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Member Since 14 Mar 2009
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#2535623 Lines Thread

Posted by Jesusberg on 05 September 2014 - 02:23 PM


Yeah, but so did Mule and Nyquist. Franzen-Legwand-Nyquist was the best line we had all year.  So I don't see any reason to not try and replicate it with Weiss.  The second best line was the kids, and barring a return by Alfie we'll have Tatar-Sheahan-Jurco back together too.  We'll essentially be adding a Zetterberg-Datsyuk-? line to the two best lines from a year ago. 


This. Not to mention, I thought Sheahan and Tatar had some real chemistry. Sheahan's ability to find Tatar around the net impressed me quite a few times last season - lot of back and forth, and cross-crease stuff between them.

#2534315 Holland signs 4 year extension with wings **MOD Warning Post 130**

Posted by Jesusberg on 15 August 2014 - 01:05 PM

Things I will give Ken Holland full credit for:


-Restocking the prospect shelves. Let's face it, the drafting was pretty hit and miss during the early to mid 2000's. Kenny doesn't get full credit here, but he was part of turning around the prospect pool.


-Being smart with prospect progression. I know a lot of people hate the whole overripe thing, but Nyquist and Tatar are examples of players who have greatly benefited from gaining experience in the minors.


-Signing younger players to solid deals. I think his "bridge deals" are a real positive. Guys like Zetterberg, Filppula and Kronwall all got them, now it's guys like Tatar and most likely Nyquist next year. He seems to be good with the younger player's deals.


-Rebuilding on the fly. Most teams need to tank, sell off their assets and completely alter their team. Detroit's managed to keep their superstars, and nearly all of their promising young players while staying competitive. Whatever your definition of competitive is, Detroit hasn't been a basement dweller - that's a plus in my eyes.


Things I don't think are Ken Holland's fault:


-Missing out on big name free agents. The salary cap has changed the playing field in the NHL, but I also think that the attitudes of players have changed. It's almost as if they want teams to chase them. The whole Suter thing was mind-boggling to me. You're a GM and you get on a plane to go talk to a player? Guys wanting to play in their hometowns, with their best friends, etc. is out of Ken's hands, I think. Does he need to change his approach, perhaps? It's a situation now where players want three things: comfort, comradery and cap hit. The one thing Kenny can control is giving out money, so luring players here is going to be a matter of over payment, I think.


Things I want to slap Ken Holland for:


-Misguided loyalty to veteran players. The list of players could go on and on, but we know the deal here.


-Bringing back familiar talent. I think you can also accuse Kenny of playing it "too safe" here. Bringing back talent to take the places of prospects he feels aren't ready yet. It's kind of a double-edged sword, but at times I think Kenny holds guys back too much. It was great for Gus and Tatar to stay down, but then the team also had that mess at the beginning of the year with Bert, Sammy and Cleary taking up spots.


-Poor judgement with trades and contracts. The Quincey and Legwand trades still bother me. Giving out 3 million dollar, NTC contracts to 35+ year-old vets, and a 4.25 million dollar contract to a pylon.


All things considered, I don't think there's another guy for the job right now, but that doesn't mean I think Kenny is totally effective in his post. He's done a lot of great things for this team, and recently some not-so-great things. If he could just alter his approach to trading, I think he would be totally set.


This team is entering a situation where the star players will be done in a few seasons, and there's quite a bit of talent waiting in the wings to take their place. The question is, which guys are going to become legitimate superstars, and what is Kenny going to do with the excess talent? I think Nyquist, Mantha, Jurco and Tatar all have potential to be star forwards on this team, DeKeyser, Ouellet and Sproul strike me as the future of the blueline, but who knows what will happen when they're not insulated anymore. Kenny's going to have some big decisions to make with the talent on this team, and they're going to determine if this entire "rebuild on the fly" process was really effective or not.

#2534230 Holland signs 4 year extension with wings **MOD Warning Post 130**

Posted by Jesusberg on 14 August 2014 - 10:48 AM

I honestly don't think the guy is a bad general manager - he's proven just the opposite over the years. I just think some aspects of the game have passed him by - namely making moves and having a good relationship with other general managers.

