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Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill joins Hockey Central to discuss the toughest season of his coaching career, but says if it doesn’t crush you, which it hasn’t, you have an opportunity at “unreal growth.”
The National Hockey League continues to look into scenarios which could see the season salvaged as the Board of Governors held a conference call on Monday. TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger explains what those plans could look like, including playing into September, and reveals how an infectious disease consultant gave 'a reality check' to the BOGs.
from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,
The promising thing for the Wings’ organization is the strong finish by some of the young players.
There will be plenty of time ahead to analyze more of the Wings’ recent draft picks. But it’s interesting to note right now, a handful of players were playing some of their best hockey of this season — putting exclamation points on fine seasons — when the coronavirus pandemic ended everyone’s hockey schedule.
Shawn Horcoff, the Red Wings’ director of player development, identified some of the organization’s late-season risers.
- Joe Veleno, center, Grand Rapids (AHL): The Wings’ second first-round pick in 2018, Veleno was in the process of his completing his first pro season and was looking like a different player from the first half of the season.
Veleno’s overall game took off after he returned from a stellar performance during the holidays at the world junior championships for Canada.
The confidence and assertiveness in Veleno’s game was more evident, Horcoff said.
“The kid played really well the second half,” Horcoff said. “His game was starting to come on since he came from from world juniors. We really put a lot of focus on his defensive game. By the time Christmas hit, he was real comfortable and didn’t focus or think about it so much. Things were coming naturally to him.
“I’m happy with how his game came along. It’s not easy for a 19-year-old to play in the AHL, and he was playing in all situations.”
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins on Monday signed forward Max Humitz (HEW-mihtz) and defenseman Tory Dello to one-year contracts for the 2020-21 season.
from the CP at TSN,
"It's been, 'What's going on? If I want to speak to doctors, who do I speak to? Do you have any idea how long this is going to last? Do you have any idea when we might be able to get access to rinks simply to do some sort of generalized conditional skating?'" Fehr said in a phone interview with The Canadian Press. "Their primary concern is for the health and safety of their families. Their (other) concerns are how we best prepare ourselves for the wide range of contingencies which might arise."
The Ottawa Senators announced Saturday a second player had tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number in the NHL to two.
Both were part of the team's recent California road trip that included games in San Jose, Anaheim and Los Angeles. Ottawa played the Sharks at SAP Center on March 7 despite a recommendation by the county to not hold large public gatherings.
Fehr said he's not in a position at this point to second-guess if holding that game, and two subsequent contests, was the right call.
"We're still coming to grips with events," he said. "When this is all over, we can go back and look and see if, in light of hindsight, we would have made different decisions or whether based upon the available evidence they were the best decisions.
"We also don't know whether (Ottawa's game in San Jose) had anything to do with those (positive tests)."
BetOnline with a few odds on the NHL returning this season.
What do you think?
Return to Action Props
Next NHL Game to be Played June 1st or Sooner
Yes +300 (3/1)
No -500 (1/5)
Next NHL Game to be Played July 1st or Sooner
Yes +160 (8/5)
No -225 (4/9)
Next NHL Game to be Played August 1st or Sooner
Yes -180 (5/9)
No +140 (7/5)
via the NHL PR department,
The NHL is providing an updated Q&A to reflect recent developments during the pause in play. We will provide regular updates to this Q&A as information changes.
On March 15, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended against gatherings with 50 people-or-more for a period of eight weeks. How does that impact the NHL’s timeline on determining when the season can resume?
We will continue to monitor developments during the 60-day window prescribed by the CDC. Assuming events are tracking positively, we would hope to be able to begin providing high-level guidance on the potential of opening a Club training camp period roughly 45 days into the period covered by the CDC’s recommendation.
Have any NHL Players tested positive for the coronavirus?
We are aware of two NHL players testing positive for the COVID-19 virus. The Ottawa Senators Players, who tested positive, presented only mild symptoms and are currently in isolation.
3:40 to watch great saves from this season, all in slow motion.
from Chip Alexander of the News & Observer,
At 8 p.m. Sunday, John Forslund was to leave the basement of his Apex home, rejoining his family, symptom-free for the coronavirus, his self-quarantine at an end.
“It’s been an ordeal,” Forslund said Saturday, thankful that a 10-day period filled with uncertainty and mind games would be coming to a close.
Forslund, the Carolina Hurricanes’ longtime broadcaster, also quickly qualified that comment. Others, he said, face grave health challenges from COVID-19 during a global pandemic that has made life as we know it far from the life we once knew. And there are other life-threatening diseases.
