Red Wings-Sabres mini preview: Wings host Sabres on back-to-back night for Buffalo

The Detroit Red Wings host the Buffalo Sabres on Hockey Fights Cancer night tonight at Little Caesars Arena (7 PM EST start on Bally Sports Detroit/MSG-B/97.1 FM).

The 9-9-and-3 Red Wings are in a quiet portion of their schedule, having not played since Wednesday’s win over St. Louis, while the Sabres, who always play strongly against the Wings, are amidst a stretch of 3 games to be played over the course of 4 nights.

8-10-and-2 Buffalo just snapped a 4-game losing streak via a 4-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Friday. We’re going to examine Friday’s game via the Associated Press’s straightforward recap…

Continue reading Red Wings-Sabres mini preview: Wings host Sabres on back-to-back night for Buffalo

Prospect Round-up: Kivenmaki 2A in Liiga; Walleye win; Cotton 2A in WHL

Of Red Wings prospect-related note on Friday:

In Europe, in the Finnish Liiga, Otto Kivenmaki had 2 assists, finishing at +2 with 1 shot in 13:20 played as the Lahti Pelicans won 3-0 over SaiPa;

Eemil Viro finished even with 2 shots in 16:22 played as TPS Turku won 5-2 over Ilves;

In the Swedish Allsvenskan, Jesper Eliasson was the back-up in Almtuna IS’s 4-3 loss to MoDo;

Filip Larsson was the back-up in HV71’s 2-1 loss to Kristianstads;

In the Swedish J20 league, Liam Dower Nilsson didn’t play in the Frolunda Indians’ 4-3 win over Vaxjo;

In North America, in the ECHL, Billy Christopoulos stopped 26 of 29 shots as the Toledo Walleye won 4-3 in overtime over the Indy Fuel:

In the QMJHL, Oscar Plandowski finished even in the Charlottetown Islanders’ 4-1 loss to Quebec;

Pasquale Zito had an assist, finishing even with 2 shots and a 9-for-13 faceoff record in the Windsor Spitfires’ 6-5 loss to Saginaw;

In the WHL, Sebastian Cossa was the back-up in the Edmonton Oil Kings’ 3-2 loss to Lethbridge;

Alex Cotton had 2 assists, finishing at +2 with 5 shots in the Vancouver Giants’ 3-1 win over Tri-City;

And in NCAA Hockey, Kyle Aucoin finished even in the Harvard Crimson’s 1-0 loss to New Hampshire;

Sam Stange finished even with 2 shots in the University of Wisconsin Badgers’ 1-1 tie with Clarkson;

Ryan O’Reilly scored a goal, finishing even with 1 shot in the Arizona State University Sun Devils’ 6-4 win over Bemidji State;

And Cooper Moore finished at -2 in the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks’ 5-1 loss to Minnesota.

Recap: Griffins flattened by Chicago Wolves’ 5-goal 3rd period rally

The Grand Rapids Griffins experienced a setback on Friday, losing 5-3 to the Chicago Wolves. Jared McIsaac (2) and Kyle Criscuolo scored for Grand Rapids, securing the team a 3-0 lead, but the Wolves scored 5 times(!) during the third period, with 4 going in on the as-to-yet-unassailable Calvin Pickard, to rally.

The Griffins’ website posted a recap:

Continue reading Recap: Griffins flattened by Chicago Wolves’ 5-goal 3rd period rally

Checking in with Alex Delvecchio

The Kingston Whig-Standard’s Patrick Kennedy checked in with former Red Wings captain and legend Alex Delvecchio as the man nicknamed “Fats” prepares to turn 90 on December 4th:

“My dad never showed any interest in hockey,” Delvecchio remembers. “He’d say, ‘You can’t eat pucks.’ But I was determined to show him that while you couldn’t eat them, you could make a living playing with one.” To that end, the young teenager would eschew his studies and sneak out the basement coal bin door to play shinny, then sneak back in an hour or so later.

