The Malik Report
from The Hockey News,
X-FACTOR: Still recovering from the retirement of all-time great Nicklas Lidstrom, the development of Detroit’s young defense corps will be a key to watch this season. The back end started to solidify by playoff time with the ascension of Danny DeKeyser and Brendan Smith, so the promise is there. But these guys are still in their youth as NHL players and will have hiccups from time to time. Jonathan Ericsson still needs to bring more to the table. Niklas Kronwall has stepped up as a capable leader of the blueline – but how strong will the depth be over 82 games?
PERIPHERAL PREDICTION: At least one of Detroit’s young forwards (Tomas Tatar, Gustav Nyquist, Joakim Andersson) brings way more to the table than anyone guesses – because that’s what Red Wings do.
ATLANTIC NO. 2: DETROIT RED WINGS
more on the Wings...
As reported by the beat writers...
Alfredsson and Franzen on the ice, Helm left after drills and no update on Eaves, who is not skating.
I will update this post as needed.
added 1:30pm, Chuck Pleiness with a video of Babcock talking briefly about last night's game and a few injury updates.
Watch it below...
Detroit, MI... Four-time Stanley Cup champion and seven-time Norris Trophy winner Nick Lidstrom has committed to play in the 2013 Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings Alumni Showdown™ on Tuesday, Dec. 31 at Comerica Park. Lidstrom joins many former teammates who will take part in the contest, which is part of a series of games that leads up to the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® between the Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday, Jan. 1 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich.
from Joe Haggerty of CSNNE,
Detroit coach Mike Babcock and the rest of the Wings braintrust brought a pretty loaded training camp roster with them to Boston: Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Niklas Kronwall, Jimmy Howard and Justin Abdelkader led the parade of NHL players that were in the lineup. That was in sharp contract to a Bruins lineup that included 19-year-old Malcolm Subban in his first NHL starting spot along with such immortals as Rob Flick, Craig Cunningham and Nick Johnson among others.
Needless to say Babcock felt like he saw the 8-2 final score coming when he looked at the players suiting up for both teams, and didn’t feel like his Wings got much accomplished in spite of the landslide victory.
“They got a young kid in net. It didn’t go the way [Subban] wanted. The other thing is, Claude [Julien] chose the lineup tonight. I brought more than he had in the lineup. He had no [Patrice] Bergeron’s line. He had no [Chris] Kelly’s line,” said Babcock. “To be honest with you, I’d rather the score be 4-2 and it was a regular game, right? Things got away on the young guy. One of the things as a young player in this league, you get lessons. That was a lesson night tonight.”
Hopefully George is resting and will do so through at least Saturday morning.
I am not going to give you all the details on the game and I probably will not be doing a post-game blog either, but that should not stop you from discussing the game tonight.
All I know about the game is the Bruins plan to play Malcom Subban the full game in goal and if you are in the Boston area, you can watch a live stream here.
Otherwise, the game is on FoxSports Detroit and the puck drops just after 7:00p, ET.
Of course, I will return if something major happens, but I need a bit of rest too. So see you tomorrow unless events call for another post tonight.
Ansar Khan of Mlive with a look at Jacub Kindl,
Jakub Kindl took a significant step last season, but Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock colorfully illustrated how far the 26-year-old defenseman has to go.
“In the hundred-mile journey, he just finished lap five,'' Babcock said.
At least Kindl is in the race. That wasn't the case at the start of the lockout-shortened 2013 season, when he appeared to have a rough road ahead of him....
“Just poise and confidence, and he still has to compete way harder without the puck,'' Babcock said. “But he does some really good things with the puck and he got better and better, and he has to continue to get better and better.
“Him and I talked about that this morning. But you can talk about all of our D in the same way.”
Kindl led Red Wings defensemen and was second on the club with a plus-15 rating, to go along with four goals and nine points in 41 games.
from Bill Roose of DetroitRedWings.com,
Brendan Smith entered his ‘full’ NHL season with a reputation for being an offensive defenseman, but the Red Wings would like for him to modify his game.
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock has instructed Smith to be more responsible on defense and less offensive-minded, which often times led to turnovers last season.
“Be a real good defender, a real good penalty-killer, a real good puck guy, who moves the puck quickly,” Babcock said. “The offensive stuff will look after itself, but less plays where you force something. Just play simple.”
More than three years ago, Smith was the talk of a college hockey world infatuated with his offensive acumen. In his third and final season at the University of Wisconsin, Smith was the only defenseman to finish among the nation’s top 65 scorers. His 52 points, which included 15 goals, ranked him No. 9 in the country and put him in the running for the Hobey Baker Award that year.
The adjustment will take some getting used to, Smith said.
This via the Dreger Report at TSN,
The NHL's Board of Governors meet on Monday in New York.
As per usual, this meeting will serve as a 'state of the NHL' update.
Franchise matters ranging from the expected sale of the Florida Panthers, the sale of the New Jersey Devils and the latest on the Ilitch family's ownership transfer in Detroit will be covered by the commissioner's office.
Some around the league expect future expansion to find its way into discussions at the board level on Monday as well.
If Seattle's plan to construct a new building is followed through, it's believed Seattle will remain of interest to the NHL. However, sources say there isn't going to be a major expansion plan or push given the improved financial stability of all 30 NHL teams anytime soon.
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
Detroit Red Wings forward Patrick Eaves is being evaluated after sustaining a lower-body injury in practice today at Joe Louis Arena.
The club said it hoped to have an update on his condition later today or tomorrow.
Eaves went down in front of the net, holding his knee in pain. He had to be helped off the ice by teammates.
Eaves was not schedule to play in tonight's preseason game at Boston (7 p.m., Fox Sports Detroit):
Here is the lineup for tonight's game:
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.