That being said, results are results. Regardless of his intentions, Holland hasn't made too many impact moves of late. The ones he's tried to make haven't turned out well. I'm not overly thrilled with the term, but I guess we'll see how it goes. Bonus is if this gets Babs to sign on for some term, otherwise it's kind of "meh" for me.

#2534143 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 13 August 2014 - 09:34 AM

First off, I think this roster is going to be a bit of a mess at the start of the season. All the question marks surrounding Weiss - Will he stay healthy? Who will he find chemistry with? Can he produce like the 2nd line center he's supposed to be? Along with that, we've got Dan Cleary, for at least 10 games, trying to prove he can still play hockey. I'd keep Jurco away from that, for now. Tie goes to the veteran, and even when it's not a tie... well... I think about the way Tatar was mishandled at the beginning of last season and I cringe.


The contract is going to carry over into next season too for Alfie. Same with Cleary once he plays his lousy ten games. So the Wings are paying for two players that either don't drastically or at all improve their chances of winning this year or beyond. Sure, there will be injuries but why does that matter? The 12 best forwards should start on the team and Tomas Jurco is one of them.

It took until mid-November to get Gustav Nyquist up last season. I'm not saying Jurco will have that same impact, but I would rather watch him progress against NHL competition and building for the future than veterans that don't change the immediate outlook for the Red Wings.

Alfie was solid until February and then disappeared. Whether it be fatigue or injury, both of those are probable to occur again when dealing with an athlete over 40. It goes back to the direction of the organization. Does a fringe playoff team really benefit from using veterans at the expense of youth? If I thought the Wings could win a Cup, then I'm all for keeping Alfie. Otherwise, I'm not sure there's a real purpose.


I see your point about the carry over bonuses, but the team's got about 15 million in space, and that's not taking into account the cap going up by whatever it will go up by. Only Nyquist, Jurco and Smith to retain - I'm not sure what they'll do with Andersson, but if they keep him, he'll be cheap. Add in whatever bonuses carry over and their new cap hits, and I still think we've got plenty of room. If there are reasons to not bring in Alfie, I don't think carry over bonuses are up there, considering the team is in a pretty good situation.


As for the best 12 forwards playing, I agree to an extent. If by "best" you mean the most skilled, I think there's still a need for role players. Jurco would have to be on the 3rd line or above for me to want him on this team. I think that if he can play in an insulated situation in the top 9, he could be up... otherwise, he's better off in GR.


Nyquist taking until November to be on the team was a pain... a huge pain. I also think it was a far different situation. You had Bertuzzi, Samuelsson and Cleary expected to play skilled roles when the skill just wasn't there anymore. Here's Gus in the AHL, who can clearly outplay any of those guys in that role, and he's languishing. I'm not sure that's the same situation here. As I've said before, while Jurco showed flashes of brilliance, he also fell off a bit. I think there's still something to be learned in the AHL for Tomas. Alfie's good for "top 6 forward" points - he's not a Samuelsson or Bertuzzi. Apples and oranges, IMO.


Alfie's fatigue, if I'm remembering correctly, can be attributed in part to being overplayed during the Olympics. I remember a few people around here ranting about it. Believe me, I'm not confused here - 40+ year-olds aren't going to hold up as well over an 82 game season, but I think last year was a unique situation that contributed to his drop off. Nyquist dropped off, too. It happens to a lot of guys. It's not just an age thing. At the end of the day, I think having a guy who can produce at a .72 PPG clip, even if it's only for 60 or so games, is worth hanging onto.


I'm sure it sounds like a cop-out, but I really have concern over how they'd handle Jurco in this situation. I think that if he is on the team, I'd want it to be in an insulated situation. 3rd line minutes on a line with Sheahan-Alfredsson would be fantastic, I think. The issue there is pushing Abdelkader out of the top 9, and into the 4th line with Miller-Helm. It would also mean one of Franzen, Nyquist or Tatar next to Z-Pavs, and I think we know which way Babcock would go on that one.


In fact if it came down to cleary or Alfie I'd choose cleary. Because he gave everything he had for this team(yes I still wish he would retire!). But cleary has done A LOT for this team. However I'd still prefer pulk and jurco over cleary and Alfie.


