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What Does This Team Need More/Most?


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#41 dat's sick

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 02:28 PM

 
What difference does it make if they keep us from getting one?
 
We got pushed around and lost and it's now a mad scramble by the anti-fighting crowd to say " but but, the power play, the officiating!"  It couldn't possibly be that a team came into the Joe, intimidated the Wings, got in their face after whistles, threw elbows and won because of it.  It couldn't be that right?
 
esteef

Anti-fighting crowd..lol. Hell Smith had a nice fight, what did it help?

I just don't see how 1 tough guy in the lineup would have changed a thing. We'd be better with Tootoo/toughGuy#127 in the lineup over Sammy/Cleary but then what? We're still not gonna outmuscle certain teams. Our best bet is winning with skill and yes, our PP. Biggest problem last night was the Wings didn't keep their cool. They took penalties of their own. But we outplayed Ottawa, actually we absolutely dominated them in the 1st. It was a fluke win even if they did well to push the game to what they wanted it to be.

We can't be all things at once like before the cap.

#42 Playmaker

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 02:33 PM

 

My issue there is it shouldn't have come to that. It shouldn't have been Suter-and-Parise-or-bust. It should've been, "Well, we'd certainly love to have Suter and Parise, but we'll still be in very good shape if we don't land them." Instead, it was "We need these guys (more Suter than Parise) or we're majorly screwed." Tellingly, right after we struck out there, Holland's big thing became The Central Importance of Drafting Well and Promoting from Within, Not Trying to Bring in Outside Help. Because that's never been the Red Wing way! (*cough '99*, *cough '02*)

I haven't been happy at all with what Holland has been doing of late, but really, how exactly do you replace the Perfect Human?  You don't.  As was stated earlier, it isn't like offensive defenseman grow on trees It isn't like they passed up on a superstar thinking they had Lidstrom forever. Nick was on a totally year to year basis and no one would have been surprised if he had played another 5 years.  Rafalski totally caught the Wings off guard by retiring when he did.  They thought they had him for another few years at least.  He made a move to replace Brad Stuart in acquiring Kyle Quincey.  His success with LA and Colorado made it a somewhat reasonable move.  Holland could not have predicted how horribly he would play.

 

With the lack of high draft picks the Wings have had, it's amazing that they have the depth they do in the minors.  So long as they still have stars, Holland will always believe we're just a veteran away from being a contender.  Holland has made it clear that he likes vets better than youth.  It is what it is. 



#43 GMRwings1983

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 02:37 PM

 

I don't think playoff spots are really the main issue here. It's more (from where I stand, at least) that we got exposed on two fairly distinct fronts: we had no answer in terms of muscle and toughness, and we had no answer in terms of scoring. And, regarding that second one - it's true, all we have to do is score on one of those missed opportunities and we may very well win that game. But...doesn't that sound kinda familiar? Haven't we been saying, "All we have to do is score one of those several thousand golden, gift-wrapped opportunities and we're in business" for awhile now? That's why I ask: Is it not toughness we need but, rather, clutch scoring? We didn't necessarily lose to the 'hawks because they out-toughed us. We couldn't buy a goal when we really, really, really needed one. Or you could take a different angle and say that more muscle and toughness would lead to more goals.

 

I'm not trying to make this a "WE NEED MOAR GOONS" show.

 

Why not?  It's fun.  


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#44 CaliforniaWingsFan

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 02:46 PM

Tootoo whistle.



#45 esteef

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 03:00 PM

Anti-fighting crowd..lol. Hell Smith had a nice fight, what did it help?

I just don't see how 1 tough guy in the lineup would have changed a thing. We'd be better with Tootoo/toughGuy#127 in the lineup over Sammy/Cleary but then what? We're still not gonna outmuscle certain teams. Our best bet is winning with skill and yes, our PP. Biggest problem last night was the Wings didn't keep their cool. They took penalties of their own. But we outplayed Ottawa, actually we absolutely dominated them in the 1st. It was a fluke win even if they did well to push the game to what they wanted it to be.

We can't be all things at once like before the cap.

