I’m not gonna bullshit you: I’m still fundraising to help pay my November bills, and as a blog without commercial advertisements or sponsorships (“yet” on the latter), I’m always going to have to make pledge drives part of the daily grind so that I’m able to grind out content…
But the holidays are a rough time of year for so many people during our difficult pandemic timeline, and if you’re able to make a donation today, please consider someplace like Gleaners’ Food Bank, the Salvation Army of Michigan, or even my local food bank, Active Faith of South Lyon, which has helped Aunt Annie and me get through a year in which we lost both my mother and the income she brought into the household.
If you don’t want to donate to those organizations, do some online homework and find an organization that jibes best with your priorities and theirs…But I’m asking you today to consider giving to our over-stressed-by-COVID charities and food banks…
Former Red Wings GM Ken Holland (who now runs the Edmonton Oilers) and Edmonton Oilers executive Kevin Lowe were supposed to be part of the 2020 class of Hockey Hall of Fame inductees. Instead of holding a remote induction, the NHL chose to delay full, public inductions to 2021, and.
Red Wings prospect Jack Adams entered the NCAA’s transfer portal when the Union College Dutchmen chose to suspend operations for the 2020-2021 campaign, and it appears that Adams will be suiting up for the Providence College Friars, his brother “Roo’s” school:
Of prospect-related note on a relatively light Tuesday’s worth of game action:
In the Czech Extraliga, the match-up between Filip Hronek’s Mountfield HK and Filip Zadina’s HC Ocelari Trinec didn’t live up to expectations, at least from a Red Wings standpoint.
Trinec shut out Mountfield 3-0, with Zadina finishing with 4 shots and an “even” plus-minus rating in 14:56 played; Hronek played a now-usual 24:16, taking 2 shots and finishing at -1;
Elsewhere in the Czech Extraliga, everything that could go wrong did go wrong for HC Energie Karlovy Vary. Wings prospect Jan Bednar got the start and stopped 16 of a staggering 21 first-period shots, giving up 5 goals en route to an 11-4 loss to BK Mlada Boleslav.
Given that Hockey Canada’s already holding its World Junior Selection Camp, which has been beset by a couple of positive coronavirus cases, this news about the Swedish World Junior selection process ahead of this year’s World Junior Championship in Edmonton is a bit surprising:
Russia is having world junior selection camp Nov. 29 in Moscow. Swedes picking their team from players already playing in SHL and Allsvenskan. No camp.— Jim Matheson (@jimmathesonnhl) November 24, 2020
The World Junior Championship will begin in Edmonton on December 25th, and Lucas Raymond, William Wallinder, Theodor Niederbach and Elmer Soderblom are among the possible Wings prospects who may play for Sweden at the WJC.
The Red Wings were bottom-feeders last season, as they are in total revamp mode. Steve Yzerman is essentially trying to build a winner from scratch, though the top line of Larkin, Anthony Mantha and Tyler Bertuzzi (all 26 and under) is worth building around. The best of the bunch is Larkin, a fiery leader and likely next captain of this team (he currently wears an “A”). Having your No. 1 center count about $6 million against the cap is a coup in today’s NHL.
For the better part of the decade, the Red Wings have been saddled by bloated, poorly aging contracts — the aftermath of 25 consecutive playoff appearances. Ken Holland passed the torch to Yzerman, who has been slowly cleaning up (and waiting out) the salary-cap mess. The last big contract on the books belongs to Henrik Zetterberg, who hasn’t played since 2017-18 but is in his final year of a 12-year, $73 million contract extension signed in 2009. Since Zetterberg is on LTIR, our choice here is Nielsen, who scored just four goals and five assists in 60 games last season, saw his average ice time dip to 13:41 and is signed for two more seasons.
Continued; one may debate which deal is the Red Wings’ “best,” but the Nielsen contract, one made after the Wings swung and missed on landing Steven Stamkos back in 2016, is doubtlessly the worst remnant of the Holland regime.
The Nielsen deal doesn’t include a no-move clause any more, so the Wings can expose him for the 2021 expansion draft (if they don’t just buy the last year of his deal out), and Nielsen has been admirable in terms of his on-ice efforts and his off-ice accountability, but neither factor has produced on-ice results in terms of points or wins.