Green Out Two to Three Weeks

Detroit general manager Ken Holland announced on Monday that defenseman Mike Green will miss two to three weeks with an upper body injury.

Green suffered the injury on Friday night in Calgary on a hit by Josh Jooris. He finished the game but was held out of Saturday’s matchup with the Vancouver Canucks.

Holland also confirmed that blueliner Kyle Quincey will be out through the weekend as he undergoes concussion protocol. Quincey was hit high by the Flames’ Sam Bennett and also finished the game but missed the Saturday match.

Additionally, forward Brad Richards, out with a back injury, was scheduled to meet with a specialist today.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Canucks – 10/24

One day after shaking up their blue line in an effort to find some consistency, the Red Wings are forced to switch things up again in the face of injury. Headed into their matchup with the Vancouver Canucks, Detroit will be without Kyle Quincey and Mike Green.

Quincey is being held out due to concussion protocol after taking a high hit from Sam Bennett late in Friday’s 3-2 loss to the Calgary Flames. He finished the game but Alexey Marchenko – who will play his third game in four nights – has been called up to replace him in Vancouver.

Green suffered a shoulder injury on a first-period hit from Josh Jooris. He also finished the game. Jakub Kindl, who was a healthy scratch on Friday, will skate in Green’s place.

To make room for Marchenko, Brad Richards has been placed on short-term injured reserve. Richards has been out with a back injury that will be re-evaluated when the Red Wings return to Detroit.

While every defense pairing could see a change, the forward lines will be identical to those used against the Flames.

Petr Mrazek will get the start in goal with Jimmy Howard having gone on Friday night.

Game time is 10:00 PM on FSD.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Flames – 10/23

Riding a three-game losing streak, the Red Wings will shake up their lines as they visit the Calgary Flames tonight.

Part of that shakeup is due to a back injury for Brad Richards, who will miss the final two games of Detroit’s road trip through Western Canada. With Richards out and Pavel Datsyuk not yet back from injury, rookie Dylan Larkin will switch from wing to center the team’s second line.

The expected lines are as follows:

Justin AbdelkaderHenrik ZetterbergGustav Nyquist
Tomas Tatar – Dylan Larkin – Teemu Pulkkinen
Darren HelmRiley SheahanLuke Glendening
Drew MillerJoakim AnderssonLandon Ferraro

Niklas KronwallMike Green
Kyle QuinceyDanny DeKeyser
Brendan SmithJonathan Ericsson

On defense, all three pairs are changed up, with Brendan Smith swapping in for Jakub Kindl in an effort to both spark offense and plug a porous blue line. Kindl joins Tomas Jurco as a healthy scratch.

Jimmy Howard gets the start in net for the Red Wings. Petr Mrazek will get the nod to close out the trip in Vancouver.

Game time is 9:00 PM on FSD.

TPL Pregame: October 9 – Loving You Makes Life Worth Living

Editor’s Note: I miss The Production Line. You should, too. Back for one night only (unless you guys convince them otherwise), it’s the TPL Pregame.


WHAT’S ALL THIS THEN?

The Detroit Red Wings begin their 90th season in the National Hockey League, and will face off against their former coach Mike Babcock and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Puck drops at 7:30pm at Joe Louis Arena.

WHAT’S THE BIG IDEA?

The big story will be the changing of the coaching guard. Out with the old (Babcock), and in with the new (Jeff Blashill). The excitement level among the community is higher than it’s been in several years — thanks in part to the new voice behind the bench…as well as the opportunity given to a teenager in Dylan Larkin. If you think a player like Larkin had a chance in hell at making this team with Mike Babcock running the show, you need a CAT scan.

NOW, WHERE WERE WE?

The Wings and Maple Leafs played five times in 2014-15, with the teams splitting the season series 2-2-1. The fifth and final meeting was on December 13th, wherein Detroit lost 4-1 and the Leafs won their fourth in a row. Niklas Kronwall had the first goal of the game — but the 1-0 lead lasted exactly one minute before James van Riemsdyk began the onslaught. The defense took the night off, with Petr Mrazek facing 40 shots (who lost his first contest of the season), and Dan Cleary played in the 600th contest of his career. He would go on to play nine more (and was a healthy scratch for 42 more…but was re-signed anyway).

OH, HI AGAIN

The obvious returnee to the Joe is former head coach Mike Babcock, but he also took former assistant coaches Jim Hiller and Andrew Brewer with him to Toronto, where he joined a front office led by former alternate captain Brendan Shanahan. Forward Shawn Matthias was a second round draft pick of the Red Wings in 2006, but he was traded a year later in exchange for — wait for it — 8 games of Todd Bertuzzi (obviously, Bert would sign with Detroit again a few seasons later). It never came to pass, but if Twitter was to be believed on Trade Deadline Day, Maple Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf was AS GOOD AS a Red Wing for a few hours.

