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.
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
"I just try and show up to the rink every day and be myself and play the game hard," Larkin said after Thursday's morning skate at Centre Bell. "I try not to look at it and let my agent do it. It’s nothing anyone can really do about it, at least on my view of things. When something happens, there are conversations, there’s talk. But I’ve been trying to just focus on playing."
Bertuzzi said he isn't so much frustrated about where contracts are at but rather, "being hurt all the time."
Bertuzzi missed significant time recovering from two hand surgeries, and most recently dealt with a lower-body injury. That's made it hard to settle on money and term on a new deal, and increased the probability general manager Steve Yzerman trades Bertuzzi, 27, ahead of the March 3 deadline. It's also been a challenge for coach Derek Lalonde, who knows Bertuzzi scored 30 goals last season but also has seen how sloppy he can be with the puck.
"He’s got such a good stick," Lalonde said. "But he leads us in turnovers in all three zones, and I just think that’s the pace being on top of him. If he gets in his rhythm, those get limited. It’s been a tough go for him. I don’t think it will take him long to get to that 30-goal form, but he needs to get some reps and rhythms.
"I like him with Larks and (Lucas) Raymond, I think all three like playing with each other, and like the chemistry. But Bert gets in there and that chemistry and rhythm get lost with his inability to manage the puck."
If Bertuzzi isn't dealt, the sides could settle on a one-year extension.
More:Jakub Vrana's play in AHL will dictate if he returns to Wings, NHL
Yzerman has offered Larkin, 26, eight years and $64 million, but Larkin's side can use the eight-year, $73.2 million ($9.15 million annual average value) deal the Islanders gave Mathew Barzal in October as an example in countering.
from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,
Andrew Copp hasn't provided the offense the Wings maybe expected after signing a free-agent contract last summer, but Copp feels that still could happen.
Copp had off-season core surgery, missed training camp and the exhibition season, and only recently has begun to feel close to optimal."Me, personally, especially with the injury and how it started, I can feel it start to build," Copp said. "I can feel myself getting a lot more confident in the play a little more, because I'm feeling better."
Copp went into Thursday's game with 26 points (five goals and 21 assists). The offense might be slow coming around, but Copp has been as good as advertised from a defensive standpoint and a key component on special teams.
The assists are trending toward a career-high — he had 32 last season, along with a career-high 21 goals — though getting dealt to the New York Rangers from Winnipeg helped the offensive numbers.
"He's on a wing with maybe the most offensive skilled guy in the league in (Artemi) Panarin (in New York after the trade deadline) and that’s a lot different ask," Lalonde said. "He's been great. It looks like he's getting his legs back. Those core surgeries are tough to come back from and it looks like he's got more pop in him."
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