TSN’s Yost talks Wings, Hawks in decline

TSN’s Travis Yost penned an article titled, “Red Wings, Blackhawks paying for past glory,” and among his points:

Ten years ago, the Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks ushered in a new era of hockey – one built on speed, puck possession and an incredible pool of talent that ensured playoff contention every season.

But hockey, like most things, is cyclical. The state of the organizations in Detroit and Chicago is quite different in 2018. These two historic franchises wrote the playbook on how to build a contender in the modern era. But they also are writing a sequel – one that speaks to the importance of salary cap management and continuous player development.

Detroit’s story has already been written. The Red Wings are embarking on a full-blown rebuild and it may be some time before they come out of it. The Red Wings were naturally going to dissolve first. Their core was substantially older than their Original Six brethren, and so was their window of contention.

The Red Wings now carry the league’s oldest roster by a significant margin – the average player age working against the Detroit cap is 31, which is three standard deviations from league norms these days. Players age 34 and up, a vanishing breed in the NHL, are consuming about $36-million against the cap. Not only are those players relatively unproductive (or, simply not playing, like forward Johan Franzen), but the organization hasn’t been able to replace them with competent young talent. The rebuild is ongoing and will take some time.

Yost continues, and I would argue that the Wings’ consistent misses at the draft over the past half-decade–yielding an inability to build a “next generation” defensive corps and trading away the Calle Jarnkrok and Mattias Janmark for veterans to “continue the streak”–have significantly hamstrung the team, but those are just two of the factors playing into the Wings’ struggles today.


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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.

14 thoughts on “TSN’s Yost talks Wings, Hawks in decline”

  1. On drafting D: You are absolutely right. It’s inexplicable how this franchise can whiff on so many D picks.

    On trading to two J’s: I don’t think losing a third line penalty killer and a middle six winger really hamstrung the team.

    Both teams are victims of their own success. The Wings kept it up longer than the Hawks but, in fairness, did so mostly in the pre-cap NHL.

    1. There’s also the argument that the Wings’ luck in drafting Lidstrom, Zetterberg and Datsyuk = the thrust behind the Wings’ dominance in the 00’s. Between those three players and the cap-less league, the Wings definitely got a leg up on their competition.

  2. I thought Calle Jarnkrok was moving back to Sweden full time that is way we traded for Legwand. At least I recall this mantra at the time. Wings got a deal on that one.

  3. 100% no question. Like any franchise, they’ve had good luck and bad.

    It irks me when writers look for complex reasons for the Wings decline. They were good, they tried to stay good for too long perhaps, now they’re bad. It’s simple.

    In 10 years let’s see how old the Leafs are and how many bad contracts they have. I just hope for the sake of Yost and all his pals at the Toronto Sports Network they have a cup or two to keep them warm and fuzzy (actually, I don’t hope for this at all)

    1. it irks me when holland fans excuse his denseness . 1-he drafted bad for too long , nill was very weak . 2- holland wasnt smart enough to make trades of guys that were doing good either in detroit or grand rapids while they obviously werent going to be future core peices such as nyquist-tatar-pulks (in gr) for draft picks from teams that might miss play offs thusly getting us good picks . 3- made a hideous trade of a 1st for quincey . 4- drafted too many undersized guys too early hoping to find the next twin such as ferraro 5- wiffed on multiple early picks in kindl-mccollum-ferraro-smith-etc. 6- drafted dumb dman after dumb dman from sproul to smith to kindl when its obvious in todays high speed nhl a dman has to have a high speed thought process or hes burnt to a crisp . 7- dumb contract after dumb contract blowing important asset of cap space on abdelkader-dekeyser-helm-ericsson-etc and all the while knowing fans rightly said these contracts were ridiculous . ilitch family gave holland too much respect too long and once scotty left he got very lost without bowmans opinions , and a very large number of serious fans have been seriously down on hollands thinking for many years . and not because theyre spoiled , but because they knew his conduct was leading towards a big crash while he kept preaching ‘ rebuilding on the fly ‘ which in reality was a bunch of hot air because he did absolutely nothing different then he had did all along . just like osgood was made by yzerman shanny feds scotty cheli etc , hollands an average not great gm made by scotty , babs , nick , etc but ilitches thought too highly of him and let him go too far

  4. “the Wings’ consistent misses at the draft over the past half-decade–…”

    I honestly don’t see consistent misses over the last 5 drafts (or the last 10 for that matter).

