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The Malik Report

Ken Holland interviews 1 and 2 of 2: Red Wings GM talks roster philosophy

Updated at 7:58 PM with interview #2: As we await the start of Game 3 of the Grand Rapids Griffins-Syracuse Crunch series (7 PM EDT, AHLLive.com/WOOD Radio), Red Wings GM Ken Holland appeared on ESPN 96.1 this afternoon, and I'll post that sometime during the game as their podcast page updates...

But he already appeared on WDFN's Matt Sheppard show this morning, and MLive's Josh Slaghter annotated Holland's points of emphasis, noting that Holland tried to explain the rationale behind the concept of "rebuilding on the fly" instead of taking the Big Red Machine apart:

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Is Pierre McGuire ‘terrible?’ You bet, but he’s wonderfully terrible, and that’s the problem

This is coming from multiple sources on Twitter--a bunch of smart people in both the mainstream media and the blogosphere--but this quip from NBC Sports' executive producer Sam Flood, as noted by Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch, is more than a little bit surprising:

• Pierre McGuire's work has drawn very loud supporters and detractors, even though his position in the broadcast would suggest neutrality. Does NBC consider him a polarizing broadcaster? Said Flood: "I consider Pierre to be the gold standard, The position of being inside the glass was created because of Pierre. His skill set is uniquely suited to telling stories on air. His knowledge of the game and background of every player on the ice is incredible. He is a huge asset. He won an Emmy Award this year for obvious reasons. The sad thing about how society is today is there are a small group of people who shout loud and hide behind blogger names and fraudulent titles and attack people. They attack Cris Collinsworth. They attack Al Michaels. They attack Pierre McGuire. They attack Mike Milbury. They attack Keith Jones. They are a bunch of chickens who hide behind their Twitter names and attack people. Shame on them. If you want to say something, say it with your name behind it. But if you want to hide behind funny little names on the Internet, be my guest. But shame on you."

My name is George Malik, and I think that Pierre McGuire is indeed terrible...In no small part because he could be an absolutely fantastic broadcaster if he could dial back his enthusiasm 2 or 3% to not sound like someone who is committing the broadcast equivalent of USING ALL CAPITAL LETTERS ALL THE TIME ZOMG I'M MANICALLY EXCITED and if he could be a wee bit less chummy during the interviews with players and coaches where he comes off as downright cuddly and, as such, slightly creepy.

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Griffins-Crunch Game 3 game-day updates: on prospect growth and a Van Andel sell-out

Updated 4x at 1:40 PM: The stories regarding Game 3 of the Grand Rapids Griffins' Calder Cup Final series against the Syracuse Crunch this evening (7 PM EDT, AHLLive.com/WOOD Radio) got shoved to the bottom of the overnight report, but the Griffins' Twitter account is quite busy this morning with Grifins status updates, including a notice that tickets are going VERY fast for tonight's game, as well as Friday and Saturday's Games 4 and 5...

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Khan: How will the Red Wings determine Damien Brunner’s worth?

The Red Wings, Damien Brunner and Brunner's agent, Neil Sheehy have quite the pickle on their hands in attempting to determine what Brunner is "worth" in terms of both importance and monetary compensation thanks to what was an incredibly small sample size of his performance.

Brunner earned a total of $1.4425 million this past season, or at least 48 games' worth of said salary, and in theory, a 27-year-old who scored the 82-game-season equivalent of 20.5 goals and 44 points--or, in Brunner's case, 12 goals and 26 points over the course of 44 games played--should be able to command about $3 million, if not more than that, on the open market...

But the fact that he's played one NHL season and has had one solid playoff run is probably vexing both the Wings and Sheehy, as MLive's Ansar Khan suggests:

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Red Wings overnight report: on over-building the roster, Hawks-piration and the Griffins

Beware: auto-play highlight clips lurk within (sorry): I've at least spent a bordering-on-ridiculous amount of time talking about the Red Wings' possible free agency plans and their possible ramifications for current roster players, and I made sure to suggest that it is entirely possible that the Wings may simply try to re-sign UFA's-to-be Damien Brunner, Daniel Cleary and Drew Miller, ink their RFA's in Gustav Nyquist, Joakim Andersson, Brendan Smith and Jakub Kindl to new deals, to swing hard at a top-six, goal-scoring forward and/or a top-pair defenseman and, if they strike out...

