The Malik Report
By Malik Report standards, five entries in a day is downright delinquent, this sniffly blogger had laid down for an afternoon nap simply because I assumed Brendan Shanahan would obviously be named one of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s 2012 inductees, only to wake and find out that Adam Oates, Joe Sakic, Pavel Bure and Mats Sundin were named to the Hall, but not Shanahan on Tuesday afternoon.
So while other Wings news popped up over the course of Tuesday in some intriguing takes on the Wings’ pursuit of Justin Schultz, the team’s coaching candidates and the team’s release of its summer development camp roster, I’d like to focus on Shanahan’s omission…
But not before noting, as MLive’s Ansar Khan pointed out, that Oates, who was also named the Washington Capitals’ coach, began his career as a Red Wing:
Smart, smart, smart. At least from this biased NHLPA supporter’s perspective. As Paul noted, the NHL and NHLPA will kick off CBA negotiations in New York, NY on Friday…
But before doing so, Comcast Sportsnet Chicago’s Chris Boden reports that they’ll name a 30-player negotiating committee aft the close of their three-day executive board meetings in Chicago, and equally intelligently, they’ve scheduled meetings all over the world up to speed, with Boden and NHL.com’s Brian Hedger stating that the meetings are scheduled to take place in Toronto, Ontario, (for Eastern Canadians and Americans), Kelowna, British Columbia (for the players who spend their summers in Western Canada or the Western U.S.), Moscow (for Russian players), Barcelona, Spain (for players from the rest of Europe) and another meeting in Chicago as well (cue the Midwesterners).
Today, the 50-some players in attendance split into three groups to tackle several topics at once, and they spoke to Hedger about what they discussed, at least in general terms:
Updated 2x with some roster clarification at 1:07 AM: No Calle Jarnkrok, no Alexei Marchenko, no Jake Chelios, no Mattias Backman: Just over a week-and-a-half before the Red Wings’ summer prospect camp kicks of on July 7th in Traverse City, MI, the Wings have released their list of players attending the camp. DetroitRedWings.com’s Bill Roose reports that the team has invited 28 players and 14 free agents to the camp, and some of their free agent invitees’ names might sound familiar:
Of the invitees, three have ties to the Wings’ organization, including Dean and Jake Chelios, the sons of longtime defenseman and current advisor to hockey operations, Chris Chelios. The son of coach Mike Babcock, Detroit Catholic Central senior Michael Babcock, will be a first-time participant in the camp.
Here’s the Wings’ list of players attending the camp. Free agent try-outs are listed in italics:
Updated with more from Chelios at 11:23 PM: The Red Wings are going to move quickly to fill the assistant coaching vacancy created by Jeff Blashill’s demotion to the Grand Rapids Griffins, and while it’s assumed that the Wings will look internally to find a candidate to succeed Blashill, Red Wings executive and player mentor Chris Chelios tells the Macomb Daily’s Chuck Pleiness that he’s not interested in the job:
“I’m not ready to take over a full responsibility job like that,” Chelios said in a phone interview Tuesday. “I think I’m two years away from actually taking a full-time job again.”
“I can honestly say I would hope to find a position like that in my future, but right now I’m pretty content with having that freedom of going to see my kids play,” Chelios said.
I read the release from the Hockey Hall of Fame and couldn’t believe it. Long-time Red Wing Brendan Shanahan, his three Stanley Cups and 600-plus goals won’t be heading to Toronto this year, and I just can’t believe it. It’s insane.That’s it as I’m still sick, but I just can’t believe it. Pavel Bure and Adam Oates are fine players, as is Mats Sundin, but did they win Shanahan’s three Stanley Cups, or help define the term “power forward?”
Stunned, just stunned. I’m still very sick, so more on this later.
Holy s***, folks. I don’t know any more delicate way of putting it. Holy s***, this is…Baffling!
Updated 3x at 5:48 PM: As the Red Wings do their best to sell their “program” to potential unrestricted free agent targets, Wings GM Ken Holland may have summarized his team’s decision-making processes best in a conversation with ESPN’s Craig Custance (subscriber-only, sorry):
“It’s all about planning,” Holland said. “Planning is the most important thing so that when it comes time to make decisions, you make them uninhibited.”
There’s no doubt the Red Wings will make a big push on July 1 for Parise and Suter. They’re definitely in pursuit of college free agent defenseman Justin Schultz ,even if there’s indication he’d prefer to play in Canada. They’ll look to add a backup goalie, with Jonas Gustavsson on their radar—if he doesn’t sign with the Winnipeg Jets—and Scott Clemensen another a safe veteran option. Mike Babcock would love more size up front with Montreal’s Travis Moen a candidate to get a look in Detroit should he hit the market. But Holland stresses that free agency can’t be the only solution for the Red Wings.
