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Prospect news: Hronek scores for Czechs at WJC; Finns on the ropes

Of prospect-related note:

At the World Junior Championship, Vili Saarijarvi took 3 shots, finishing at -1 in 21:45 of ice time as Finland lost 3-1 to Sweden. The Finns have to hope that Denmark beats Switzerland to advance to the playoff round;

Filip Hronek scored a goal on 4 shots in 25:36 of ice time as the Czechs lost 3-2 in OT to Denmark. TSN posted a Twitter video of Hronek's goal:

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Red Wings-Senators quick take: OT, Man-tha!

The Red Wings attempted to spoil the Ottawa Senators' party on Thursday night, playing against the Senators on Daniel Alfredsson jersey retirement night. The Red Wings were happy to take in the ceremony, but they also hoped to steal two points from their hosts.

The Wings scored the game's first goal, sagged as the 1st period went on, surrendered a pair of goals, and rallied from a 2-1 deficit to tie the game halfway through the 2nd...And they played through a muck-and-grind-fest of a 3rd period to earn a point, and, despite going 0-for-5 on the power play, a combination of good play from Coreau, better fundamentals from the skaters and a clutch game-winning goal from Anthony Mantha all added up to a huge 3-2 OT win over the Sens.

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St. James updates the statuses of Helm, Abdelkader and Green

The Free Press's Helene St. James updates the Wings' injury situations, reporting that Darren Helm, Justin Abdelkader and Mike Green remain sidelined with their respective injuries (as is Jimmy Howard, who will be back in mid-January):

Expectations that Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm might return soon have been scaled back, especially in Helm’s case. General manager Ken Holland told the Free Press Thursday that Helm will be out at least a couple more weeks, because doctors are being very conservative. Helm suffered a dislocated left shoulder Nov. 15. Should he come back too soon and re-aggravate the injury, the recovery process would take at least another 6-to-8 weeks, longer in case of surgery. Helm’s line with Thomas Vanek and Gustav Nyquist showed great chemistry before Vanek got hurt in late October.

Abdelkader, out since spraining a knee at the start of December, may be back during next week’s California trip, though he needs a handful of practices first, and practices are hard to come by given the hectic schedule. The Wings miss Abdelkader – he’s one of their few physical players, using his big body to create room.

Mike Green was lost to an upper body injury Dec. 17, and Holland said he did not “have a time frame” for Green’s return, adding “it might be a week or two, might be longer.”

St. James continues, and she adds this from Holland regarding the Wings' present circumstances:

“We understand if we don’t put something together, games are clicking by and we’re treading water or losing ground,” Holland said. “Everybody understands the urgency.”

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Evening news: A Game-Day Preview video; Centennial Classic stuff; on Coreau and Alfredsson

Of Red Wings-related note this evening:

1. Here's the Wings' Game-Day Preview video:

2. In Centennial Classic news, NHL.com posted a "diary" entry from Luke Glendening:

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NHL releases Centennial Classic Alumni Game Rosters

From the NHL:


TORONTO (Dec. 29, 2016) – The National Hockey League (NHL®), Detroit Red Wings® and the Toronto Maple Leafs® today jointly released the numerical rosters for the 2017 Rogers NHL Centennial Classic™ Alumni Game. The outdoor game will take place Saturday, Dec. 31, at Noon ET at Exhibition Stadium.

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Red Wings-Senators game-day articles (and Tweets): Coreau starts for Detroit; Sens reflect on Alfie

Updated at 2:25 PM: The Red Wings took an optional morning skate ahead of tonight's game against the Ottawa Senators (8 PM EST start on FSD/TSN 5/RDS/97.1 FM), and at the end of the skate, it was revealed that the Wings will start Perth, Ontario native Jared Coreau opposite Mike Condon this evening.

Coreau's start is a big deal:

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Red Wings post a trio of videos about the ‘97 Cup-winning team

The Red Wings produced a set of three in-arena videos for the game in which the team honored the 1997 Stanley Cup championship-winning team, and the Wings just uploaded the trio of videos to YouTube:

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Red Wings-Senators morning skate Tweets and articles: Coreau starts as Wings ‘take an optional’

The Detroit Red Wings kick off their 7-game road trip tonight against the Ottawa Senators (8 PM EST on FSD/TSN 5/RDS/97.1 FM), and while the Wings will happily take in part of Daniel Alfredsson's jersey retirement ceremony, the team would prefer to spoil the party once the puck is dropped during this late-starting game.

The Senators hit the ice a little closer to 11 AM for their morning skate:

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JvP keeping Switzerland ‘in it’ at the World Junior Championship

As noted last night, Red Wings goaltending prospect Joren van Pottelberghe stopped 42 of 46 shots as Team Switzerland lost 4-2 to Sweden at the World Junior Championship, and NHL.com's Joe Yerdon noted that van Pottelberghe is one of the better "stories" at the WJC:

Switzerland goalie van Pottelberghe strong in defeat: Goalie Joren van Pottelberghe (Detroit Red Wings) was the main reason why Switzerland was tied with Sweden until the final five minutes of the third period.

Van Pottelberghe made 42 saves and had Switzerland in position to force overtime until Eriksson Ek and defenseman Lucas Carlsson (Chicago Blackhawks) scored late in the third. In two games, van Pottelberghe has made 78 saves on 85 shots (.918 save percentage).

"It's a great booster when we know we have a guy in the back that can make saves when we need them," Switzerland captain Calvin Thurkauf (Columbus Blue Jackets) told the IIHF website. "Joren has been astonishing over the last two games. We hope we can count on that for the rest of the tournament."

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All about Matt Lorito

The Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner profiles the Grand Rapids Griffins' leading scorer, Matt Lorito, this morning:

Finding a replacement for last year's leading scorer Andy Miele wasn't an easy task for the Grand Rapids Griffins, who ultimately lucked out that Matt Lorito grew up a Detroit Red Wings fan.

Lorito has not only stepped in to provide scoring punch for the Griffins, but he has done it by shifting early in the season from center to his more natural position at wing. The result has been 10 goals and 32 points from the second-year pro, good for a share of second in the AHL.


Lorito led Albany in scoring (18-36-54) last season after a decorated career at Brown. He signed an amateur tryout agreement with the New Jersey Devils organization and, when he became a free agent after a productive first season, he liked the opportunity and fit with the Red Wings' organization.

"Anytime you get a chance to sign with an organization like this it's pretty exciting," said Lorito, who grew up in Oakville, Ontario, as a Red Wings fan even though Toronto was closer in proximity. I was a Leafs fans early on but as I started watching it on TV and getting to know more about hockey I gravitated toward the Wings," he said. "So it (signing) was a dream come true."

Wallner continues...

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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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