Monday notes from Kulfan: On the sked ahead, Mantha hitting 20 and trade talk

Among the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan’s off-day notes:

The Red Wings were off Monday after the back-to-back games, and having played three games in four days.

They have another rugged stretch coming up, with four games in the next six days — and Sunday’s game in New York against the Rangers beginning a stretch of 10 of 11 games away from Little Caesars Arena.

Kulfan also spoke with Anthony Mantha and Jeff Blashill regarding Mantha hitting the 20-goal mark:

“Obviously it feels good,” said Mantha, trying to make the best of the situation. “I don’t want to stop here, that’s for sure. I would rather get the two points (in the standings) than that 20th (goal).”

Blashill, a few times, has compared Mantha to Toronto power forward James van Riemsdyk, who also happened to score a net-front goal, his 24th goal this season, in Sunday’s game.

After Sunday’s game, Blashill again felt Mantha would do well to watch van Riemsdyk and pattern some of the way the Toronto forward plays.

“It’s a good step,” Blashill said of Mantha reaching 20 goals. “One of the big things, and I’ll talk to him about it, is he (Mantha) has scored lots of goals standing in front of the goalie, and when you learn to embrace that as a player, I don’t think it was a natural thing for him, they (the Leafs) got a guy in van Riemsdyk who consistently scores around 30 because he’s real good in front of the net.

“Anthony is hopefully seeing that just by being in front of the net you can increase your goal totals a ton. It’s good reinforcement of what net presence and that spot on the power play means.”

Kulfan continues, discussing trade rumors

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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.

One thought on “Monday notes from Kulfan: On the sked ahead, Mantha hitting 20 and trade talk”

  1. Blashill’s insistence on using Mantha as a net-front guys is too obsessive. Mantha has scored goals from different spots on the ice and always looks good in the slot, when he gets a pass or can set up there.

    No question, Mantha needs to be more consistent from shift to shift and game to game but slotting him into one role I detrimental to his game and his creativity.

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