Blogs > Red Wings Corner

Up-to-the minute updates and insights from the Red Wings locker room at home and on the road. By Chuck Pleiness of The Macomb Daily.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Laraque gets five games for Kronwall hit

According to

Should have been longer IMHO, more than five and up to 10. I never understood why a player is held responsible for his stick, but nothing else. I don't care if it was accidental, you don't carry yourself that way on the ice because it could easily lead to such an injury.

McCarty on Versus

Darren McCarty debuts on Versus tonight at 7. Wings at Preds. I really hope this turns into a long-term gig. I'm a big McCarty fan.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Maltby back

Kirk Maltby is back in the lineup tonight after missing a week with the flu. Brad May will be scratched.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Larsson sent back to GR

Chris Osgood must be feeling fine. Goalie Daniel Larsson was sent back to Grand Rapids after spending the past week backing up Jimmy Howard. Osgood is slated to start in net Friday against Florida.

To make room for Larsson, the Griffins sent defenseman Sebastien Piche to Toledo of the ECHL.

The Detroit Red Wings on Thursday assigned goaltender Daniel Larsson to the Grand Rapids Griffins and reassigned defenseman Sebastien Piche (pee-SHAY) from the Griffins to the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wednesday's morning skate

Lines for tonight's game against Dallas ..

May-Abdelkader-Miller (Maltby working in)

Lilja-Meech (scratches)

Osgood (scratched)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Toys For Tots at JLA

Here's a great cause ... the Red Wings are collecting toys at Wednesday's game for Toys For Tots. If you are coming to the game, please consider bringing a contribution.

Here's the team's press release ...

Detroit, MI… The Detroit Red Wings are teaming up with the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve to help thousands of underprivileged children in Southeastern Michigan have a brighter holiday season with the “Toys For Tots” toy collection Wednesday, November 18 at Joe Louis Arena. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the 7:30 p.m. game.

Fans attending the Wings game are asked to bring new, unwrapped toys (please no stuffed animals) to collection bins at Joe Louis Arena. The toys will then be distributed to needy children in Southeastern Michigan. The toy collection continues Friday, November 20 when the Wings face off against the Florida Panthers.

Goalie rotation

Jimmy Howard will start in net Wednesday against Dallas with Chris Osgood coming off a bout with the flu. Osgood will start Friday and Howard will go Saturday. Coach Mike Babcock said of Howard's Saturday start that Howard is playing well.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Still no Ozzie

Chris Osgood and Kirk Maltby are out for tonight's game against Anaheim with the flu. Both missed Thursday's game as well. Daniel Larsson will back up Howard. Maltby skated this morning.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Larsson called up; Ozzie not playing

Chris Osgood has the flu. Jimmy Howard starts in net tonight against Vancouver, his second start in two nights. Daniel Larsson has been called up from Grand Rapids to back up Howard.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Red Wings added a forward today, claiming Drew Miller off waivers from Tampa Bay. Here's the Red Wings' press release ...

Detroit... The Detroit Red Wings announced today that the club has claimed forward Drew Miller off waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning. In 14 games with Tampa Bay this season he registered no points and two PIM.

Miller, 25, was originally a sixth round pick (186th overall) of the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. He played in parts of three seasons with the Ducks before joining Tampa Bay for the 2008-09 season. In 67 career NHL games he has registered 15 points (6-9-15) and 25 PIM. He also appeared in 16 postseason games for Anaheim from 2006-2009.

Miller played three seasons at Michigan State University before joining the NHL. In 2005-06, he was named Michigan State’s Most Valuable Player and was selected as the CCHA’s best defensive forward. Drew’s older brother, Ryan, is the current starting goaltender for the Buffalo Sabres, while his cousins Kip, Kevin and Kelly have also played in the NHL. Kevin played with the Red Wings from 1990-91 to 1991-92 and again in 2003-04.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

DETROIT – Brad Stuart has been here before.

As a 20-year-old rookie in San Jose, Stuart and Gary Suter were the Sharks’ top-unit defensemen on the power play. After Suter left, Stuart was the No. 1 blue-liner in San Jose with the man-advantage, leading the team in 2003-04 with 3:52 of power-play ice time power game.

In Boston, in Los Angeles as recently as 2006-07, Stuart, who was the third overall draft pick in 1998, has been a power-play regular.

