Kukla's Korner

This Outlook For Petr Mrazek This Season

Blog: The Malik Report By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

2015-16 outlook: Mrazek is poised for his first full NHL season and has the inside track on the starting job, which he won from Jimmy Howard at the end of the regular season. He was strong in the playoffs, giving the Red Wings a chance to upset to the heavily favored Lightning.

He had a few bad outings the second half of the season but showed good resolve by bouncing back strong in his next start each time. He exudes confidence and has a mental toughness about him.

Mrazek's puck-moving ability is a tremendous help to his defensemen, an edge he has over Howard.

Howard will be highly motivated to win back his job but Mrazek won't give it up easily. If the competition is close, new coach Jeff Blashill might favor Mrazek, who he coached for much of the past three seasons in Grand Rapids, winning the Calder Cup in 2013.

Mrazek is in line for a significant salary bump after the season.

Key question: Will Mrazek establish himself as the No. 1 goalie and become the team's workhorse?

more

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All about Pat Holway

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Patriot-Ledger's Mike Loftus has penned an article about Red Wings prospect Pat Holway and his journey toward pro hockey, which has included lacrosse-playing and a decision to eschew high school and Major Junior hockey to play in a unique Massachusetts hockey program:

Selected by the [Dubuque] Fighting Saints in May’s USHL draft, Holway spent the first week of June at their week-long Tryout Camp, then came home to wait out the June 26-27 NHL Draft (and pick up his Cohasset High diploma). The Wings grabbed him in Round 6, No. 170 overall, and then he was off to Traverse City, Michigan, for their July 3-7 Development Camp.

“It was an incredible stretch,” Holway said. “It’s kind of like being acknowledged for all your hard work, so it’s a good feeling: People have actually seen that you did work hard, you did what you needed to do. It’s like a reward, almost.”

...

[If] if there was any doubt that Holway’s game is sufficient to bring him success in the coming years, it was largely erased during this summer’s camps: He was selected to play in the Saints’ Tryout Camp All-Star Game, and had a two-assist effort in a scrimmage during Detroit’s Development Camp.

“It took a little bit to get used to” the USHL level,” said Holway, whose Saints started training camp this week, and have a home-and-home exhibition series against in-state rival Cedar Rapids over the weekend. “But I thought I handled it well, improved as the week went on.

"The Red Wings’ camp was was another few notches up ... but again, I thought by the end of the week, I’d handled it well. I was able to keep up, all that. It gives you some reassurance. You get that sense of ‘OK, maybe I do belong here.’”

Continued

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Evening news: On Howard’s mask, Franzen and golf outings

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated at 9:47 PM: Of Red Wings-related note this evening: Via a Tweet from the Windsor Star's Bob Duff, I posted pictures of Jimmy Howard's Ray Bishop-designed mask yesterday at this time, and if you missed it...

According to InGoal Magazine's Rob McGregor, the mask was inspired by one of Howard's tattoos:

Continue Reading »

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The Connor McDavid Rookie Card

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Marty Klinkenberg of the Globe and Mail,

It will be highly coveted, and the card company promises it will be a challenge to find. There hasn’t been a player of such magnitude to enter the game in at least 10 years.

“We have been planning on this since Connor was 14,” says Chris Carlin, senior marketing manager for California-based Upper Deck, the NHL’s lone licensed trading-card partner. “This type of player comes around very seldom.”

There is speculation Mr. McDavid’s rookie card will be worth $250 to $300 straight out of the pack. Mr. Carlin says the buzz is beyond anything the company experienced with Sidney Crosby.

“Connor is not just attracting interest from hockey, he is attracting sports fans, investors, gamblers and speculators,” Mr. Carlin says. “We have card dealers telling us that people are calling and saying they want to buy a case this year instead of a box. Everyone wants a piece of Connor.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: connor+mcdavid

Post-informal practice articles: On Franzen and Abdelkader

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated 5x at 3:29 PM: We're going to be talking about this as one of the main stories going into training camp, the exhibition season and regular season, so let me be blunt:

I've had three severe concussions in my life, and as a result, I'm hesitant to take part in any sport because I've learned that one "funny bump" on the noggin can yield post-concussive symptoms that last for months. While I get to do things like test sticks and gear, I don't do anything involving contact.