You lost me there. Taking a beaten up, ineffective veteran over one who can still produce for the sake of nostalgia. You stop it right now, Kenny.

#2534127 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 12 August 2014 - 09:24 PM

My god Boston blamed Rask, Habs Vanek and the Pens their coach. Keep blaming injuries for all I care and dream of hundred point sessions but don't act disappointed if that doesn't happen. But I can already envision the if only Alfredsson would have played more line but whatever keep believing...

I can't speak for krsmith, but I'm certainly not under the impression that Alfredsson is going to lead the Red Wings to a cup, or a 100+ point season. Perhaps the team as a whole, with far less injuries, has a shot at doing better than they did last season. I don't think that's out of the realm of expectation. 

I don't think Alfredsson is a game breaker, nor is he someone who will be deemed "responsible" for a playoff exit. He's a very reliable player with good pedigree,  who gave this team some new looks on the power play.


Quite frankly, after you consider his offensive contributions last season, the points per game drop off a fair bit for the players beneath him. I'd say the Red Wings could use those points, especially considering the question marks surrounding Weiss. You need points from somewhere, and Alfredsson is capable of producing them. I don't think many people who are in favor of him coming back give more responsibility to or weight on Alfredsson than that.

#2534117 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 12 August 2014 - 04:37 PM

I'm not going to go back and forth about whether or not this team will face a significant number of injuries or not - I don't think any of us can predict that. I think it'd be pretty insane to see the number of injuries we did last year.


I will say that this is the youngest the team has looked in years. The superstars are getting long in the tooth, but this team is also going to be able to lean on younger bodies more than ever. Does that stop a freak accident from happening to Z, Pav, etc? No. I think it minimizes the wear and tear, though.


I loved the way the Kid Line played during portions of last season, but I also think that playing Alfredsson on the wing of that 3rd line will benefit Tatar and Sheahan as well. Surrounding the kids with veterans who play the game the "right" way is going to turn them into leaders, and superstars.

Can anyone against signing Alfredsson say they would feel the same way if Cleary had not been signed? It's easy to say, "well stop the damage now, we've already got enough veterans". I don't think that has anything to do with Alfredsson being an effective player, because he was. Reality is, playing are going to get hurt, and Jurco, Pulkkinen, etc. are going to be called up throughout the season. I don't care how old the guy is - I don't see a single reason why you wouldn't bring back your highest scoring forward from the previous season.

The bottom line for me: Alfredsson  was an effective player last season. You re-sign effective players.

#2534068 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 12 August 2014 - 08:08 AM

I find it crazy that some people still actually believe that the best thing for the team and for the player (Jurco) is for him to play with the big club to start next season. It is not. Jurco would benefit in so many ways from playing another year down in the minors. He is still a kid, and could use another partial to full season down with the Griffs, getting top line minutes, top power play time, working out the kinks in his game, because believe it or not there definitely still are some kinks in his game. Even if we weren't going to re-sign Alfie for whatever reason, I would still want Jurco down in Grand Rapids to at least start the season.


Signed, Jurco's biggest fan.


Bingo. I think some people forget that Jurco is only 21. The kid showed flashes of brilliance, but also looked lost in the shuffle at times. It's not a fair comparison, but when you look at Gus or Tatar then look at Jurco, they're well ahead of him right now. They weren't ready at that stage in their careers, and I truly believe going back down to GR helped both of those guys tremendously (though, I am among the group that thought they should have started as regulars last season).

This team will face injuries, and there's a very real chance that Jurco will find himself in the line-up throughout the season. It's easy to compare this situation to last season's, when Nyquist was more than ready, but I don't believe Jurco is now where Nyquist was last season. Starting the season in the AHL is not going to hinder his overall development, IMO. If anything, I think it's going to put a chip on his shoulder and make him want it even more.

Tatar had several issues starting the season - and even getting call-ups before last season. Many (including myself) thought he was in Babcock's dog house, and being treated unfairly. Signing his 3-year deal just showed that the kids can play, and when they prove it, they will be rewarded.

