Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Videos- Talk After Today’s Practice

10 1/2 minutes with Jeff Blashill and I will add to this post if more videos become available.  added 1:12pm, Richard Panik below.  added 1:!4pm, Jakub Vrana below.

 

Richard Panik

 

 

Jakub Vrana

 

 

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Comments

Paul's avatar

Ansar Khan tweets,

New #RedWing Jakub Vrana: “This is a great historical club, this club has a name. It’s an honor to put this jersey on. When Steve Yzerman called me, it (trade) was really fresh. I was shocked, but also really excited and I could see someone that trusts me, believes in me.”

More Vrana: “I’m a strong skater, I got speed, I got a good shot, I can create offense, create some momentum, just help the team at the important moments. I’m going to do my best to fit in as quick as possible.”

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/14/21 at 01:18 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

“When Steve Yzerman called me, it (trade) was really fresh. I was shocked, but also really excited and I could see someone that trusts me, believes in me.”

And therein lies some of the benefit of Yzerman being the GM. I’m sure Holland called guys after trades and tried to make them feel welcome, but I would think having a HOFer call would just feel more special to guys. Whether that translates into Vrana actually performing better in Detroit remains to be seen.

As for Panik, I think the zamboni driver could call to welcome him and he’d show up ready to play at 110%. I’m guessing he’ll be paired with Helm and Glendenning with Erne moving up a line or two. If that happens, I think the 4th line is going to be very hard to play against. I can’t wait.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 04/14/21 at 02:20 PM ET

Paul's avatar

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

“I really was kind of shocked, but at the same time, it’s a great opportunity,” said Vrana, who skated on a line with Michael Rasmussen and Valtteri Filppula. “I’m looking forward to it. I was kind of shocked, but that’s how it is. It’s part of this business and I’m excited to join this group and do some big things.”

Vrana had just gotten vaccinated Monday when he received a call from Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan about the trade.

“Mixed emotions,” Vrana said of his initial feelings. “I was drafted to that club and had a relationship with the city and with the guys there. So at the moment, like I said, I was shocked.

“But when Steve (Yzerman, the Wings’ general manager) called me, and when somebody wants to give you a chance and wants you in their organization, wants to play for their team, it just gives me excitement to come here and do my best to help this group build something here.”

Vrana appeared confused by MacLellan’s comments after the trade, saying Vrana was “frustrated” in Washington and probably needed a change of scenery.

“I have read that, that there was something going on, but I don’t really know what happened,” Vrana said. “If that was the main reason, or what was the reason, I don’t know. This is not something I worry about. I want to play hockey. I want to play my best on the ice. If that is what Brian thought, I don’t really know what to say. It’s his thoughts and verdict, and let’s just move on and move forward.”

Panik had two years remaining on the four-year, $11 million ($2.75 million salary cap hit) contract he signed two seasons ago — a deal the Capitals wanted to get out of.

Panik, 30, had three goals and six assists this season and welcomed the move as well.

“Really excited to be here,” said Panik, who skated with Vladislav Namestnikov and Sam Gagner during Wednesday’s practice. “It didn’t work out in Washington. Sometimes things don’t click and hopefully this will be a new chapter for me, a new beginning, and it’s going to go well for both sides.”

more

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/14/21 at 03:06 PM ET

Paul's avatar

from Roman Stubbs of The Washington Post,

Vrana had left his home in the Czech Republic at 15 to move to Sweden, where he quickly turned into a promising prospect whose top-end speed drew scouts’ attention. Washington drafted him 13th overall in the 2014 draft, seeing him as a future star. Vrana’s baby-faced grin grew only wider when Alex Ovechkin called to congratulate him shortly after he was picked.

Vrana never stopped referring to himself as a “happy kid.” He became even more of a fan favorite during the Capitals’ 2018 Stanley Cup run, in which he sniped a decisive goal in the clinching Game 5 win over the Vegas Golden Knights and afterward celebrated with his teammates over the course of several nights in the Washington area. He got a tattoo of the trophy on his wrist while holding former goaltender Braden Holtby’s hand, and the video and photos of that escapade continued to circulate on social media.

But Vrana also struggled to become a consistent two-way player. He set career highs in goals during his second and third full seasons in the league but had produced no points in 15 combined postseason games during the 2019 and 2020 playoffs.

