Red Wings Open Preseason with OT Loss to Blackhawks

The Detroit Red Wings dropped a 5-4 overtime decision to the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night to open their 2015 exhibition schedule.

Featuring a team made up mostly of players destined for the Grand Rapids Griffins against a large NHL contingent playing in front of their home crowd, Detroit rallied from a 4-1 third-period deficit to force overtime before Trevor Daley scored to give the Blackhawks the win.

Detroit’s trio of Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha, and Nick Jensen sustained pressure in the Chicago end on the second shift of overtime but Larkin was tripped and took down Mantha, leading to a three-on-one against Ryan Sproul – who had come on for Jensen – for the Blackhawks. Patrick Kane moved the puck to Artem Anisimov who moved it on to Daley for an easy snap past Red Wings’ goalie Tom McCollum at 1:40 of the extra period.

The Blackhawks had opened the game’s scoring 7:16 in, when Kyle Baun batted the mid-air rebound of a Ryan Garbutt chance past Jimmy Howard, who started the game in net for Detroit.

Jonathan Toews made it 2-0 just 1:08 later, snapping a shot from the top of the left circle past Howard.

Chicago’s power play gave the Blackhawks a 3-0 lead at 6:24 of the second period, as Howard stopped Toews’ initial shot was blocked aside by Howard but Teuvo Teravaninen put the puck back between the Detroit netminder’s pads from in close.

Mantha got the Red Wings on the board with 5:05 left in the middle period, beating Mark Visentin from the slot off a feed from Andy Miele. Visentin had replaced started Scott Darling midway through the period.

Garbutt restored the Chicago lead at 2:39 of the third period, capitalizing on a turnover by Brian Lashoff and a mental mistake by Sproul to step up and snap a shot past McCollum. Sproul appeared to think the play was offsides and made no move to challenge Garbutt as he jumped into the zone.

Riley Sheahan started Detroit’s comeback at 5:58 of the third, tipping a Nathan Paetsch shot past Visentin to make it 4-2.

With 7:07 remaining, Teemu Pulkkinen made it 4-3, crashing the crease to get to the rebound of a Miele chance and shovel it into the open side of the net.

Luke Glendening tied things up on a power play with just 2:05 remaining, gathering up the rebound of an Andreas Athanasiou chance and lifting it past Visentin from the edge of the crease.

Each team finished the night with a power play goal. Detroit had three chances with the extra attacker to Chicago’s four.

Howard stopped 18 of 21 shots he faced and McCollum made 14 saves on 16 shots for the Red Wings. Darling was perfect on 22 shots while Visentin stopped 12 of 16 for the Blackhawks.

The two teams will meet again on Wednesday in Detroit, with the Red Wings expected to dress a mostly-NHLer lineup and the Blackhawks icing a prospect-heavy team.


With none of their usual leaders in the lineup, Drew Miller, Riley Sheahan, and Luke Glendening wore alternate captain’s As for the Red Wings.

Trade Deadline Thoughts: Robidas, Draft Picks, and Kesler

In the final twenty-four hours before the NHL’s trade deadline I want to talk on a couple points based on some of today’s news.

Red Wings’ general manager Ken Holland has said the team is looking to make a “hockey trade” and that they want a top-four defensemen. “Hockey trade” apparently means that they’re not looking for a rental, or that they’re not willing to give up big assets for one.

That likely means the price tag for a player like Christian Ehrhoff from Buffalo or Alexander Edler from Vancouver will be too high. Andrew MacDonald was dealt from the Islanders for a fifth rounder this year, a third next year, and a forward prospect. Stephane Robidas was different, however.

Robidas went from Dallas to Anaheim for “just” a fourth round pick. Hardly an exorbitant amount for a right-handed shot on the point and a veteran with a mean streak. The Stars say they’re not selling assets off and that Robidas was an exception, so maybe the seemingly-low price was driven by that. Maybe Robidas wanted a deal to Anaheim, for example.