#2533455 2014-15 Grand Rapids Griffins

Posted by Jesusberg on 01 August 2014 - 12:38 PM

While some people are less than thrilled about the Red Wings' off-season, I think there should definitely be some optimism about the Griffins right now. The team is stacked, IMO. Leaves me wondering just where players fit in, and who will be going down to Toledo. I'm curious about what some of you think regarding the line combinations, and who will split time between GR and Toledo.

These would be some of my preferred lines:

Jurco-Miele-Pulkkinen (assuming Alfie signs)
Nosek-Nestrasil-Mantha (could swap Nosek-Nestrasil at center)

Hoggan-Porter-Callahan (chippy line, but could use a shooter, perhaps?)

Athanasiou-Ferraro-Campbell (great speed, Campbell brings size/grit)

As far as forwards go, I'm just not sure guys like Tvrdon and Frk will crack the line-up, hence why I have Campbell on that 4th line. If Frk could somehow outplay a few guys, I wouldn't mind him on that 3rd line, but I think GR's pretty deep on the right wing. I also wouldn't mind swapping Mantha with Callahan, at least until Mantha gets the hang of the pace in the AHL, but I can see people thinking that being "stuck" on a line with Hoggan and Porter might hinder his offense.

On the back end:

Ouellet-Paetsch (stable pairing, can eat minutes)
Evans-Sproul (Evans will balance Sproul out nicely)
Backman-Marchenko (seems like a very solid pairing - could work ahead of Evans-Sproul)

I almost wish they had one less veteran here, to allow for Jensen to be paired with one of them on the bottom pairing. I would love an Ouellet-Sproul, Backman-Marchenko top 4, but Evans and Paetsch don't allow for it. This is what I think will pan out on defense.

Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?

#2533371 2014 Offseason League Signings and Trades

Posted by Jesusberg on 30 July 2014 - 01:13 PM

Stars sign defenseman Derek Meech to a standard AHL contract.


Nill, you sly dog.

#2533017 Dekeyser signed. 2 yrs $2.187 million AAV

Posted by Jesusberg on 25 July 2014 - 04:12 PM

My point is that you can't really apply that logic to everyone (i.e. giving a bridge deal to everyone coming of ELC).  Take Crosby as another extreme case.  You wouldn't sign him to a 2 year prove it deal after his first 3 years.  To me, bridge deals are more of a risk management concept.  Sometimes, a player would prefer 2 years at $3M per rather than 6 years at $4M per...it really depends.


Take Subban for example.  Montreal went with a bridge deal for him and are going to get burned now.  Not sure if he pushed for the bridge deal or not, but they would have been better off signing him long-term a couple years ago, now they will end up paying much more.


I understand your point of view though....you haven't put in enough time to demonstrate consistency, therefore don't deserve a long-term lucrative contract....however, teams often give players contracts they don't currently deserve to avoid having to pay them even more in the future.

For the record, I'm not against skipping bridge deals when the situation calls for it. (I know my 3rd post in this topic seems to contradict that, because I said "players"). My original point was this: 

Tatar should sign a "bridge" deal, just like most younger players. I can't stand when I see a guy come off of his ELC and get a 6 million dollar contract (not saying Tatar is getting this, or has asked for it) for one season of strong play. The rare occasion, it's deserved and the deal works out

So perhaps I wasn't specific enough, but I'm referring to the mid-range players, not superstar. I acknowledge that skipping bridge deals can be beneficial. At times, skipping those bridge deals turns out to be a fantastic situation for a team - i.e. John Tavares. I think most players considered to be superstars can "safely" skip those deals.

Montreal's screwed right now because of Subban's bridge deals, and that's where I think a team like Ottawa did the right thing (Karlsson @ 6.5 per). 

However, in Tatar's particular case, I would feel much safer giving him a bridge deal to determine his long-term contract's value. As of right now, he's played predominantly on the 3rd line. The players mentioned above are studs, playing against the other team's top competition. Maybe it's my perception of Tatar's potential, but I don't see Detroit being burned by a bridge deal with him. I don't think it'll amount to a situation where Tatar is able to demand upwards of 7 million on his next deal.

