The Malik Report
Updated with a little off-the-cuff Lidstrom gabba at 5:13 AM: NHL.com’s “30 in 30” series discusses the Red Wings’ outlook going into the 2012-2013 season today, and given that it’s the middle of August, it’s probably a good time to get an outside perspective on the “state of the team” given that we know the team is likely to re-sign Justin Abdelkader, ink one more defenseman via free agency and then, well…wait and see what both their youth movement and the CBA can bring before making more meaningful additions over the course of the regular season.
NHL.com’s Dan Rosen starts at the beginning, asking Wings coach Mike Babcock how the team plans on beginning the “post-Lidstrom era,” and even I get worried when Babcock tells Rosen that, and I quote, “I’m always scared to death in the summer”:
This is just bizarre, as already noted by Paul: According to the Detroit News’s Charles E. Ramirez, the plaintiff in a civil suit against Anaheim Ducks GM Bob Murray began to make her case on Tuesday…
A Plymouth woman says she “aches all of the time” after being hit with a chair by the general manager of the Anaheim Ducks after the team’s loss to the Red Wings in the 2009 National Hockey League playoffs.
Rachel Paris, who filed suit in U.S. District Court in Detroit in 2010, testified Wednesday that the chair was thrown by Bob Murray in the press box at Joe Louis Arena and caused severe injuries to her left shoulder, neck, back, ribs and hips. Paris, who was 55 at the time, said a few of her teeth were also chipped.
The suit seeks financial damages in excess of $75,000. Murray and his attorneys deny the allegations, according to court records. The suit alleges Murray was so angered by his team’s Game 7 loss in the Western Conference semifinals that he threw a chair at Paris, who was working on the game’s television broadcast.
As you might expect in these sorts of cases, private investigators are involved, and the Free Press’s David Ashenfelter reports that surveillance footage of the plaintiff forms the foundation of Murray’s defense:
Update: Sorry I put this in the wrong blog!
The New Jersey Devils have signed first-round draft pick Stefan Matteau to an entry-level contract.
Devils president and general manager Lou Lamoriello announced the signing on Tuesday without disclosing details.
Matteau, the son of former Rangers forward Stephane Matteau, was the 29th overall pick in June. Stephane scored two double-overtime goals in the 1994 conference finals as New York eliminated New Jersey en route to the Stanley Cup.
“Stefan Matteau is a size-and-strength power forward,” Lamoriello said, “who we consider to be one of our top prospects.”
Boy howdy, is this ever important and pertinent for Red Wings fans, from ESPN’s Craig Custance:
Still a chance Red Wings host annual Sept. prospect tourney in TC. Conference call this week w/participating teams to determine fate.— Craig Custance (@CraigCustance) August 14, 2012
Cross your fingers, folks. I want to see the prospects play and compete just as much as you do.
Updateydoo: From the Left Wing Lock’s Sarah Lindenau:
— Sarah Lindenau (@Lindy72) August 14, 2012
@craigcustance I actually serve as the social media captain for the tournament and we aren’t prepared to make an announcement at this time
Despite reports there is no announcement about the— Sarah Lindenau (@Lindy72) August 14, 2012
#nhlprospects tournament at this time. We will have something soon I hope.
Via RedWingsFeed, MLive’s Brendan Savage provides a superb follow-up for those of you who may have wondered aloud whether the Wings really need to re-sign Justin Abdelkader, who the Free Press’s Helene St. James stated the Wings are working toward inking a new contract with, in the overnight report’s comment section.
Savage spoke to Ken Holland about Abdelkader’s importance to the team, and as far as Holland’s concerned, Abdelkader’s just as important to the present-day Wings as Kirk Maltby was to the Grind Line:
Despite many TMR readers’ protests to the contrary, the Red Wings front office really has only two (and maybe three) pressing issues to address before the start of the regular season: the Wings need to re-sign restricted free agent Justin Abdelkader to a new contract, they need to add some sort of free agent defenseman to serve as a band-aid until the team chooses to make a trade to acquire a more meaningful reinforcement to offset the losses of Nicklas Lidstrom and Brad Stuart (and that trade may occur at the start of the regular season, or it may not take place until the trade deadline, depending on the team’s desire to entrust its blueline to “the kids”).