With Jason Williams out with a broken leg, Stuart will likely be back in the power-play rotation when the Red Wings take the ice in Columbus tomorrow (7 p.m., FSN).

Williams, a right-handed shooting forward who plays the point with the man-advantage, and Niklas Kronwall have been the Red Wings’ second blue-line combo. Nicklas Lidstrom and Brian Rafalski are on the top unit.

Williams has been one of the Red Wings' top power-play performers. He has been on the ice for 9.5 goals scored per 60 minutes of power-play ice time -- a figure that is tops among Detroit defensemen. The team averages 7.2 goals per 60 minutes of power-play time.

“We all know (Stuart) has got a great shot and he sees the ice real well,” said Kronwall. “He’ll fit in just perfect.”

Coach Mike Babcock said that Lidstrom, Rafalski and Kronwall will be rotated on the power play now, but that Stuart will be the next option when one of those three can’t man the blue line.

“He’s got the real hard shot,” said Babcock of Stuart. “He’s always played on the power play prior to coming here. We’ve just used him way more on the penalty-kill role and the physical-matchup role. We like him getting his minutes that way. But obviously when things change, things change. You’ve got to adjust.”

In 2005-06 with San Jose, Stuart averaged 4:57 of power-play time per game. That same season, he had a career high of seven power-play goals – one of four campaigns with at least five power-play goals for Stuart.

But Stuart’s role in Detroit has been quite different. He’s on the top penalty-kill unit and used as a physical, shut-down defenseman.

Last winter, Stuart was sixth among Detroit defensemen in power-play time per game, trailing forward Mikael Samuelsson and Derek Meech. This season, Stuart has averaged just 27 seconds of power-play ice time per game.

“Earlier in my career, sure, if I wasn’t playing the power play, I would have gotten more upset, let it affect me,” said Stuart. “But I’ve gotten to the point now where as long as I feel like I’m contributing and an important part of the team, I’ll do whatever they need me to do.”

And until Williams’ broken leg heals, there is a need on the power play.

“Certainly it’s fun playing the power play, but I’ve put my focus on other parts of my game getting better,” said Stuart. “I’ve really taken pride in killing penalties and just playing strong, physical defense. But any time you get a chance to be on the power play and get some time out there is nice. I’ve just accepted that that’s not what they need me to do here, so it’s not a big deal.”

May debating visor

Do as I see.

Last Saturday, Brad May played his first game as a professional wearing a visor. Injured when an errant stick from Williams pushed into his right eye while he was sitting on the bench, May felt the need for ocular protection.

But in both of Detroit’s practices since he debuted his visor, May has skated without one.

After Tuesday’s practice, May was good-natured, but superstitious. He hasn’t decided whether he wants to keep wearing the visor or not.

“I hope you’ll forgive me, but I don’t want to talk about it,” said May. “The more I talk about it … it’s like not wearing a mouth guard, when you talk about it, that’s when you’re going to take one in the mouth.”

McCarty hired as Versus color analyst

Former Red Wing Darren McCarty is the newest color analyst for Versus. His first game will be Nov. 23, Red Wings at Nashville.

"His looks are definitely more for radio than for television," joked long-time friend Kris Draper. "I think he's going to do a good job. He's very passionate towards the game. This is a great opportunity. I'm sure over the next couple of weeks he's going to work and make sure that he's prepared to do it and do well at it."

But calling the Red Wings in his first game?

"He better not rip any of us," joked Draper. "If I find out, we'll be talking. He better be a homer."

Even-strength effectiveness

Red Wings' goals for and against per 60 minutes of ice time ...

(Forwards ranked by GF/60; defensemen by GA/60)

Eaves 4.5-2.3
Helm 3.7-3.2
Zetterberg 3.0-2.7
Holmstrom 2.8-1.8
Datsyuk 2.7-1.5
Draper 2.4-2.4
Maltby 2.3-0.6
Abdelkader 2.3-2.8
Team 2.3-2.7
Bertuzzi 2.1-3.6
Cleary 2.1-4.2
May 1.9-3.8
Filppula 1.7-4.3
Franzen 1.4-1.4
Leino 1.1-2.5
Williams 1.0-2.5

Lidstrom 2.9-1.1
Kronwall 1.2-1.4
Stuart 1.5-2.4
Team 2.3-2.7
Rafalski 2.6-3.1
Meech 1.2-3.6
Lebda 3.5-5.0
Ericsson 3.6-5.3

