Posted on: January 3, 2010 11:46 am

Lidstrom The Hockey News player of decade

Detroit Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom plays the starring role in The Hockey News All-Decade issue as he edges New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur as the magazine's Player of the Decade.

Editor-in-Chief Jason Kay narrowed the potential field to just Lidstrom and Brodeur and gave Brodeur the edge statistically and in the intangibles, and Lidstrom the edge in trophies and awards, playoffs and Olympics and durability, before giving Lidstrom the overall edge.

The fans agreed on the magazine's website poll, with Lidstrom garnering 31% of the votes while Brodeur was a close second at 30%. Other players receiving fan votes include: Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals (13%), Joe Sakic, formerly of the Colorado Avalanche (11%), Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins (5%), Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames (4%), Joe Thornton of the San Jose Sharks (3%), and Ilya Kovalchuk of the Altanta Thrashers, Chris Pronger of the Philadelphia Flyers and the Red Wings'  Pavel Dastyuk receiving 1% each.

Lidstrom was an "easy choice" as defenseman on the magazine's All Decade first line and was the only player to rate five out of five in all five player evaluation categories (offense, defense, leadership, playoffs, and durability). Joining Lidstrom on the first line were forwards Sakic, Ovechkin and Iginla, defenseman Pronger and goalie Brodeur. Mike Babcock was selected as coach and Ken Holland was chosen as general manager.

The magazine selected Datsyuk to center its second line between Daniel Alfredsson of the Ottawa Senators and Kovalchuk, along with Red Wings defenseman Brian Rafalski and Robyn Regehr of the Calgary Flames on the blueline.

Red Wings' Kris Draper was selected as the fourth line center between Jarkko Ruutu and Chris Neil, both of the Senators, and former Red Wings backup goalie Ty Conklin of the St. Louis Blues was the publication's choice as the All-Decade backup.

Red Wings All-Decade Team

The All-Decade team as selected by The Hockey News is as follows:

<caption></caption>Forward LinesLeft WingCenterRight WingHenrik ZetterbergPavel DatsyukTomas HolmstromBrendan ShanahanSteve YzermanJohan FranzenKris DraperSergei FedorovBrett HullDan ClearyIgor LarionovKirk Maltby<caption></caption>Defense PairingsLeft DefenseRight DefenseNicklas LidstromChris CheliosNiklas KronwallBrian RafalskiJiri FischerMathieu Schneider<caption></caption>GoaliesChris OsgoodDominik Hasek


Double Duty

Osgood is also listed as the #2 goalie on the New York Islanders All-Decade Team. Hasek is also the #2 goalie on the Buffalo Sabres All-Decade Team. Rafalski is also on the second defense pair on the New Jersey Devils All-Decade Team. Schneider is also on the second defense pair on the Los Angeles Kings All-Decade team. Shanahan is also on the second line of the New York Rangers All-Decade Team. Fedorov is also on the second line of the Columbus Blue Jackets All-Decade Team.  Current Red Wing Brad May is the fourth line left winger for the Phoenix Coyotes All-Decade Team, and Todd Bertuzzi was selected as the second line right winger on the Vancouver Canucks All-Decade Team.

Statistical highlights

The Red Wings top the list of most wins by a franchise in the decade with 452 victories, four 50-win seasons, nine Central Division titles and two Stanley Cups.
Nicklas Lidstrom topped several lists including top scoring defenseman in the decade with 563 points, easily edging Sergei Gonchar of the Pittsburgh Penguins who scored 515 points in the decade. Lidstrom led all blueliners in games played with 720, just ahead of Sean O'Donnell of the Los Angeles Kings with 715 games played. He also led the entire league in plus/minus with a +229 rating, +62 ahead of teammate Datsyuk who finished second at +167.
Rafalski finished tied for seventh in games played by a defenseman in the decade with Darryl Sydor of the St. Louis Blues with 692 games played. He was third in points by defensemen with 427. Rafalski was also sixth in plus/minus in the decade at +144.
Lidstrom's 563 points was tops amongst Red Wings and 23rd overall in the decade. Datsyuk finished second on Detroit with 552 points which places him 27th, and Todd Bertuzzi's 523 points placed him 33rd overall in the decade. Former Red Wings' Marian Hossa of the Chicago Blackhawks, Robert Lang of the Phoenix Coyotes and Brendan Shanahan also placed in the top 40 in scoring in the decade. Hossa was fourth overall with 679 points, Lang was 30th with 538 points, and Shanahan was 38th with 516 points.
Henrik Zetterberg was 14th in plus/minus in the decade at +124.

