Free Press’s Windsor campaigns for the youth movement

The Free Press’s Shawn Windsor offers a column in which he discusses the Red Wings’ free agent signings in the context of “speeding up or slowing down the rebuild,” and I believe that Windsor speaks for more than a few of us here:

Then the free agency period rolled around and all that hope fell like a mercury-filled balloon. You could hear the groaning from Ann Arbor to New Baltimore, from Clarkston down to the Michigan-Ohio state line.

Really? The fanbase bemoaned. More veterans? More inexplicable use of cap space? More of the Wings getting in their own way?

It may not be much in the scheme of things, in both dollars and length of contract, but when the Wings announced the signings of Thomas Vanek and Mike Green — goalie Jonathan Bernier made more sense — it was hard to find a corner of the Wings’ faithful that wasn’t confused.

Or suffering from a kind of Red Wings PTSD.

That’s post-traumatic stress disorder, if you prefer your acronyms spelled out. Which is a fancy way of saying:


Or, better yet, what the hell?

Windsor continues, and I can only say that the Red Wings’ GM has signed so many veterans over the past 10 years that he’s browbeaten me into shrugging and sighing when he inevitably places roadblocks in the way of the Wings’ next generation.

Thankfully, the Wings’ young players are persistent, and they eventually break through, but it’s sure damn frustrating to watch the team place obstacles in their way every July 1st.

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.

6 thoughts on “Free Press’s Windsor campaigns for the youth movement”

  1. The roster numbers at forward just barely work, assuming an injury or two (but wishing the guys good health).

    If you pencil in Rasmussen, and Z comes back, it looks like three scoring lines, with a fourth line of:

    Helm Glendening Abdelkader

    That leaves Frk and Witkowski as extras…and Zadina, hopefully, in Grand Rapids, to start.

    Svechnikov, Turgeon and Pope (given his age) look like the next three to get auditions.

    That’s (18) deep at forward, not counting the veteran pros brought into Grand Rapids.

    But there’s some real offensive depth up front. No one close to a 30-goal scorer, at least yet (Mantha?) But depth and potential.
    And, a 10M checking line, in which three veteran grinders are slotted where most would like them. Of course, it’s more likely we’ll see all three of those guys at other spots in the lineup, as more talented players platoon on the fourth line.

    Some seasons, a team needs (18) forwards or more.
    Some seasons, they barely need (14).
    How that goes will probably determine (on top what the young guys earn) whether the young guys end up being blocked.

  2. I guess if Zadina is lights-out in camp and preseason, you can waive Frk and/or Witkowski.

    Then the issue for the Wings is minutes and opportunity.

    Does Svech have a better start in GR? Or does he end up demoralized, losing even more confidence. Does Pope, at 24, earn a look?

    I’ll give Holland credit again for a very good move in trading Tatar to clear cap space (soon to be spent!) and a roster spot. But of course Vanek wasn’t on the roster last season. So the main change is subtracting Booth who barely played.

  3. If you assume that with one of the oldest rosters in the NHL 1-2 forwards and 1 deffenseman will likely be injured at any given time, the roster isn’t actually all that bad. Z, Kronner, and Helm are all good candidates to miss substantial time again.

    With perfect health the wings have room for Zadina/Ras and Bert and one of Jensen/Hronek/Cholo as is. I bet Frk will be the healthy scratch most nights given his ineffectiveness 5 on 5. I also somewhat suspect that guys like Nike, Vanek, Daily, Green, and Howard could all be trade bait at the deadline for more picks/prospects. In which case it would make sense to have another veteran or 2 in the system. Obviously the Helm, Abs, Nielson, E, DDK contracts are still terrible, but that’s not something that KH can do much about at this point.

  4. Wait until only one prospect makes the Big Club (maybe Ras). All the excuses by KH will be nauseating. Zadina Voted the Most NHL ready player, among many other awards. “they could be up in 2 weeks”, “Not ready” Blah Blah Blah

  5. “with a fourth line of:
    Helm Glendening Abdelkader”

    You know Helm or Abby will be on the wing flanking Larkin and Mantha right?

    While the other will be flanking Vanek and Neilsen?

    I see these lines

    2Z – Z – Nyke
    Abby – Larkin – Mantha
    Vanek – Nielsen – Helm
    AA – LGD – Ras/Frk/Witt

    Sure they may give Ras some minutes on the wing with either Larkin or Z but as soon as he blows a fart in Blash’s direction down to the 4th line he goes, with an occasional trip upstairs to watch games with Witt or Frk.

    I don’t see the D changing. Which sucks, that’s our biggest problem and we’ll have the exact same squad on the back-end as last years disaster.

  6. i like the forward depth and signing of the smart / talented vanek to teach rooks . i dont like greens game but i agree with keeping the team some what competitive during rebuild , and his cap hit dont mean anything at this time as we couldnt sign anybody else . my disagreement is with the lack of d prospects and its where i want action taken , as in trading guys like nyquist whose prime is now when wings windows closed , and who is a good weapon 3on3/pp/o zone if on a contender . trade nyquist today for a d prospect in ahl , i dont care if he has a 2nd pairing ceiling as in a stay at home / pk guy he’ll still eventually be of big help in building the all important d corps . another move ide like is anthansou because he dont seem to fit the culture , but give him big minutes for first 3 or 4 months without bitching at him about 2 way game and hope he plays great raising his worth to trade for a blue chip d propspect in january . i dont care if he goes else where and does good as long as we get a good d in return . but trading him now while stocks down would be foolish . besides those 2 moves wings need to seriously look at how theyre developing their dmen and change whatever theyre doing , dial 1-800-NICK and ask him if he wants an office and own coaching staff in grand rapids to make return visits to when he has time . get the smartest dman ever involved in developing our d men . if ilitch has the cash to spend on inovations such as a developmental coaching staff for dmen it becomes an edge for wings . i dream of all our d prospects skyping nick every nite , after nick runs pre season in person , in sweden and going over game film or answering questions . some thing like this would be huge for players = getting coached by the best thinking dman ever !

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