Do nothing save prepare for Tomas Tatar's graduation to full-time NHL player status, buy out Mikael Samuelsson, and then wait until the eve of the regular season to see how the team's glut of forwards and defensemen (see: the possible returns of Darren Helm and Todd Bertuzzi possibly making Patrick Eaves, Cory Emmerton and even Jordin Tootoo trade bait, and the incredibly high likelhood that the team moves Carlo Colaiacovo) compete against each other during training camp and the exhibition season, allowing the players to determine who stays and who goes by the time that the Wings have to comply to the $64.3 million upper limit and 23-man roster on "the last day of training camp" (i.e. after the last exhibition game).

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Yes, both goalies and players’ gear need to be tweaked, but going too far is literally dangerous

Sportsnet's Mark Spector had a conversation with NHLPA special assistant to the executive director and competition committee member Mathieu Schneider about attempts to reduce the number of blocked shots and re-tweak goaltending equipment to increase scroring, and while I'm no fan of the fact that John Tortorella's mandate that each and every member of the New York Rangers block shots, to the point that the Rangers' equipment staff worked with equipment manufacturers to place composite shot-blocking protectors on the backhand of every player's hockey gloves...

The question of decreasing protective equipment is always a delicate one. Sure, as Spector and Schneider note, Gregory Campbell being called a hero for breaking his leg blocking a shot is...Let's say there's a fine line between heroism and stupidity in hockey...

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Grand Rapids Griffins Tuesday practice news: Van Andel will be packed Wednesday all’s well otherwise

The Grand Rapids Griffins and Syracuse Crunch (with inspirational material in tow) took to the ice to prepare for Game 3 of the Calder Cup Finals tomorrow evening (7 PM EDT, AHLLive.com/WOOD Radio), but as of 6 PM EDT on Tuesday, the Syracuse Post-Standard's Lindsay Kramer offers us a story about scrached Crunch players Jared Nightingale and J-F Jacques trying to keep their heads up while literally playing supporting roles...

As the ice resurfacer circled around them after a Syracuse Crunch practice earlier this week, defenseman Jared Nightingale and Lightning player development coach Stacy Roest moved to the middle of the rink to avoid getting run over.

Nightingale kept asking questions and Roest responded with animated gestures. Roest once played with legendary Detroit blueliner Nicklas Lidstrom, and Nightingale wanted Roest to pass on a few tips from that time.

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Wings goalie coach Jim Bedard doesn’t believe CHL’s proposed import goalie ban will help kids

Paul noted that the Canadian Hockey League--which is the umbrella organization representing the three Major Junior hockey leagues that are the Ontario Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League--may or may not be planning on banning European-born goaltenders to protect what some elements in the CHL believe is a present as well as future threat to the development of American and especially Canadian-born goaltenders.

Yahoo Sports' Sunaya Sapurji spoke to Red Wings goaltending coach Jim Bedard about the issue, and Bedard believes that the plain old fact that playing goal is incredibly expensive, especially in terms of having to buy and then replace gear as growing players no longer fit in to their equipment, isn't getting enough attention...

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Savage ponders where Jordin Tootoo fits in with the Red Wings going forward

This qualifies as an emptying-out-the-notebook article, but MLive's Brendan Savage offers points regarding Jordin Tootoo's up-and-down season with the Red Wings that are worth repeating.

Tootoo wound up taking a prominent role as a forechecking forward as well as a "shift disturber" and enforcer over the course of 42 games played during his 2013 season capaign with the Wings, but Tootoo only played in one playoff game, and both Wings fans and the team's media corps wondered why a player the team will be paying a total of $4 million over the next two seasons was a healthy scratch.

About thirteen months ago, Tootoo made some Ian White-style comments regarding his future with the Predators after spending the team's first-round series against Detroit in the press box, but this time around, as Savage noted, Tootoo was much more circumspect about his status...

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Red Wings mid-day news: Griffins talk, a matter of interpretation, the ‘Howe Trophy’ and rambling

The Grand Rapids Griffins were back on the ice this morning in Grand Rapids, preparing for Games 3, 4 and 5 of the AHL's Calder Cup Final against Syracuse.

The games take place on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, respectively, and if you're wondering about attending, I can tell you that the tickets are being sold through the Griffins' website and from their ticket office for anywhere from $14-36 per game, and the Griffins are not expecting to sell out, so "good seats remain available."

The Syracuse Post-Standard's Lindsay Kramer offers a Griffins-related quip...

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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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