Today he lives quietly with his second wife, Judy, an artist with whom he shares a December birthday. He has five children, 10 grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and a new Silverado pickup truck. “I don’t let him sit around,” reasons Judy, 16 years her husband’s junior.

“I was very fortunate to play so long and with just one team,” Delvecchio reflects. “I never bought a house until I had the 10 seasons you needed to qualify for a (NHL) pension. I always rented because Adams could unload you at any time for any reason. He kept everyone on edge, except the big guy.”

Delvecchio proved as durable as the Energizer bunny. In all those years in the rough-and-tumble NHL, through all the bumps, bruises and, yes, broken bones, he missed only 43 games. He might’ve missed a few more if not for “the tyrant” Adams.

“I broke my thumb one time and was riding the bike in the dressing room while the other guys were on the ice at practice,” Delvecchio recalls. “Adams comes in and says, ‘What the hell are you doing here?’”

Delvecchio showed him the cast on his hand.

“Horses—!” thundered Adams, who promptly ordered trainer Lefty Wilson to cut off the cast with a pair of snips. Delvecchio played that night. Imagine that happening today?


Friday’s notebook round-up: On Givani Smith’s promotion, Dylan Larkin’s recovery and the health of Joe Veleno, Danny DeKeyser and Marc Staal

Of Red Wings-related note from Friday’s practice, per the Red Wings’ beat writers:

  1. The Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan noted that Givani Smith has been moved up to the Robby Fabbri-Pius Suter line as the right winger, with coach Jeff Blashill suggesting that Smith’s size and strength may serve as an asset for the smaller Fabbri and Suter:

“We’re considering it,” coach Jeff Blashill said of the Smith switch. “I’m not sure if we stay with it in a game, but it’s something we want to look at. If we have Smitty up there, he’s a net presence, a big body, so you have (Smith) with a playmaking center (Suter) and a shooter in Fabs.”

Smith, after being a healthy scratch early last week, has strung together games where he’s been more of a physical presence, an area the Wings want to see him develop.

“He’s been solid the last three games,” Blashill said. “The Vegas game, he made a mistake or two defensively, but he was a presence in the offensive zone (scored a goal). He was better defensively in Arizona. The last game (Wednesday) he was a solid player. He can be a guy who if he can get consistent in his game, and brings what he brings to the table different than other people, he can be a guy who can help us.”

The Wings want Smith to be a physical presence, aggressive, but not take needless penalties after the whistle, or lazy penalties such as hooking and holding. It’s a fine line, a delicate balance, and Smith has had difficulty at times finding that fine line.

“Once the whistle blows, get back to our bench, and if he’s upsetting people, great, but don’t need to chat a lot,” Blashill said.

Kulfan continues;

2. MLive’s Ansar Khan filed an article discussing Dylan Larkin’s recovery from a difficult summer spent recovering from a neck injury, as well as his leave from the team due to a family emergency (and a false positive COVID test) this fall:

Continue reading Friday’s notebook round-up: On Givani Smith’s promotion, Dylan Larkin’s recovery and the health of Joe Veleno, Danny DeKeyser and Marc Staal

Press release: Red Wings to hold Hockey Fights Cancer night on Saturday

Per’s Josh Berenter:

Red Wings set to host Hockey Fights Cancer Night on Saturday

Wings continue annual NHL initiative founded in 1998 to raise money and awareness for hockey’s most important fight

DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings are proud to once again team up with the American Cancer Society for Hockey Fights Cancer Night on Saturday as the organizations join forces to shine a light on cancer awareness and raise money for research, in partnership with Comerica Bank.

To join the fight against this dreaded disease in which one in three people will be diagnosed in their lifetime, the Red Wings are hosting several initiatives before, during and after Saturday’s game against the Buffalo Sabres at Little Caesars Arena.