More Red Wings Decade in Review: Red Wings Decade in Review: Top Point Scorers
Category: NHL
Posted on: November 18, 2009 12:13 am

Tyler Seguin ranked ahead of Taylor Hall by CSB

Central Scouting released its preliminary rankings on Tuesday and surprisingly Taylor Hall of the Windsor Spitfires was not their top ranked prospect in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
That honour belongs to Tyler Seguin of the Plymouth Whalers. Cam Fowler also of the Spitfires is the top ranked defenseman in the OHL and ranked third overall.
However, TSN analyst and draft expert Bob McKenzie polled seven scouts and five said they would select Hall first overall.
International Scouting Service (ISS) agrees with the scouts as they had Hall ranked first overall on their November rankings followed by Seguin and Fowler.
Other Spitfires making the CSB list include right winger Austin Watson, ranked eight, and left winger Justin Shugg, ranked 11th. Former Spitfire Andrew Yogan is ranked 10th.
Seguin, a 6'1" 186-pound center, has risen to the top very quickly on the strength of his performance in the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament and his play so far this season. He is fourth in OHL scoring with 36 points in 18 games while Hall leads the OHL with 21 goals and 45 points in 25 games. Fowler is the top scoring defenseman with 29 points in 25 games and ranks second in the league witha plus/minus of plus-25.
Hall and Fowler have been considered top prospects since The Hockey News (THN) included them among the top five players to watch for in the 2010 draft in their annual Future Watch special issue published in February 2008.
Hall assumed the status as the top ranked prospect later that season in THN's 2008 Draft Preview Special Issue which was published in April 2008. Fowler was ranked fourth overall. Hall has often been compared to Pavel Bure because of his blazing speed and knack for scoring goals. Fowler is compared to Scott Niedermayer of teh Anaheim Ducks as both players are smooth skating defenseman who can control the game at both ends of the ice.
Hall maintained his number one status through 2009, while Fowler saw his stock drop and was not included in THN's top 10 prospects in the 2009 Draft Preview.

To place your vote on who should be ranked #1 please go to: Central Scouting drops Taylor Hall from top spot, scouts still think he's No. 1

Posted on: November 14, 2009 12:06 am

Red Wings have run out of depth at forward

The Detroit Red Wings seemingly never ending depth has finally been exhausted, at least at forward, as indicated by the team claiming Drew Miller on waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning. Miller is in the final year of his contract and has a salary and cap hit of $525,000 (according to

Long-term injuries to Johan Franzen, Valtteri Filppula and Jason Williams and the previous promotions of Ville Leino, Darren Helm and Justin Abdelkader have left the Red Wings with no NHL ready prospects on the team’s minor league affiliate in Grand Rapids.

Prior to Thursday game, Miller played 14 games for Tampa Bay this season without a point. He was originally a sixth round pick by Anaheim in 2003 and played 53 games scoring 15 points with the Ducks. He also played in 16 playoff games with the Ducks over three seasons.

By contrast the most experienced forward in the Red Wings organization playing in Grand Rapids is Kris Newbury who played 44 games for Toronto before the Red Wings signed him as a free agent this past summer. Newbury has three goals and six points in the NHL. He is followed by fellow former Maple Leaf Jeremy Williams who has scored nine goals in 31 NHL games also with Toronto.

