The Malik Report
Updated 3x at 12:35 PM: The Red Wings will try to extend their points streak to 11 games against the Washington Capitals this evening (7:30 PM on NBCSN with Ken Daniels and Pierre McGuire/Sportsnet/97.1 FM). Normally, this post is Tweet-based, but a couple of articles popped up overnight, so:
1. The Capitals' website posted several notes about tonight's game in their "Capitals Today" press release:
Hockey's Future's Ryan Womeldorf examines the Red Wings' Major Junior-playing prospects, and the headliner is, well, the headliner:
Evgeny Svechnikov, LW, Cape Breton Screaming Eagles
Drafted: 1st round (19th overall), 2015
After just one season in North America, the big Russian (6-2, 200) had already made quite the name for himself. With a 32-goal, 78-point debut effort in the QMJHL for Cape Breton, Svechnikov became one of the hottest prospects heading into the 2015 NHL Draft and the Red Wings were all too happy to snap up the power forward with the goal-scorer’s hands.
The 2015-16 season has already been a strong one for Svechnikov and the Screaming Eagles. Cape Breton is currently second in the Q’s Maritimes Division, just one point back of division leader Moncton. Svechnikov, meanwhile, has appeared in 27 of the team’s 33 games so far and has notched 17 goals and 22 assists. He’s on pace to best his goal total of a year ago and generally has looked like the dynamic power forward the Red Wings envisioned when they selected him.
Svechnikov still has a long way to go in his development – he recently just turned 19 – but he appears to be a future top-six forward for the Red Wings going forward.
The 15-8-and-4 Red Wings face quite the test in battling the 18-5-and-2 Washington Capitals Tuesday evening (7:30 PM on NBCSN with Ken Daniels and Pierre McGuire providing commentary/97.1 FM; yes, this is Mike Green's return to Washington, too), marking the Wings' third and final match-up with the Capitals this season.
In a vacuum, this game is a tough task in itself; the fact that it kicks of a slate of 3 games in 4 nights against the Capitals on the road, then the Atlantic and East-leading Canadiens at home on Thursday and the suddenly surging Devils in Newark this Friday adds up to a particularly difficult week for the unbeaten-in-10 Wings.
Our friends broadcasting the game, a.k.a. NBCSN, provide a fine preview of tonight's action:
Okay, let's tally them up:
- Joe Hicketts is going to Hockey Canada's World Junior selection camp, where his coach from the Victoria Royals, Dave Lowry, will coach the team. Hicketts is being touted as a possible captain or alternate captain;
- Christoffer Ehn and Axel Holmstrom were named to Team Sweden's World Junior preliminary roster earlier today;
- NHL.com reports that Vili Saarijarvi has been named to Team Finland's preliminary WJC roster;
- And we already know that Evgeny Svechnikov will play in the World Juniors for Russia;
- Who else: Winging It in Motown's SlapShotgoal reports that Joren Van Pottelberghe has been invited to Switzerland's World Junior Selection camp, and that makes it 6 Wings prospects who are highly likely to play in the World Junior Championships.
Updated 2x at 6:30 PM: After taking part in a short practice at Joe Louis Arena, the Red Wings hopped an early afternoon flight to Washington, where they'll face a potentially Karl Alzner and Marcus Johanssen-less Washington Capitals team on Tuesday (7:30 PM on NBCSN).
The 15-8-and-4 Wings will be looking up at the 18-5-and-2 Capitals, who are coming off a 3-2 loss to Winnipeg this past Saturday, but the Wings have earned points in 10 straight games (7-0-and-3), including Saturday's 5-4 OT win over Nashville.
Monday's practice included the Wings keeping the lines that Jeff Blashill placed together during the 2nd and 3rd periods of the Predators game, and the coach told the assembled media that he'll name his starter for Tuesday's game at the morning skate.
MLive's Brendan Savage kicks off our "article" coverage of Monday's practice with a video of Wings coach Jeff Blashill discussing the match-up with Washington and the current status of the Wings' "process" of evolving into an elite team:
In the prospect department, via RedWingsFeed, the Grand Rapids Griffins are announcing a very strange move given that both Grand Rapids and the Toledo Walleye, who are without starter Jeff Lerg, play on Wednesday:
The Detroit Red Wings have reassigned goaltender Jake Paterson from the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye to the Grand Rapids Griffins.
Detroit’s second choice (80th overall) in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, Paterson has appeared in 10 games with the Walleye during his first professional season. The Mississauga, Ontario, native posts a 5-3-1-1 record between the pipes for the division-leading Walleye to go along with 0.922 save percentage and a 2.48 goals against average.
Of prospect-related note:
Also, from Kelowna Rockets commentator Regan Bartel:
[edit: We'll find out whether Turgeon made the Americans' preliminary WJC roster cut today at 3:30 PM /end edit]
Updated 7x at 12:37 PM: The Red Wings hit the ice just before 11 AM to practice ahead of tomorrow night's game against the Washington Capitals.
Red Wings lines at practice:
As did DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose...
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
Here are five things to watch this week:
Mr. Green goes to Washington
Mike Green returns to Washington on Tuesday. That's where he played for 10 seasons as one of the league's most prolific offensive defensemen. Green has shown flashes of his offensive ability since returning from a shoulder injury, with nine points (goal, eight assists) in 14 games.
The teams split two games at JLA last month – the Red Wings prevailed 1-0 on Nov. 10 behind Petr Mrazek's 38-save performance and the Capitals won 2-1 on Nov. 18 on Evgeny Kuznetsov's overtime goal.
Alex Ovechkin has registered 21 of his league-high 124 shots against the Red Wings. Braden Holtby leads the NHL in wins (16) and goals-against average (1.95).
Washington is 7-2-1 in its past 10 vs. Detroit and has won five of its past six home games against the Red Wings....
Can Jurco establish himself in lineup?
Long-term injuries to Drew Miller and Teemu Pulkkinen enabled Joakim Andersson and Tomas Jurco to get into the lineup on Saturday. Andersson likely will continue to play because he kills penalties, but what about Jurco?
Jurco, who's appeared in only six games, will have difficulty cracking the top nine. As long as he's on the fourth line, he'll need to alter his offensive mindset to a more grinding role. He'll need to skate, play physical and focus on not getting scored against.
If he can't adjust, the Red Wings might be inclined to play someone from Grand Rapids. They are expected to recall a forward this week so they have an extra in case of injury.
‘Roughly Translated’: Nicklas Lidstrom’s Swedish biography, ‘Captain Fantastic,’ comes out this week
Via RedWingsFeed, Expressen's Simon Norberg has penned a preview of Nicklas Lidstrom's biography, Lidstrom: Captain Fantastic, and unsurprisingly, the excerpt-and-interview focuses upon the most painful injury of Lidstrom's career, his lacerated testicle suffered during the Western Conference Final in 2009.
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.