I am not in Johan Franzen's skates, and I have all the sympathy in the world for a man who's been playing hockey for the vast majority of his 35 years. I also understand that when one is a professional athlete, as Franzen is, it's probably close to impossible to envision yourself stepping away from the lifestyle you love for the sake of your health, especially if you feel--as Franzen clearly does--that you haven't "given your all" to exhaust all options for a comeback.

Continue Reading »

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How one ‘does the math’ changes Red Wings arena contract breakdown significantly

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

This article from the Free Press's Joe Guillen may cause a bit of a kerfuffle:

Of the more than $200 million in construction contracts awarded for the new Red Wings arena project so far, nearly $77 million will end up in the pockets of Detroit companies.

But the financial gains for Detroit companies, as tallied by the Free Press, are significantly less than the figures publicly reported by the Ilitch-owned arena developer, Olympia Development of Michigan.

Companies headquartered in Detroit or with offices here have been awarded about 38% of the arena contract amounts so far — a mark exceeding the Ilitch family’s promise to include Detroit companies in at least 30% of the new arena’s construction contracts, according to a Free Press analysis of 11 arena contract packages awarded so far.

By Olympia’s calculations, however, Detroit companies have received more than $126 million, or about 63%, of the $200 million worth of construction contracts. The developer has used this method to promote Detroit participation in the arena project through news releases and public appearances.

Continued

Update: Via JeffW, here's a video of Fox 2's Roop Raj talking about the District Detroit webcam (http://www.districtdetroit.com/live-web-cam/) and speaking with Olympia/Wings CEO Tom Wilson:

Continue Reading »

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Report- The Pittsburgh Penguins Price Tag - $750M

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rick Westhead of TSN,

The owners of the Pittsburgh Penguins are asking $750 million (U.S.) for the team, but face long odds of finding a buyer who’s willing to pay that much because of the flagging North American economy and uncertainty over the future of the Canadian dollar, sports investment bankers say.

A $750-million transaction price would mark a record for a U.S.-based NHL team, said Drew Dorweiler, a Montreal economist who has been hired by the owners of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Manchester United and other sports teams to estimate their franchise values.

“It does seem a bit steep with the economy and for that market,” Dorweiler said. “Pittsburgh is certainly not one of the largest cities in the U.S.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Video- Happy Birthday Madi

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Calgary Flames,

After hearing Madi's story, Joe Colborne decided to surprise her for her birthday.

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Wings prospect Adam Marsh thriving after pushing the re-set button

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

MLive's Brendan Savage has posted an "emptying the notebook" article about Wings prospect Adam Marsh, who re-set his hockey career after moving from Chicago to Saint John, New Brunswick to play for the QMJHL's Saint John Sea Dogs:

"I liked his game," said Grand Rapids Griffins coach Todd Nelson, who conducted the camp. "He did a lot of good things. He had some nice shots on net, scored, his handling the puck. I liked his game. That was the first time I really saw him in a scrimmage and that was a guy who put himself in a good spot."

Playing against top Red Wings prospects like Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha and Andreas Athanasiou at the development gave Marsh, who will be a senior in high school this year, an idea of what he can expect when he makes the move to pro hockey in a couple of years.

"I like to see the speed of all of them and knowing where I need to be by this time next year and see what I have to work on when I come back to camp," he said. "The speed is definitely up there.

"The pace and practices are pretty high but it's nothing I can't handle."

Marsh will take part in the Red Wings prospects tournament beginning Sept. 11 – he'll be one of the youngest players in Traverse City – before heading back to Saint John for his second QMJHL season.

"I definitely want to put up some good numbers," he said, "but I always want to have a good defensive game and be a team player as well. Just have the best season possible."

Savage continues...

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Post-informal practice Tweets: Franzen still ‘suffering setbacks’

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Updated 4x at 1:15 PM: Of note among the post-informal practice Tweets:

Johan Franzen said he hasn't been guaranteed anything from the Red Wings, but he's encouraged by his physical progress.

...

Franzen said he had to go home from four-hour workouts and sleep the rest of the day. I asked him the last time he had to. "Last week."

From DetroitRedWings.com's Dana Wakiji:

#RedWings Franzen says he's going hard on and off ice to test himself.

Update #1:

Continue Reading »

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