Red Wings to Buy Out Colaiacovo

The Detroit Red Wings will place defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo on waivers on Wednesday, intending to use one of their two compliance buyouts on him should he clear.

The NHL’s new collective bargaining agreement allows for two compliance buyouts per team. Compliance buyouts will not count against the salary cap.

Colaiacovo was signed to a two-year, $5 million contract on September 14, 2012, just before the start of the lockout that cost the league half of its season. He was injured in just the second game of the season and played only six games before the start of the playoffs. The injury to Danny DeKeyser made room for him in the lineup at the end of Detroit’s first round series with Anaheim and he remained in for the entirety of the seven-game second round matchup with Chicago.

The Red Wings had been expected to use their second compliance buyout on forward Mikael Samuelsson but his injured pectoral muscle makes him ineligible to be bought out. Contrary to speculation, forward Todd Bertuzzi will not be bought out in his place. The team may save the second buyout for the 2014 offseason.

On the Sum of the Parts

Something about this year’s Detroit Red Wings team and what they accomplished will never really add up.

This Red Wings team was not constructed to make a long playoff run. I’m not certain that they were constructed to make the playoffs at all.

This is a team that lost Nicklas Lidstrom and Jiri Hudler and replaced them with Carlo Colaiacovo and Mikael Samuelsson. That added Jordin Tootoo to an already bottom-heavy forward unit.

This is a team that, midway through the season, had Justin Abdelkader dragging down Pavel Datsyuk on the top line.

You look at the team, you see the gaping holes in the lineup. You see rookie mistakes all season. You see an inability to close out even the worst teams. And yet they ended up one win from the Western Conference Finals.

Things that seemingly shouldn’t have worked did.

Abdelkader and Datsyuk ended up clicking, with Abdelkader looking like he belonged on the top line.

Colaiacovo outplayed Ian White, a top-two defender in 2011-12, to get the sixth defenseman’s spot after Danny DeKeyser (himself acquired midseason) went down to injury.

Tootoo and Samuelsson (and Todd Bertuzzi) were outplayed by rookies like Gustav Nyquist and Joakim Andersson and left out of the lineup.

I’ve said my piece on the Red Wings’ organization’s preparation (or lack thereof) for the playoff run. The team had holes that should have been addressed. For the final weeks of the season, however, the individual players elevated their respective games to overcome that.

The sum of the parts was briefly greater than the whole.

I don’t think we can count on that going forward. The holes are still there. But for a few short weeks, it was kind of awesome to see what these players could do.

Pregame: Ducks @ Red Wings – Game Four – 5/6

Trailing the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 in their Western Conference Quarterfinal matchup, the Red Wings host Game Four in Detroit tonight.

The Red Wings will be without forward Justin Abdelkader, suspended for two games following his hit on Toni Lydman in Game Three. The hit also earned him a five-minute major (on which the Ducks’ first goal was scored) and ejection.

Mikael Samuelsson will replace Abdelkader on the top line with Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk. Todd Bertuzzi jumps back into the lineup to replace Samuelsson on the fourth line.

Brian Lashoff remains in the lineup on the blue line after swapping in for the injured Danny DeKeyser in Game Three.

Stupid stat(s) of the day: The Red Wings are 13-22 all-time in series in which they trail 1-2 after three games. That drops to 2-19 if they lose Game Four.

Game time is 8:00 PM on FSD.

Red Wings Collapse in Third Period Again, Drop Game Three 4-0

For the second consecutive game, the Red Wings allowed three third-period goals by the Ducks. On Saturday night, however, there was no overtime hero as Detroit dropped a 4-0 decision to Anaheim.

The Ducks broke a scoreless tie late in the second period on a power play brought on by a controversial Justin Abdelkader hit. With 4:49 remaining in the period, Abdelkader left his feet and hit the head of Anaheim defender Toni Lydman. Replays were inconclusive as to whether he left his feet during the hit or before and whether or not Lydman’s head was the initial point of contact. Further complicating matters, Abdelkader was given a five minute major and ejected for charging, when he had actually stopped skating leading into the hit.

Just 13 seconds into the five-minute power play. Nick Bonino swatted a loose puck at the top of the crease past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard on a goal-mouth scramble to make it 1-0.

Ryan Getzlaf made it 2-0 at 6:33 of the third, capitalizing on a Damien Brunner turnover in the Detroit zone to skate around a poke-check from Howard and put the puck into the empty net for a shorthanded goal.

Teemu Selanne fed Emerson Etem with a backhand pass from behind the net just 1:31 later, with Etem wristing a chance past Howard to put the Ducks up by three.

With 6:26 remaining, Matt Beleskey rounded out the scoring on an Anaheim power play. Beleskey was left uncovered in the low slot to tip a pass from Saku Koivu in behind Howard.