Patrick Rismiller, a veteran of 182 games with San Jose and the New York Rangers, was recently reassigned from Hartford to Grand Rapids by the Rangers but remains property of New York.

Further attrition to the forward ranks could force Detroit to either acquire NHL talent or call up prospects such as Newbury who has 11 points in 13 games in Grand Rapids, Williams (nine points) or perhaps Cory Emmerton (eight points).

Red Wings Waiver History

The last time the Red Wings claimed a player off waivers was 1998 when they acquired Todd Gill from the St. Louis Blues.

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    Category: NHL
    Posted on: November 9, 2009 12:40 am

    The Hockey News declares Lidstrom still the best

    The Hockey News proclaims Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings, the best defenseman in their November 16th "Defenseman Issue."

    The weekly magazine polled six hockey experts to rank the NHL defenseman in 11 categories and Lidstrom was the winner in four and received votes in two others.

    Lidstrom was selected as the best shutdown defenseman, as having the best point shot, making the best first pass, and as the top mentor. He also received votes as the best skater and best corner man.

    Lidstrom beat Sheldon Souray of the Edmonton Oilers and Mike Green of the Washington Capitals for the best point shot. He beat Scott Niedermayer of the Anaheim Ducks and Chris Pronger of the Philadelphia Flyers for the best first pass. Pronger was runner-up to Lidstrom as the best shut down defenseman and Robyn Regehr of the Calgary Flames was third. Niedermayer was again runner-up to Lidstrom in the best mentor category followed by Rob Blake of the San Jose Sharks.

    Brian Rafalski of the Red Wings was selected as the NHL's best small defenseman. Small is defined as under six-feet tall and under 200 pounds. Rafalski edged Kimmo Timmonen of the Flyers and Dan Boyle of the Sharks.

    Pronger won a couple of categories including best corner man and nastiest and most intimidating player. Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators was second to Pronger as best corner man and Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins ranked third. Chara was runner-up to Pronger as the nastiest defenseman and Dion Phaneuf of the Flames was third. Niedermayer was selected as the best skater ahead of Jay Bouwmeester of the Calgary Flames and Brian Campbell of the Chicago Blackhawks.

    Drew Doughty was selected as the best defenseman under 22 ahead of Zach Bogosian and Tyler Myers.

    Phaneuf was selected as the best open ice hitter ahead of Niklas Kronwall of the Red Wings and Anton Volchenkov of the Ottawa Senators. Volchenkov was selected as the best shot blocker followed by Regehr, and Zbynek Michalek of the Phoenix Coyotes.

    Please submit your Red Wings or hockey questions to for a new mid-week column this season, Detroit Red Wings Examiner's Mailbag coming soon.

    For more info: Mike also covers the Windsor Spitfires for and is syndicated by

    For all of my Red Wings coverage check out my homepage at: EXAMINER
    Posted on: November 2, 2009 11:53 pm

    The Detroit Red Wings weekly report, November 2

    The Detroit Red Wings wrapped up their five game road trip going  2-0-1  through the NHL's version of the Bermuda Triangle this week, beating the Vancouver Canucks and the Calgary Flames while losing in a shootout to the Edmonton Oilers.

    While it did not salvage the trip in terms of the won-loss record the team set for themselves, they did get the desired number of points and it did provide hope is some areas of their game.

    Prior to departure Red Wings general manager Ken Holland told Ansar Khan, of, the goal for the trip was to win three games of five for six points. Well the team picked up six points in the five games, although they did leave two points for their opponents by going 2-1-2 as opposed to 3-2-0.

    In positive news, the team regained their offensive touch scoring five goals in two of the games and 13 goals overall this past week. Also 13 different players got at least one point in the last three games as well indicating a return to a balanced attack that makes it difficult to defend against the Red Wings. Pavel Datsyuk led the resurgence with six points in his last three games. That kind of involvement throughout the roster and a pseudo successful trip has lifted the team's spirits about themselves as Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press wrote in this story: Red Wings' spirits high after long road trip

    Unfortunately along with the good comes some bad news and lingering issues in the Red Wings game. First the bad news, Valtteri Filppula suffered a broken wrist in the game against Edmonton and will be out six weeks. Also Brad May suffered an eye injury off the stick of his teammate Jason Williams and is expected to be out of the lineup for one week, and is seeking a second medical opinion, as reported by George Sipple of the Free Press.