Nice time for a lift from Helm and Eaves. They're on the ice for a few too many goals against, but at least they're creating more offense for us than for them. Helm and Eaves have been on the ice for five of the Wings' last 11 even-strength goals scored.
That line that fared so well in the preseason -- Filppula, Williams and Leino -- was a disaster in the regular season. The Wings didn't score with them on the ice. Williams was on the ice for three goals for in more than three full games of ice time ... a 0.95 goals per game average.
Lidstrom has been remarkable. Detroit has outscored opponents 13-5 with him on the ice.
Stuart and Kronwall are starting to show some signs of offensive life to go with their good defensive starts. Stuart has been on the ice for five goals scored in the past five games after starting the season with just two goals for in the first 10 games. Kronwall has been on the ice for three goals scored in the past five games.
Ericsson and Lebda haven't stopped the defensive bleeding. Ericsson has been on the ice for three goals against in the past four games; Lebda for four.
And I haven't been a Maltby fan since the lockout, but I have to point out that the Wings have outscored opponents, 4-1, with him on the ice in 104:56. That's more than five full periods with just one goal allowed. He'll have to keep that defensive pace up because the offense has dried up. Maltby has been on the ice for just one goal scored in the past nine games after starting the season with three in the first six games.

Power-play effectiveness

Red Wings' goals for per 60 minutes of of power-play ice time ...

Franzen 10.0
Cleary 9.7
Zetterberg 8.4
Filppula 8.0
Bertuzzi 7.2
Team 7.2
Holmstrom 6.4
Datsyuk 6.2
Leino 3.1

Williams 9.5
Stuart 8.7
Kronwall 8.1
Team 7.2
Lidstrom 6.4
Rafalski 5.3

Williams' loss will be felt on the power play. I don't care how you want to twist these effectiveness ratings and say that so-and-so is only on the ice against inferior players (which I don't buy) ... Williams has been on the ice for as many power-play goals as Lidstrom (seven) in 21 less minutes of ice time. We'll see if the second unit's production drops.
Leino has been ineffective on the PP and hasn't been on the ice for a goal scored since Game 1. The first unit of Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Holmstrom has been on the ice for three of the last four PP goals.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Short-handed effectiveness

Red Wings' goals against per 60 minutes of short-handed ice time ...

Abdelkader 0.0
Franzen 0.0
Helm 3.3
Datsyuk 4.0
Eaves 4.7
Maltby 5.1
Cleary 6.5
Zetterberg 9.2
Team 9.3
Draper 14.4
Filppula 20.5

Rafalski 0.0
Lebda 0.0
Lidstrom 4.6
Team 9.3
Kronwall 10.2
Stuart 11.4
Ericsson 13.7

Lidstrom is having a wonderful start to his season. Maltby and Helm were finally scored upon on the PK, but the Wings have a 1-1 score short-handed with Malts on the ice in his 11:43 of ice time. Helm has been out for 18:16 and has only seen one goal against.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

May back in lineup Saturday

Brad May has been cleared to return to Wings' lineup for Saturday's game in Toronto. He'll wear a visor for first time since juniors.

May caught Jason Williams' stick in the eye while sitting on the bench during a game in Calgary, Oct. 31.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Red Wings recall Janik

The Red Wings brought up defenseman Doug Janik from Grand Rapids.

The Griffins' press release ....

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday recalled defenseman Doug Janik from the Grand Rapids Griffins.

Janik, 29, leads all Griffins defensemen and is tied for second overall on the club with six points (1-5—6) in 10 games. He also paces Grand Rapids with a plus-four rating and ranks third with 15 penalty minutes.

A ninth-year pro, Janik has appeared in 161 NHL games for Buffalo, Tampa Bay, Dallas and Montreal, totaling 16 points (3-13—16) and 123 PIM. Last season, he registered one assist in 13 games with the Stars before going scoreless in two games with the Canadiens following a Feb. 26 trade. The majority of Janik’s NHL experience came with the Lightning from 2006-08, when he accumulated 15 points (3-12—15) over 136 games.

Janik will be available to make his Red Wings debut – and become the 105th Griffins alumnus to play in the NHL – tonight when the Boston Bruins visit Joe Louis Arena at 7 p.m. The game will be televised live on Versus.