As he entered his fourth full season with the team in January, it was clear the Capitals no longer viewed him as an up-and-coming player. “He’s not a kid anymore. … His hand is on the rope,” Capitals first-year coach Peter Laviolette said earlier this winter, and after he began the year with 11 goals and 14 assists in 39 games, his ice time dipped. He was a healthy scratch for two games earlier this month.

After the deal Monday, MacLellan said, “There was a tug-of-war between coaching staff and staffs that have had him and the way he was playing.”

Laviolette said Tuesday: “When you say between Jakub and me or Jakub and the coaching staff, I think it’s just the idea of how a team needs to play in order to be successful on a nightly basis and certainly in the playoffs, in the rounds when things become heavy. It’s just about a style every player has to play on a successful team and you can be the top player in the league and in order to be successful you still have to play with a certain identity … so some of the conversations with Jakub had revolved around that.”

Those who supported Vrana in Washington did not let him go quietly. Some Capitals fans took to social media to say their goodbyes and express their displeasure with the trade Monday. Capitals veteran T.J. Oshie bid his friend farewell on Twitter and later with a text, and Panik — who had been traded multiple times in his career — vowed to help Vrana grasp his new reality in Detroit.

“I think for him it’s a great opportunity,” Panik said. “It’s a new team. He can earn any spot he can. … He has to get the confidence of the coach, and then he can play even more minutes than he played in Washington. It’s up to him.”

more

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/14/21 at 05:52 PM ET

Alan's avatar

I’m sure Holland called guys after trades and tried to make them feel welcome, but I would think having a HOFer call would just feel more special to guys. Whether that translates into Vrana actually performing better in Detroit remains to be seen

100%. There’s a distinct difference between a GM who helped assemble teams that were consistent contenders, and a GM who played on those contending teams, won three cups, has his number hanging in the rafters, and is a HOFer.

That said, I think Vrana will perform well. He just didn’t fit into the Caps system. There’s only 12 games left of the season, so he really doesn’t have much time to make an impact this season.

Time will tell, of course, but if he has consistency, I would see him as an upgrade.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 04/14/21 at 06:12 PM ET

Avatar

I’m excited for tomorrow’s game.  Excited to see both new Wings.  And how damn good has Ras looked?  What a huge improvement.  Love his fiestiness too.  He’s so tenacious now.

Posted by ThatGuy on 04/14/21 at 08:47 PM ET

SYF's avatar

I’m excited for tomorrow’s game.  Excited to see both new Wings.  And how damn good has Ras looked?  What a huge improvement.  Love his fiestiness too.  He’s so tenacious now.

Posted by ThatGuy on 04/14/21 at 08:47 PM ET

After that last game, I haz mancrush on Ras.

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 04/14/21 at 11:07 PM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

I know you boys try to go out of your way to get your Holland hate out and Yzerman love in, but if we revisit reality here, when Holland was trading FOR players, not unloading for pics, something tells me the player was excited to join a playoff team and playing with real talent, like Mantha should be in Washington.

BTW, you guys must’ve missed this…


Holland

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 04/14/21 at 11:48 PM ET

Avatar

BTW, you guys must’ve missed this…

Hall of famers can still be criticized.

Posted by beantownredwings on 04/15/21 at 08:53 AM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

I definitely think Yzerman does bring something extra to the table, Bobby Ryan’s gushing would tell you so.

But Vrana, after reading and listening to his comments, and considering the context of the trade and his recent healthy scratches, I take his comments as a slight against the Caps management as opposed to anything else.

Posted by ilovehomers on 04/15/21 at 10:06 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

BTW, you guys must’ve missed this…

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0’s pixie dust fueled bandwagon

If you think Holland’s HoF credentials carry the same cache with players that Yzerman’s credentials carry, MC, you’ve been snorting more than just the “pixie dust” you think is in the air around here.  LOL

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 04/15/21 at 12:04 PM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 04/15/21 at 12:04 PM ET

I’m sure players respect a former player, especially HOF’er no doubt, and now he’s got cred on both the ice and the office, hell I’d rather take a call from Stevie, but again, when Holland was acquiring players, not picks, he was also very well regarded as one of the game’s best GMs, and the wings were competing so I don’t think there was more magical motivation.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 04/15/21 at 01:15 PM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

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