    And while the Red Wings scored 13 goals they also allowed 11, and weak goaltending was a major reason. Chris Osgood was pulled just seven minutes into the game against the Canucks after allowing two goals on four shots. Jimmy Howard came in and played well to earn his first NHL win since 2005. Howard started the next game against Edmonton and was shaky, giving up three goals in the opening period while the team dug itself a deep hole. The Wings trailed 4-1 and 5-2, but rallied in the third period playing perhaps their best 20 minutes of hockey before finally losing in a shootout. The game was broadcast on Canadian cable outlet TSN, whose analysts were very critical of the Red Wings play this season and the goaltending in particular.

    Osgood and the Wings bounced back with a well-played convincing win over the Flames to salvage the trip.

    While on the trip Holland offered some insight on his team's play and some measuring sticks to use to grade the team as the season progresses. Holland shared with St. James that he is the least bit surprised by the team's start of the season based on the roster turnover during the summer and the fact that they have been hit with some unexpected setbacks. He is also not willing to judge his team based on the first 10 games of the season (4-4-2) but rather will make his assessment of the team based on their play in games 11 through 25. At the same time he pointed Thanksgiving as an interim measuring stick in this article by Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province: Holland helps keep his team on top of league.

    The week ahead

    The Red Wings return home for a couple of good matchups against two of the best teams in the NHL last season. The Boston Bruins visit Joe Louis Arena Tuesday night, and the San Jose Sharks are in town on Thursday. The Bruins were the top team in the Eastern Conference last season and like the Red Wings have struggled with injuries early in the year and it is reflected in their record of 6-6-1. For more on this game and the Bruins be sure to read: Pre-game hype: Boston Bruins at Detroit Red Wings, and Boston Bruins Examiner Mark Marino

    Thursday night against the Sharks is also the first of many sponsored giveaways in the month of November as all fans in attendance will receive a Budd Lynch bobblehead doll courtesy of Bank of America.

    Other giveaways in November include, November 12 against the Vancouver Canucks is Steve Yzerman plaque giveaway night courtesy of Fifth Third Bank, and November 25th against Atlanta is team wall calendar giveaway night.

    For more info: For more information on the Red Wings and the promotional giveaways be sure to check out the team's official website at: Detroit Red Wings.

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    For more on the Red Wings be sure to check out my Red Wings coverage at examiner, and please check out my new page at examiner on the Windsor Spitfires

    Posted on: October 30, 2009 12:16 pm
    Edited on: October 30, 2009 12:17 pm

    TSN analysts brutally honest about Red Wings

    If you follow the Red Wings with rose tinted glasses, last night's TSN (Canadian cable network) broadcast of their game against the Edmonton Oilers would have a been a shock to your beliefs in the team.

    You would probably say they were over-critical of your favorite team, but in reality they were simply being brutally honest.

    Chris Cuthbert does the play-by-play with color commentary provided by former player Ray Ferraro. Ferraro's son Landon was the Red Wings first pick in the 2009 Entry Draft. Between period analysis is provided by host James Duthie, and analysts Bob McKenzie, and former Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish.

    The Oilers had not scored a goal in their last seven periods heading into last night's game, but found themselves up 1-0 just 42 seconds into the game and ahead 3-0 by the 13-minute mark. They stretched the lead to 4-0 with another first minute goal to open the second period, and it was 5-2 after 40 minutes of play.

