Alumni Showdown Roster Review

I’ve been (finally) going through my photos from the Alumni Showdown at Comerica Park on New Years Eve and my lack of familiarity with some of the Toronto players has been causing some problems. I look at my photos and say “Who is that guy and why don’t I see a #28 listed on the roster?”

Well, it’s because the announced rosters weren’t the final rosters. A couple players were listed for one game and played in the other or were listed with different numbers or were listed and didn’t actually play. I went back through the player introductions to put together a complete list and I figured I’d share it out for posterity.

Game One

Toronto Maple Leafs

# Name Pos.
33 Doug Favell G
1 Mark Laforest G
1 Peter Ing G
4 Mike Pelyk D
4 Cory Cross D
33 Matt Martin D
3 Brad Marsh (A) D
4 Greg Hotham D
24 Dan Daoust F
21 Mark Osborne F
19 Bill Derlago F
9 Stew Gavin F
15 Pat Boutette F
12 Rob Pearson F
15 Claude Loiselle F
10 Brad May (A) F
14 Dave Reid F
19 Tom Fergus (A) F
26 Mike Krushelnyski F
7 Dave McLlwain F
8 Todd Warriner F
20 Mike Johnson F
16 Nikolai Borschevsky F
32 Lou Franceschetti F

On the Toronto side, Doug Favell wasn’t listed on the roster but did play. Jamie Macoun and Shayne Corson were listed but didn’t play. Mike Johnson wore #20 after being listed without a number.

For Detroit, Ken Holland was on the roster but did not play.

Game Two

Toronto Maple Leafs

# Name Pos.
29 Mike Palmateer G
31 Curtis Joseph G
29 Felix Potvin G
24 Bryan McCabe (A) D
34 Jamie Macoun D
4 Dave Ellett D
15 Bob McGill D
33 Al Iafrate D
34 Bryan Berard D
27 Darryl Sittler (C) F
22 Rick Vaive (C) F
17 Wendel Clark (C) F
93 Doug Gilmour (C) F
14 Dave Andreychuk (A) F
16 Darcy Tucker (A) F
18 Kevin Maguire F
4 Gary Leeman (A) F
9 Russ Courtnall F
7 Gary Roberts (A) F
7 Lanny McDonald (A) F
22 Tiger Williams F
16 Mike Walton F
28 Tie Domi (A) F
11 Mike Gartner F
25 Joe Nieuwendyk (A) F
32 Steve Thomas (A) F
11 Steve Sullivan F

For Detroit, the only oddity was that Joe Kocur was introduced in and played the first period wearing Bob Probert‘s #24 jersey.

For the Leafs, several things were different. Macoun played after having been on the Game One roster. Curtis Joseph wore his usual #31 and Felix Potvin wore #29, having been listed with #35 and #36, respectively. Bryan McCabe wore #24 instead of #29. Up front, Gary Leeman wore #4 instead of #11, Tie Domi wore #28 instead of #20, and Mike Gartner wore #11 instead of #22.

As I said, compiling this list is nothing groundbreaking, I just wanted it to be documented somewhere so I figured I’d write it up.

Alumni Showdown Rosters

Possibly lost in the shuffle yesterday between the Griffins/Marlies tilt at Comerica Park, the Red Wings’ visit to Nashville, and other build-up to tomorrow’s Winter Classic in Ann Arbor, Bill Roose had the rosters for Detroit’s two alumni teams for today’s Alumni Showdown.

Kocur was listed as wearing his usual #26 but announced that he would don #24 in honor of Bob Probert.

Red Wings Free Agency Recap: Day 2

It was a quiet day for the Red Wings in Day 2 of NHL free agency but that doesn’t mean it was uneventful. Here are a few things of note that happened today:

Cleary
A mid-afternoon report stated that Daniel Cleary and the Red Wings had agreed to a three-year deal that would carry a $2.6 million cap hit, to be signed as soon as some of Detroit’s excess forwards are dumped (as mentioned yesterday, including RFAs the Wings are at the 50-contract limit). Quickly, that report was contradicted by one stating that the Wings would like to have him back if they can fit him under the salary cap.