“We can go out and get some players in free agency but if we don’t have some internal push, those moves in free agency aren’t doing anything anyways,” Holland said. “Brendan Smith needs to make our team. We’re hoping there’s a push from [Gustav] Nyquist or [Tomas] Tatar, [Cory] Emmerton and [Jan] Mursak. Then we’ll look at free agency.”
Today at 3 PM EDT, TSN and the NHL Network U.S. will air the Hockey Hall of Fame’s announcement of its 2012 induction class, and it’s all but assured that three-time Stanley Cup winner and long-time Red Wing Brendan Shanahan will receive a call from the HHOF’s selection committee sometime this morning.
The present-day Red Wings’ organization has stolen some of the spotlight away from Shanahan’s day in the sun, however. The general manager who took over after Scotty Bowman snagged Shanahan from the Hartford Whalers is doing his best to ensure that the standard of excellence to which the organization’s held itself since Shanahan’s time with the team, the standard of excellence the team was able to maintain when Steve Yzerman retired and Shanahan moved along six summers ago, and the standard of excellence the team was able to maintain while Nicklas Lidstrom played for them will not slip.
The Red Wings wouldn’t normally even consider telling a player who has yet to suit up for a professional game that, should he sign with Detroit, he could expect to start the season on the Wings’ NHL roster, but this isn’t a normal year for the Wings, and MLive’s Ansar Khan and the Macomb Daily’s Chuck Pleiness both report that Red Wings GM Ken Holland is in fact pursuing the 21-year-old unrestricted free agent despite his high cap hit ($3.8 million including bonuses) and his agents’ requests for ensured playing time:
“We’ve contacted his agents to express the Detroit Red Wings are interested in signing him to a contract,’’ general manager Ken Holland told M-Live.com. “We think there’s a tremendous opportunity in Detroit.’‘
Updated 3x at 12:27 AM: Good news, bad news. The NHLPA’s executive board’s kicked off a three-day slate of meetings in Chicago on Monday, and between the media in attendance and the number and star power of the players involved speaks to the positive influence executive director Donald Fehr’s had upon player participation…But as CBA negotiations will probably start on Wednesday or Thursday, as the Chicago Tribune’s Chris Kuc (on on Twitter and in article form), some of Fehr’s comments are a bit worrisome given that the CBA expires in two and a half months…
“There’s plenty of time to negotiate an agreement between now and Sept. 15,” NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr said. “By the way, there’s nothing magic about Sept. 15. The law is, is if you don’t have a new agreement and as long as both sides are willing to keep negotiating you continue to play under the terms of the old one until you reach an agreement.”
Fehr said negotiations will being “very quickly” after the player’s meetings wrap up in Chicago on Wednesday.
And those of you who believe that fans should “Fear Fehr” will probably find what he had to Comcast Sportsnet Chicago’s Tracey Myers (also providing updates on Twitter) scary, though it doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to understand that the NHLPA isn’t simply going to say, “Roll back our salaries? Okay! Then give you 7% of $3.3-plus billion in revenues back? Okay!):
Update: I got suckered as the Semin account is fake: Well, then. If the Red Wings weren’t already in enough of a state of flux, Mike Babcock will need to find a new assistant coach as the team’s decided to send Jeff Blashill to the AHL to serve as the Grand Rapids Griffins’ coach. From the Griffins:
The Detroit Red Wings on Monday named Jeff Blashill (BLA-shill) as the new head coach for the Grand Rapids Griffins. He replaces Curt Fraser, who departed Grand Rapids one week ago as the winningest coach in franchise history to join the Dallas Stars as an assistant coach.
Blashill, 38, becomes the ninth head coach in Griffins history and moves to Grand Rapids after serving as an assistant coach for the parent Red Wings in 2011-12, when he helped the team to its 12th consecutive 100-point season and 21st consecutive postseason appearance. Prior to joining the organization, he served as the head coach of the CCHA’s Western Michigan Broncos in 2010-11, earning several national coach of the year honors.
“We’re very excited to name Jeff the next head coach of the Griffins,” said Red Wings general manager Ken Holland. “He’s a talented coach that has a proven track record of working well with young players. He did a tremendous job for us in Detroit last season and we look forward to having him groom and mentor our prospects in Grand Rapids.”
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.