The Ducks finished the night with two power play goals on six tries while the Red Wings could not score in the same number of attempts with the man-advantage.

Howard made 25 saves on 29 shots. Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller stopped all 23 shots he faced to earn the shutout.

Game Four will be on Monday in Detroit, with the Ducks leading the series 2-1.


Brian Lashoff made his first appearance of the playoffs for the Red Wings, swapping in for the injured Danny DeKeyser. Mikael Samuelsson also entered the Detroit lineup, replacing Todd Bertuzzi on the fourth line.

Pregame: Ducks @ Red Wings – Game 3 – 5/4

The Red Wings’ tied first-round matchup with the Anaheim Ducks shifts to Detroit for Game Three today.

Detroit will be without defenseman Danny DeKeyser, lost for the remainder of the playoffs after suffering a broken thumb in Game Two. Brian Lashoff will take his spot in the lineup, making his first career playoff appearance.

Mikael Samuelsson also swaps into the lineup, replacing Todd Bertuzzi on the fourth line.

Game time is 7:30 PM on FSD.

Red Wings Down Ducks in OT After Third-Period Collapse

Gustav Nyquist lifted the Detroit Red Wings over the Anaheim Ducks early in overtime on Thursday night, giving Detroit a much-needed Game Two win after they allowed three third-period goals to erase a 4-1 lead.

The Ducks scored a trio of goals in under ten minutes to force overtime but Detroit’s fourth goal in the first two minutes of a period – and third on a carry-over penalty – was enough to secure the win.

At 1:21 of the overtime, Valtteri Filppula faked around Anaheim’s Corey Perry in the left faceoff circle and found a lane to shovel a pass across to Nyquist on the opposite side for a quick wrister past neminder Jonas Hiller. The goal came with under two seconds remaining in a Detroit power play.

Justin Abdelkader had opened the scoring only 48 seconds into the game, flipping a shot from the high slot that was tipped by the stick of defenseman Francois Beauchemin to confuse Hiller.

Damien Brunner made it 2-0 at 4:20 of the first. Off a turnover in the Ducks’ zone, Kyle Quincey poked the puck to Brunner all alone in the slot to snap past Hiller.

Johan Franzen‘s first of the night put the Red Wings up by three at 1:04 of the second period. Camped out on the edge of the crease, Franzen banged home the rebound of a Henrik Zetterberg chance for Detroit’s first power play goal of the night.

Saku Koivu got the Ducks on the board with a power play goal of their own with 9:07 remaining in the middle period. Off the rebound of a Teemu Selanne shot, Koivu kicked the puck towards the goal and got his stick on it before it crossed the line to tap it in.

Franzen’s second of the night made it 4-1 just 20 seconds into the third period as he drove to the side of the net and reached around Hiller to stuff it in the far side.

Anaheim captain Ryan Getzlaf started his team’s comeback at 7:50 of the third, backhanding a shot from the edge of the right faceoff circle through Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard to make it 4-2.

Kyle Palmieri snapped a shot from the left circle past Howard just after the expiration of an Anaheim power play with 7:29 remaining to pull the Ducks within a goal.

The comeback was complete with Bobby Ryan‘s goal with 2:22 remaining. Cam Fowler had the puck in the left wing corner and sent it out front to Ryan for a tip past Howard, evening things up at 4-4.

The Red Wings finished the night with three power play goals on six chances with the extra attacker while the Ducks scored once on five tries.

Howard made 28 saves on 32 shots against in earning the win. Hiller stopped 27 of the 32 shots he faced.

With the Red Wings having earned a split of the opening games in Anaheim, the series now shifts to Detroit for Game Three on Saturday night.


Todd Bertuzzi made his first appearance in the Detroit lineup since February xxx, returning from a back injury to replace Jordin Tootoo on the fourth line… After the game, Detroit head coach Mike Babcock announced that rookie defenseman Danny DeKeyser would miss the remainder of the playoffs with a broken thumb.

Howard Blanks Predators as Red Wings Regain Playoff Spot

The Detroit Red Wings moved back into playoff position Sunday night behind a shutout of the Nashville Predators by goaltender Jimmy Howard.

Howard stopped 22 Nashville shots for his second blanking of the Predators this season. With the two points, the Red Wings moved past Dallas and back into eighth place in the standings, though the Stars have a game in hand.

After a scoreless first period, Henrik Zetterberg got Detroit on the board at 6:23 of the second. Pavel Datsyuk forced a giveaway in the right faceoff circle and the puck came out to Jakub Kindl at the point, who sent it back along the blue line to Datsyuk. Datsyuk moved it along to Danny DeKeyser, who fired a shot from the top of the left circle intentionally wide of Pekka Rinne in the Nashville goal. The puck caromed off the back boards to the opposite side of the net where Zetterberg snapped a shot in behind Rinne.