I’m in the group that thinks the original report is closer to the truth and that there probably is a gentleman’s agreement in place to bring Cleary back but that the Wings organization is worried admitting as much would be considered circumventing the cap. And, for the record, I hope neither the term nor the value of the reported deal end up being true. Especially the term. As Helene St. James tells us, though, Mike Babcock loves Cleary so the Wings will do what they can to keep him.

Brunner
Still no word on what will happen with Damien Brunner but there is a report that he’s looking for $3 – $3.5 million per year on a three-year deal. That was the high end of where I was willing to go for him. It’s apparent that Babcock does not love Brunner, despite being the one to seemingly promise him a top-six role last summer. As mentioned yesterday, he played well in the third-line role down the stretch and into the playoffs so I don’t blame the Wings for not giving him the promotion he’s looking for.

Scouts
In a major blow to the Red Wings organization, head of amateur scouting Joe McDonnell and amateur scout Mark Leach have left Detroit to join former Wings’ assistant general manager Jim Nill, now the GM of the Dallas Stars. McDonnell ran the 2013 NHL Draft for Detroit after Nill’s departure, as Nill had been the Wings’ “draft guy” for years.

Detroit’s management and coaching staff has been raided repeatedly since their 2008 Stanley Cup win. After that season they lost assistant coach Todd McLellan to the San Jose Sharks and he took video coach Jay Woodcroft with him. In 2010, Vice President of Hockey Steve Yzerman left to take on the GM role with the Tampa Bay Lightning, taking scout Pat Verbeek with him. In 2011, assistant coaches Paul MacLean and Brad McCrimmon moved on to head coaching roles elsewhere and in 2012 the Wings lost another assistant head coach as Jeff Blashill shifted over to the head coaching job with the Grand Rapids Griffins.

Alfredsson Reaction
Finally, today saw some interesting reaction to yesterday’s signing of Daniel Alfredsson, with “Puck Daddy” Greg Wyshynski taking offense to Alfredsson’s decision to “get selfish.” I’m not going to link to it because I think the guys at Yahoo see Wings fans as easy targets for extra clicks.

I think the accusation of selfishness is interesting given the timeline of his contract negotiations and the actual timing of the signing.

Supposedly Alfredsson made his contract demands to Ottawa and was told that they were “unfair.” The Sens let him reach July 1 unsigned, at which point he was free to talk to other teams. When he started talking to other teams he decided he wanted to leave; only then did Ottawa offer him a “blank check” to return. He said no and moved on.

A star player who’d spent his entire career offended by the route that negotiations took and making a selfish decision to bolt for personal reasons? Alfredsson’s choice came exactly two weeks before the tenth anniversary of when Sergei Fedorov did it to the Red Wings.

I wish more of today’s MSM had been around then so we could compare their thoughts on Alfredsson to what they said about Fedorov. For the record, I only wrote up a news piece rather than an opinion one at the time.

Tuesday in Review

It’s been a busy day for the Red Wings, with a retirement, an injury and a loss in about a six-hour span. Let’s get going then…

Maltby
Veteran forward Kirk Maltby announced his retirement at a 5:30 press conference at Joe Louis Arena. Rather than accept assignment to the Grand Rapids Griffins, he’ll move into the Detroit front office to replace Pat Verbeek as one of the team’s three pro scouts.

I haven’t exactly hidden the fact that I think Maltby could have retired a year or two ago but I think you have to respect everything he’s done for this team. Four Stanley Cups is not something to take lightly. Best of luck to Malts in his new career.

Rafalski
Where the hell did this come from? Brian Rafalski leaves practice early on Monday and now he’s out for a month?

Rafalski had his knee scoped this afternoon and will miss three to four weeks. The timeline seems to be the only bad news, thankfully, as the procedure went off without a hitch and, as GM Ken Holland put it, “They cleaned out some loose particles.”

With Jonathan Ericsson still nursing his injured back, Doug Janik was called up to play against Colorado. Kris Draper was placed on short-term injured reserve to make room for Janik; I’m not entirely certain why Rafalski wasn’t.

