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.
My apologies for disappearing for a couple of days. When I finally got home from the two-week trip to Traverse City, the fatigue of the trip hit like a brick wall, and I plain old crashed for the remainder of Thursday, Friday and today. I haven’t unpacked (a rarity for me) and have done very little other than sleep.
I’ll try to get my act together by Monday at the latest as I know that preseason news travels fast. My apologies for any inconvenience.
The Detroit Red Wings play the Chicago Blackhawks tonight at Little Caesars Arena (7:30 PM on FSD Plus), and I’m going to be out of the loop for a bit as I pack up the car and drive home from Traverse City.
It is a remarkable list:Lindsay, Gordie Howe (four titles each) and Delvecchio (three) of the Detroit Red Wings;Maurice Richard (eight), Jacques Plante, Dickie Moore, Bernie Geoffrion, Doug Harvey, Tom Johnson (six each) and Butch Bouchard (four) of the Montreal Canadiens; Hall, Hull, Stan Mikita and Pierre Pilote (one each) of the Chicago Black Hawks; Andy Bathgate (one) of the Toronto Maple Leafs; and Bert Olmstead, who won four times with Montreal and one more with Toronto.
Four of the 16 players are living legends, and each understands that, given the Stanley Cup’s changing face, being on the trophy is not forever.
“The Cup is only so big,” Lindsay said with a laugh. “You can only put so many names on those five rings. It’s a testament to all the great men who have played the game and are being developed today. It’s an honor for today’s players to have their names on the Cup with those who went before them, as it was an honor for me to be on it with the greats who went before me.”
Lindsay, who joked that “at 93, I’m not a believer in looking or acting my age,” won titles with the Red Wings in 1950, ’52, ’54 and ’55. The forward’s first two championship teams were removed with the band honoring Cup winners from 1940-41 to 1952-53. This time his last two title teams will be taken off.
“My name coming off the Cup is progress,” he said.
Stubbs continues, also speaking with Glenn Hall, Alex Delvecchio and Bobby Hull.
Update: The NHL posted a video regarding the band being removed from the Cup:
“These young guys are pushing, it’s just going to push everyone to be better,” [Dylan] Larkin said. “There’s opportunity there for jobs. Guys understand there’s minutes and power-play time and these young guys are pushing. I’m excited about it. It’s definitely in the back of my mind a little bit that these guys are coming and they’re players and they’re only going to help us. It wouldn’t surprise me by Day 1 we have some fresh faces. They’re energized, they’re skilled and they can play the game. It could be the first time I’m not the youngest guy on the team. That’s why I’m growing out this beard.”
[Dennis] Cholowski assisted on two goals, including Rasmussen’s. Cholowski’s shot hit the post. Larkin corralled the rebound and passed to [Michael] Rasmussen at the net-front for an easy tap-in, just one second after a power play expired.
Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said Rasmussen started slowly but got better as the game progressed.
“I thought he was doing the things he needs to do,” Blashill said. “He was engaged, really a big hit in the second period. He was strong on the puck, he’s great around the net. He’s got real good hands in that area. Got kind of a blind-side hit in the third and didn’t budge because he’s a big, big, big man. And as much as we talk about skating in this game today, size matters. He’s a big man with a good set of hands, so I thought he had a good night.”
The Red Wings received some contributions from young players as Michael Rasmussen scored the OT winner, Dennis Cholowski had 2 assists in 23:33 played, and Grosse Pointe native Trevor Hamilton scored the game’s opening goal.
The lack of the “C” on the winged-wheel crested jerseys would be a just tribute to guy a lot of folks around the room are having a little trouble letting go of.
Management has not announced a decision on the succession plan and is unlikely to do so until near the end of this consequential preseason.
Designating three alternate captains would also indicate the leadership-by-group the Red Wings think they are likely to experience, in their captain’s absence, during a season of diminished expectations.
“I think, for us, he’s always been our leader,” Jimmy Howard said of Zetterberg. “But, it’s one of those things where we’ve still got great leadership in the room.
“As far as the C goes in the room, I don’t think it’s really a big concern.”
It’s hard for Dr. Murray Howe to pick out the favorite among the long list of stories he’s heard about his late father, hockey legend Gordie Howe.
The youngest son of “Mr. Hockey,” Dr. Howe listened to thousands of anecdotes about his famous dad even before the younger Howe’s book, “Nine Lessons I Learned from my Father,” hit stores last October.
“When I wrote the book on Dad, I really just put it down because I just wanted to pay tribute to him, and just kind of share with the world the humanitarian that he was and the kind of amazing father he was …,” Dr. Howe said. “(I wrote it) without any forethought as to what would happen afterwards, what it would look like when the book was done. I kind of just went with the flow.
“The book has been so well received, and it’s just been a neat way to keep Dad’s spirit going. The main way that’s happening is through all the appearances I’ve been doing, and just meeting people.”
Dr. Howe will visit the Bedford Branch Library for a Meet the Author event on from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Books will be available for purchase and a signing will follow the program.
“I thought as the camp went along he just got better and better,” coach Jeff Blashill said Wednesday morning. “He really started to show me some real things.
“I always look to see, what’s an elite skill that a player has that’s going to allow that to be transferable to the NHL? For him, I wasn’t sure what it was at first. He’s definitely a good transporter of the puck from one end to the other, but his edges are excellent. I mean he can really create space with his edges and then he makes lots of plays in small areas. Those two things can be extraordinarily important here in the NHL.”
The Red Wings better hope so! With the sudden retirement of Henrik Zetterberg, Detroit is looking pretty thin down the middle. After putting up a career-high 63 points last season, the 22-year-old Larkin was given a five-year extension this offseason. That was a vote of confidence in Larkin’s future, and now he’s got an opportunity to continue his upward trajectory and prove that he’s worthy of being the Wings’ top center as they continue their rebuild in Detroit. If he does that, this could be his team moving forward.