If Detroit could have had him for a fourth-rounder, though, I have a hard time saying I wouldn’t make that move. It would be a rental, yes. Robidas is 37, he wouldn’t be the long-term acquisition that Holland seems to be looking for. But at that cost, I do the deal. Especially given that the kind of deal Holland says he wants looks less and less likely.

Trading draft picks is a crapshoot, especially a fourth-rounder. No pick is a sure-thing. The fourth round is early enough that you can still find some good talent but late enough that it’s not easy to do so. Recently, the Red Wings have used fourth round picks to select Andreas Athanasiou, Teemu Pulkkinen and Gustav Nyquist. I wouldn’t trade any of those players for Robidas.

Before that, though, the fourth round brought Mattias Ritola, Evan McGrath, Johan Berggren, and Miroslav Blatak. I’d dump all of them (or equivalent players) for a Robidas rental. It would appear that Holland wasn’t willing to take that chance. Or he didn’t get the option.


To jump back to Ehrhoff’s name for a minute… The word is that Buffalo wants prospects in return for him, not picks. I think that, should the Wings decide to make a move, that favors them. Holland won’t want to dump his first-rounder but the Wings have some prospects that could be deemed extraneous. I’m still not sure it’d be worth it but it depends on what Buffalo wants. Trade a defenseman for a defensive prospect or for the best player you can get? I’m not sure I’d move a Pulkkinen but what about Ryan Sproul?

I mean, I’d prefer Ehrhoff for Kyle Quincey, straight up, but we’ve gotta be a little realistic.


After missing out on (or never being in on, or whatever) Robidas, we’ve still got reports that the Red Wings are going after Vancouver forward Ryan Kesler. There was a specific Tweet I wanted to reference on that but I lost track of it.

I just can’t see how this deal makes sense for Detroit. Vancouver wants a top young center plus prospects and picks. Maybe I’m biased against Kesler, he grew up in Livonia hating the Red Wings and I see that as a character flaw, but I wouldn’t deal any of the Wings’ young roster players for him. Dump some vets for him, sure. A couple draft picks? Yeah. The Canucks aren’t going to do that, though. As I said, we’ve gotta be a little realistic.

That said, if Holland somehow swings a deal for him, I’ll probably be able to justify it to myself somehow. As I said awhile ago, a slightly-dirty player who hates the Red Wings? Fifteen years ago that was Chris Chelios and it worked out okay when he came to Detroit.

Griffins Jersey Number Updates

I’ve already looked at the Red Wings’ jersey number changes this season but now that the Griffins have released their camp roster, I can do the same for them.

None of last-season’s full-time Griffins are changing their numbers for the coming year but all of the players who joined the team late in the season have been assigned different numbers than those they wore during Grand Rapids’ Calder Cup run.

Defenseman Ryan Sproul gives up the #2 he had been wearing (having inherited it from Cody Lampl and Carlo Colaiacovo) to Joe Hartman, switching to the #7 vacated by Brendan Smith‘s ascension to the Detroit roster full-time. Fellow blueliner Xavier Ouellet switches from #37 to #16 while Richard Nedomlel goes from #41 to #45, a rare case of a Griffin wearing a high number.

With Ouellet taking #16, Marek Tvrdon drops to the #13 previously assigned to Gustav Nyquist, who seems poised to make the jump to the Red Wings.

Teemu Pulkkinen switches from #26 to the #6 that was briefly assigned to Andreas Athanasiou, with #26 going to free-agent signing David McIntyre. Calle Jarnkrok drops from the #25 he shared with Mike Knuble last year (and was originally assigned to Damien Brunner) to the #12 vacated by Brent Raedeke‘s departure. Kevin Lynch picks up the #25 from Jarnkrok.

