Team Defense Will Be Stressed Starting Tonight
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press, Eight games will be plenty to give both Alex Nedeljkovic and newcomer Ville Husso enough starts to get comfortable. On defense, Moritz Seider has spent camp paired with Ben Chiarot, Filip Hronek with Olli Määttä, with a presumptive third pairing in Simon Edvinsson and Gustav Lindstrom — but Lalonde has repeatedly said there'll be lots of experimentation during preseason to see who gels with whom. "We haven’t really stressed about it," he said. "I couldn’t give you any looks at all. We are going to take the full eight games and let it play out and go from there. We do put a lot of time into a ballpark matrix. We basically a guy a number we want to see and then work back from there. It never works that way. It changes daily. It’s already changed many times. But we ballpark what we want to see out of each guy." What Lalonde wants to see, starting Tuesday, is how well the Wings are implementing the emphasis on playing good team defense. "We have to take a step every day," he said. "Establishing some compete, some attitude, work on all those things. I feel fortunate we have eight games this year to fine-tune somethings before our home opener." more
Alex Stalock Battles Back From Myocarditis
from Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times, As a 35-year-old goaltender at Blackhawks training camp, Alex Stalock feels roughly the same way he did as a 22-year-old goaltender at Sharks training camp in 2009. He has no idea how this will pan out. But the fact he’s at camp at all—on an NHL contract, penciled in as the Hawks’ backup to Petr Mrazek, competing every day to earn that role—is a small blessing in itself. The opportunity means a lot. After all, this is his first training camp since 2019. “What I’ve learned in pro hockey is anything can change at any day,” Stalock said Monday. “There can be injuries. There can be sicknesses. Obviously, COVID now changes everything. You can never be complacent and say, ‘This is how it’s going to be,’ because I guarantee you that’s not how it’s going to be at the end of the year.” Stalock has experienced a few of those days where everything changed. But the one in November 2020 during which he was diagnosed with myocarditis stands out above the rest. Stalock was starting to prepare for the pandemic-shortened 2020-21 season when he tested positive for COVID-19 during a routine entry into the Wild’s practice facility. Shortly after, an MRI revealed his heart muscle was inflamed. He needed to halt all physical activity or risk cardiac arrest. continued
Day 5 Recap
from George Malik of The Malik Report, The Detroit Red Wings concluded their 2022 training camp activities in Traverse City on Monday with two hour-long practices, from 9:30 to 10:10 AM and then 11 until about 11:45 AM. Regrettably, the Wings chose to omit the dreaded “skating test” from their Monday activities, so the players were spared from grueling sets of full-rink laps with 3, 2, 1 minute and then 30 seconds’ worth of rest between laps. After days one, two, three and four (which consisted of the Red vs. White Game), perhaps the coaching staff felt that it was better to practice and get out of dodge, and perhaps they were sparing the players of some cruelty given the hard work they’d put in over the last five days. continued with many details.. Plus this from George.... As you know, at present, I’m not credentialed for Red Wings games, and while I’m going to speak to the PR staff about that at some point soon.. It's past due DRW, make it happen.
Canada Lifts Vaccination Requirements
from ESPN News Sevices, The Canadian government confirmed, on Monday, that non-citizens entering the country -- including professional athletes -- will no longer be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 beginning in October. The Associated Press reported, last week, the decision was imminent. Removal of the vaccine mandate means unvaccinated Major League Baseball players would be allowed to play in Toronto in the playoffs should the Blue Jays make the postseason. It would also apply to the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League. Unvaccinated players are currently not allowed to cross the border into Canada. continued
Hope In Ottawa
from Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic, The Ottawa Senators are entering must-watch TV territory. They’re going to be fun in 2022-23. Head coach D.J. Smith might pull his hair out on some nights because his team will be on the wrong end of some of these entertaining affairs. That’s going to be the real challenge for a team loaded up front — how much better they can actually defend. But either way, the Sens should never be boring this season, and their program overall is very much on the rise. Priority No. 1 is managing expectations in their market, which appears downright giddy right now. There’s a ton of enthusiasm in that Sens fan base after a summer that’s included signing Claude Giroux and trading for Alex DeBrincat, not to mention locking up more core pieces. There appears to finally be some hope in Ottawa. continued ($)
Red Wings Trim Roster
DETROIT - The Detroit Red Wings today assigned forwards Amadeus Lombardi and Pasquale Zito, defenseman Oscar Plandowski and goaltender Jan Bednar to their respective major junior clubs and released forwards Julien Anctil, Marcus Limpar-Lantz, Mitchell Martin and Jacob Mathieu and goaltender Andrew Oke from their amateur tryouts. The Red Wings currently have 60 players on their training camp roster: 34 forwards, 20 defensemen and six goaltenders. Detroit will continue practices in Traverse City, Mich., on Monday, Sept. 26 prior to beginning an eight-game preseason schedule on Tuesday, Sept. 27 at Pittsburgh. PLAYERS ASSIGNED/RELEASED ON 9/26/22