“This is something totally different, where you have to sacrifice for the good of yourself and everyone around you, so that’s basically what I did,” Forslund said. “I do have to be honest. It has been harder than I thought it would be.”
from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
All of these young players might have played their final game this season.
“Certainly, there’s some potential for development to have been stalled,” Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "There was in (Grand Rapids) a potential playoff run, and there’s development involved in that. When you go through experiences in life, you have the opportunity to grow. You don’t always, it’s up to you a little bit, but you have the opportunity to grow, both from good and bad experiences.
"Right now there’s no day to day experience. So for kids in college, for kids in pro, there isn’t that developmental opportunity."
Making matters worse, their training regimens are disrupted due to closures of team and exercise facilities.
“It’s a difficult situation that’s fluid, dealing with prospects in different countries with different regulations,” Shawn Horcoff, Red Wings director of player development, said. “The main thing is staying safe and following the guidelines that government is putting together.”
Horcoff provided an update recently on how some of the organization’s top prospects fared this season:
from Karen Bouffard of the Detroit News,
Michigan had 1,035 confirmed COVID-19 case resulting in eight deaths through 10 a.m. Sunday, according to the latest numbers released by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services on Sunday afternoon.
The numbers included three deaths reported by area hospitals on Saturday.
The number of counties with confirmed coronavirus cases increased to 32, from 27 counties with cases reported as of Saturday. Allegan, Emmet, Gladwin, Grand Traverse and Roscommon counties were added to the list.
The greatest number of confirmed cases are in the city of Detroit, where 325 cases have been confirmed, including four people who died.
Of the newly confirmed cases, 86% are in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. Statewide, 50 percent of the cases are in males, and 50 percent in females, according to state data.
There have been 277 confirmed cases in Oakland County, and one death. Wayne County has had 152 cases with one death, and there have been 140 cases and one death confirmed in Macomb County.
from the Detroit News two days ago,
Red Wings beat reporter Ted Kulfan talks to coach Jeff Blashill about preparing for life in a post-coronavirus world and former NHL defenseman Marcus Ragnarsson says Gustav Lindstrom can be a 'top-four defenseman' with the Red Wings.
Ragnarsson, who is Lindstrom's uncle and coached Lindstrom in junior hockey in Sweden, is an assistant coach with the Swedish hockey team which is scheduled to compete at the world championships in Switzerland from May 8-24. (As of Friday morning, the IIHF hasn't cancelled the tournament despite the COVID-19 pandemic).
A veteran of 632 games with the San Jose Sharks and Philadelphia Flyers (37 goals, 140 assists, 482 penalty minutes), Ragnarsson was at Little Caesars Arena last week scouting players like Lindstrom for the Swedish team coached by former Red Wings forward Johan Garpenlov.
"I think he (Lindstrom) can be a top-four defenseman (with the Red Wings)," Ragnarsson said. "As he progresses, he's going to be even better as he gets more comfortable playing against better players."
continued with a podcast too...
Thanks to a KK member for the pointer.
from Evan Petzold at the Detroit Free Press,
Freelancers at Fox Sports Detroit are searching for answers.
Almost every FSD employee working home games for the Detroit Pistons, Red Wings and Tigers is a freelancer — stage managers, camera operators, audio technicians, editors, among others.
Those are the people Michael Abdella, an EVS operator at Fox Sports for 14 years, is fighting for. With the cancellation or postponement of sporting events because of the coronavirus pandemic, his self-described family members within the Sinclair Broadcast Group freelance industry are out of jobs.
There are more than 100 freelancers who work for FSD — 35 to 40 are needed to produce each game — and right now, they have no source of income, or any information coming from the corporate office.
“This feels like there’s no coming back from,” said Abdella, who specializes in instant replay. “That is the real punch in the gut for a lot of us. You preach teamwork, have meetings, send information out, then when the times get the hardest, you’re radio silent. That is devastating to us.”
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
Trailing the bulky beast with its top speed of 15.6 km/h, there’s a surprising history, a lot of water under the blade. For nine decades, it has been the first on the ice every day and last off, still doing laps around everyone.
“It’s hard to believe it has been as successful as it has,” company president Richard Zamboni told the Toronto Sun in a previous interview from his office in Paramount, Calif....
Steven Galyean, who steers for the Carolina Thunderbirds of the Federal League, tried to convey the contraption’s unusual romance for spectators.
“It’s something being driven on the ice, a machine on wheels, it’s just something different,” he told journalnow.com. “It’s got a weird name. Every kid loves the Zamboni, even the big kids. The truth is everybody wants to drive it.”
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