The Malik Report
Of prospect-related note:
In the ECHL, the Toledo Walleye are now Marek Tvrdon-free, and Tvrdon was nearly a point-per-game player, but the Walleye had no trouble scoring against the Indy Fuel, receiving a goal and an assist from Dominic Zombo and goals from Alden Hirschfeld and Josh Shalla--as well as 33 saves from Jeff Lerg--as the Walleye defeated Indy 4-3. The Walleye's website posted a recap:
The Detroit Red Wings did what was necessary to finally win in regulation on Sunday vs. the Calgary Flames:
Detroit rallied from a 1-0 deficit, Detroit pushed away from the Calgary Flames with a 3-goal second period, and while Detroit did give up a 3-2 goal late, Detroit kept the hammer down, eventually salting the game away with an empty-netter as the Red Wings defeated Calgary 4-2.
This game wasn't extraordinary per se, but for a Wings team that was winless in 3, facing a Flames team that had won 7 of 8 (and was peeved having dropped a game yesterday in St. Louis), the Red Wings overcame a slightly slow start by playing simple, efficient and determined hockey against a Flames team that is now as skilled as it is physical.
As a result, the Red Wings slowly but surely established themselves as the dominant team, and while their power play didn't deliver (again) and there were some hiccups (as usual), this was as efficient a game as the Wings have played in a month, and when you move the puck out of trouble in a hurry thanks to lots of defensive support, minimize your time in the neutral zone and sustain presence and puck control in the offensive zone, you're gonna win games.
The Wings' 800th win at the Joe is something of a blueprint for the Wings going forward, not only for Tuesday's pre-Christmas finale against New Jersey, but also thereafter, when the road schedule gets gnarly.
Many thanks to Anders B. Jansson and Niklas Drake for heads-ups on this:
SVT.se's Marie Lehmann spoke with Pavel Datsyuk in his hometown of Yekaterinburg, Russia last summer (during his summer hockey school) as part of a biographical profile, and the Swedish website posted the half-hour video--which is mostly in English, and is incredibly revelatory--today on SVT.se. You should be able to watch this in the U.S. and Canada.
Hockey Canada announced its roster for the World Junior Championships an hour ago, and this guy will be playing on Canada's blueline:
Evening news: Wings-Flames game-day articles; on Nosek and Ouellet’s call-ups, Larkin & the 1st pair
Of Red Wings-related note this evening:
The Red Wings posted a game-day preview video...
As did the Flames:
Updated 6x at 2:12 PM: The Red Wings are getting the "Hometown Hockey" treatment on Sportsnet prior to tonight's game between Detroit and Calgary (7 PM EST on FSD/Sportsnet/97.1 FM), with Sportsnet broadcasting from Sarnia, Ontario (for those of you not geographically familiar with Michigan, Sarnia is the city across the St. Clair River from Port Huron, Michigan). There are some Wings alumni in tow for tonight's broadcast, including Sarnia native Dino Ciccarelli and Leamington's Darren McCarty:
Red Wings-Flames morning skate Tweets: Zetterberg in, Ericsson ‘a game-time decision’; Mrazek starts
The Red Wings will have their hands full when they host the Calgary Flames this evening (7 PM EST on FSD/Sportsnet/97.1 FM) as Calgary's loss in St. Louis ended a 7-game winning streak.
Sportsnet is giving the Wings the full treatment as Hometown Hockey will precede the game from Sarnia, Ontario, and they've posted a video previewing some of the key players to watch this evening:
In the article department, USA Today's sports staff wrote a list of "Christmas wishes" for each and every NHL team, and Kristen Shilton believes that the Red Wings need a little mental fortitude to reclaim their form:
The Grand Rapids Griffins had to rally for a comeback win against the Texas Stars last night, but there was no need to do so en route to the team's 14th straight win.
On Saturday night, Antony Mantha, Andreas Athanasiou (who potted a Gordie Howe hat trick), Tomas Nosek and Andy Miele had a goal and an assist apiece, Martin Frk had a goal and 2 assists, Daniel Cleary had 2 assists and Jared Coreau stopped 28 of 29 shots as the Griffins defeated the Texas Stars 6-1. The Griffins' website posted a recap:
The 16-9-and-7 Red Wings face a particularly stiff task in snapping their 3-game winless streak against the 15-15-and-2 Calgary Flames this evening (7 PM EST on FSD/Sportsnet/97.1 FM).
The Flames ended a 7-game winning streak in the form of a 3-2 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Saturday, and while they started slowly, they nearly rallied from a 3-0 deficit in the 3rd period, scoring 2 goals.
Ater the game, Flames captain Mark Giordano was blunt while speaking with the Associated Press:
The loss snapped a seven-game win streak for the Flames (15-15-2), who were 7-0 in December after going 3-8-1 in October and 5-6-1 in November. Calgary, which fell to 5-10-2 on the road, finishes off a four-game road trip on Sunday in Detroit.
"The positive is we've won seven in a row before tonight and lost one game," Giordano said. "Now we have an opportunity tomorrow to finish three-and-one on this road trip which is a big road trip for us. We've got to come out tomorrow ready to play, better off the hop. It starts with me."
NHL.com's Louie Korac will pick up the game narrative from there:
From the Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner and the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness:
MLive's Ansar Khan confirms:
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.