Training Camp Observations
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press, As the Wings wrap up five days in Traverse City and head home to Little Caesars Arena to begin their exhibition season, here are top observations from their time Up North: Mean duo New head coach Derek Lalonde has emphasized that nothing should be read into who is playing with whom so far, but reigning NHL rookie of the year Moritz Seider and veteran Ben Chiarot sure have looked like they complement one another well. Chiarot showed in Sunday's scrimmage that he's not going to let up just because his opponents were teammates: He hit Michael Rasmussen into the bench, and then turned around and crushed Filip Zadina. "That’s a tone setter," Lalonde said. Seider plays a game that is equal parts skill and physicality, and paired with Chiarot, the two have the potential to be a fearsome duo. Big Kid Dominik Kubalik, like Chiarot a newcomer who has looked really good in camp, smiled when asked about 6-foot-8 prospect Elmer Soderblom. "He’s huge," Kubalik said. "When I saw him the first time, he’s a big kid. And he skates pretty well, he’s got a good shot, good hands. It’s exciting to watch him. I like him so far." more
Coach Lalonde On A Few Players
from Kevin Allen of Detroit Hockey Now, Detroit Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde said he liked the pace of today’s annual Red and White scrimmage in Traverse City. He thought the players were putting emphasis on executing their defensive responsibilities. That’s important, given that last season the Red Wings ranked last in giving up dangerous scoring chances. Lalonde is aiming to fix that immediately. The Red Team beat the White Team 3-2. Givani Smith, Jakub Vrana and Cross Hanas scored for the Red Team while Dylan Larkin and Matt Luff scored for the White Team. Lalonde liked the game’s energy. Here are five quotes from the Lalonde press conference after the game: On Filip Zadina “Assertive with his game. It probably started Day 2 of camp, Day 1 was fine. I think Day 2 you could see being assertive with the puck and some confidence and then it translated into today’s game. He was flying, puck was on his stick, skill in tight, he was getting shots off, obviously he created a ton of offense today. He looked like he’s playing with some confidence. So hopefully we can keep building that going forward.” On Elmer Soderblom continued
Video- Derek Lalonde And Dominik Kubalik After Today’s Red And White Game
Coach Lalonde says no update on Robert Hagg. He took the puck in the back of the ear/head area — Carley Johnston (@carleykjohnston) September 25, 2022 Joe Veleno was a maintenance day, lower-body but probably could have played. They wanted to be cautious — Max Bultman (@m_bultman) September 25, 2022 Watch coach Lalonde and Dominik Kubalik below.
Sunday Hockey Notes
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun, - It’s easy to talk about firing Kyle Dubas at the end of the season or, in the more demure way, not re-signing him as general manager. The better question: Who do you replace him with? And who would do a better job? Montreal fired Marc Bergevin after a long run as GM and replaced him with Jeff Gorton and Kent Hughes. If there’s a Jeff Gorton out there and available, Toronto would be wise to investigate. - I’ve never heard a bad word said about Zdeno Chara. Not by those playing with him. Not by those playing against him. It’s hard to find any player who was as universally respected as Chara was. He will be a first-ballot Hall of Famer in 2022. Probably alongside Duncan Keith, who won three Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks and also won two Norris Trophies and, maybe the most important award, one called the Conn Smythe. - Not sure P.K. Subban, great as he was, electric as he was, so much the personality, did enough to make the Hall of Fame. He did win the Norris and that works in his favour. The only retired Norris winner not to make the Hall is Randy Carlyle. One day in history we’ll look back and see that Chris Pronger, Scott Niedermayer, Drew Doughty and Victor Hedman only won one Norris, and collectively we’ll shake our heads. And to think, Brad Park never won but he did finish second eight times, usually behind a guy named Bobby Orr. - In 2004, Jaromir Jagr was the highest-paid player in the NHL at $11 million a season. There was no salary cap then. All these years later, Nathan MacKinnon is the highest-paid player at $12.6 million. No athletes in pro sports have been as underpaid, big picture, as NHL stars. The salary cap hasn’t done a thing for hockey stars but limit their value … By comparison, the highest-paid player in the NBA in 2004 was Shaquille O’Neal at $27 million a year. Steph Curry is the highest paid now at $48 million. Second highest-paid player in 2004 was Dikembe Mutombo at $19.4 million. The second-highest paid player in the NHL today is Connor McDavid at $12.5 million. The second highest-paid player in the NBA today is Russell Westbrook at $47 million. a few more hockey topics...
Stream- Go Red, Go White
The annual Red & White game from Traverse City starts at noon today. Stream begins at 11:50am and can be watched below. Red vs. White! Live at 11:50am » https://t.co/WPhvYJCZDa pic.twitter.com/KD4dXRt9jT — Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) September 25, 2022
Video- Dominik Kubalik Today
Dominik Kubalik with John Keating.
