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I think he'll be on the big club. No doubt about it.

Straight out of training camp or 2-5 months into the season? Because...if we know anything about the Detroit Red Wings and Ken Holland and Jeff Blashill...then we know there's a good chance the forward group is going to look something like this on opening night:

Zetterberg Larkin Abdelkader

Helm Nielsen Nyquist

Tatar Sheahan Vanek

Miller Glendening Jurco

The Griffins lost Miele and Zengerle; I assume Holland wants AA to be the Griffins' 1C this season. "If he can prove he's a legitimate 1C in the AHL, then we'll give him another look, at some point. blah blah blah blah blah."

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Straight out of training camp or 2-5 months into the season? Because...if we know anything about the Detroit Red Wings and Ken Holland and Jeff Blashill...then we know there's a good chance the forward group is going to look something like this on opening night:

Zetterberg Larkin Abdelkader

Helm Nielsen Nyquist

Tatar Sheahan Vanek

Miller Glendening Jurco

Even if you think that's the opening lineup, you still have the 2 extra forward spots and, with Pulkkinen on IR due to his shoulder, that's 2 spots for Ott, AA, Mantha, or Frk (I think he's unlikely). So I think it's pretty hard to imagine he'll be sent down, at least to start.

If they go with 8 dmen, that might be a scenario were AA gets sent down. That's unlikely, but I could get behind that idea so we could give XO and Sproul a shot and trade the lesser of the 2 (or Ericsson, of course haha). But even in that situation I'd prefer Ott sent down...

Edited by PavelValerievichDatsyuk

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I think if we can't trade one of them, we'll use Pulk's spot to keep both Sproul and Ouellet protected. So barring any trades, further injuries, or a truly excellent training camp, I expect AA to start out in GR. But I also expect at some point sooner rather than later, a spot will open up and he'll move up for good.

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Even if you think that's the opening lineup, you still have the 2 extra forward spots and, with Pulkkinen on IR due to his shoulder, that's 2 spots for Ott, AA, Mantha, or Frk (I think he's unlikely). So I think it's pretty hard to imagine he'll be sent down, at least to start.

I want both Mantha and Athanasiou on the Wings' opening night roster, but I wouldn't count on either of them making the cut. Because this team is run by assholes.

I mean, c'mon. We know how this works. We see the same scenario play out every October.

"We'd rather have [insert kid who should be playing regular minutes as a Red Wing but isn't, because reasons] playing key minutes in the AHL. We don't see any point in him sitting in the press box or playing on the fourth line. We see him playing big minutes for the Griffins, playing in all situations, being a leader, a guy they count on. We feel that's what's best for his development. We feel that's the next step he has to take. We like to fart in our own mouths."

Ott will probably get one of those two extra spots. (Blashill might even slot Ott higher than Jurco. Because reasons.) The other spot might go to Callahan. I dunno.

Edited by Dabura

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And, again, the Griffins lost Miele and Zengerle. That's two high-quality AHL centermen. Dominic Turgeon will be making the jump and Nosek is a solid AHL centerman...but, to me, the loss of Miele and Zengerle is, by itself, all the reason Holland needs to start Athanasiou in Grand Rapids and not call him up until injuries force his hand.

I hope I'm wrong. But history says I'm probably right.

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Doesn't your fake quote about Red Wings player development seem like a very logical way to handle young prospects to get the most out of them? We just seen first hand what keeping a young talented player on the fourth line did to Jurco. Management cares more about getting the most out of young players than getting a few extra wins and improving team scoring and I agree with the philosophy. A lot of fans will enjoy the ride a lot more once they realize the wings are planning for the future and it may not always be the ideal product on the ice because of that. Give it time

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I agree that Athanasiou will likely start in Grand Rapids, and I also agree that it's not the worst thing that could happen. However, he wouldn't be sent down just so the Griffins would have a number one center. When we lost Miele, Ben Street was brought in, and he is more than capable of filling the same role Miele did for the past couple years.

I would have loved to see Athanasiou start on the big club, had we not signed Miller, Ott and Vanek, but unfortunately, I don't see Athanasiou up with the mess of this current roster. One of two things need to happen, the very unlikely trade, or the inevitable injury. I don't see a trade happening, but an injury could occur as early as October (or as late as February). He will certainly be the first call up, and I see him playing somewhere around 60 games for the Wings this year.

Unfortunately, again unless there's a trade or we're struck hard with injuries, I don't see much of a chance for Mantha either. He's likely number 2 on our call up list, and I don't see him playing any more than 20 or so games.

Both these guys are waiver exempt though, so I'd much rather send either or even both down to Grand Rapids than risk losing either Ouellet or Sproul for nothing. Holland created this mess, so I just hope he can somehow fix it, and relieve this team of this massive log jam. We have way too many good players, not close to enough great players...