    During the broadcast Ferraro had some biting comments about the goaltending in particular but also had some observations about the play of the defense as well. His comment just prior to the second period was particularly insightful and the timing of the comment was incredible. He pointed out that from a player's perspective when your team is not getting good goaltending you play with a lack of confidence because your worried that every turnover or giveaway you make will end up in your net, and that's how it appeared Detroit was playing. One minute into the period Todd Bertuzzi made an ill-advised pass to a flat-footed Brian Rafalski at the Oilers blueline that the Oilers turned into a turnover and scored on the ensuing breakaway.

    Later, Ferraro noted that the Red Wings defense has become a giveaway machine, and moments later Jonathan Ericsson was weak on clearing pass and the Oilers were able to generate a couple of opportunities off the turnover. Ferraro was also fair in his analysis, as he astutely pointed out that the Red Wings had found and exploited a seam in the Oilers neutral zone coverage with long breakout passes resulting in two goals during the Red Wings furious comeback in the third period. He also noted that the Oilers were unable to withstand the comeback because the Red Wings had returned to their game plan and did not allow the Oilers to have the puck for much of the period.

    During the second intermission Duthie asked if it was too soon to question what's wrong with the Red Wings, to which McKenzie responded that is not too soon, after all this is a team that has competed for the Stanley Cup the past two seasons, and the expectation should be that they would play better than they have. McKenzie pointed out two factors for the slow start, the first being that the goaltending has not been good, and they have had injuries to significant players such as Johan Franzen who is out of the lineup, Henrik Zetterberg who missed all of training camp, as did Darren Helm, and Pavel Datsyuk has also missed games. He also factored in the large roster turnover from last year. MacTavish was far more blunt stating that the Red Wings have not played well enough to overcome "mediocre" goaltending.

    Injury Update
    Valtteri Filppula did not play the third period last night and has been diagnosed with a broken wrist. He is expected to miss six to eight weeks.

    For some photos of last night's game be sure to check out the slideshow at: TSN analysts brutally honest
    For more Red Wings articles by Mike, check out his examiner page at: Examiner

    Category: NHL
    Posted on: October 20, 2009 10:44 pm

    The Detroit Red Wings weekly report, October 20

    The Detroit Red Wings managed to display their multiple personalities last week while going 1-1-1 against the Buffalo Sabres, Los Angeles Kings, and Colorado Avalanche.

    The week began with an absolute stinker against the Buffalo Sabres, who have transformed their game and become the mirror image of what Detroit is supposed to play like. Coincidentally, Sabres coach Lindy Ruff is an assistant coach to Red Wings coach Mike Babcock on Team Canada in the upcoming Olympics. Perhaps Babcock has revealed too much of the Red Wings system at Team Canada meetings.

    The Sabres dominated the faceoff dots winning 62% of the draws and then played keep away from Detroit for most of the night with an effective puck possession game. The Sabres who lead the league in shots on goal per game, much like Detroit has for years, then outshot Detroit 37-25, and outscored them 6-2. Buffalo had struggled offensively and were winning because goalie Ryan Miller, from  East Lansing, had been stingy since the start of the season. Unfortunately for Detroit the Sabres offensive struggles came to an abrupt end on Tuesday. Perhaps Ruff can repay the favor of taking the Red Wings system by providing secrets to beating Miller, who is a candidate to play goal for Team USA, to Team Canada, and by default the Red Wings. Then the coaches can call it even.

    The Los Angeles Kings came into Detroit riding a modest hot streak, winning four of their last five games, and their top line of Ryan Smyth, Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams had combined for 25 points in six games. The Kings were also getting solid goaltending on nights when the offense struggled. Detroit's team defense, that was scorched in Buffalo, delivered a gem, limiting the Kings top line to just one goal, and two points. Chris Osgood rebounded from his dud in Buffalo and was the game's second star stopping  24 shots. The highlight of night and the week was Nicklas Lidstrom's second assist of the game which was his 1,000th NHL point. He is just the eighth defenseman in league history to reach the milestone.

    "It feels great and it's something I'm proud of to reach that milestone, with the other players that are in there with 1,000 points, especially the defensemen," said Lidstrom.

