A different take on the Wings vs. Golden Knights from Khan

This is a strange one…While setting up tomorrow’s Red Wings-Vegas Golden Knights game, MLive’s Ansar Khan offers a fair bit of criticism toward the Red Wings’ coaching, management and scouts:

Vegas is set up to succeed for years. The Red Wings are just beginning what could be a long and painful process. It’s due to several factors, including poor drafting, lack of trades, bad contracts and player regression under coach Jeff Blashill.

Detroit’s success resulted in no pick higher than 19th from 1992 to 2013. The Red Wings traded six first-round picks from 1997 to 2004 for established players (Brendan Shanahan, Chris Chelios, Dominik Hasek, Robert Lang).

None of their top picks from 2005 to 2011 remain on their roster (Jakub Kindl, Cory Emmerton, Brendan Smith, Tom McCollum, Landon Ferraro, Riley Sheahan and Tomas Jurco).

Their ability to land a high-impact defenseman anywhere in the draft since 2000 (Niklas Kronwall) has hurt

Drafting and trading are more important in today’s NHL due to a decline in the free-agent market caused by more teams locking up players to long-term deals.

General manager Ken Holland hasn’t made an impactful player for player trade in some time. No player on the current roster was acquired through trade.

The Red Wings have several big contracts (money and term) that would be difficult to move: Justin Abdelkader (five more years at a $4.25 million cap hit), Danny DeKeyser (four years at $5 million), Frans Nielsen (four years at $5.25 million) and Darren Helm (three years at $3.85 million).

Is there hope? Definitely, as the Red Wings have finally begun to hit on some prospects worth their salt in the draft, and the Wings are flush with picks for the next couple of drafts, with high-level prospects on the way…

But in the interim, the Red Wings may be mediocre for another year or three, as Khan suggests:

A core of talented, young forwards and a bevy of picks provides hope for the future, but it could be a while before the Red Wings get to where the Golden Knights are.

Published by

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.

8 thoughts on “A different take on the Wings vs. Golden Knights from Khan”

  1. Wow. Surprised to hear this from Ansar. Good for him. The city needs more critiques like this.

  2. I sure wouldn’t trade what the Night’s have for our Wings roster that’s for sure – biggest plus they Golden Nights have going is there coach Gerrard Gallant. He’s getting the most out of all his players and has a system in place for playing in his own end and fore-checking the opposition. Our coach Blashill seems to throw the pucks on the ice, make a few line changes and hopes for the best. I’d still like to see how this group of Wings could do with an experience NHL Coach – sure miss Babcock!!!

  3. “None of their top picks from 2005 to 2011 remain on their roster (Jakub Kindl, Cory Emmerton, Brendan Smith, Tom McCollum, Landon Ferraro, Riley Sheahan and Tomas Jurco).”

    OK…. ome of those weren’t even 1st rounders though, so that’s a bit of shenanigans from Khan, and he knows that. Jurco, Ferraro, and Emmerton were all DET’s “first” picks in their respective drafts, but were 2nd rounders. And McCollum was taken #30 overall, barely 1st round.

    “Their ability to land a high-impact defenseman anywhere in the draft since 2000 (Niklas Kronwall) has hurt”

    This is the far bigger problem.

    1. Yes Khan was careful to correctly phrase that our first selections in those drafts aren’t on the roster. But at the same time, Kenny was the one who deliberately opted to trade down out of the 1st round. That’s his choice and now he has to live with it.

      I mean in 2011 Kenny could have selected guys like Namestnikov, Rakell, Phillip Danault in the 1st round…but he CHOSE to trade down and select Jurco. He then was giddy about, claiming Jurco had as much skill as anyone in the 1st round and immediately started making comparisons to Hossa. We got an extra 2nd rounder out of the deal and we promptly used our 2nds on Ouellet and Sproul. So we effed up the entire 2011 draft. Nothing to show for it.

      Same thing in 2009. We could have selected in the 1st round, but Kenny traded down into round 2 and selected Landon Ferraro. The next pick was Ryan O’Reilly.

      We did this over and over. Trade out of the 1st round, got a bonus pick, and then would typically say we got the guy we wanted anyway. Kenny was lauded every time for his shrewd ability to get extra draft picks out of the deal. Did it again with Chychrun. You can’t have it both ways…praising Kenny for these deals, and then lamenting that we didn’t have enough 1st rounders.

      For the record, some fans, myself included, did not praise these deals. Some of us wanted to do the opposite. Trade your 1st and 2nd round pick to move up and get a higher pick in round 1. But we’ve never done that. Always opting for quantity, rather than quality. This is 100% Kenny’s fault. He signed off on every one of those draft day deals…

  4. “No player on the current roster was acquired through trade.”
    Who took the gag order off Khan? There is some dingers in there. All facts too. If Helene Ever projects this way as Khan did, wings nation may believe hell has froze over.

  5. “This is a strange one…”

    That it is, a beat writer offering legitimate criticism. Without beating around the bush. First time I recall Ansar being straight forward and honest.

  6. Much like all of you, I’m surprised to see this level of criticism from a Wings beat writer. Their drafting has been abysmal for the better part of 2 decades. To me, it demonstrates that they just got lucky for a number of years getting gems in the later rounds. They stuck to that formula despite it failing year after year. Even the guys recently drafted that they are high on aren’t exactly elite talent. Larkin probably caps out as a 2C, Mantha a streaky top 6 winger, AA the same and Bert a top 9 winger. They have to find a way to a game changer at forward. Then there’s the defense, I don’t have the will to go into that.

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