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Doesn't your fake quote about Red Wings player development seem like a very logical way to handle young prospects to get the most out of them?

In theory, yes, it is. But the Red Wings take it to a ridiculous extreme. We are (or, at least, should be) a team in transition, not a perennial contender. Overripening is something we need to be moving away from.

We just seen first hand what keeping a young talented player on the fourth line did to Jurco.

What we've seen with Jurco -- and the fourth line in general -- is boneheaded usage. I'm ok with using Jurco on the fourth line if we're trying to roll four scoring lines. I'm not ok with slotting Jurco on a line with Miller and Glendening. I'm not ok with using the fourth line as a sacrificial "shutdown" line (i.e. we hard-match it against the best players in the league) when its centerman is Luke Glendening and one of its wingers is a redundant grinderbangershotblockerpenaltykiller.

Our fourth line could be Jurco-Athanasiou-Mantha and we could roll four dangerous lines. Ideally, at least two of those players are playing higher in the lineup -- but, point is, we need to rethink everything we think we know about a professional hockey team's fourth line. We need to stop associating fourth lines with grinding and banging and killing penalties and trying to shut down Sidney Crosby and Patrick Kane and Connor McDavid. Fourth lines are allowed to be scoring threats. You don't (necessarily) need a "defensive fourth line with real good defensive players and real good defensive defensiveness."

http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/news/la-kings-news-darryl-sutter-quotes-corsi-for-definition-sidney-crosby/1ty2k6440ww8213spqckr4u09n

"The big thing in today’s game is you have to be able forecheck and backcheck, and you have to have the puck," Sutter said over the weekend (h/t Ryan Lambert). "You can’t give the puck up. We don’t play in our zone, so there’s not much defending."

The numbers back him up. LA takes 56.9 percent of all even-strength shot attempts in their games, an effective way to measure puck possession. That's more than any team in the league. Last season, the Kings were at 58 percent. That was more than any team in the league. In 2011-12, they were at 54.9 percent. That was less than only the Pittsburgh Penguins — and the Kings wound up winning the Stanley Cup.

So, Sutter would seem to be an authority on the topic: Don't mistake dominance for "defensive responsibility" or physicality. Having the puck is the most important part of the game.

“I’ve coached in three decades now and this stuff where they said Marian had to play in (former Minnesota Wild coach Jacques) Lemaire's system is a bunch of bullcrap," Sutter said.

"The game’s changed. They think there’s defending in today’s game. Nah, it’s how much you have the puck. Teams that play around in their own zone (say) they’re defending but they’re generally getting scored on or taking face-offs and they need a goalie to stand on his head if that’s the way they play,” said Sutter.

Add that to from Edmonton Oilers coach Dallas Eakins earlier this season:

"You know what the perfect game is? The perfect game is no hits. You know why that is? It's because you have the puck. You don't have to hit anybody. You have the puck."

And this from a member of Team Canada's gold-medal winning team:

"Our defense were pretty good at skating themselves out of trouble, but I think everyone talks about our defensive play — we just have the puck for most of the game. I think we possessed the puck, and we were able to control the puck a lot in the offensive zone. When you do that, teams don't get a lot of time or energy to come against you.

"Defensively, there's no doubt that we backtracked really hard when we needed to, but I think that's something that's preached on every team and something that's important to every team winning. … I think on the flipside, you see the effect that playing the offensive zone has, and you want to make sure that that's something you continue to do (in the NHL)."

That was Sidney Crosby.

On the other end of the spectrum, you have the Wings, who are obsessed with "defensive responsibility" and "being able to play without the puck" and having "grit" and being able to block shots and kill penalties and *bangs head on table repeatedly*. The Wings used to be all about high-end skill. Now they're all about blue-collar blue-collarness. And they wonder why we can't put the puck in the net.

A lot of fans will enjoy the ride a lot more once they realize the wings are planning for the future and it may not always be the ideal product on the ice because of that. Give it time

I've actually defended the front office on these very grounds (albeit, in a devil's advocate way). But, lately, I'm really starting to question The Plan. It sounds great in theory, and, sure, you can point to a supporting piece of evidence here and there. But, really, what you're saying is "Have blind faith in Team Holland and everything will be ok. You don't understand now, but one day you will." Which is 1) almost more pretentious than anything that even I would say, 2) somewhat ignorant of recent history, and 3) wonderfully trusting (bordering on naive).

Holland isn't the coach, Blashill is. It will come down to training camp and who Blash wants on the team.

The hate for Holland is strong that he gets blamed for things not in his control lol.