I get the idea of risk management, and I wouldn't have been totally opposed to a 5 year, 3-3.5 million deal. It worked out well with Filppula. I just think that the 2-3 year deal, in Tatar's case, would be the best fit for now. 

#2532965 Dekeyser signed. 2 yrs $2.187 million AAV

Posted by Jesusberg on 24 July 2014 - 02:31 PM


Who's suggesting he get a 6 million dollar deal?

I edited it right before you replied. I had Edmonton in mind when I threw out the 6 million dollar figure.

#2532963 Dekeyser signed. 2 yrs $2.187 million AAV

Posted by Jesusberg on 24 July 2014 - 02:18 PM

Tatar should sign a "bridge" deal, just like most younger players. I can't stand when I see a guy come off of his ELC and get a 6 million dollar contract (not saying Tatar is getting this, or has asked for it) for one season of strong play. The rare occasion, it's deserved and the deal works out. I think there's a lot of risk, as it just sets a bad precedent, and players expect the money without really proving they're worth the contract.

#2532946 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 24 July 2014 - 12:47 PM

Pucktividi, it doesn't and shouldn't always come down to who is the better player, sometimes it has to be a more calculated decision. When it comes down to handing a roster spot to a (21 year old) kid that still has another year of waiver exemption (Tomas Jurco), or re-signing a (future hall-of-fame) veteran to a reasonable contract (Daniel Alfredsson), I would pick the second one 95% of the time.


In my opinion there are a number of reasons for doing this. One being point production. In this case, both player will more than likely produce the same number of points, my guess being between 40-50. Secondly, development. I'm a big believer that a player is much better off playing top line minutes in all situations in the minors rather than getting sheltered minutes and no special teams in the pros. Another thing would be confidence. This doesn't apply as much to a player like Jurco as much as Mantha, but confidence can definitely be completely diminished if thrown in to the deep end too early. I'm sure there are even more reasons but I'm going to finish off with team depth. A veteran player like Alfredsson is brought in, while a great young kid like Jurco is buried to increase the overall depth of the team. When the inevitable injuries hit, Jurco / Mantha are great first call ups.


Everyone is well aware of how highly I regard Jurco, he is far and away my favorite prospect and will more than likely be my favorite Red Wing in a few years. Hell, I'm getting a new dog in a couple months and I'm between two names, Zetty and Jurco and I'm leaning toward Jurco... I cannot wait for this kid to be up full time with the Wings, however I still believe that another year in the American League is the best thing for his development, and because of that, I'm confident that is where he will end up.


I think that because people got a glimpse of Jurco last season, and saw some flashes of high-end skill, they missed some of the knocks on him (right now). There are still little things that Jurco is going to have to learn to reach his full level of consistency at the NHL level. I remember seeing Tatar during one of his first call-up games and watching him go offside twice in the span of a few minutes, mostly because he wasn't used to the pace/speed yet. As you mentioned in a previous post, Nyquist and Tatar were able to adjust to the NHL because they were brought in the right way, and there's nothing wrong with doing that with Jurco right now.

All in all, Jurco is not a necessity at this point - but allowing him to mature properly is definitely a necessity. We're going to need that when Hank and Pavs leave, and a guy who's putting up 40-50 when he could put up 60-70 isn't going to help that.


On a similar note, I think that before Mantha comes up, Pulkkinen should be the next call-up behind Jurco... but that's a whole other issue.

#2532809 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 22 July 2014 - 02:01 PM


I agree, it's not his fault.  But it would be stupid to bring back the EXACT same roster as a year ago, and since he doesn't have a contract, it seems like Alfie would be the reasonable one (at this point) to leave out. 


I, like everyone else, wish it would have been someone else (Cleary) but it's too late for that. 


I've got faith that in a full season Jurco could put up 30-40 points and be WAY harder to play against than Alfie.  That's all. 


While I think it would be stupid to bring back the same roster, we're already in that position, IMO. I just don't think that Alfredsson should be left out because Holland has made other boneheaded moves. I get what you're saying - plug the hole while we still can.