 

You can see it, you just don't WANT to see it.

 

esteef


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#46 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 03:08 PM

Why not?  It's fun.  

 

Well, I'm just trying to be reasonably open-minded and objective, because I don't want this thread to have an inherent slant with regards to the central question (and because I'm genuinely not sure what I feel we really need the most). That being said, maybe a goon is the answer. I know I wouldn't mind having a Colton Orr in our ranks. But I'm not sure if that's The Answer to All Our Problems, or if such an Answer even exists. Maybe it's like Sean McIndoe says: the Red Wings' suckage has been a true team effort, the result of a host of issues, not just one or two.


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#47 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 03:35 PM

I haven't been happy at all with what Holland has been doing of late, but really, how exactly do you replace the Perfect Human?  You don't.

 

It's a very simple notion that I'm pushing. You can't lose Brad Stuart, Nicklas Lidstrom, and Brian Rafalski and "just kinda run with it." Especially when the clock on your two franchise forwards is ticking ever more loudy. Like I said, you don't flat-out replace #5. But you also don't sit on your hands and assume Lidstrom will play into his late forties, which is what Holland seems to have been doing. Have some kind of safety net in place, an actual plan that you've put into motion. Fortification. Compensation. Hole-filling by committee. Don't say, "Well, when Nick retires...we'll just sign the next-best thing. Boom. Problem solved." Don't say, "Look, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it." Don't be a lazy fool. Prepare like your life depends on it, because Lidstrom is your team.

 

Think of it this way. Some animals hibernate in the winter. The ones who have their s*** together well in advance are, generally, the ones who fare the best. Winter is a big-ass deal, but that doesn't mean you get a pass for not really doing much to prepare. You don't want to be the bear sitting in the middle of a blizzard saying, "Well, what was I supposed to do? You can't stop winter."


Edited by Dabura, 24 November 2013 - 03:42 PM.

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#48 Nev

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:01 PM

Talent, put and simple.  On the back end especially.

 

The toughness/fighting thing is a complete red herring.  Go back 5 years to when the Wings had a monster team, and the same people were making exactly the same accusations - "we need more fighters!  Our team is too soft!  We'll get murdered in the playoffs!"

 

And Howard going back to last seasons form would help too.


"If I can be totally honest, it's not a lot of guys you get impressed by. Actually, it's no one else but him. From the bench, to see what move he makes -- you're like, 'I wish I could do that.' Sometimes you sit on the bench and just think, 'wow,' and you look over to the other bench and they sit there and shake their heads, too. He has great, great skills. I'm probably not going to play with another player who has the kind of skills he has." Mikael Samuelsson on Pavel Datsyuk

#49 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:12 PM

 

It's a very simple notion that I'm pushing. You can't lose Brad Stuart, Nicklas Lidstrom, and Brian Rafalski and "just kinda run with it." Especially when the clock on your two franchise forwards is ticking ever more loudy. Like I said, you don't flat-out replace #5. But you also don't sit on your hands and assume Lidstrom will play into his late forties, which is what Holland seems to have been doing. Have some kind of safety net in place, an actual plan that you've put into motion. Fortification. Compensation. Hole-filling by committee. Don't say, "Well, when Nick retires...we'll just sign the next-best thing. Boom. Problem solved." Don't say, "Look, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it." Don't be a lazy fool. Prepare like your life depends on it, because Lidstrom is your team.

 

Think of it this way. Some animals hibernate in the winter. The ones who have their s*** together well in advance are, generally, the ones who fare the best. Winter is a big-ass deal, but that doesn't mean you get a pass for not really doing much to prepare. You don't want to be the bear sitting in the middle of a blizzard saying, "Well, what was I supposed to do? You can't stop winter."

 

Now, to be fair (and clear), I'm not saying Holland was completely unprepared. I'm saying he was inadequately prepared. That's not the same as saying, "He didn't find a new Lidstrom! Hang him!" It's saying, "Our blue line should be better than it is now."