    We took a risk on Mantha, while it hasn’t paid off his production has been better than the other F drafted after him… we passed on Muller & Theodore to take
    Mantha and despite wishing Mantha was better I’m okay with the decision.

    We took Larkin the next year passing up both Sanheim & DeAngelo. – I’m fine with that. Svechnikov over Juulsen and Larsson?

    None of the D we’ve passed on have been hidden gems that we overlooked while a different franchise hit the jackpot…

    I’m not happy about our lack of good luck, but I don’t think I can call a franchise that got lucky with Yzerman and then Fedorov and then Datsyuk (without missing a single season, instead having the HoF’ers overlap) unlucky because the magic pixie dust finally ran out.

    The worm will turn once again & until then I’ll enjoy hoping that Larkin shows vast improvement yet again this training camp.

    1. you dont see consistant misses at draft when holland drafted bad year after year ? hollands been lost since bowman left , no scotty no cuppys !

      1. “you dont see consistant misses at draft when holland drafted bad year after year ?” – mule#93.

        ~no, I don’t. I mentioned a couple of specifics earlier. Up above you wrote,

        “holland wasnt smart enough to make trades of guys that were doing good either in detroit or grand rapids while they obviously werent going to be future core peices such as nyquist-tatar-pulks (in gr) for draft picks from teams that might miss play offs thusly getting us good picks”

        Firstly, a team that “might” miss the playoffs isn’t a team with a top 5 pick, which is what we’ve lacked. Secondly, we’ve gotten plenty more in trading our the talent that we’ve developed than any other franchise around. Total up what we’ve received for Kindl, Smith, Mrazek, & Tatar and that is more than what any other franchise has piled up.

        You seem to think that the DRW have gotten better because of missed opportunities, but… I don’t think you’re being realistic.

        Let me paraphrase that:

        I think that you are judging Holland, et al. against a standard of perfection.
        I think that is the wrong standard.
        I think that you should judge Holland, et al. against a standard of how the other NHL franchises have perfomed.

        Has Holland ever thrown up his hands and just cleared out every defensemen the most-prolific-fans-on-social-media think he should ?

        No. The New York Rangers did that. Holland received a couple of draft picks from the New York Rangers for one of the D we developed.

        Holland is doing what he’s supposed to do. But he can’t play and until we get the next Yzerman/Fedorov/Datsyuk we won’t be an elite team in the league. Hopefully Larkin can elevate this very next season (I for one have not ruled out the playoffs this season), hopefully-this, hopefully-that.

        Holland is in charge of a selling team until then & he has raked in more draft picks then his fellow GMs since he starting selling.

        1. I wrote, “You seem to think that the DRW have gotten better because of missed opportunities, but… I don’t think you’re being realistic.”

          I meant to write, ‘worse,’ as in, “… You seem to think that the DRW have gotten worse because of missed opportunities, but …”