Petr Mrazek Employed A Physiotherapist Over The Summer
from Scott Powers of The Athletic, Petr Mrazek knew he had to do something different this offseason. His body hadn’t been holding up. He missed stretches of last season due to a groin injury and was limited to 20 games for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Plus, there was his age. He turned 30 in February. Being a goalie, he knew those factors were only going to present more challenges in the future. If he was going to get ahead of it all, he had to treat this offseason differently “I knew I need to change something,” Mrazek said after Blackhawks practice on Saturday. “With the age, it comes. I feel like the body gets a little sorer, a little tighter. That’s something I had to change, too. I had to change the things and get more flexible, feeling good about myself, feeling good about the body.” So, he started seeing a physiotherapist back home in Czechia over the summer. “I spent time with a physiotherapist 4-5 times a week for an hour or two hours working with them, stretching even more than I used to be,” Mrazek said. “Those were things I haven’t done before in the summers. That was something we changed. … I feel like I’m getting back to being flexible like I was younger. The parts of my body that were hurting before the summers and seasons are gone.” continued ($$$)
Video- Andrew Copp With A Health Update
via Bally Sports Detroit's YouTube page, John Keating reports on Andrew Copp, who's recovering nicely from abdominal surgery and is expected to contribute on the power play this season.
Videos- The Talk After Today’s Practice
Lucas Raymond first, Ville Husso below.
The Talk During Training Camps
from Luke Fox of Sportsnet, A quick mix of the things we gleaned from the week of hockey, serious and less so, and rolling four lines deep. Apologies in advance: We’re still in preseason form. 1. Connor McDavid ($12.5 million AAV) will have held the title of most handsomely paid NHL player for five seasons, when Nathan MacKinnon’s new deal ($12.6 million AAV) knocks him off the peak next season. MacKinnon’s reign on the top will be short like leprechauns. Auston Matthews is destined to supplant him after just a one-year run. (And, while we’re playing this game, Connor McDavid should leapfrog Matthews after two seasons, by 2026-27.)... 2. Is it unusual for a cash-flush organization — the same one that doled out millions for Mike Babcock to not coach the team — to not at least give Dubas a short-term extension and save the GM from “lame duck” status? Yes, it is. Heck, the Dallas Stars went as brief as one year on Jim Nill’s security cushion. But as consistent as the Maple Leafs’ regular seasons have been, the optics of rewarding four straight one-and-done postseasons under Dubas would’ve landed awkwardly.... more on the above topics and more notes too...
Zdeno Chara Changed The Bruins
from Kevin Paul Dupont Of The Boston Globe, The most vivid memory of Zdeno Chara’s time with the Bruins undoubtedly will be the night of June 15, 2011, in Vancouver. The bearded Bruins captain, then 34, took the handoff from NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and shook the glimmering Stanley Cup vigorously over his head, turning the trophy into an oversized salt shaker to sprinkle grains of joy. In that one cathartic moment, the franchise’s 39-year championship drought finally came to an end. The days of the Big Bad Bruins, of Orr and Espo, of leather skates and wooden sticks and a dusty, fetid Garden, officially were relegated to a distant corner of the memory vault. All of it certified in that joyful moment some 3,200 miles west of Causeway Street by the towering Big Z. More powerful and lasting, though, is the Chara legacy here of the last decade-plus, his combination of Herculean work ethic, athleticism, and professionalism that delivered a much-needed culture change that the organization prays can linger for many more years to come. continued plus more topics...
Mullett Arena Reviews
from Michael Traikos of the National Post, The aptly named Mullett Arena, which immediately conjures up images of long locks of hair flowing out the back of a helmet, has yet to host an actual NHL game — much less has even finished construction — but it’s already getting rave reviews from players around the league. “I think it will be pretty fun,” said Toronto’s Auston Matthews. “It’s going to be electric,” said Columbus’ Zach Werenski. “It’s going to be amazing and unbelievable,” said Arizona’s Clayton Keller, “One of the best places to play in the league, for sure.” By the sounds of it, you’d think these players were gushing about the possibilities of playing in a 30,000-seat venue, complete with a gigantic video screen and the kind of bells and whistles that would rival the noise and fan experience of seeing a game at the Bell Centre in Montreal. Instead, what has the NHL buzzing these days is a 5,000-seat rink located on a college campus in Tempe, Arizona, of all places. continued
One More Long Cup Run For The Bolts?
from John Romano of the Tampa Bay Times, If this were a movie, the credits would have rolled months ago. The story of a team’s rise through setbacks and heartbreaks to become back-to-back champions before falling valiantly, maddeningly close to a third consecutive title. Cue the theme music as they skated off the Amalie Arena ice after Game 6 of the Stanley Cup final against Colorado, never to perform together as a band of mismatched brothers again. But tell me, what if that wasn’t really the end? What if the Lightning have a sequel to tell? It’s not likely. The idea of another Stanley Cup run, that is. The gap between the Lightning and the rest of the Eastern Conference has been growing narrower over the years and may finally have flipped. The Panthers. The Maple Leafs. The Hurricanes. Oddsmakers say all three teams are more likely to win the conference than Tampa Bay this season. Realistically, the idea of a team reaching the Stanley Cup final five times in nine years is unheard of in the salary-cap era of the NHL. continued
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