 

Holland's main job, or one of his two or three main duties, is to make this team as good as it can possibly be. And I think he dropped the ball there, re: Lidstrom's retirement. He was left to make a rather desperate pitch for an all-star free agent and then, upon striking out there, scramble around like a GM who...well...was inadequately prepared. I mean, he snatched up Carlo Colaiacovo at the last minute, and that was supposed to be a pretty big deal for our blue line. That alone should be pretty telling.

 

I'm not saying I would've been able to do a better job. But I'm not the genius GM, he is. And, honestly, I think he'd probably admit to being underprepared if someone were to ask him about it. He'd almost certainly say you can't replace Lidstrom, and I think that's a lame truism, but I think he'd admit he really wasn't fully prepared, that Nick's decision had suddenly put him in a really bad spot (because he'd just assumed Nick had another season or two or three or four in him).

 

It just gets to me that the writing was on the wall (especially with Rafalski's retirement), but no one really seemed to notice it. Hell, I certainly didn't see Nick's "early retirement" coming. But, again, I'm not the GM.

 

Right now, my hope is that we grab an all-star defenseman this summer through free agency. That's our best bet. But it probably shouldn't have come to that.


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#50 Playmaker

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:12 PM

 

It's a very simple notion that I'm pushing. You can't lose Brad Stuart, Nicklas Lidstrom, and Brian Rafalski and "just kinda run with it." Especially when the clock on your two franchise forwards is ticking ever more loudy. Like I said, you don't flat-out replace #5. But you also don't sit on your hands and assume Lidstrom will play into his late forties, which is what Holland seems to have been doing. Have some kind of safety net in place, an actual plan that you've put into motion. Fortification. Compensation. Hole-filling by committee. Don't say, "Well, when Nick retires...we'll just sign the next-best thing. Boom. Problem solved." Don't say, "Look, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it." Don't be a lazy fool. Prepare like your life depends on it, because Lidstrom is your team.

 

Think of it this way. Some animals hibernate in the winter. The ones who have their s*** together well in advance are, generally, the ones who fare the best. Winter is a big-ass deal, but that doesn't mean you get a pass for not really doing much to prepare. You don't want to be the bear sitting in the middle of a blizzard saying, "Well, what was I supposed to do? You can't stop winter."

It's easy to say that, but what were his options?  They knew he would retire at some point, Holland made sure he had enough cap space available for Suter and Parise.  He made a substantial offer but he couldn't overcome the hometown pull or that Suter and Parise would tag team it.  They can't draft a superstar defenseman when they don't have high draft picks.  What other free agents were available that would have filled the void?  They've got Smith, Sproul, Oulette.  It's not like they haven't drafted some quality prospects.  Holland signed Ian White to replace Rafalski.  There were no future Hall of Famers in their prime available when Rafalski retired unexpectedly.  It's possible to make a trade, but not always easily and the Wings don't have a lot to offer for trade bait.  You have to trade quality to get quality. 

 

Signing Cleary this year while already over the cap and roster limit, giving Sammy a 2 year NTC, signing Drew Miller to a long term deal, giving Tootoo a 3 year deal, that was just stupidity on his part and he gets no passes on those. 



#51 haroldsnepsts

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:18 PM

Talent, put and simple.  On the back end especially.

 

The toughness/fighting thing is a complete red herring.  Go back 5 years to when the Wings had a monster team, and the same people were making exactly the same accusations - "we need more fighters!  Our team is too soft!  We'll get murdered in the playoffs!"

 

And Howard going back to last seasons form would help too.

 

I agree that the toughness is in part a reaction to last night, but I don't think it's a complete red herring.

 

Part of the issue is the Wings simply don't have the talent to play the system they did 5 years ago or the draft picks to get those players.  They need to adjust their playing style that's less dependent on the high skill level they had then. 



#52 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:18 PM

The toughness/fighting thing is a complete red herring.  Go back 5 years to when the Wings had a monster team, and the same people were making exactly the same accusations - "we need more fighters!  Our team is too soft!  We'll get murdered in the playoffs!"

 

But, regardless of what people were saying, we did have an infinitely better, and tougher, bottom six. The Grind Liners. A young and explosive Darren Helm. Dallas Drake.