MEMBA ME

There are no former Maple Leafs on the Red Wings, because good teams don’t take leftovers from shitty ones. But if you want to get technical, the Griffins assistant coach Ben Simon once played for (and coached) the Marlies. That’s as close as we’re willing to get. –PETRELLA

BEST NAME NOMINEE

I’m going with Stephane Robidas. I’ve always been a Johnny Cash/Boy Named Sue fan, and I can’t help but see some odd connection between a guy sporting a ladies name and who spent a good chunk of his career in Texas. I feel like there’s a “Call me Caitlyn” moment coming here where, during his retirement speech, he reveals that he’s been tucking and wearing silk t-back lady thongs for the past decade. When that happens, people will call me a genius, and I’ll just sit back in my brass buttoned leather wingback, knowing I’d spotted it long ago. –DISCH

THEIR LAST GAMES

While the Red Wings were bounced by the Lightning in the first round last season (losing Game 7 by a score of 2-0), at least they had a date to the dance. The Maple Leafs’ season ended somewhere around January, but — believe it or not — they played until April 11th. They opened their 2015-16 season on Wednesday and — wait for it! — lost to the Montreal Candiens 3-1. Turns out you CAN’T polish a turd, Babs!

EXPECTED LINEUP

Gator :: Hank :: DYLAN LARKIN (!!!)
Tatar :: Richards :: Nyquist
Franzen :: TinkyWinky :: Pulkkinen
Miller :: Glendening :: Ferraro

Kronwall :: Shitbox
Quincey :: Mike Green
Smith :: Kindl

Howard
Mrazek

Injured
Pavel Datsyuk (ankle, expected back mid-November)
Danny DeKeyser (foot, early November)
Darren Helm (concussion, next weekend)

Scratches
Joakim Andersson
Dan Cleary
Tomas Jurco
Alexey Marchenko

NICKNAMES

Mike “Remember When We Held on in the Rain?” Babcock
Niklas “The Nights We Almost Lost It” Kronwall
Jiri “Once Again We Can Take the Night Into Tomorrow” Hudler
Tomas “Living on Feelings” Tatar
Gustav “Touching You, I Feel It All Again” Nyquist
Johan “Didn’t We Almost Have it All” Franzen
Luke “When Love Was All We Had Worth Giving” Glendening
Marian “The Ride With You Was Worth the Fall, My Friend” Hossa
Pavel “Loving You Makes Life Worth Living” Datsyuk
Steve “The Nights We Held On ‘Til the Morning” Yzerman
Nicklas “You Know You’ll Never Love That Way Again” Lidstrom
Jimmy “The Way You Used to Touch Me Felt So Fine” Howard
Darren “We Kept Our Hearts Together Down the Line” Helm
Henrik “A Moment in the Soul Can Last Forever” Zetterberg
Jonathan “Comfort and Keep Us” Ericsson
Jeff “Help Me Bring the Feeling Back Again” Blashill
Sergei “Didn’t We Have the Best of Times” Fedorov
Petr “When Love Was Young and New” Mrazek
Tomas “Couldn’t We Reach Inside and Find” Jurco
Todd “That World of Me and You? We’ll Never Lose it Again” Bertuzzi
Dan “Cuz Once You Know What Love Is… YOU NEVER LET IT END” Cleary
— PETRELLA

THE FIVE HOLE

  1. GOALIES! Both goaltenders — Jimmy Howard and Petr Mrazek — played very well in the pre-season in what what Coach Blashill called an open competition for the role of starter. Jimmy Howard always had the inside track because he slid out of Mrs. Howard before Pete cartwheeled out of Mrs. Mrazek, but I’d be shocked if three weeks go by before the entire planet realizes that Petr Mrazek is the better goalie.
  2. NEW BODIES! The Red Wings finally got their right handed defenseman in Mike Green. He’s able to contribute some points, and is able to move the puck out of the zone efficiently, which is a prerequisite for the style of play in Detroit. Brad Richards, who either follows success, or whom success follows, adds another option up the middle, and will allow Zetterberg and Datsyuk to be paired together, if the time comes.
  3. TEENAGER! Waterford native Dylan Larkin forced the organization to buck their trends and has made the opening night roster, and it looks like he’ll get a chance to man the first line. That’s very exciting for all involved, included the fans, who get a young local to cheer for, and who has every bit of talent needed to inject some youthful exuberance onto an aging core. And Dan Cleary was waived on Wednesday. Jasper succinctly sums up our feelings on the matter.
  4. HEALTH! Hey, whattaya know, the Red Wing start the season with a bunch of regulars on injured reserve. Pavel Datsyuk will be out until mid-November, Danny DeKeyser is supposed to be out until early November, Darren Helm might be set to return next week, assuming his concussion and shoulder calm down. What, you didn’t think we’d be able to get rid of a drill sergeant coach, a once-useful knee-less veteran, AND Piet Van Zant all at once, did you?
  5. YOUTH! We say it all the time, but the young players really opened some eyes in the pre-season. You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone that wouldn’t agree that Tyler Bertuzzi, Andreas Athanasiou, and even Anthony Mantha did quite a bit to make some other guys expendable in the coming months and years. Obviously Zetterberg and Datsyuk aren’t going anywhere, but there will have to be some decisions made with some of the other guys, thanks to the guys below Larkin on the depth chart.