Newcomer Alden Hirschfeld takes Francis Pare‘s old #9. Similarly, Martin Frk picks up Tomas Tatar‘s #27, Dane Walters gets Brian Lashoff‘s #32, Travis Novak will wear Jan Mursak‘s #39 and Alexey Marchenko gets the #3 that was shared by Erik Spady, Mark Mitera and Brett Skinner.

Goalie Jared Coreau gets his usual #31, meaning that he joins Landon Ferraro (#29) and Petr Mrazek (#34) as the only Griffins assigned the same number in Grand Rapids as they are in Detroit.

Joakim Andersson‘s old #18, Chad Billins‘ #14 and Danny DeKeyser‘s #55 were not assigned for camp.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Blackhawks – 9/17

Coming off a 4-1 win in Pittsburgh last night, the Red Wings move on to face the Blackhawks in Chicago tonight.

The red team gets the nod this time around, with the lineup looking as follows:

Todd BertuzziStephen WeissDaniel Alfredsson
Gustav NyquistRiley SheahanTomas Jurco
Teemu PulkkinenAndreas AthanasiouMitch Callahan
Drew MillerCory EmmertonPatrick Eaves

Niklas KronwallJonathan Ericsson
Nathan PaetschBrian Lashoff
Xavier Oulette – Ryan Sproul

Jonas Gutstavsson will start in goal and Jared Coreau will play the third period.

Game time is 8:00 PM. It will not be televised in either market and won’t be on the radio in Detroit but WGN will carry it in Chicago and stream the feed.

Red Wings’ 2013 Development Camp Sweater Number Stuff

As I’ve mentioned every summer for the past few years, I love it when the Red Wings’ training camp rosters come out and we get to see who will be wearing what number. I’m a geek about sweater numbers (as seen with yesterday’s post on how to get Alfredsson into #11) so that’s fun to me.

With today’s release of the jersey numbers for Detroit’s 2013 Development Camp, we can get a look at some of the changes soon to come. Last year we were told that development camp numbers meant nothing but only Luke Glendening (who was on a tryout at the time of the development camp) switched between camp and the Red & White Game in January, so I think it’s safe to use these numbers as indicators.

Of immediate note, the recently-signed Glendening has moved from the #72 he wore in camp and the #65 he wore in the Red & White Game (now taken by Danny DeKeyser) to #21. That number had been assigned to Tomas Tatar, so the fact that Glendening has it now seems to validate the report that he’d requested a switch to #90.

Similarly, Phillippe Hudon has been given #63 (he wore #61 last year), which wouldn’t be available if Joakim Andersson were not switching. I’d been expecting Andersson to take #18 as soon as it became available, which is the case with Ian White no longer on the team.

It’s worth noting that no number changes were expected for goalies Petr Mrazek and Tom McCollum but Mrazek’s #34 was assigned to free agent Andrew D’Agostini and McCollum’s #38 went to tryout Toni Eskelinen.
It would appear that Tomas Jurco will not be switching back to #28 now that it has been made available by Carlo Colaiacovo‘s buyout as it’s been assigned to free agent invitee Trevor Hamilton. Other numbers that had been assigned to a player last year include Jan Mursak‘s #39 (given to first-round draft pick Anthony Mantha), Kent Huskins‘ #3 (given to Nick Jensen) and Joey MacDonald‘s #31 (free agent signing Jared Coreau).
The only player keeping the same number from last year’s camp is Marek Tvrdon, who holds on to #60.

The changes from last year are as follows (excluding free agent invitees who are returning):

Player Name Old Num. New Num.
Andreas Athanasiou 76 72
Rasmus Bodin 75 67
Martin Frk 48 42
James De Haas 74 75
Nick Jensen 71 3
Richard Nedomlel 3 77
Xavier Ouellet 54 61
Ryan Sproul 22 48

The final switch is a humorous one. Red Wings’ goaltending prospect Jake Paterson switches to the #36 previously assigned to goalie Jordan Pearce, while the #68 he wore last year will be assigned to free agent tryout goalie Jake Patterson (that number was worn by Chad Billins, now in the Calgary Flames organization, during the Red & White Game).