 

Like I said, that was an extremely well-balanced team. It had everything.


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#53 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:36 PM

I'm not going to go much deeper into the Lidstrom debate, because it always goes the same way. Someone makes a perfectly reasonable point - that Holland was not adequately prepared (and he wasn't) - and it degenerates into, "Well, tell me what he should've done, or else your argument holds no water."

 

Again, I'm not the genius GM. He is. Which is why it surprises me that he was caught with his pants down like he was and had to scramble for spare parts...to "replace" the second-greatest defenseman in the history of the game. My ability to make a list of guys who he maybe coulda/shoulda/woulda gone after shouldn't really have any bearing on the assertion that, whatever Holland's options were or weren't, Lidstrom's departure came several years earlier than Holland (and everyone?) was expecting, and, accordingly, he really hadn't put ANYTHING into motion in the hopes of really easing the transition, cushioning the blow.

 

Deals can always be made. Players can always be had. Things can alwas be done. To say, "There is absolutely nothing Holland could've done to better prepare for Lidstrom's departure" is, I think, really lame - because, as far as I can tell, he didn't do ANYTHING to seriously prepare for the possibility that Nick might be gone sooner than everyone had been thinking and hoping! All - or at least maybe half - of this experimenting we're doing with the blue line, bringing the youngsters along and finding out Kyle Quincey is terrible, should've already been happening, if not as seriously as it is now. It - again - shouldn't have come down to "Suter or bust!"

 

Again, it's a very simple idea I'm pushing here. Holland was assuming Nick would be around longer, and that assumption was a misstep on his part. Even if I were the most ardent Ken Holland supporter, I'd probably acknowledge this point and conede that, yeah, it does kinda bug me. (Because Ken Holland IS the best GM in hockey. That's why it gets me.)


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#54 wings_fanatic

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 04:46 PM

To say Ken Holland wasn't prepared for losing Lidstrom is not fair. The expectation was that, even after Nick retired, we would still have a few seasons out of Brian Rafalski, which would have been huge for us. We all know what Rafi was capable of. 

 

I mean what exactly did you want Kenny to do? It is not like he can just go to the store and buy a new Nick Lidstrom. Sutter didn't want to come here, Kenny tried that. Nothing he can do about that. It isn't like we had a chance to draft a guy like Erik Karlsson because the Wings have been getting late picks for a long time. So Kenny drafted Brendan Smith, who no doubt has offensive potential if Babcock would utilize him properly. Kronners and Ericcsson have formed themselves into a solid top pairing, Kenny brought in Danny D, who is going to have a wonderful career with the Red Wings.

 

We saw the team come together in the playoffs last year. This season, for the most part, we have not had our entire team playing together. Face it, there was nothing Ken Holland could have done to prepare to replace Nick Lidstrom. Rafalski retiring caught everyone off guard and, to be honest, I truly believe if Rafi didn't retire that season then Nick would have. I think Nick held off one year solely because Rafi retired and didn't want to really handcuff the Wings. But none of that was Kenny's fault.



#55 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:09 PM

We can't be all things at once like before the cap.

 

Ah, but that's what was so great about the '08 team - it showed that we actually could have a complete team. Or am I looking back through rose-tinted glasses? I mean, I know LGWers had issues with the team...but even so: Wasn't it a pretty complete team?

 

I totally get what you're saying, and I don't necessarily disagree with any of it. But, I will say: I'm not just looking at this one game. I mean, I guess I am, but as a microcosm. We are a team that has scoring issues and "toughness" issues. It's probably not realistic that we fix both issues, so, which one do you think is the more pressing one? Or could we perhaps kill two birds with one stone? (Taking advantage of our golden opportunities - which we have struggled to do in recent seasons - would win us games, and might get physical teams to think twice before roughing us up. Or, on the other hand, a bigger, tougher, meaner roster - which might be easier to ice than an ultra-elite one - might accomplish the same thing, giving our goal-scorers more space and protection and maybe getting physical teams to back off.)

