The Malik Report
What follows is a bleary-eyed blogger's assortment of "stuff that didn't make the recap" (I worked really *#$%@& hard on that recap...at least give it a glance...) and prospect news.
The latter before the former: None of the Wings' prospects who took part in playoff hockey had good Tuesdays.
In the QMJHL, Anthony Mantha had a hat trick, but his Val-d'Or Foreurs dropped a 6-5 OT decision to the Halifax Mooseheads, who trail the Q's conference final 2 games to 1.
Mantha has 14 goals, 7 assists and 21 points in 13 playoff games played;
The Detroit Red Wings' 3-0 loss to the Boston Bruins included a telling moment. Sergei Fedorov, who is both CSKA Moscow's general manager and an every-summer resident of Metro Detroit, was spotted in the press box, speaking with Ken Holland and Chris Chelios.
I'm pretty sure that the vast majority of the Red Wings' fans would've given their left knee (or the right one? Brad Marchand will let us know) to see Fedorov or Chelios suit up, but the Wings aren't built that way anymore.
On Tuesday night, the Wings had six forwards and two defensemen who participated in last spring's Grand Rapids Griffins' Calder Cup run in their lineup, as well as a total of four "second year" defensemen and four "real" rookies. The team's dressed support players (Drew Miller, Darren Helm, Justin Abdelkader and Kyle Quincey) aren't exactly scorers, and the player who's been playing a Chelios-like leadership role was out with a bad back.
This is the state of the Red Wings right now, especially if Datsyuk, Franzen (yes, I know, boo), Legwand and Kronwall are being shut down by the Bruins' checking:
After watching what may have been the worst Red Wings game since...The 6-1 loss to Ottawa, this time a 3-0 loss to Boston, I have two hopes:
1. I sincerely hope that the Red Wings' forwards start doing things other than cheating toward offense and begging their defensemen to be the only ones who shoot pucks on the power play;
2. I hope the Bruins buy into what their media corps is selling, because the Wings may have been manhandled in two consecutive stinkers--from the goal on out--but as far as the B's media has informed us on Twitter, it's time to prepare for the Canadiens-Bruins series, which will start after Saturday's game, apparently.
Very regrettably, Brad Marchand's flop-and-flail-and-grab-the-wrong-leg crap (he's been targeting Brendan Smith, who did try to knee Marchand, all series long), may have been the highlight of the night for Red Wings fans.
Red Wings prospect Teemu Pulkkinen had a very, very solid North American pro debut, and today, Griffinshockey.com's Alan Cross profiles one of the Wings' brightest prospects (via RedWingsFeed). Pulkkinen hopes to help the Grand Rapids Griffins defend their Calder Cup championship:
Teemu Pulkkinen has enjoyed a landmark rookie season in North America, to say the least. The Vantaa, Finland, native ended the 2013-14 regular season as the leading scorer for the Grand Rapids Griffins with 31 goals and 28 assists in 71 games. He tied for 16th overall among AHL scorers and ranked second among league rookies. As a result, he was named to the 2013-14 AHL All-Rookie Team on April 9. And in March, he made his NHL debut with the Detroit Red Wings.
Still, it’s not enough.
“My own game? It’s been OK,” said the 22-year-old Pulkkinen following a recent Griffins practice. “Of course, you always want to do better as a player. It’s been OK, but I know that I can do better, and I want to play better.”
Cross continues at length, and the Griffins are heading to Abbotsford, BC to face the Abbtosford Heat in the first round of the AHL playoffs tomorrow evening.
Updated 18x at 2:56 PM: After a Monday's "optional," the Detroit Red Wings hope to utilize home ice to their advantage as they host the Boston Bruins this evening (7:30 PM EDT on FSD in Michigan, NESN in Massachusetts, and NBCSN or
TSN TSN2 everywhere else, and on 97.1 FM; the Wings sent out an email stating that tickets are still available for tonight's game).
Again, with the series tied at 1 game apiece, both teams insist that they're going to impose their will upon their opponent via composed, disciplined and structurally-sound hockey, but the Wings and Bruins' definitions thereof are very different.
Cue the obligatory Ye Olde Game Day Skate photos!
The Detroit Red Wings face a nearly-must-win situation as they host the Boston Bruins tonight in Game 3 (7:30 PM on FSD in Michigan, NESN in Massachusetts, and NBCSN and TSN everywhere else, 97.1 FM as well).
After dropping Game 2 (and getting beaten up, as the Chief reminded us), the Wings flew home and "took an optional" Monday at the Joe, while the Bruins--reminding us that this isn't exactly a West Coast series--stayed in Boston to hold their own optional before flying to Detroit on Monday afternoon.
Both teams' players spoke with the press at length; I've already posted a video entry regarding the Wings' comments, and on Monday evening, the Bruins' website posted their off-day report...
In Red Wings prospect news...
In playoff hockey, in the OHL, Tyler Bertuzzi scored a goal and finished at +2 as his Guelph Storm defeated the Erie Otters 7-1, taking a 3 games to none lead in the OHL's Western Conference Final.
Red Wings color commentator Mickey Remdond appeared on Detroit Sports 105.1 FM on Monday afternoon, and he spoke about the Red Wings-Bruins series for the majority of his 21-minute interview...But around the 12-minute mark, he went on quite the tear regarding player safety, respect for one's opponents and the way that the NHL's culture of violence needs to change. He was quite eloquent, frankly:
Redmond says that he feels that the game's become, "Too bloody violent" and that the game is too good to not make players responsible for their actions regardless of their opponents' actions. He feels that the NHLPA needs to rally for player safety lest someone suffer a catastrophic injury...
And as a counter, I would argue that the coaches, GM's and owners need to inform their players that the kind of stuff we're seeing (Seabrook-Backes, Cooke-Barrie, etc.) is unacceptable.
It's got to come from both sides.
The Red Wings practice post is chock-full of quips, quotes and videos, but I didn't have space to add what I'll describe as an "interesting" interview. NBC's Eddie Olczyk spoke with Detroit Sports 105.1 FM's Matt Dery today, discussing the Wings-Bruins series and the concept that precident = it's okay to not suspend people for spearing...
Somebody who has more of a rooting interest, Comcast Sportsnet Northeast's Joe Haggerty, also spoke about the Red Wings-Bruins series with WDFN's Matt Dery this morning...
Today's Red Wings-Bruins "optional" post is still going, but these videos merit their own entry.
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.