Part of me feels like Jurco won't be used properly, anyway. At least not until Cleary is out of the way. I think Jurco, in a year or so, will be a huge upgrade over Abdelkader in that net-front role on the top line, because he's got the skill to boot. What I don't see is him being placed in that role right now. At this point, he's battling guys on that 3rd line for time, because I don't think Babcock, etc. even considers him as a top 6 guy right now (even though I think he'd be fine on the 2nd line with two vets).


I don't know though.  I mean, I hear what you're saying.  But I guess my whole point is that I think we need a whole different look up front.  Personally, I hate the idea of Alfie with Dats and Z.  I don't think he can play that many minutes first of all.  He faded fast down the stretch.  But he's also a perimeter player and so are they.  None of them are big or play great in the crease.  They're also all getting a little old and injury prone.  I definitely don't want my whole top line to come with that many question marks.  Personally, I'd like to see Jurco with Dats and Z, and Mantha with Tatar and Sheahan. 


Will it happen?  No.  And IMO we'll be worse for it. 

I think every one saw him fade down the stretch, but I think that can be attributed to having to play a much larger role than expected all season. Additionally, wasn't he basically abused during the Olympics? I seem to remember him being way overplayed during the tournament. Playing him in a top 6 role would work, but I do agree that 1st line time might be a bit too much. I'd love the skill set on a Z-Dats-Alfie line, but I don't think they'd have the legs to keep it up throughout the season.



But that was just how it sounded.  It's clear now that you weren't saying that, and instead are suggesting that Legwand and Alfie could potentially combine for around 100 pts. this coming season, and so if we don't resign them we'll need to replace that production.  I agree, they have the potential for that.  But it's a moot point because, as we both agree, Weiss will be counted on for about 50 points which would cover the loss of Legwand's 50 point potential so we'd only need to replace Alfie's points if he isn't resigned.



If we're really speaking on the potential of points, then I think just about every one on the team is going to be expected to potentially do better than they did last year. Whether it's Z, Dats, Weiss and Mule being healthier, or Nyquist and Tatar being regulars right off the bat, I think this team should see increased production across the board with the forwards.

That being said, it's almost expected that this team is going to face injuries again. I'd prefer to have as much depth as possible at this point. It sucks, but it's a reality that these forwards have a number of health issues. I still want to see guys like Nyquist, Tatar and Sheahan insulated by the veterans. Right now, for my money, I trust Alfredsson to set a better example on and off the ice than Mule or Weiss. No disrespect to Weiss, but I think the jury is still out on what he's going to bring to this team, and Mule is Mule.

I don't think, given the current state of this team, that it's going to kill them now or in the future to bring back a veteran who can contribute on a consistent basis.

#2532787 Alfie wants to play

Posted by Jesusberg on 22 July 2014 - 12:08 PM


Maybe we'd be better, maybe we wouldn't.  But it's not like we were good with Alfredsson, so why not try something different?  Sometimes it's all about the team dynamic.  Who ever believed Columbus would be a better offensive (and defensive team) without Nash, Carter, Gaborik, or Horton (injured)?  On paper it seems like it's crazy, but the team might actually be better in the long run.



Man, that's just sooo not on Alfredsson, at all. The team being "good" or not doesn't come down to one veteran player. He lead the team in scoring - a team that was without it's two best offensive players for a little under half the season, and was probably the most consistent scoring forward on the team throughout the season. He gives the team another look at the PP, and unlike Hudler, Samuelsson, etc. he can actually hold the blueline.

Holland has just left this stale taste in everyone's mouths when it comes to signing veterans. I can't stand signing vets for the sake of it - but this is one of the few vets in recent memory that Kenny should re-sign. For his production, it was without a good chunk of the core offensive players on this team. He was charged with carrying a load for this team that he never should have, and he still did a solid job doing it.

Even if you don't want to consider the guy a top 6'er, he's a great insurance policy. The team stays healthy and you've got a player who can add 50 or so points, he goes down with injury and Jurco can come up. I am fully behind the idea that one of Ouellet/Sproul/Backman/Marchenko should be in Quincey's spot, and I'm also fully behind Jurco being in Cleary's, but I don't think you remove a productive, veteran player from your team for the sake of change.