Ken Holland is the general manager. Jeff Blashill is the head coach. Jeff Blashill works for Ken Holland.

A couple years ago Mike Babcock wanted Xavier Ouellet on the opening night roster. Babcock said that if it were up to him, Ouellet would be on the opening night roster, but he -- Babcock -- was allowed to cast only one vote, while Ken Holland was allowed to cast "two." Babcock's point being, Ken Holland has the first and final say in anything and everything personnel-related and Ken Holland knows it. And this, to me, is a problem, because it's Ken Holland, whose way of doing things represents and perpetuates everything that's wrong with the Red Wings today. He is an arrogant dinosaur who is struggling mightily to reconcile his way of doing things with the harsh realities of the cap era. As a result, we haven't won a damn thing in close to a decade, and right now we're probably at least three years away from being a serious contender.

The Wings, under Ken Holland, are all about treading water, selling tickets, getting a little bit of playoff revenue, and then repeating the whole cycle again. They're about maintaining the status quo, not truly moving forward.

I agree that Athanasiou will likely start in Grand Rapids, and I also agree that it's not the worst thing that could happen. However, he wouldn't be sent down just so the Griffins would have a number one center. When we lost Miele, Ben Street was brought in, and he is more than capable of filling the same role Miele did for the past couple years.

I'd totally forgotten about Street. Good call.

Still, y'know what I'm saying.

Edited by Dabura

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In theory, yes, it is. But the Red Wings take it to a ridiculous extreme. We are (or, at least, should be) a team in transition, not a perennial contender. Overripening is something we need to be moving away from.

What we've seen with Jurco -- and the fourth line in general -- is boneheaded usage. I'm ok with using Jurco on the fourth line if we're trying to roll four scoring lines. I'm not ok with slotting Jurco on a line with Miller and Glendening. I'm not ok with using the fourth line as a sacrificial "shutdown" line (i.e. we hard-match it against the best players in the league) when its centerman is Luke Glendening and one of its wingers is a redundant grinderbangershotblockerpenaltykiller.

Our fourth line could be Jurco--Athanasiou-Mantha and we could roll four dangerous lines. Ideally, at least two of those players are playing higher in the lineup -- but, point is, we need to rethink everything we think we know about a professional hockey team's fourth line. We need to stop associating fourth lines with grinding and banging and killing penalties and trying to shut down Sidney Crosby and Patrick Kane and Connor McDavid. Fourth lines are allowed to be scoring threats. You don't (necessarily) need a "defensive fourth line with real good defensive players and real good defensive defensiveness."

http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/news/la-kings-news-darryl-sutter-quotes-corsi-for-definition-sidney-crosby/1ty2k6440ww8213spqckr4u09n

"The big thing in today’s game is you have to be able forecheck and backcheck, and you have to have the puck," Sutter said over the weekend (h/t Ryan Lambert). "You can’t give the puck up. We don’t play in our zone, so there’s not much defending."

The numbers back him up. LA takes 56.9 percent of all even-strength shot attempts in their games, an effective way to measure puck possession. That's more than any team in the league. Last season, the Kings were at 58 percent. That was more than any team in the league. In 2011-12, they were at 54.9 percent. That was less than only the Pittsburgh Penguins — and the Kings wound up winning the Stanley Cup.

So, Sutter would seem to be an authority on the topic: Don't mistake dominance for "defensive responsibility" or physicality. Having the puck is the most important part of the game.

“I’ve coached in three decades now and this stuff where they said Marian had to play in (former Minnesota Wild coach Jacques) Lemaire's system is a bunch of bullcrap," Sutter said.

"The game’s changed. They think there’s defending in today’s game. Nah, it’s how much you have the puck. Teams that play around in their own zone (say) they’re defending but they’re generally getting scored on or taking face-offs and they need a goalie to stand on his head if that’s the way they play,” said Sutter.

Add that to from Edmonton Oilers coach Dallas Eakins earlier this season:

"You know what the perfect game is? The perfect game is no hits. You know why that is? It's because you have the puck. You don't have to hit anybody. You have the puck."

And this from a member of Team Canada's gold-medal winning team:

"Our defense were pretty good at skating themselves out of trouble, but I think everyone talks about our defensive play — we just have the puck for most of the game. I think we possessed the puck, and we were able to control the puck a lot in the offensive zone. When you do that, teams don't get a lot of time or energy to come against you.

"Defensively, there's no doubt that we backtracked really hard when we needed to, but I think that's something that's preached on every team and something that's important to every team winning. … I think on the flipside, you see the effect that playing the offensive zone has, and you want to make sure that that's something you continue to do (in the NHL)."

That was Sidney Crosby.

