Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Previewing The Detroit Red Wings

from Nicholas J. Cotsonika of NGL.com,


1. Offensive improvement

They simply need to score more. They scored 125 goals last season, one more than the Anaheim Ducks, who scored the fewest in the NHL. Part of the problem was injuries. Part of it was the power play (11.4 percent), second-to-last in the NHL behind the Ducks (8.9 percent).

Forwards Tyler Bertuzzi, Robby Fabbri and Dylan Larkin are expected to be healthy. Forward Jakub Vrana wants to show what he can do in a larger role after coming from the Washington Capitals in a trade April 12. Detroit added defenseman Nick Leddy and center Pius Suter in the offseason, plus assistant Alex Tanguay to coach the power play.

2. Nedeljkovic's numbers

Goalie Alex Nedeljkovic needs to follow up on last season, when he was a finalist for the Calder Trophy, which goes to the NHL rookie of the year as voted by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, after going 15-5-3 with a 1.90 goals-against average, a .932 save percentage and three shutouts in 23 games (all starts) for the Carolina Hurricanes.

That would help the Red Wings win in the short term and address the concern about the small sample size of his NHL career (29 games). After trading for the 25-year-old on July 22 and signing him to a two-year contract, general manager Steve Yzerman said they think he has the potential to be their goalie "for a number of years."

3. Seider's development

The most important thing for them to return to Stanley Cup contention is the development of their top prospects, and the top prospect most ready to make an impact in the NHL is 20-year-old defenseman Moritz Seider.

read on

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Jeff Blashill Ready To Go

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

"There are certain non-negotiables on our hockey team," Blashill said Thursday. "You have to make sure to work, compete and execute. Execute can show itself in practice and how you drill. We're trying to be as perfect as possible out there.

"That was the message we talked about yesterday, and let's go and let's get's after it on day one and keep getting better every day."

As he begins his seventh season as Wings coach, Blashill has a revamped roster that is getting younger, and possibly more talented.

The fight for playing time is expected to be intense, with more depth throughout the lineup.

"We'll see which guys, over the next few weeks, grab spots," Blashill said. "I'm interested to watch and see."

The defense will be an interesting area to watch.


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Videos- Michael Rasmussen And Jeff Blashill After Day 1 In Traverse City

Rasmussen first, Blashill is below.


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Video- Talking With Jeff Blashill

John Keating talked with Jeff Blashill this morning.


added 2:29pm, watch Dylan Larkin below after today's practice.

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Tyler Bertuzzi On Not Getting Vaccinated

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

Tyler Bertuzzi said he made a personal choice not to get the COVID-19 vaccinate.

Bertuzzi had a brief Zoom interview with media after Thursday’s training camp practice.

“It went fine, it was good,” Bertuzzi said of his chat with general manager Steve Yzerman about his decision not to get vaccinated. ”It’s a life choice, a personal choice. Personal choice.”

Bertuzzi said he’s talked with teammates about his decision.

“Everything is good, same as normal,” Bertuzzi said.

Bertuzzi didn’t think twice about his decision to not get vaccinated.

“It was pretty set in stone,” Bertuzzi said.


added 2:09pm, Watch Bertuzzi after today's practice.

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Stream- Day 1 Of The Wings’ Training Camp

via the YouTube page of the Detroit Red Wings,

Take an inside look at Detroit #RedWings Training Camp with Ken Kal, Daniella Bruce, Art Regner, and Carley Johnson live from Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City.

Watch below, scheduled to start at 10:30am,

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Let The Competitions Begin

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

On the eve of his third training camp in charge of the team he once captained, Steve Yzerman is excited.

Detroit Red Wings veterans, newcomers and prospects all have something to prove when practices begin Thursday at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City, where the Wings have held camp, save a few times, yearly since Scotty Bowman first took the defending Stanley Cup champions there in 1997.

Arguably no player carries more intrigue than Moritz Seider, the 6-foot-4 defenseman Yzerman grabbed in 2019, his first draft as general manager of the Wings. But there are others: Pius Suter, Nick Leddy, Jordan Oesterle and Alex Nedeljkovic, all off-season acquisitions, and prospects including Joe Veleno and Givani Smith.

“I think it makes for a more interesting training camp,” Yzerman said Wednesday. “I expect and hope the players all recognize, whether it’s Bobby Ryan coming on in a PTO, Givani Smith, Moritz Seider — you name them, they have a lot to play for and to have a good training camp and then to have a good preseason, and then ultimately once the regular season starts, to either hold their role or play an increased role. I think that’s good for us, I think that shows some progress. I hope our record is better than last year, but time will tell.

“Ultimately we have to get on the ice and see how it all plays out, but I am looking forward to watching all the new faces and see how the players in our organization that have been here respond to the opportunity to get a bigger role and to compete with some of the younger players or some of the new faces for the spots.”

continued (paid sub.)

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Video- Luke Witkowski’s Summer

Witkowski joined Carley Johnston to talk Wings and othe topics.


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No Canada For Tyler Bertuzzi

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

The Detroit Red Wings play nine games in Canada this season, and as of now, they will be without one of their best players for all of them.

That is because Tyler Bertuzzi is the lone Red Wing who has opted not to get vaccinated for COVID-19, general manager Steve Yzerman said Wednesday on the eve of training camp.

“The league has worked on protocols for vaccinated and non-vaccinated players that all teams and players are to follow,” Yzerman said. “Tyler will follow the protocols for non-vaccinated players, most significant is as of now and the foreseeable future you can’t enter Canada unless you’re vaccinated. So that obviously will be an issue when we play Canadian teams.”

Yzerman said Bertuzzi will be on the ice Thursday when the team opens camp in Traverse City.

“It’s his decision. That’s the world we live in today,” Yzerman said. “We can’t force anyone to get vaccinated. I’m vaccinated, my family is vaccinated, I’ll leave it at that. Tyler has his reasons. I respect the fact he has a choice and has made that choice. We’re going to work within the league’s protocols.”

Yzerman said the protocols for Bertuzzi include wearing a mask on the ice for practices and distancing himself from others in the gym and at team facilities.

continued, basically a wrap of today's media conference...

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Live Stream- Steve Yzerman Meets The Media Today

Steve Yzerman talks with the media today, scheduled to start just after 12:30pm ET.

Watch below.

added 1:54pm, archived version of the media conference can be watched below, it replaces the live stream.

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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com


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