Colorado 5, Detroit 4 (SO)
We get to tonight’s game, in which the Red Wings played like a team that had a lot going on off the ice.

On the plus side, it looks like every forward line is clicking. There’s some great passing going on out there and it’s leading to goals. Datsyuk’s goal, one of Franzen’s, Eaves’… All preceded by at least one nice pass.

On the negative side, several things. The team looked sloppy and tired. They did a bad job of breaking up Avalanche passes, leading to Colorado getting a ton of scoring chances. The exception being the five-minute OT period, where I thought the Wings dominated.

I’m not going to throw him under the bus for the loss but Jimmy Howard did not look fantastic to me. He was great in the shootout but I think one or two of the regulation goals he might want back.

Detroit’s shooters in the shootout put on some nice moves but couldn’t finish. Lots of posts, but if you can’t score a single goal on six shots it’s gonna be embarrassing.

Lightning Claim Ritola, Meech and Maltby Waived

Forward Mattias Ritola has been claimed on waivers by the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Ritola was placed on waivers by the Detroit Red Wings on Monday, with the team hoping he would clear so they could send him to the Grand Rapids Griffins. He is a known commodity to Tampa Bay scout Pat Verbeek and general manager Steve Yzerman, who were with the Detroit organization last season.

The Red Wings also announced that veteran forward Kirk Maltby and defenseman Derek Meech were waived, with the intent of sending them to Grand Rapids. Meech cleared waivers last month.

The moves get the Red Wings down to a 23-man roster.

Wings Close Trip With Tie in Dallas

The Red Wings are ready to be done with their West Coast road trip and head for home after finishing up with a 2-2 tie against the Dallas Stars.

The teams got off to a slow start, trying to get a sense of each other. Detroit began to pressure first. Henrik Zetterberg had a good scoring chance against Marty Turco early, but hit the goalpost.

Pavel Datsyuk opened the scoring at 12:28 of the first period. Jiri Fischer made a pass into the Stars’ zone. Datsyuk raced in to beat Sergei Zubov to the puck, then took a hard wrist shot which beat Turco through the five-hole.

Dallas tied the game up on a power play late in the period. Jason Arnott won the faceoff in the Red Wings’ defensive zone. Richard Matvichuk took a hard shot from the left point, and David Oliver tipped the puck on its way through. Steve Ott was screening Manny Legace so that the goalie couldn’t see the shot until it was too late.

The late goal gave the Stars a confidence they may have lacked before, and they came on strong for the second period. The Red Wings’ skaters had a tough time getting the puck out of their zone, let alone trying to set up any scoring chances against Turco. Fortunately for Detroit, Legace was there to stop every Dallas shot he faced in the second.

Tomas Holmstrom moved the Red Wings back into the lead with a non-characteristic goal early in the third. He intercepted a pass from Matvichuk to Teppo Numminen deep in the Dallas zone. Turco came out of the net to challenge, but Holmstrom stick-handled around the goaltender and zinged a hard shot into the net.

The Red Wings seemed to slump back into a defensive position after that, but the Stars continued to pressure offensively. They tied the game back up with just 6:03 remaining in regulation. Pierre Turgeon won the faceoff in Detroit’s zone. Numminen shot the puck from the right point. Turgeon and Bill Guerin were both in front of the net creating a screen so that Legace couldn’t see the puck sliding through traffic.

Detroit controlled the overtime, coming up with five good scoring chances against Turco to the Stars’ one shot against Legace, but neither goaltender allowed another shot through.
Dallas outshot Detroit by a count of 29 to 26. The Red Wings will return home to face the New Jersey Devils on Thursday evening.


This was Steve Yzerman‘s 1425th game, moving him past Pat Verbeek into 15th place on the list of total career games played…. Dominik Hasek‘s injured groin will be re-evaluated on Wednesday.

Belfour’s Best Imitation of a Wall

The Stars were hungry for a win, after their humiliating loss to Pittsburgh. They got what they wanted. Brett Hull and Pat Verbeek came up even with two assists each, in their first game against their former teammates, as the Red Wings lost to the Dallas Stars, 5 to 3.

