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Prospect news: Mantha scores in Griffins loss; Walleye win in shootout; Givani Smith 2 + 1

Of prospect-related note:

In the AHL, Jared Coreau stopped 30 of 32 shots and Anthony Mantha scored his 6th goal in 4 games, but the Grand Rapids Griffins were hexed by Rockford IceHogs goalie Lars Johansson, who stopped 27 of 28 shots en route to a 2-1 IceHogs win over the Griffins on Friday night.

The Griffins' website posted a game recap:

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Red Wings-Predators quick take: Yeehaw!

The Red Wings hoped to build upon Wednesday's rope-a-dope victory over the Rangers in more convincing fashion as the Nashville Predators came to town on Friday night; Nashville was looking to rebound from a two-game losing streak.

The Wings won a wild and woolly affair, defeating the Nashville Predators 5-3, and Detroit's 43-33 shot advantage, 64-47 shot attempt advantage, ability to rally from a 2-1 deficit late in the 2nd, occurrence of Dylan Larkin's first fight and plain old craziness yielded perhaps the most terrifyingly entertaining Red Wings game in ages. This one was indeed, as Ken Daniels said, a "Green apple shuffle" (ahem).

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Krupa weighs in on the Wings’ defense

From the Detroit News's Gregg Krupa:

The decline of the Red Wings defense took some time and was prompted by various causes: retirements, injuries, failed draft choices, free agents who chose to play elsewhere, a disadvantageous trade market, some lagging development and the ill-timed departure of Pavel Datsyuk.

It also is likely to take time to fix.

Seeking improvement in two key areas, managing the puck and eliminating odd-man rushes, coach Jeff Blashill said he had a message for the Wings on Friday.

“I told the team this morning if we don’t improve in them we won’t be a good enough hockey team,” he said. “If we improve in them, we’ll get a chance to be a real good hockey team.”

Frustrating is that the only solution reasonably expected as of this October is the same as last October: Any improvement likely must come from within.

Someone from the current corps of defensemen grabbing a critical role by authoring a more consistently fine performance would help. But that was the hope last season, too.


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Here’s the Red Wings’ Wings-Predators Game Day Preview video

From Red Wings Productions and Ken Kal...

Update: WXYZ's Brad Galli interviewed PK Subban as well:

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“Everyone Needs To Be On The Same Page”

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

The focus for the Wings is playing with better structure after failing to do so for most of three of the first four games.

“Everyone needs to be on the same page,” Danny DeKeyser said. “We went over it today – limit turnovers, things like that. Not give the other offense easy chances to score.”

Blashill said he told the players this morning that if there isn’t improvement on puck managenet and on not giving up easy, out-numbered rushes against, “we won’t be a good enough hockey team. If we improve, we’ll get a chance to be a really good hockey team.”

Ott is with Luke Glendening and Drew Miller, reforming a line that was excellent during exhibition season. The trio played the first game (at Tampa Bay) but then Ott was scratched until today.

“They had real good chemistry in exhibition,” Blashill said. “They weren't bad against Tampa. They weren't great. It just gave me a chance to get AA in there a little bit. But I think that line can have good chemistry.


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Here’s the Griffins’ game-day preview ahead of their tilt vs. Rockford

From the Grand Rapids Griffins, via RedWingsFeed, here's a game-day preview video ahead of tonight's game against Rockford, starring Bob Kaser:

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Red Wings-Predators game-day articles: Sproul earns an opportunity to shine

Updated 8x at 2:28 PM: The Red Wings' morning skate revealed new lines and two changes to the lineup in Steve Ott and Ryan Sproul playing ahead of Andreas Athanasiou and Xavier Ouellet, respectively, as noted by MLive's Ansar Khan...

Looks like some line changes for #RedWings


Looks like Sproul might be in. He skated with Smith and is practicing on second PP unit. #RedWings


#RedWings power play units:
Tatar-Nielsen-Zetterberg, Vanek, Green
Nyquist-Larkin-Sheahan, Abdelkader, Sproul


Athanasiou is skating but looked like Ott was back with Glendening and Miller. #RedWings


On defense, is was DeKeyser-Green, Smith-Sproul, and I think Ericsson-Ouellet, maybe Marchenko. Kronwall also skating.


Will be Sproul's 2nd NHL game. Debut 4-13-14, season finale at STL, 18:25 (3:25 PP), 3 shots, 2 hits, 2 blocks, no pts in 3-0 win #RedWings

And Khan was first out of the chute with a text article regarding tonight's changes:

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WXYZ’s Galli shares picture of Wings’ Gordie Howe statue replica

FYI from WXYZ's Brad Galli:


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Mike Green’s Twitterview

Here are the questions that Mike Green answered during his "Twitterview":

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Custance answers a question about Jacob Trouba

In his Friday Insider-only mailbag, ESPN's Craig Custance answers a question regarding the possibility that Jacob Trouba might be traded to Detroit:

Living in Detroit, I hear Trouba’s name a lot and he’s exactly what this team needs. I just don’t see a fit from the Jets’ perspective. For this trade to happen, Winnipeg would have to change its asking price fairly dramatically, because there’s not a comparable left-shot defenseman in Detroit that would make sense.

As much as the Red Wings would love Trouba, I don’t see a match.

Cam Fowler is more realistic and may even be the preference for some in the organization. Detroit has top-six forwards who might tempt the Anaheim Ducks. The challenge is money. If the Ducks are trading Fowler, they’re doing it to clear cap space, and it doesn’t help the cause if Detroit builds a deal around, say, Tomas Tatar ($2.75 million cap hit) or Gustav Nyquist ($4.75 million).

They could help the cause by taking back a salary like Clayton Stoner's ($3.25 million this season and next) but now you’re talking about over $7 million in salary heading to Detroit with Fowler factored in. The Red Wings are currently up against the salary cap.

Like most teams right now, they’d have to look at a deal that is dollar-in and dollar-out, something that doesn’t necessarily benefit the Ducks. Now, if the Wings can find a taker for Jimmy Howard at full price ...

Custance continues...

Update: TSN's Pierre LeBrun addressed the Trouba situaiton as well:

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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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