The Malik Report
On Sunday evening, Last Week Tonight With John Oliver discussed the public funding of sports stadiums, and Oliver discussed the Red Wings' follow-on rink as a prime example of the practice. I'm going to post the video and allow you to come to your own conclusions:
Update: Here's the Cliff's Notes version, from the Detroit News's Christine Ferretti:
"Sports teams are successful businesses with wealthy owners and yet they still get our help," he said.
Two years ago, Oliver noted in the show, Detroit got approval for $280 million in taxpayer funds for a new arena project for the Red Wings "just six days after the city filed for bankruptcy."
For the project, about $283 million in public investment will come through economic development money, requiring no new taxes.
"Even though the owner of the Red Wings is Mike Ilitch, the founder of the Little Caesar's Pizza chain," he said, noting Ilitch's empire is worth about $5.1 billion. "It's hard to swallow. Sure, not as hard to swallow as Little Caesars Crazy Bread, with an assortment of Caesar dips. But still pretty hard."
Update: MLive's Brendan Savage confirms:
The Detroit Red Wings have re-signed forward Mitch Callahan to a one-year, two-way contract worth $600,000.
He'll provide more depth for the Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit's top farm club.
Callahan, 23, missed the final two months of last season with a torn right ACL and resumed skating this month during the Red Wings' development camp in Traverse City. He expects to be ready for training camp in September.
Chuck Pleiness of Red Wings Front with an article on if the Wings will attract more UFAs with Mike Babcock gone.
Here is Ken Holland on the subject...
“I don’t put any stock into that,” Holland said. “I just think a year ago … we targeted so few people. If you look at our team, we’d like to think we drafted well. A year ago we wanted a right-hand shot defenseman which there was two or three people.”
The first offseason after Babcock left Detroit for the Toronto Maple Leafs and became the highest paid NHL coach ($50 million over eight years) in the process, the Wings landed that right-handed shooting defenseman – Mike Green – and a two-time Stanley Cup champ – Brad Richards.
“I think everybody wants to play manager and come up with reasons why things don’t happen,” said Holland, who hired Jeff Blashill once Babcock decided to go elsewhere. “I just think there are 30 teams in the game, and the salary cap has made it almost a level playing field.
The first word that comes to mind when I think of Dominic Turgeon is "mature," and that applies to both the way in which he plays the game and the way in which Turgeon conducts himself off the ice. The Free Press's George Sipple (via RedWingsFeed) asked Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill which player outside the highly-heralded types impressed him the most, and Turgeon is an easy pick:
"One guy I thought was overlooked who had a really good camp was (Dominic) Turgeon," Blashill told the Free Press.
The Wings drafted Turgeon, a center, in the third round of the 2014 NHL draft. Turgeon (6-feet-2, 190 pounds) has spent three full seasons with the Portland Winterhawks in the Western Hockey League. He is coming off his best season. He had 18 goals and 25 assists in 67 games. He also chipped in eight goals and one assist in 17 playoff games.
"I thought he had shown marked improvement from a year ago," said Blashill, who watched from the stands this year after running the camp on the ice in the past as head coach of the Grand Rapids Griffins. "Looked like he had more confidence. He was one guy who made a real good impression."
What does Turgeon, a left-handed shot, need to improve on most?
"I think confidence with the puck is something he'll continue to get better at," Blashill said. "He's a guy who naturally wants to defend, naturally wants to play from the right side of the puck. He doesn't take a lot of chances offensively as a result. What's positive about that is it makes you a real good defensive player. The negative is you have to learn to take a few of those chances in order to become a better offensive player."
Sipple continues, and I can certainly tell you that Turgeon was bound and determined to increase his offensive output.
The Park Avenue Hotel was imploded to make room for the Red Wings' follow-on rink today, and if you're simply a fan of explosions, implosions or big things falling over, you may enjoy watching videos of the building meeting its demise for the sake of a modern loading dock at the follow-on rink, per the Detroit Free Press...
The Detroit News...
The Red Wings have posted parts 1, 2 and 3 of their series on the summer development camp, and here they are in chronological order (with a shootout "bonus"):
The Red Wings' hiring of Mike Kadar as their strength and conditioning coach has a relatively simple motivation on Detroit's side: Mike Babcock took Pete Renzetti back to Renzetti's hometown of Toronto when Babcock left for Hogtown, so the Red Wings hired someone recommended to them by Tony Granato...
And according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Jonathan Bombulie, Kader was allowed to pursue other options because the Penguins have hired Gary Roberts as a fitness consultant, and he likely wants to bring in his own staff...But that's not what Penguins GM Jim Rutherford intonates regarding the end of the organization's 8-year relationship with Kadar:
Rutherford said the Penguins wanted to make changes to the way they approach injury prevention.
“The Penguins, over the last five or 10 years, have been a team that has had a lot of injuries,” Rutherford said. “I'm not suggesting it's any one person's fault by any means, but if we can strengthen that area and do more research on how we train the athletes and how much rest they need and all those different things, that's what we're doing.”
The Penguins have been among the top three in the NHL in games lost to injury in four of the past five seasons. They were third last season, missing 320 man-games.
Many of those games were missed for ailments not typically found in hockey — blood clots for Pascal Dupuis and Tomas Vokoun, the removal of a cancerous tumor for Olli Maatta, a stroke for Kris Letang — which seem to be independent of any strength or conditioning philosophy.
“Someone from the outside might look at it and say I did a terrible job, but once you dissect where the numbers are coming from, we missed five games due to soft-tissue injuries last season and 15 the year before that. That's something I take pride in,” Kadar said. “I don't think that was a big issue.”
As Paul reported earlier today, the Red Wings signed Gustav Nyquist to a 4-year contract extension today, and MLive's Khan has the salary breakdown:
According to the Free Press's Helene St. James, the Wings are now slightly over the salary cap with Teemu Pulkkinen and Tomas Jurco left to re-sign, but that's OK for now and not an overwhelming concern for GM Ken Holland...
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings today agreed to terms with right wing Gustav Nyquist on a four-year contract. In accordance with club policy, additional details will not be disclosed.
“We’re very happy to have Gustav locked up for four more years,” said Executive Vice President and General Manager Ken Holland. “He’s quickly become an important part of our team, and is a critical piece to the Red Wings’ future. He is just now entering the prime of his career.”
Updated at 12:04 PM: The Free Press's George Sipple spoke with Wings coach Jeff Blashill regarding Joe Hicketts, and he found that Blashill compared the 5'8" defenseman to someone he's coached at the USHL level--Torey Krug:
"To me, Joe's a hockey player," Blashill said. "He does a ton of things well. His instincts are great, both offensively and defensively. He's not the fastest, he's not the biggest, but his impact on the game always seems to be real big."
Hicketts helped Canada win gold at the IIHF world junior championship in January.
"He was great, I thought, for the Canadian world junior team," Blashill said. "He was a big reason why they won the gold. And I'm real excited to have Joe. Like every player, he needs to get better at certain things. As his skating improves, as his shot becomes more of a weapon, those are two areas that are going to need to improve for him to become an NHL player. But I think he has the hockey sense and the confidence to be real successful. He'll go back for another year of junior, but I suspect, at the end of the year, he'll make an impact with Grand Rapids after his junior season is over."
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.