Johan Franzen virtually locked things up with 2:59 left in the third period, roofing a backhander from the slot over Rinne’s glove off a Nashville turnover.

Justin Abdelkader‘s empty-net goal with 1:19 remaining wrapped up the game’s scoring.

Rinne finished the night with 29 saves on 31 shots against.

Both teams were scoreless on two power plays each.


Kyle Quincey was a healthy scratch on defense for the Red Wings, with Brendan Smith swapping back into the lineup… After the game Brian Lashoff was sent to the Grand Rapids Griffins to help alleviate the logjam on the blue line, giving the Red Wings eight defenders on the roster.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Avalanche – 4/5

Coming off an uninspired 4-2 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes last night, the Red Wings head on to Denver to meet the Colorado Avalanche tonight.

Jimmy Howard will get the start for the second consecutive night and the forward lines remain unchanged but the defense will be all shaken up. In are Kyle Quincey, Ian White and Danny DeKeyser. Out are Brian Lashoff, Carlo Colaiacovo and Brendan Smith.

Stupid stat of the day: This season the Red Wings are 4-3 against teams whose location name does not match the city they play their home games in.

Game time is 9:00 PM on FSD.

Datsyuk Scores Twice as Red Wings Down Avalanche in OT

Pavel Datsyuk opened and closed the scoring Friday night in Denver, scoring his second goal of the night with 16 seconds remaining in overtime to lift the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Colorado Avalanch.

Datsyuk backhanded a loose puck in the crease past Colorado netminder Jean-Sebastien Giguere to secure the win for Detroit.

Datsyuk had opened the scoring at 8:27 of the first period. Johan Franzen drew the Colorado defense to him as he cut through the right faceoff circle and drove to the net before dishing off to Datsyuk alone in the slot for a shot past Giguere. It was a power play goal, the same way Detroit opened the scoring the previous night against Phoenix.

As against the Coyotes, the next goal tied the game when Mark Oliver backhanded a shot over Jimmy Howard on a partial breakway with 8:24 remaining to make it 1-1.

The tie was short-lived, as Gustav Nyquist put Detroit back out in front just 13 seconds later. Nyquist scooped up a bobbled puck in the left circle of the Colorado zone and took it to the net, stuffing it in around Giguere’s pad to make it 2-1.

P.A. Parenteau evened things back up at 6:29 of the third period. Jamie McGinn threw the puck on net from the left wing boards and Parenteau knocked it in behind Howard out of mid-air with the shaft of his stick.

Howard would finish the night with 33 saves on 35 shots while Giguere stopped 28 of 31 chances.

The opening goal was the game’s only power play tally. Detroit had four tries with the extra attacker to Colorado’s three.

The Red Wings will now fly back to Detroit for a 12:30 matchup with the St. Louis Blues on Sunday.


Rookie defenseman Danny DeKeyser made his NHL debut for Detroit and Kyle Quincey returned from injury. Ian White was also back in the lineup. Brendan Smith, Brian Lashoff and Carlo Colaiacovo were out to make room.

Red Wings Sign Northern Michigan Goalie Coreau

In their only move on the day of the National Hockey League’s trade deadline, the Detroit Red Wings announced on Wednesday the signing of goaltender Jared Coreau to an entry-level contract.

Coreau, 21, is coming off his junior year with Northern Michigan University, a season in which he went 15-19-4 with a 2.70 GAA and a .919 save percentage.

He spent three years with the Wildcats, compiling a 32-31-8 record.

Coreau had attended rookie camps with the San Jose Sharks, New York Rangers, Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers after his first two seasons with NMU. In addition to the Red Wings, the Winnipeg Jets and Chicago Blackhawks were said to have interest in the 6’5″ netminder following his team’s loss to Michigan in the opening round of the CCHA tournament.

With the addition of Coreau, the crease is crowded across the Red Wings organization. Jimmy Howard has the starter’s role with the Red Wings, backed up by Jonas Gustavsson. Rookie Petr Mrazek has taken over as starter for the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins with Tom McCollum as his backup. Jordan Pearce is with the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye. Changes could come quickly this summer, however, as Howard, McCollum and Pearce are all scheduled to become free agents. Pearce, in particular, is expected to leave hockey to pursue a career in medicine.

In signing with Detroit, Coreau forgoes his final year of NCAA eligibility.

The long-rumored signing is Detroit’s second of an NCAA player in the last week, as the team agreed to terms with Western Michigan University defenseman Danny DeKeyser on Friday.

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