Pregame: Maple Leafs @ Red Wings – 10/9

After a long summer with some major moves, the Red Wings are back in action tonight, hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2015-16 home opener.

A familiar face will be behind the Toronto bench, as Mike Babcock jumped ship from Detroit to move on to the Maple Leafs during the offseason. Former Grand Rapids Griffins head coach Jeff Blashill now leads the Red Wings.

Blashill isn’t the only new addition to the Wings. Free agent signings Brad Richards and Mike Green will be making their Detroit debuts, as will rookie Dylan Larkin, who impressed enough during the preseason to not just make the opening night lineup but earn a spot on the top line with Henrik Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader.

Detroit will be without Pavel Datsyuk, Darren Helm, and Danny DeKeyser due to injury. Helm could be back next week while neither Datsyuk nor DeKeyser is expected to return until November.

With Datsyuk out, Richards will center the second line with Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist. Kyle Quincey will replace DeKeyser as Green’s defense partner.

Joakim Andersson, Tomas Jurco, and Alexey Marchenko will be healthy scratches for the Red Wings. Xavier Ouellet and Daniel Cleary had been with the team but were assigned to the Grand Rapids Griffins yesterday.

Jimmy Howard will get the start in goal for Detroit, with Petr Mrazek scheduled to start tomorrow against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Stupid stat of the day: In the last two decades, the Red Wings have lost only once on October 9. The opponent in that loss? The Toronto Maple Leafs.

Game time is 7:30 PM on FSD and Fox 2 Detroit.

Larkin, Pulkkinen Lead Red Wings in Rout of Penguins

In a preseason battle of “B” teams, Detroit’s youth led the Red Wings to a 6-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night.

Both Detroit and Pittsburgh iced lineups devoid of many of their top stars. Pittsburgh was without Sidney Crosby and Phil Kessel while the Red Wings went without Henrik Zetterberg, Brad Richards, and most of their regular regular blueline corps.

Tyler Bertuzzi opened the scoring for Detroit with 6:37 left in the opening period, slipping a shot through Pittsburgh netminder Matthew Murray that just made it across the goal line.

With 3:16 left in the period, Dylan Larkin put the rebound of a Teemu Pulkkinen chance into the open side of Murray’s net on a five-on three.

Just 1:27 later, Pulkkinen snapped a shot from in close over Murray’s shoulder to make it 3-0 with another power play goal.

Drew Miller scored the only goal of the second period, deflecting a Brian Lashoff shot past Murray to put the Red Wings up 4-0 with 2:32 left in the second period.

Pulkkinen added his second just 1:08 into the third, taking a feed from Bertuzzi to break down the right wing and snap a shot past Murray for a 5-0 lead.

Beau Bennett ended the shutout bid with 9:16 left in regulation, putting a rebound chance past Detroit netminder Jimmy Howard off a net-front scramble.

Larkin rounded out the scoring with ten seconds remaining, whipping a shot from the bottom of the left circle past Murray off a quick passing play.

Howard finished the night with 34 saves on 35 shots. Murray made 21 saves on 27 Detroit chances.


The two teams played a three-on-three overtime after the game as a test run of the NHL’s new tiebreaker format. Pittsburgh scored a late shorthanded goal to end it.

Tatar Leads Red Wings to Preseason Win over Blackhawks

Tomas Tatar scored three goals for the Red Wings, leading Detroit to a 4-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks in their exhibition home opener. The win came one night after Detroit fell to the Blackhawks in overtime in Chicago

Tatar opened the game’s scoring with 8:30 left in the first period, working a quick give-and-go with former Blackhawk Brad Richards before snapping a shot from the slot past Chicago goalie Corey Crawford.