Numbers for players marking their first appearance at the development camp are as follows:

Player Name Number
Tyler Bertuzzi 59
Mattias Janmark 81
Alexei Marchenko 47
Hampus Melen 83
Marc McNulty 74
Zach Nastasiuk 62
David Pope 64

Bertuzzi’s #59 had previously been assigned to Francis Pare, who signed with TPS of Finland today as an unrestricted free agent.

Update, 11:25 PM: The Left Wing Lock’s Sarah Lindenau Tweeted the following regarding the numbers assigned during the Wings’ development camp:

As I said at the top, we were told last year that the development camp numbers meant nothing. That was a season that saw Brian Lashoff switch from #25 to #23 and Martin Frk assigned the #48 that had been worn the prior season by Cory Emmerton. Weeks later, Emmerton’s switch from #48 to #25 was announced.

Clearly some of these numbers mean nothing. I would be shocked if Zach Nastasiuk ever wears #62 in a regular season game for Detroit (or if he’s even wearing it in the next camp). Similarly, I don’t expect Andreas Athanasiou to wear any number in the 70s if/when he cracks the lineup.

Whether intentional or not, the trend for the Wings is that players wearing numbers in the 50s or higher are the guys not expected to crack the lineup that year and they wear numbers that may be randomly assigned. The lower your number gets the more likely you are of a call-up, until you’re actually assigned a “real” number.

In his first camp, Tomas Tatar wore #72. The next year, when he was in line for a call-up during the season, he was down to #21. Landon Ferraro wore #57 in his first camp and was down to #41 last year. We’ll see what number he actually wears if and when he ever makes his debut.

In the time that I’ve been watching the camp numbers, no prospect has ever been assigned the number of a player already on the Red Wings’ roster. Much like Frk getting #48 last year was a sign of Emmerton’s upcoming switch, I think #21 and #63 being assigned makes it safe to say Tatar and Joakim Andersson will be getting new numbers next year. No, I don’t know it for certain, it would just follow the trend. A prospect being assigned the number of a roster player seems to mean something.

Perhaps #34 and #38 were given out because those numbers went to free agents who won’t be back for the main camp, when Petr Mrazek and Tom McCollum return. Or maybe McCollum will finally take the #33 he wore in junior. Those two we’ll have to wait to see.

Red Wings’ 2012 Draft Recap

I’ve noted before that the draft isn’t as interesting to me as I acknowledge it should be, as I grew up in a time when the players the Red Wings drafted seemed unlikely to ever play for the team anyway.  As such, while I think some of Detroit’s draft picks this season are interesting, I’m not reading too much into any of it.

With no pick in the first round (sent to Tampa in the Kyle Quincey deal, the Lightning selected big Russian goalie Andrei Vasilevski), the Wings started in the second round at #49 overall.  Here are their choices…

#49 – Martin Frk (F, Halifax Mooseheads, QMJHL)
#80 – Jake Patterson (G, Saginaw Spirit, OHL)
#110 – Andreas Athanasiou (F, London Knights, OHL)
#140 – Mike McKee (D, Lincoln Stars, USHL)
#170 – James De Haas (D, Toronto Lakeshore Patriots, OJHL)
#200 – Rasmus Bodin (F, Ostersunds IK, SWE)

Bodin came in late to win the best name award from me.  It would have gone to Frk but I have to go with a guy named Rasmus.

I like the Frk pick, it’s a typical Wings move in that he had been highly-rated and slid, with the Wings willing to take a chance.  The kind of thing we always point out Ken Holland doing with free agents like Danny Cleary or Mikael Samuelsson.

Same with Athanasiou, to a certain extent.

We’re not going to see any of these guys in Detroit any time soon, though, so that’s why you won’t see me getting too excited right now.