The Malik Report
Regarding the Red Wings' summer development camp and its lack of returning Griffins/Walleye players:
The Red Wings' want me to let you know that there wasn't an "opt-out" option for Griffins--the Wings' coaches and management chose to bring the roster here that they brought here, and in the specific case of Martin Frk, the Wings were going to bring him up here until they drafted 6 forwards.
[edit/update: So stop bagging on the guy--he apparently received some rude comments after it was found out that he wasn't participating in the camp, and neither he, Marek Tvrdon, Colin Campbell or any of the other players that I know of who aren't at the camp "opted out." The Wings view this more and more as an orientation camp, and so the conspicuous absences will be back for the fall tournament /end edit].
Updated w/ St. James audio at 8:50 AM: The Red Wings' summer development camp continues with its second and last day of dedicated skill development practices starting at 9 AM today at Centre Ice Arena, and the camp will wrap up with an 11 AM scrimmage on Tuesday.
I focused on "Team Yzerman" during yesterday's drills, and today, I'll be watching "Team Lidstrom," who are undoubtedly led by the turning-pro Andreas Athanasiou. The Traverse City Record-Eagle's Chris Dobrowolski spoke with Athanasiou regarding the importance of this summer camp as an event that can build the foundation for his first pro season...
Updated 2x at 9:23 AM: The Red Wings' truncated summer camp schedule took a turn for the..."I guess we'll have to wait and see what the prospects and team thinks" today, and its schedule will continue (prior tomorrow's in-person training camp ticket sale at noon) as follows...
8:45 am – 9:30 am Team Yzerman off ice work out
9:00 am – 9:45 am Team Lidstrom practice
10:00 am Team Yzerman skating
10:00 am Team Lidstrom skills
10:25 am Team Yzerman skills
10:25 Team Lidstrom skating
11:00 – 11:45 am Team Yzerman practice
11:00 am Team Lidstrom off ice workout
The camp will conclude with an 11 AM scrimmage on Tuesday.
The skill and skating drills for this summer's camp were completely absent Tomas Storm (skills) or Andy Weidenbach (skating), and the sessions only really lasted for 25-to-30 minutes. Previous camps used to anywhere between 45 and 60 minutes spent on each set of drills, and those sessions wouldn't last for 2 days (this camp ends with an 11 AM scrimmage on Tuesday); instead, the skill and skating drills would go on for 4 or 5 days, and the "team drill" portion of the camp wasn't nearly as important.
WXYZ's "7 Sports Cave's" Brad Galli, Matt Sheppard and Dave Birkett spoke about the issue at the 7-minute mark of their hour-long weekly show, and the Oakland Press's Pat Caputo also addressed the issue I have yet to be able to speak with Ken Holland about up here at the summer development camp. The Red Wings whiffed in the free agency market, and it has the town--the state, and Red Wings fans all over the world--jittery:
The Red Wings have had one of the things other NHL organizations have generally lacked – stability. Yet, it’s like it has been turned around on them.
For many Red Wings’ fans, their general manager is clueless and their coach a tyrant nobody wants to play for, because of the free agent failure this summer.
There has to be a trade coming, right? The Red Wings have been looking for a right-handed shooting defenseman since Brian Rafalski retired.
Aside from Richard Nedomlel, who was out with an undisclosed and very minor injury, all of the prospects who took part in yesterday's scrimmage skated in today's team practices and skill drills at the Red Wings' summer development camp, and Alexey Marchenko took more than a few turns prior to the main practice, skating on his own, speaking with the medical staff a few times, and helping Jim Bedard and his assistant warm up the goalies prior to Team Yzerman's skate.
T'was dark, but this is mine, and I think Marchenko had surgery on his left ankle (the side of his broken ankle was never revealed) as he was testing his left leg gingerly. Given that he's 10 days out from having two surgical screws removed, however, he looked good, and he engaged in a workout with the morning group, so all is well:
The Red Wings' summer campers took part in both "team" drills and a set of skating and skill development drills--minus Andy Weidenbach and Tomas Storm--and the players seemed to do pretty darn well given the fatigue they were battling from the previous day's scrimmage, though I will tell you about some "bunny hop" drills in which several prospects took spills later.
