cover Athlete Campaign
May 24, 2012 – EA SPORTS™ and NHL.com announced today that the semifinals matchups for the EA SPORTS NHL®13 Cover Vote, sponsored by BlackBerry®, will be Philadelphia Flyers forward Claude Giroux versus Pittsburgh Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin and New York Islanders forward John Tavares against Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne. Fans have cast more than 19.5 million votes to date.
Updated with Parise/Suter talk at 1:16 PM: The comment section went a little crazy after I posted an article in which the Free Press’s Helene St. James suggested that, despite the Wings’ need for a goal-scorer, they may not retain Jiri Hudler’s services, and MLive’s Ansar Khan provides a corollary to St. James’ argument:
Put simply, given the incredibly thin crop of goal-scorers available in this summer’s free agent class, Hudler will probably be able to earn much more than the Wings could slot him in for, and that’s why Khan believes that Hudler will leave the Wings to cash in
Perhaps it got lost amidst the leak‘s worth of news regarding the Red Wings’ hiring of an architectural firm to help design their Joe Louis Arena follow-on rink and whatever will be built around it: my eyebrow, at least, rose half a foot when I read that the Wings are looking at an 18,000-seat arena, which would fit in nearly 2,000 fewer fans per night.
The Windsor Star’s Dave Waddell allows Wings VP Jimmy Devellano to explain why that is while surveying the various comments Mike Ilitch, Mike Babcock and Devellano have made to the media over the past year—especially regarding the Joe’s status as a building whose amenities for its players aren’t exactly spectacular:
Nicklas Lidstrom freak-out talk included—and Lidstrom won’t be making a decision until the middle of the month, so the whole Twitter/Facebook misunderstanding boondoggle was nothing more than that—we do know that the Red Wings’ brass will be meeting, according to MLive’s Ansar Khan and the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan, from June 2nd to 4th to formulate their roster plans going forward, with the futures of Lidstrom, Tomas Holmstrom, Brad Stuart and Jiri Hudler uncertain at best.
This afternoon, the Free Press’s Helene St. James wonders whether Hudler, who acrimoniously left the team to sign with Dynamo Moscow as a restricted free agent two summers ago, and who could obviously earn more on the open market than he can in Detroit, will be part of the team’s future plans, especially with the Wings looking to add a forward who can do more than score the 25 goals Hudler registered this past season as something of a perimeter player:
Updated repeatedly: According to the Red Wings, the TC camp account simply misunderstood a joke on the Red Wings’ Facebook page. and the TC account is confirming. All is OK!: I’m not too worried about this, but I am slightly concerned: the Red Wings’ Twitter account is going into overdrive today to promote the last day of voting for Pavel Datsyuk in EA Sports’ NHL 13 cover vote semifinals, and the Wings revealed that Nicklas Lidstrom was at Joe Louis Arena today.
The NHL news cycle is like Chuck Norris at this time of year: it doesn’t sleep, it waits. Over the past few days, we’ve learned about a potential deal with an architectural firm that may or may not design Joe Louis Arena’s follow-on facility, the fact that the Wings’ brass will weigh the futures of Tomas Holmstrom, Brad Stuart, Jiri Hudler and probably start to press for Nicklas Lidstrom to come up with a play-or-not-play answer while formulating its free agency plans at its organizational meetings next week, all over the past two days.
The Red Wings’ Twitter account and Facebook page went into overdrive overnight as EA Sports revealed that the race is neck-and-neck between Pavel Datsyuk and John Tavares as the last day of voting in the players’ showdown in EA Sports’ NHL 13 cover athlete semifinals is taking place, so, fellow Wings fans, it’s time to vote early and vote often to push the only real-life video game player over the top today.
Updated 2x with some free agency scuttlebutt at 4:40 PM: Red Wings GM Ken Holland used the same terminology regarding the team’s take on Tomas Holmstrom’s future while speaking to the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan and MLive’s Ansar Khan—saying that #96’s future basically isn’t totally up to Holmstrom himself—and in light of that reality, the Free Press’s Helene St. James wonders aloud whether the Wings will ultimately bring back a player who is, in his coach and GM’s eyes, a fourth-line forward:
Holland was back at his office at Joe Louis Arena Monday after spending a week at the International Ice Hockey Federation world championship in Helsinki, where the difference between winning and losing was, much like the NHL playoffs, incredibly close. Holland chatted very briefly with Holmstrom on Monday, mostly just to say the two would meet soon. Holmstrom, Holland told the Free Press, “has to decide what his body is telling him, and if he wants to play, he and I need to sit down.”
The biggest Red Wings news on Monday will run into something of a wall today: the widely-reported coverage of and speculation about SportsBusiness Journal’s Don Muret’s report that the Wings and/or Ilitch Holdings has hired an architectural firm to design Joe Louis Arena’s follow-on facility is definitely intriguing, but between the self-imposed gag organizational “no comment” policy’s laid over a foundation of secrecy so tight that governmental agencies should be jealous of how well the Wings and Ilitch Holdings are keeping information on a need-to-know basis.
On a day when none other than the Wall Street Journal’s Mike Sieleski quotes the CBC’s Gord Stellick as stating that the Red Wings are going to be the prime suitors for Zach Parise, should he choose to leave New Jersey…
One intriguing possibility is the Detroit Red Wings. “He is their guy,” former Toronto Maple Leafs GM Gord Stellick said. “[The Red Wings are] never going to go after an unrestricted free agent as hard as they’re going to go after Zach Parise.”
It’s no wonder: Parise said in an interview earlier this season that it was important to him to play for a team with a realistic chance of winning a championship. The Red Wings have won four Stanley Cups over the previous 15 years and have not finished with a losing record since the 1990-91 season, and they built their success around players such as Steve Yzerman and Pavel Datsyuk—elite two-way forwards with impeccable leadership credentials. They could make Parise into their latest incarnation of that tradition.
The Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan spoke to Wings GM Ken Holland about his take on the World Championships as they applied to the Wings…
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.