With defenseman Uwe Krupp out indefinitely with an injured rotator cuff, coach Scotty Bowman moved Mathieu Dandenault back to the defensive line and brought in Brent Gilchrist to play forward. Gilchrist made a defensive play which kept a loose puck from becoming a scoring opportunity for the Stars, but was unfortunately given a penalty for holding in the process. Joe Nieuwendyk was able to get the puck past Dominek Hasek off a rebound of Verbeek’s shot, eight minutes into the game.

Dallas scored again just a minute and a half later. Jamie Langenbrunner shot the puck from the point, and Shaun Van Allen tipped it in behind Hasek.

The Red Wings got a power play chance with 6:09 left to play in the first, when Verbeek was sent off for interference. Between the Dallas players intercepting many of Detroit’s passes, and goalie Ed Belfour holding onto any shot that came his way, the power play was shut down, and the score remained 2-0.

With just under a minute left in the first, Tomas Holmstrom was penalized for high-sticking Brad Lukowich. Because Lukowich was cut by Holmstrom’s stick, the penalty was automatically a four-minute double minor, and the Red Wings carried that into the second period.

Only sixteen seconds into the period, Kris Draper was given a tripping penalty. With valiant goaltending by Hasek, and clever defensive play by Nicklas Lidstrom, Chris Chelios, and Steve Yzerman, the Wings were able to kill off a full two minutes of 5-on-3 penalty.

Detroit finally got on the scoreboard with just over eight minutes in the period. Brenden Morrow had been sent to the box for tripping, and this time, the power play kept the puck in the offensive zone. Yzerman passed to Hull, who fired on Belfour. Hull picked up his own rebound and fired again, and the puck bounced off Luc Robitaille‘s skate and over the line, just as Robitaille was falling, and just before he knocked the net off its moorings.

Dallas managed to answer just over a minute later. During a tripping penalty to Steve Duchesne, Sergei Zubov fired the puck from the blue line. Hasek, being screened by Verbeek, was unable to see it, and the puck bounced in behind him.

With 2:25 left before the break, Holmstrom and Rob DiMaio were given offsetting penalties. Detroit would get to go to a 4-on-3 situation when Zubov was penalized for holding. Lidstrom made good on the power play, receiving a pass from Hull and one-timing a shot from the right point past Belfour.

Two and a half minutes into the third, Holmstrom was penalized for hooking, and Donald Audette was able to slide a backhand shot along the ice right past Hasek’s outstretched glove and into the net. The Stars scored again with just over eight minutes to play. Hasek came far out of the net to block a shot by Audette, and Pierre Turgeon picked up the rebound and flipped it into the wide open net before anyone could stop him.

Detroit made answer only sixteen seconds later. Draper won a faceoff in the Dallas zone, and Max Kuznetsov shot the puck right past the surprised Belfour.

Three and a half minutes before the end of the game, Jyrki Lumme took a tripping penalty and gave the Wings a man advantage. Bowman pulled Hasek from the net to send in an extra skater, and then the Stars’ Derian Hatcher took a penalty for cross-checking. For thirty-five seconds, the Wings would have six skaters against three.

It was not enough to get past Belfour, who made save after save to keep the Wings from scoring on him again before the game was over. Belfour and Hasek each faced forty-five shots during the game, and Robitaille and Yzerman were able to continue their scoring streaks.

The Wings begin a three-game road trip on Saturday, when they will face the Predators in Nashville.

10 January, 2001

How Sean Burke was able to single-handedly stop the Wings, I may never understand. Well, he didn’t really do it all by himself. The refs helped a lot by taking Pat Verbeek out of his face, even though Burke’s stick was in Verbeek’s face. Understandably, Beeker’s not quite happy about the officiating and he rants about it a little in the Free Press, which also has coverage of last night’s tie.

Around the NHL… Boston downed Mario and the Penguins. That’s only Pittsburgh’s second loss since Lemieux came back. Ed Belfour’s suspension was lifted. Lord only knows why, the Stars were undefeated with him gone. Lucky us, his first game back will be against the Wings. Maybe if we beat him bad enough he’ll leave for good, a la Patrick Roy in Montreal. One can only hope.