In terms of the interviews I was able to snag, myself and Kevin Sporka spoke with Julius Vahatalo for about seven minutes, and after dealing with a pair of Swedes whose English was better than mine in Axel Holmstrom and Christoffer Ehn, Vahatalo's halting English was a surprise. Vahatalo said that he's dealing with some significant adjustments in terms of playing on a narrower rink and at a faster North American pace, but he seemed to be taking in quite a bit from the camp, and the 6'5," 191-pound winger from TPS Turku was forthright regarding his strengths and what he needs to work on, as well as the camp experience as a whole:
The Red Wings' summer development campers will take part in a pair of skating-and-skill development practices at Centre Ice Arena today and tomorrow, and I'm guessing that the fatigue setting in after Saturday's scrimmage might yield some...Interesting interpretations of power skating coach Andy Weidenbach and skill development coach Tomas Storm's drills.
This morning, the Red Wings posted a photo gallery chronicling yesterday's practices (note the almost complete absence of Reebok gear save the Ribcor sticks), and the Traverse City Record-Eagle's Chris Dobrowolski profiled Dylan Larkin and Dominic Turgeon.
Both players are a little over a week removed from having been drafted, so both players told Dobrowolski that they've experienced a slight culture shock while taking part in their first professional hockey camps:
The rink was packed to the gills for the Red Wings summer development campers' first scrimmage today, and it's not a cliche to say that while Team Yzerman beat Team Lidstrom 3-2, "A good time was had by all." A good chunk of the summer campers were engaging in their first real "game" since March or April, so it was a bit of a defensive struggle (and Jiri Fischer said that the no-fighting rule remains in place, so there was some chippiness, but no silliness), and Christoffer Ehn said that the players found out about their linemates right before the game, so there was a bit of a learning curve...
But once everybody settled down, the pace was good--in two 25-minute periods in which the last 15 minutes were "stoppage time"--and I think Jeff Blashill, who didn't coach the teams (RPI coach Seth Appert and Wings video coordinator Keith McKittrick coached Team Yzerman, and Griffins assistant coach Jim Paek and Walleye coach Derek Lalonde coached Team Lidstrom) would've been happiest about the fact that the teams tended to employ an up-tempo, puck possession system of play--just the kind of system of play Blashill's trying to imprint upon nearly 40 youngsters who are mostly used to dump-and-chase hockey.
Tomorrow's schedule of events at Centre Ice Arena looks like this:
Red Wings summer development camp 2014, day 2: interviews w/ Marchenko, Ehn, Nedomlel and Fischer II
The Red Wings' summer prospect campers held their first scrimmage today (they have another one scheduled for Tuesday), and Team Lidstrom defeated Team Yzerman 3-2. The players had a yoga class scheduled for shortly after the game, and they came streaming past me preparing for said class.
Yoga? O Rly? Ya Rly.
Myself, Brendan Savage, Hooked on Hockey's Kevin Sporka and the Hockey Writers' Zackary Landers were able to speak with Alexey Marchenko,and I didn't think that we were going to be able to get him again.
Well I will take this news with my $2 ham sandwich (Oleson's Market's deli section powers my summer development camp coverage): the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness reports that Danny DeKeyser did not file for salary arbitration (via RedWingsFeed), and DeKeyser was apparently the only Wing who could do so:
The Wings’ only eligible player for salary arbitration, defenseman Danny DeKeyser, as expected chose not to file by the deadline.
DeKeyser and Tomas Tatar are Detroit’s two remaining restricted free agents.
The team will get deals done with both players by the time training camp opens in September.
The Wings have already re-signed Riley Sheahan and tendered qualifying offers to those they planned on keeping.
Updated 2x at 2:20 PM: The Red Wings' summer development campers held simultaneous practices from 9 to 9:45 AM today, ahead of this afternoon's scrimmage (3 PM at Centre Ice Arena), so I had to play "pick a team" (this is the least-favorite game for someone who goes ga-ga about taking in hockey information).
I had watched the star-heavy Team Yzerman (Mantha, Larkin, Holmstrom, etc.) for the most part on Friday, so today, I watched the goalies warm up in the West Rink, and when I realized that Team Lidstrom was going to practice in David's Rink...
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.