On the other end of the spectrum, you have the Wings, who are obsessed with "defensive responsibility" and "being able to play without the puck" and having "grit" and being able to block shots and kill penalties and *bangs head on table repeatedly*. The Wings used to be all about high-end skill. Now they're all about blue-collar blue-collarness. And they wonder why we can't put the puck in the net.

I've actually defended the front office on these very grounds (albeit, in a devil's advocate way). But, lately, I'm really starting to question The Plan. It sounds great in theory, and, sure, you can point to a supporting piece of evidence here and there. But, really, what you're saying is "Have blind faith in Team Holland and everything will be ok. You don't understand now, but one day you will." Which is 1) almost more pretentious than anything that even I would say, 2) somewhat ignorant of recent history, and 3) wonderfully trusting (bordering on naive).

Ken Holland is the general manager. Jeff Blashill is the head coach. Jeff Blashill works for Ken Holland.

A couple years ago Mike Babcock wanted Xavier Ouellet on the opening night roster. Babcock said that if it were up to him, Ouellet would be on the opening night roster, but he -- Babcock -- was allowed to cast only one vote, while Ken Holland was allowed to cast "two." Babcock's point being, Ken Holland has the first and final say in anything and everything personnel-related and Ken Holland knows it. And this, to me, is a problem, because it's Ken Holland, whose way of doing things represents and perpetuates everything that's wrong with the Red Wings today. He is an arrogant dinosaur who is struggling mightily to reconcile his way of doing things with the harsh realities of the cap era. As a result, we haven't won a damn thing in close to a decade, and right now we're probably at least three years away from being a serious contender.

The Wings, under Ken Holland, are all about treading water, selling tickets, getting a little bit of playoff revenue, and then repeating the whole cycle again. They're about maintaining the status quo, not truly moving forward.

I'd totally forgotten about Street. Good call.

Still, y'know what I'm saying.

Ken Holland is the GM, he drafts, trades and builds the entire roster for AHL and NHL.

Blashill is the coach, he determines the lines and who is going to play.

Don't let blind hate get in your way.

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Holland has said in at least two interviews that he gave Babcock the power to chose his lineup. So I find it hard to believe that Holland is not flexible. Babcock ran that team. Blashill probably doesn't have the same power Babcock did. Not yet at least.

Remember the Commodore story?

Edited by kickazz

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I'm leaning towards blaming things more on Blashill.

For the longest time Babcock was all about "drive the offense and SHOOT THE PUCK" menatlity.

With Blashill idk what his dam philosophy is. Under Blashill the non possession players all had their 5 on 5 time increased and possession players like Tatar had their ice time decreased.

On top of all that the Red Wings dropped from being Ranked 8th in shots against with Babcock to ranked 16th under Blashill. And shots against does correlate to goals against in our case. We were the only team with one of the worse goals for/against ratios in the league that squeezed into playoffs.

Edited by kickazz

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I think you will see the team transition to a Tatar-Nielsen-Abdelkader line taking on the top scoring threat lines. They can score but they also stand to play excellent defense. Nielsen is one of the best in the league.

Tatar-Nielsen-Abdelkader

Nyquist-Zetterberg-Vanek

Sheahan-Helm-Larkin

Miller-Glendening-Ott

Ideally I would like to see two forwards and a defenseman moved for a top D. Even if the team had to roll out Helm as a 2nd line center for a year...

Tatar-Nyquist-Sproul are young enough to generate a lot of interest in other teams as a package.

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I think you will see the team transition to a Tatar-Nielsen-Abdelkader line taking on the top scoring threat lines. They can score but they also stand to play excellent defense. Nielsen is one of the best in the league.

Tatar-Nielsen-Abdelkader

Nyquist-Zetterberg-Vanek

Sheahan-Helm-Larkin

Miller-Glendening-Ott

Ideally I would like to see two forwards and a defenseman moved for a top D. Even if the team had to roll out Helm as a 2nd line center for a year...

Tatar-Nyquist-Sproul are young enough to generate a lot of interest in other teams as a package.

Larkin on the third line whilst Tatar and Nyq on the 1st and 2nd respectiely? sorry Charlie, no sale

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Don't even think it matters what line he's on in this coaching system. We have 4th liners getting as much ice time overall than some 3rd and 2nd liners. Including 5 on 5 times.

This is what needs to change. The 4th line should be played as a 4th line, not as a 2nd or 3rd line. Blashill needs to learn from last year from our putrid offense that things like that won't work.

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This is what needs to change. The 4th line should be played as a 4th line, not as a 2nd or 3rd line. Blashill needs to learn from last year from our putrid offense that things like that won't work.

do you remember the first half of the season when he'd be juggling and mixing up the lines like crazy? hopefully the new staff surrounding him will help to make better adjustments and line combos

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