 

I'm just curious what people think "The Problem" with this team is. Because it's somewhat rare that you have a reasonably elite team that has issues on both sides of the spectrum (not enough quality skill, not enough quality sandpaper). But maybe that's not really the case at all and I'm completely off-base here. I'm open to that.


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#56 jimmyemeryhunter

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:13 PM

I think we need to tweak, not change the system.
Get more speed through the neutral zone/better breakout schemes.
I also think we need to coerce shanahan to join our management system and get him raising hell to the league about better refs.
Which I don't see happening considering he's apparently not even reviewing the elbow to datayuks chin.

Or start buying refs.
Either way.

#57 kipwinger

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:14 PM

 

What difference does it make if they keep us from getting one?

 

We got pushed around and lost and it's now a mad scramble by the anti-fighting crowd to say " but but, the power play, the officiating!"  It couldn't possibly be that a team came into the Joe, intimidated the Wings, got in their face after whistles, threw elbows and won because of it.  It couldn't be that right?

 

esteef

 

It obviously was that, you're right.  But that doesn't explain all the other losses which had nothing to do with that.  Nobody is saying we are a tough team.  We're saying that we've got bigger issues than that.  We lost exactly one game because of our lack of toughness.  We lost seven in a row before that because we don't hold leads, get outplayed in the third, are terrible at moving the puck, and can't score goals when we need to.  Why focus on the most recent loss as if it's indicative of something and ignore all the other ones that had nothing to do with team toughness?


Edited by kipwinger, 24 November 2013 - 05:18 PM.

GMRwings:  "Well, in other civilized countries, 16 years old isn't considered underage.  For instance, I believe the age of consent is 16 in Canada.  There's some US states where it's 16 as well.  

 

Get off the high horse.  Not like she was 10."

 

"Some girls are 17 even though they look 25."

 

 


#58 esteef

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:22 PM

 

It obviously was that, you're right.  But that doesn't explain all the other losses which had nothing to do with that.  Nobody is saying we are a tough team.  We're saying that we've got bigger issues than that.  We lost exactly one game because of our lack of toughness.  We lost seven in a row before that because we don't hold leads, get outplayed in the third, are terrible at moving the puck, and can't score goals when we need to.  Why focus on the most recent loss as if it's indicative of something and ignore all the other ones that had nothing to do with team toughness?

 

The lack of toughness isn't the only weakness and it certainly isn't anything new.

 

esteef


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#59 kipwinger

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:35 PM

 

The lack of toughness isn't the only weakness and it certainly isn't anything new.

 

esteef

 

I can agree with that.


GMRwings:  "Well, in other civilized countries, 16 years old isn't considered underage.  For instance, I believe the age of consent is 16 in Canada.  There's some US states where it's 16 as well.  

 

Get off the high horse.  Not like she was 10."

 

"Some girls are 17 even though they look 25."

 

 


#60 Dabura

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:50 PM

It's perfectly fair to say Holland wasn't adequately prepared for Lidstrom's departure. Because he wasn't. Nick left, Holland wasn't expecting it, he went for Suter, he struck out, and that was pretty much the end of it.

 

I'm not saying he necessarily should've done this or that. But, I mean, he didn't really do anything until after the fact (Nick's retirement). Which isn't like him.

 

To be fair, maybe it's not possible to be "adequately prepared" for such a loss. Honestly, it probably isn't. But what gets me is that he seemed content to not do anything. To just wait until the damage was done, and then do damage control. Why not get a head start? Especially with Stuart and Rafalski also being gone. It might save you a season or two of figuring things out, which would be a season or two more with Datsyuk and Zetterberg and the rest of the core. Maybe get Smith in there "early" and give him good exposure to Nick Lidstrom so that, by this point in time, he might possibly be a top defenseman in the league (at the very least, he'd be better than he is now).

 

Essentially, we lost a living legend for nothing. Which could've been Suter, true - but you don't really want to pin that much on a potential UFA acquisition.

 

Look, I'm not spewing venom here. I'm saying Holland "fell asleep at the wheel," if you will. And that it bothers me.


Edited by Dabura, 24 November 2013 - 05:51 PM.

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