With 5:31 left in the second, Andrew Shaw tied things up, snapping a shot from the left faceoff dot through a screen by Bryan Bickell on a Chicago power play and beating Detroit netminder Jared Coreau, who replaced starter Petr Mrazek midway through the game.

Just 1:36 later, Justin Abdelkader took a long feed from Niklas Kronwall to break in all alone and beat Michael Leighton for a power play goal, restoring the Detroit lead.

Tatar’s second made it 3-1 at 4:24 of the third period, as he banged home a loose puck in the crease after Richards threw it on net.

With 1:34 remaining, Tatar completed the hat trick with an empty net goal.

Each team finished the night with a power play goal. Chicago had six tries with the extra attacker while Detroit had four.

Mrazek stopped all 16 shots he faced in net for the Red Wings in 29:23 of play. Coreau made 14 stops on 15 shots over the remainder of the game. Crawford stopped seven of eight shots in 30:35 while Leighton went 14-for-16 to close things out.

The Red Wings will play their third game in as many nights tomorrow when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Forward Richards Signs with Detroit

Just hours after making a splash with their signing of free agent defenseman Mike Green, the Red Wings landed another new player in forward Brad Richards.

Richards, coming off a one-year deal with the Chicago Blackhawks, signed another one year contract to come to Detroit. The deal is reportedly worth $3 million, with playoff bonuses that could push it to $4 million.

A veteran of 14 NHL seasons, Richards, 35, has played 1058 career games, scoring 288 goals and 616 assists for 904 total points.

Originally drafted in the third round, 64th overall, by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, Richards has gone on to play for the Dallas Stars and New York Rangers before last season’s championship run in Chicago. It was his second Stanley Cup, having claimed the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP during Tampa Bay’s 2004 run.

Red Wings Fall to Rangers in Overtime

The Detroit Red Wings dropped a 2-1 overtime decision to the New York Rangers on Wednesday night, stretching their losing streak to six games.

Goaltender Ty Conklin, recalled from the Grand Rapids Griffins with both Jimmy Howard and Joey MacDonald injured, stopped 32 of the 34 shots he faced in the effort.

Rangers’ captain Ryan Callahan gave his team the win at 2:42 of the overtime period. Brandon Dubinsky gained the Detroit zone and passed off to Michael Del Zotto on the left wing, who sent it back across to Callahan all alone in the high slot for a shot past Conklin.

Detroit had opened the game’s scoring just 3:36 into the first period. Henrik Zetterberg‘s wrister from the top of the right faceoff circle found it’s way through a screen and past New York netminder Henik Lundqvist.

Brad Richards responded for the Rangers with 5:02 left in the opening period and Detroit down a man. The Red Wings’ left a lane up the middle of the ice open and Richards carried the puck end-to-end before skating around Niklas Kronwall and beating Conklin from in close.

It was the only power play goal of the game, with the Rangers having three tries with the extra attacker and Detroit having one.

Lundqvist finished the night with 26 saves on 27 shots against.

The Red Wings look to snap their skid on Saturday night when they host the Carolina Hurricanes.


In addition to Howard and MacDonald, Detroit was without Johan Franzen, Darren Helm, Patrick Eaves, Jonathan Ericsson, Jakub Kindl and Nicklas Lidstrom.

Postgame: Red Wings @ Rangers – 3/21

I’m not going to complain about this one.

Call it effort, call it interest, whatever. The Wings looked invested in tonight’s 2-1 OT loss to the New York Rangers, and I’ll take it, ’cause that’s a hell of a lot more than they’ve done in the previous five games of their current losing streak.

The Red Wings made fewer mistakes in their own zone (more on that in a second) and kept up more pressure in the New York end than we’ve seen of late.

Ty Conklin, back in Detroit when no one thought he’d wear the Winged Wheel again, was rock solid in the start. Another loss won’t look good on his record but stopping 32 of 34 shots will.

That said, the Rangers were able to take advantage of blown defensive coverage twice and it was all they needed to get the win.

Brad Richards‘ first-period power play goal saw the Wings give him the entire neutral zone, right up the middle. I realize it was a PK but you can’t give that much space to a player like him. End-to-end rush turns into a goal.

On the game-winner, Pavel Datsyuk inexplicably left his man (Del Zotto) at the blue line to cut towards Dubinsky, who Niklas Kronwall already had. This left Del Zotto open to take the pass starting the play. Kronwall moved over to block his shooting lane and Stuart dropped alongside Dubinsky, leaving Callahan open for the pass from Del Zotto and the shot past Conklin. No idea why Pavs left Del Zotto, nor why Stuart left Callahan. Stick to your man and that play doesn’t happen.