Three things: On the WJSS’s local ties, the Wings’ Finnish prospects and players-turned-GM’s

Of Red Wings-related note this morning:

  1. With the World Junior Summer Showcase beginning tomorrow in Plymouth, MLive’s Ryan Zuke posted an article highlighting the players with local ties who will be participating in the event:

Team Canada

Forward Joe Veleno: The 18th overall pick of the Detroit Red Wings in 2018 finished fourth in scoring in the QMJHL last season with 104 points (42 goals, 62 assists). The 6-foot-1, 191-pound center is expected to compete for a roster spot with the Red Wings this fall.  

Team Sweden

Goalie Jesper Eliasson: Eliasson was a third-round pick of the Red Wings in 2018. The 6-foot-3 19-year-old played in the Swedish Hockey League last season. 

Forward Jonatan Berggren: The 5-foot-11 center was selected by the Red Wings at No. 33 overall in 2018. He played in the Swedish Hockey League last season. 

Team Finland

Forward Otto Kivenmaki: Kivenmaki is undersized at 5-foot-8, 137 pounds, but has a high offensive upside. He was drafted by the Red Wings in the seventh round in 2018.

Last season, Kivenmaki had two goals and 14 assists in 34 games in the Finnish Elite League. 

2. MLive’s Ansar Khan also posted an article regarding the Wings’ Finnish prospects, including Kivenmaki, Antti Tuomosto and Kasper Kotkansalo:

Kotkansalo, 20, will be starting his third year at Boston University, where he is coming off, by his own admission, a lackluster season (no goals, 11 assists, minus-8 in 38 games).

“Not good. I had a tough season for sure,” Kotkansalo said. “As a team, individually, a very, very tough season. But I’m still very confident going into the next one. I don’t doubt myself or the team at all. I guess that’s just something that happens sometimes.”

Consistency was his main issue.

“The team didn’t do so well (16-18-4); I wish I could have stood up myself around those hard times,” Kotkansalo said. “I think I was pretty inconsistent through the year. I had really good games and then fall off with some bad ones. It’s my third year now so I’ve gained some confidence and I’m in great shape. I feel really good and I think that’s what’s going to lead into next year.

“I really have no excuses. I’ve played about 80 games now in college. I think I can do well in that league.”

Khan continues

3. Finally, taking a bit of a left turn, USA Today’s Tom Schad examines the most successful players-turned-executives in sports history:

7. Steve Yzerman (NHL)

“Stevie Y” was a legendary player, a first-ballot Hall of Famer who is right up there with Gordie Howe as the best to ever play for the Detroit Red Wings. And he’s been a solid general manager, too. As GM, he led the Tampa Bay Lightning to five playoff trips, including a Stanley Cup Final appearance and three conference finals in eight seasons. He also was the 2015 General Manager of the Year. Yzerman, who also helped construct the Canadian national teams that won back-to-back Olympic gold in 2010 and 2014, rejoined the Red Wings as general manager earlier this year.

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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.

2 thoughts on “Three things: On the WJSS’s local ties, the Wings’ Finnish prospects and players-turned-GM’s”

  1. Veleno is not going from the Q straight to the NHL. Doesn’t matter what he does in camp. When will people figure this out?

  2. Have a nice relaxing vacation George. I’m looking forward to watching some of the WJSS.

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