Ideally, the Wings would also add a #7/8 defenseman who could be sent down to and recalled from Grand Rapids as necessary, but the Wings could at least in theory add NHL clauses to Nathan Paetsch and Triston Grant’s contracts if they so wish.
Otherwise, as the Free Press’s Helene St. James suggests, the Wings will sit on their cap space and wait out post-CBA-negotiation training camp and exhibition season jockeying for the 23 spots on the team’s roster, with neither an expensive trade for a top-pair defenseman, nor an earnest attempt to acquire a top-six forward in the offing:
TSN’s Mark Masters is following Team Canada and Team Russia’s potential World Junior Championship teams as they play a four-game series commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Summit Series (in lieu of annual World Junior Evaluation camps). The first two games of the “Canada-Russia Challenge” were played in Yaroslavl, Russia, and the second pair start tonight in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and as such, as noted by RedWingsFeed (blogger under the weather = I miss some stuff), Masters spoke to a very important person who happens to be traveling with the Canadian team, which happens to include Red Wings prospect Xavier Ouellet:
Feature on Byron McCrimmon’s search for closure in Yaroslavl bit.ly/Nlrnl0 (vid)— Mark Masters (@markhmasters) August 13, 2012
Byron McCrimmon is still with Canadian jrs in Halifax; was front & centre in team pic yesterday sitting beside Steve Spott— Mark Masters (@markhmasters) August 13, 2012
This afternoon’s crop of Red Wings news begins with an article from DetroitRedWings.com’s Bill Roose that makes this Vladimir Konstantinov fan smile:
Upset by a late surge late from Kris Draper in Round 1 of Operation Bobblehead: Alumni Edition, former Red Wings’ defenseman Vladimir Konstantinov stormed back to runaway with the Round 2 vote, thus becoming the second bobblehead chosen by fans.
The Wings will distribute 7,500 collectible figurines characterizing Konstantinov to their fans at a select home game during the upcoming 2012-13 season. Konstantinov destroyed his competition, earning 36.5 percent of the vote conducted last week on DetroitRedWings.com.
After the last couple of days’ worth of heavy discussion about a potential lockout and the media’s perception of and/or pandering to fans, I’m going to keep the rhetoric short and try to keep the focus of this morning’s report on the content thereof…After the first tidbit, anyway:
• According to Dagbladet and Allehanda’s Andreas Haggstrom, Peter Forsberg’s Icebreakers defeated Visby Roma 6-1 in their second charity game on Sunday, and over the course of Saturday and Sunday, Forsberg, Henrik Zetterberg, Gabriel Landeskog and a long list of Swedish NHL stars raised 750,000 Swedish Krona, or approximately $111,500, for “sick and disabled children and young people” in the Swedish province of Vasternorrland.
Via RedWingsFeed, the New York Times’ Jeff Z. Klein reports that the NHL ensured that, should it lock out its players, it can back out of the Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs at any time, with only minimal financial penalties resulting from said cancellation:
The N.H.L. can cancel the Jan. 1 Winter Classic at 115,000-seat Michigan Stadium as late as Jan. 1, the day of the game, because of a work stoppage “arising from the lack of a collective bargaining agreement,” the contract between the league and the University of Michigan shows.
The league would forfeit only $100,000 of its $3 million stadium rental fee, according to the contract. The rest of the fee would be refunded by the university.
The contract provisions give the league some leeway for salvaging its showcase event should a lockout delay the start of the 2012-13 season, enabling the N.H.L. to hold the Winter Classic even if a lockout is settled in late December.
Klein says that the NHL offers no guarantees nor refunds should the Red Wings choose not to hold the Great Lakes Invitational, the Griffins-Marlies AHL game or its slate of three OHL games at Comerica Park, but it’s covered its own ass regarding the Winter Classic:
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.