    "He's obviously is a spectacular player and he has been for a long long time, and you have to be really healthy and you have to be fortunate to play on a good team, and then you have to be an absolute star," said Red Wings coach Mike Babcock on Lidstrom's milestone. "For a d-man to reach that milestone is very very special."

    And then there was Saturday against the Avalanche. The Red Wings were definitely two different teams in this game. They opened a 2-0 lead through two periods and had outshot the Avalanche  23-13, hardly allowing them to touch the puck. The Avalanche started the third period by killing off a  double minor and then took it to the Red Wings the rest of the way. They scored three straight goals to take the lead capitalizing on turnovers (Red Wings lead the NHL with 91 turnovers) and a terrible line change. Valtteri Filppula scored to give Detroit the lead again but the they were unable to hold on as Colorado scored late to force overtime and finally a shootout which was decided when Milan Hejduk beat Osgood with the exact same move to the backhand that Marek Svatos beat Osgood with on the previous shot.

    "I just felt it was one of those games that you have everything going your way, you should bury them," said Babcock. "We didn't bury them, we let them stay in the game, and instead of putting a knife in them, and it came back to haunt us. It's a point that we let get away that we should never let it at home."

    Notable events
    Justin Abdelkader scored his first regular season goal in the NHL against the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday. He scored two goals in the playoffs last season. In off-ice news, Pavel Datsyuk was out of the lineup against Los Angeles and Colorado with an upper body injury, but is expected to return to the lineup on Thursday night against Phoenix. Johan Franzen underwent successful surgery on the ACL in his left knee and will be out of the lineup at least four months. Andreas Lilja, on long-term injured reserve, continues to suffer headaches and is not close to returning to the lineup.

    Red Wings leaders
    Filppula and Tomas Holmstrom had two goals each last week, Henrik Zetterberg had four assists and five points. Todd Bertuzzi elevated his play and was named the second star in the games against Los Angeles and Colorado.

    Red Wings three Stars of the week
    First Star - Zetterberg
    - Having missed most of training camp with a sore groin, Zetterberg is slowly catching uyp to his teammates in terms of conditioning and it is reflected in his production with one goal and four assists in three games.
    Second Star - Filppula - He has been the Red Wings player on most nights so far this season playing a complete game providing offense and defense. No one has drawn more praise from Babcock for their play than Filppula this season.
    Third Star - Bertuzzi - Bertuzzi has responded well to playing on a line Zetterberg and has also drawn praise from Babcock for his improved play.

    Next Week
    The Red Wings begin a two week road trip with a visit to the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday night and Colorado on Saturday. The Coyotes played the Red Wings tough last season losing at home in a shootout, and twice at Joe Louis, once in overtime and the other on a last minute goal on a controversial penalty call. The Avalanche have already upset the Red Wings this year.

    Check back next Monday, October 27 for the next edition of the Detroit Red Wings weekly report. Also, please submit your Red Wings or hockey questions to for a new mid-week column this season, Detroit Red Wings Examiner's Mailbag coming soon.

    For more Red Wings articles please click: Examiner

    Posted on: October 9, 2009 4:54 pm

    Red Wings Franzen to miss four weeks

    The Red Wings announced that Johan Franzen will be out the lineup a minimum of four months with a torn ACL in his left knee.

    Franzen suffered the injury in the Red Wings home opener Thursday night against the Chicago Blackhawks, in which Franzen scored the game-winner in a 3-2 game.

    With  departure of Marian Hossa, the Red Wings were relying on Franzen to become their go to scorer this season. He had a goal and an assist in three games this season and scored 37 goals for Detroit last season.

    Patrick Eaves who has not played yet this season is available to get into the lineup, or the team may elect to call up Justin Abdlekader who was sent down to Grand Rapids yesterday. Darren Helm who is recovering from an injury to his clavicle has not been cleared for contact yet, but is expected to be ready soon.

    For more Red Wings coverage by the Detroit Red Wings Examiner please click DRW Examiner

    The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or