        2. hes finally made some real good moves in the mentioned trades but before them he was in a very long term drought where he wasnt doing anything to speed up the rebuild but rather was wasting draft picks , cap space and trade opportunitys such as having could have traded green for a real good future . during this drought making the comment that further perturbed me about trades that ” your not trying to rip other gms off , you’ve got to work with these guys so you try to make trades that are fair for both teams ” . hopefully he was just saying that to sound shall we say ‘wholesome’ because if thats how he really thinks he doesnt understand his job . but i add that im ecstatic over the trades you mentioned and a bunch of picks in mantha whom i see as a possible star power forward starting this season – larkin – rasmussen – bertuzzi – hronek – obviously zadina . and the fact hes finally drafting some size when it was obvious for ever that we had become to small and soft . i realize gm’ing in the nhl is a very difficult job and i could critique about any gm out there , and like you say i have to look at the bottom line season after season competetive record . but from say the quincey trade til about 2 year ago he made me bang my head off the wall 24/7 as we were neither getting anywhere near hardware or a rebuild . i add though that i see a big part of that is ilitches keeping develano around when a younger man should have been brought in say 4 years ago , an ex nhler around hollands age thats highly respected by nhl types that would have been challenging hollands outlooks as the rocking of the boat would have seriously helped to awaken holland to the errors in his ways . one of them i believe to be keeping mark howe around as so many of the trades and signings weve made such as the last cleary contract – the ufa from florida – gustavson – janmark for cole – and others were hack jobs . new younger guys in develanos and howes jobs could have gone a long way towards rebuilding this organization as the rebuild has to take place amongst the brass too ! but ilitches ‘ were family ‘ outlook has kept alot of people in jobs they shouldnt have , one was nill whom shoulda been released long befor he left . anyway a.a. happy labor days to you , heres to watching mantha become an allstar power forward this winter ! hopefully holland learned from that you cant draft all rah rah boy scout guys because alot of very good players are strong stubborn people that dont want to conform to others ways and are quite capable of doing things their own way while still becoming great nhlers , the scouts made a mistake thinking mantha wasnt competetive because he didnt skate 200′ north then 200’ south over and over . the guy knows what hes doing and saves his energy for better use than wasting it on many times fruitless back checking which all the psycho nhl full of them selves coaches cry for 24/7 . silence blashill , just put him out there on the 1st line and pp and watch a soldier at work . #39 headed for the rafters .

  5. rebuilding on the fly shoulda been : our 1st plus the obviously one dimensional pulu the season he won ahl scoring title for a higher 1st round pick we drafted a legit size d or c with . green shoulda been traded at the deadline the season before he got hurt to a contender for their playoff run plus the full and final next season of his contract for an excellent draft pick / prospect . also moving janmark for the already oft injured cole who wasnt going to get us anywhere anyhow was a real mistake as janny has become an excellent two way forward that can play anywhere from 1 to 4 . you dont trade a solid prospect when looking at future for a player that isnt getting you near a cup

  6. “our 1st plus the obviously one dimensional pulu the season he won ahl scoring title for a higher 1st round pick we drafted a legit size d or c with . ” – mule#93

    Who in the 2015 draft do you want? Hanifin, Werenski, someone like that?

    No one in the top-10 traded their pick for that draft. Boston was able to trade Milan Lucic to an LAK team that thought he was a piece-for-a-cup in order to get Zboril(68-AHL gms & 0-NHL-gms). Boston also traded away Dougie Hamilton to Calgary and took Zachary Senyshyn(66-AHL gms & 0-NHL-gms). Boston didn’t want these 2 players, they wanted someone in the top-10. They wanted to trade the picks they used on Zboril, Senyshyn, and their own pick, DeBrusk(70-NHL-gms) for a top-10 pick.

    No team traded their top-10 pick to Boston. Boston could’ve/should’ve at least have taken Barzal & Chabot you might say… and you’d probably be right to say that but that’s out of Holland’s hands.

    Holland, et al. took Evgeny Svechnikov instead of trading like Boston.

    p.s. I wish more folks were here, mule, I like the back and forth. Thanks for the replies.

  7. yuuuuuu huuuuuuuuuu a.a.what wrong you pouting ? lmao . sorry if i crushed you too bad and shot your ideas full of holes 😉 ps – george i just got an idea = go to heyfolks at rwc at tell him you want to run the malik report out of his site as a forum seperate from his main forum , this way it cost you zilch and the sites more powerful making it more fun for your followers . just tell him you want total control of your forum there . bringing you in there would be a big drawing card for him . ide also try getting that country girl that used to post at that wiim site posting stuff for your malik report because she got some good common sense ands a wing fanatic . anyway just throwing around some ideas

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