“We’re once again asking Red Wings fans to rally together for everyone affected by cancer in our community and beyond,” Red Wings and Tigers director of community impact Kevin Brown said. “Through generous support from Comerica Bank, as well as proceeds from several in-arena initiatives, we’re raising awareness and pushing one step closer to finding a cure to defeat this awful disease.”

Saturday’s Hockey Fights Cancer initiatives will begin during pregame warmups when Red Wings players will proudly sport lavender jerseys and lavender-taped sticks on the ice, which will immediately be autographed and auctioned off until Saturday, Dec. 4 at

Continue reading Press release: Red Wings to hold Hockey Fights Cancer night on Saturday

Friday’s post-practice Videos: Blashill, Erne

The Detroit Red Wings practiced at Little Caesars Arena on Friday, preparing for Saturday’s game vs. Buffalo, and while Danny DeKeyser remains in COVID protocol, coach Jeff Blashill told the media that Joe Veleno (upper-body) and Marc Staal (non-COVID illness) are at least “questionable” to play in Saturday’s game (7 PM EST start on Bally Sports Detroit/MSG-B/97.1 FM).

The Red Wings posted a video of coach Blashill’s remarks to the media…

As well as a clip of comments from Adam Erne:

Friday’s post-practice Tweets: Veleno, Staal questionable for Saturday vs. Buffalo

The Detroit Red Wings practiced without Danny DeKeyser (COVID protocol) and Joe Veleno (???) but with Marc Staal (non-COVID related illness) on Friday at the Belfor Training Center inside Little Caesars Arena, and, ahead of Saturday’s home game vs. Buffalo (7 PM on Bally Sports Detroit/MSG-B/97.1 FM).

After Friday’s practice, coach Jeff Blashill spoke with the media…

Coach Blashill says Joe Veleno is day to day, questionable for tomorrow. #LGRW @DetroitRedWings— Carley Johnston (@carleykjohnston) November 26, 2021

Marc Staal practiced today, but Blashill says he’s questionable for tomorrow after he was out with a non-Covid related illness. #LGRW @DetroitRedWings— Carley Johnston (@carleykjohnston) November 26, 2021

Joe Veleno (upper body) is day-to-day, questionable for tomorrow, per Jeff Blashill.— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) November 26, 2021

Blashill said Veleno (upper body injury) day to day, out tomorrow. Not sure if Staal will be ready for tomorrow. Planning on giving Smith a look on Suter-Fabbri line because of his size and net-front ability. #RedWings— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) November 26, 2021

Tweets from Friday’s practice: No DeKeyser, no Veleno

MLive’s Ansar Khan was the first Red Wings scribe to weigh in from Friday’s Wings practice at the Belfor Training Center inside Little Caesars Arena:

#RedWings on ice for practice before tomorrow’s game vs. Buffalo and LCA. Staal is back after missing three games. DeKeyser (COVID protocol) and Veleno (upper body injury) not skating.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) November 26, 2021

The Wings host Buffalo tomorrow night at 7 PM EST (on Bally Sports Detroit/MSG-B/97.1 FM), and the Sabres are hosting the Montreal Canadiens in Buffalo tonight, so, in theory, anyway, the 9-9-and-3 Wings will be able to pounce upon the 7-10-and-2 Sabres.

Marc Staal back on the ice with the boys.

Veleno (upper body) and DeKeyser (COVID protocol) not practicing.— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) November 26, 2021

#RedWings lines at practice:
Notable that Smith and Zadina switched spots, at least for start of practice.
They’ve been rotating the seven healthy defensemen, using various pairs.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) November 26, 2021

#RedWings power play units:
1. Bertuzzi (net front), Fabbri (bumper), Larkin-Raymond (flanks), Seider (point).
2. Erne (net front), Suter (bumper), Hronek-Zadina (flanks), Leddy (point).
Wings no power plays first time this season Wednesday vs. STL, 7 in 6 games, 13 for opponents— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) November 26, 2021