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AA on the breakaway = 3-1 Griffins lead

Andreas Athanasiou's 3-1 breakaway goal in the Grand Rapids current 5-1-leading game over the Lake Erie Monsters was a thing of beauty:

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Datsyuk loses another(?) tooth

According to Sovetsky Sport's Dmitry Hrstich, Sport-Express's Alexei Shevchenko and Championat's Anna Ovichnnikova, Pavel Datsyuk will be spending more time in the dentist's office this summer.

Datsyuk apparently lost a tooth thanks to a hit from Swiss defenseman Robin Grossmann that went unpenalized, and the Russians were quite upset about the "dirty play" of the Swiss in Russia's 5-1 win over Switzerland today.

R-Sport's Alexander Rogulev reports that there wasn't any clarification as to whether Datsyuk lost the same tooth that Victor Hedman chipped out of Datsyuk's mouth in the series against Tampa Bay.

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Griffins game-day preview: GR-LEM Game 5

The Grand Rapids Griffins posted a game-day preview video ahead of tonight's Game 5 against Lake Erie (7 PM EDT on The AHL Live/ESPN 96.1 FM), and Griffins announcer Bob Kaser sets up the game in today's game-day preview video. According to Griffins coach Todd Nelson, Jared Coreau will start this evening:

Here are the AHL's game notes:

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Red Wings at the World Championship: Jurco, Slovakia shut out by Canada

Wrapping up a busy day at the World Championship: Tomas Jurco and Slovakia were shut out 5-0 by Canada on Saturday evening, and Jurco had a rough night, finishing at -2 with no shots in only 10:56 of ice time.

Here are the game's highlights:

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Red Wings at the World Championship: Datsyuk registers assist, Marchenko +4 in win over Switzerland

Pavel Datsyuk and Alexey Marchenko had quietly solid games in Russia's 5-1 win over Switzerland today. They were somewhat quiet in no small part because Alex Ovechkin, Yegeni Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov were all in the lineup, bumping Datsyuk down to the team's 2nd/3rd line center's role and Marchenko and Nikita Zaitsev down to the third pair.

Datsyuk was still a defensive stalwart, and he drew two consecutive penalties in the third period (a trip and a check from behind by Grossmann), but his teammates took until the final minute to adjust to Datsyuk's pass-the-puck-immediately tendencies, when Datsyuk passed to Sergei Moyzakin, and Moyzakin made no mistake in firing home the 5-1 goal.

Datsyuk was also beating his defensemen to the puck on back-checking plays, so his wheels may not be what they used to be, but he's compensating by being in the right position at the right time, much like Nicklas Lidstrom did later in his career.

Datsyuk had an assist and finished at +1 in 17:09 of ice time, not bad given a slight demotion; Marchenko finished at +4 in 13:57 of ice time.

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Red Wings at the World Championship: Nyquist scores again for Sweden; Pulkkinen plays 6:31

At the World Championship...

Gustav Nyquist scored the game's first goal in Sweden's 3-2 win over Norway. Nyquist's goal was one of four shots he took over the course of 20:56 of ice time, and Nyquist spoke with IIHF.com's Andy Potts about his goal:

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WXYZ’s Galli spends a day with Mr. Hockey’s family

From WXYZ's Brad Galli:

Gordie Howe's birthday cake stood a few feet off the ground at Joe Louis Arena in late March, surrounding by the Howe family and 20,000 people standing on their feet.

The celebration was a sign of how much had changed.

A year and a half prior, the Howe family was ready to say goodbye to Mr. Hockey.

"He had been struggling with dementia and traumatic brain injury, so a lot of things were going on. He was going downhill to the point where we said, 'This is going to be his sunset,'" Howe's son Murray told Action News this week in Toledo, where the family was launching the new Gordie Howe Initiative for stem cell treatment.

Continued, and here's the story's accompanying video:

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With all eyes upon them, Mantha, Athanasiou impress in Grand Rapids

The Grand Rapids Griffins return to action against the Lake Erie Monsters tomorrow night (7 PM on The AHL Live/ESPN 96.1) and the players will play before a full suite's worth of Red Wings executives, just as they did on Tuesday.

Ken Holland, Ryan Martin, Kris Draper, Jiri Fischer and the vast majority of the pro and amateur scouts have been watching the Griffins play as the team prepares for an organization-wide audit, and the Griffins' players are very well aware of the presence of so many influential sets of eyes in the building these days.

The Free Press's Max Bultman spoke to Anthony Mantha after Tuesday's game regarding his and Andreas Athanasiou's goal-scoring performances with the organization watching:

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Nyquist on Nyquist

USA Today's Laken Litman and Kevin Allen report that Gustav Nyquist the person did indeed know of Nyquist the horse's success at the Kentucky Derby, and Gustav told USA Today that he and Niklas Kronwall have engaged in some playful discussion about J. Paul Reddam's lame duck of a horse named after #55:

Nyquist (the person) was in Moscow, which is seven hours ahead of Eastern Time, during the Derby. He was asleep when Nyquist (the horse) won.

“We had a game the next day and the race was at about 2 o’clock in the morning over here,” Nyquist said by cell phone from Russia. “But my phone started exploding and I woke up. I managed to see the replay.”

A few days later, Nyquist (the player) recorded a hat trick and an assist in Sweden’s 7-3 victory over Kazakhstan. He leads Sweden with five goals in four games at the World Championships, and has scored 72 goals over the past three seasons with the Red Wings. So Nyquist (the horse) comes from a good bloodline.

But aside from the fact that both Nyquists are talented and famous, they don’t have other things in common, the hockey player says.

“He’s way faster than me, that’s for sure,” Nyquist said, laughing. “There are no similarities. None.”

Nyquist has never met the horse, but is hoping he wins the Preakness because he plans to be back in the United States for the Belmont Stakes next month and could therefore witness his namesake clinch the Triple Crown.

“I’m looking forward to seeing the horse and meeting the owner,” Nyquist said.

Litman and Allen continue...

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Griffins’ watch party for Game 5 is on the move

From the Grand Rapids Griffins:


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Saturday’s watch party for Game 5 of the Central Division Finals between the Grand Rapids Griffins and Lake Erie Monsters will be held at Peppino’s South, located at 1515 Eastport Drive SE near Kalamazoo Avenue and M-6. The event was moved from Peppino’s Sports Grille in downtown Grand Rapids, site of the watch parties for Games 1 and 2, due to Saturday’s Garth Brooks concerts and the anticipated parking shortage.

With the puck dropping at 7 p.m., join fellow Griffins fans and watch the action live from Quicken Loans Arena alongside the play-by-play of Bob Kaser. For fans who do not purchase an AHLLive subscription, Peppino’s offers the only way to watch the Griffins on the road as they continue their quest for the Calder Cup.

The Griffins return to Cleveland following their dramatic 5-4 win over the Monsters at Van Andel Arena on Tuesday, when they overcame a 4-1 deficit by scoring four times in the final 21 minutes, tying the greatest playoff comeback in franchise history. Grand Rapids is trying to become the fourth team in AHL history to win a best-of-seven series after trailing 3-0.

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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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