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The Malik Report

Red Wings hedge their bets on Ryan Sproul, Xavier Ouellet

Within a year of drafting Soo Greyhounds defenseman Ryan Sproul and Blainville-Boisbriand Armada defenseman Xavier Ouellet, the pair of defensemen have grown into two of the Red Wings’ best defensive prospects, so the Wings chose to sign both players now instead of attempting to negotiate with the blossoming offensive defensemen’s agents a year from now:

RED WINGS SIGN PROSPECTS RYAN SPROUL AND XAVIER OUELLET TO ENTRY-LEVEL CONTRACTS

… Defensemen Were Selected by Detroit in the 2nd Round of Last Year’s NHL Entry Draft …

Detroit, MI…The Detroit Red Wings today announced that defensemen Xavier Ouellet and Ryan Sproul have both been signed to three-year entry-level contracts. In accordance with club policy, additional terms of these deals will not be disclosed.

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Red Wings-Hurricanes quick take: Wings overcome themselves in a big win

Update: According to MLive’s Ansar Khan, the Wings have sent Brendan Smith to Grand Rapids as an olive branch as he’s not going to play while Jonathan Ericsson and Jakub Kindl get their feet wet again, and the Griffins rather desperately need to win out to make the playoffs. Having Janik and Smith in the lineup will help them considerably, and if they don’t “win out,” Smith will probably vie for a job come playoff time.

My goodness. I’m not even going to try to give you a narrative recap of the insanity that was the Detroit Red Wings’ wild, Jason Woolley 5-4 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Red Wings may have received a much-needed kick in the pants in the leadership department by Nicklas Lidstrom, who returned and registered an assist, 4 shots, 2 missed shots and 2 blocked shots in 20:26 of ice time…

But they also had to overcome the horrendous habits they’d accumulated during a 6-game winless streak. The Wings managed to surrender goals on the first shifts of the 1st and 2nd periods, surrendered 2 power play goals on 2 Hurricanes attempts and trailed 4-1 with 4 minutes and 5 seconds left in the second period.

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Red Wings-Hurricanes meandering update: Kindl in, Lidstrom a ‘maybe,’ Franzen, Ericsson, Howard out

Very briefly: as the Detroit Red Wings prepare to face off against the Carolina Hurricanes tonight (7 PM EDT, FSD+/FS Carolinas/

97.1 FM

1270AM, online stream linky here), DetroitRedWings.com’s Bill Roose reports that Nicklas Lidstrom will be a “game-time decision” as he tests out his still-sore left ankle, but the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan reports that Jakub Kindl will definitely play as he returns from a strained quadriceps muscle, and MLive’s Ansar Khan, the Free Press’s Carlos Monarrez, Fox Sports Detroit’s Dana Wakiji and NHL.com’s Brian Hedger (who also penned stories about the Wings’ injuries in general, Jimmy Howard and Nicklas Lidstrom) all report more or less the following, depending on how one reads the tea leaves:

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Updates From This Morning’s Practice

Franzen skated but left the ice when drills began.

Howard skated before practice and stated will try to face shots tomorrow and he is out to at least Wednesday.

Lidstrom, Kindl and Ericsson all practicing. Kindl appears “in” for tomorrow.

The above is a recap from the beat writers and this is Paul filling in for George.

added 12:00pm, Joey MacDonald has a slight bulging disc, surgery not an option at this point, will start cortisone treatment soon.

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A sideways year

I’ve been a very bad Red Wings fan over the past 48 hours. Since the parent received the, “We need you in first thing tomorrow to have a basal cell sarcoma removed” call on Tuesday evening, I’ve spent a decent amount of time in front of the computer, but haven’t done much of anything hockey-related. I know that the Wings played a “spirited” game against the Rangers on Wednesday (with Ty Conklin in goal) but remain winless in six, are 2-5-and-2 in March and have gone 3-7-and-3 since setting their home-ice winning record way back on February 19th. I hate to admit it, but I didn’t watch it—I taped it and played the Sims 3 instead because my brain was too rattled to even watch a Red Wings game.

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Morning Wings Talk

Paul here filling in for George who hopefully will return sometime today.

Doug Janik has been returned to Grand Rapids and the Wings have an off day today.

I have a question… There is talk of Jimmy Howard wanting to start on Saturday against Carolina. 

The Wings play Columbus at home on Monday then travel to Columbus on Wednesday.

Are the Wings better off holding him back and let him play in one of the Columbus games or are you okay with him playing Saturday?

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Wings Lose 2-1 In A Tight Game To The Rangers

Paul here for George who hopefully is recovering from a long day.

Probably the type of game Babcock wanted from this lineup, just could not find a way to put the puck in the net.

Only Detroit goal was scored by Zetterberg in the first period.

added 10:56pm, Game highlights have been added below…

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Excused absence

My apologies for not being around to do my job over the last 24 hours…Between exhaustion on my part and a health scare for the parent which has me writing this from the parking lot of the doctor’s office which asked the parent to come in immediately for a follow-up appointment, my priorities are regrettably elsewhere today. I shall return to work as soon as my and especially my parent’s health circumstances allow, and again, I apologize for the interruption in service.

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Red Wings kind-of-sort-of sign Riley Sheahan

MLive’s Ansar Khan reports that Red Wings prospect and University of Notre Dame forward Riley Sheahan has exhausted his college eligibility by committing the following deed:

Riley Sheahan, the Wings’ top pick (21st overall in 2010), has signed an amateur tryout contract with Grand Rapids, will join Griffins.

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On the Red Wings rattling off inexcusable play and Radulov

In light of the Detroit Red Wings’ troubling performance in their 5-3 loss to the Washington Capitals on Monday, The Oakland Press’s Chuck Pleiness, via RedWingsFeed, offers an assessment of the injury-marred Red Wings’ difficulties in terms of not being able to scrounge together wins without Nicklas Lidstrom…

So now we know exactly what the Red Wings’ NHL-record 23-game home winning streak means in retrospect. The Red Wings are 3-7-1 since it ended following a 5-3 home loss. The streak was a nice middle-of-the-season accomplishment, but, in less than a month, it has become a distant memory. The Red Wings have played at a considerably less than .500 pace since in a league where the vast majority of teams are above .500 overall because of the overtime and shootout rules.

They have gone from fighting for the first seed overall throughout the Stanley Cup playoffs to a tight race with the Nashville Predators for the fourth seed in the Western Conference, which would mean the home ice edge in the first round. By the Red Wings’ high standards, this is a collapse. There are reasons for it. Injuries, in particular, have been the main factor. It’s not an excuse, either. Just the truth.

Snip and re-set:

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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.

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