Jump to content

Red Wings mid-season report card


Recommended Posts

The Wings are sitting at 20-9-9 good for third in the Atlantic Conference within striking distance of the Lightning and Canadiens. Here are my individual report cards of the Wings players as the year comes to an end and the halfway point is in reach.


ZETTERBERG: B plus. Goal scoring has been his weakness, only 9 so far but nearly a point a game playing big minutes, most among Wings forwards and most importantly staying healthy.


DATSYUK A minus Speaking of staying healthy, after missing the start of the season he came back like gangbusters, in 27 games he has 13 goals and a point a game. Ages like fine wine.


TATAR: A  leads the team with 15 goals, had a wretched start (1 point in the first nine games) but found his game, ridiculously high motor and opportunistic player.


NYQUIST: B Tied with Tatar for goals scored at 15, leads team with 8 PPG. Rather limited other than his sniping abilities however, only 8 assists.


KRONWALL: B plus 21 blue line points, plays all situations leads team in ice time at nearly 24 minutes a night. Solid season.


FRANZEN: B minus  11 of his 20 points are of the PP variety. Not nearly enough 5 on 5. A big reason though why the Wings are tops in the league on the power play.


ABDELKADER:  A  10 goals, on pace for career highs in every offensive category. Has really turned into a hockey player.


SHEAHAN: C plus streaky player who is a big boy, not afraid to use his body in front of the net but has been inconsistent.


HELM: A  Has done everything asked of him, 7 goals, 18 points, plays on any line and center or either wing with equal ability. Nice comeback year.


DEKEYSER: B plus runs the second power ply with mixed results has been our best 5 on 5 defender all year.


JURCO: D plus. Had a stretch of 11 points in 12 games, other than that, he has only 1 point in his other 22 games. Still can be optioned out, Pulkinnen killing it in Grand Rapids. Just saying.


WEISS: B missed time with his hernia, came back like gangbusters, nearly a point a game when in the lineup. Solid vet, just needs to stay healthy.


KINDL: C Actually has been ok when he is healthy. Nothing special but hasn't hurt the team.


ERICSSON: B  the steadying influence on the back end allows Kronwall to roam knowing he has his back. Still think he could use his size more and that there has to be a bit more offense.


SMITH: C plus Good game, bad game, but the goods are starting to outnumber the bad.


GLENDENING: B plus our superpest is one of the leagues top penalty killers and a solid faceoff guy. A bit more offense would be nice.


MILLER: C plus most nights you don't notice him. That is a compliment.


ANDERSSON: D  Has simply had a bad season, in danger of being moved out for the talent in the pipeline.


HOWARD: A Enough cannot be said about his steady calm start to the year. He needs to win a shootout or two though, he is 0-6 in the skill competition but other than that he has been brilliant.


MRAZAK: A Like Howard he has done all that is asked of him.


 that is it, I left out guys who have only appeared in a handful of games but the Wings were picked by many to take a step back his year, they have been a revelation as they have retooled from within (again!) and look competitive most every night. Team Grade I have to say a B plus.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Think ya gotta raise Nyquist from B to B+. He's almost leading the league in PP goals. I agree that his lack of assists keeps him from the A range.


Miller is higher than a C. He plays on just about the best PK unit in the league. B- at most, but still higher than C. Let's face it, he's a role player now, and he is playing his role on the PK very well helping lead that crew. As well as they are doing, he deserves better.


You left out Xavier Oullet. He's played enough to be recognized in The Great @yave1964 Mid-Season 2014-15 Report Card, IMHO. Solid B+ or better in my book. He is a young rookie and yet, like DDK, seems to play with veteran-like calm. Obviously only has a few games under his belt, but I've only seen him make a couple of costly errors in the time he has played. Probably plays better than Smith as far as consistency goes. Smith does get tougher assignments to be fair. Gonna be a player.


I'd give DDK a B+. He HAS been our best D-man 5-on-5. As far as meeting expectations, he is exceeding them, IMO.


Also forgot Babcock: B+. He's made some really good coaching decisions this year. He is giving kids solid chances and younger players who are deserving more time either more time, time with star players like Pav/Z, or both. Giving guys like Glendening defined roles has been very good. Nice to have healthy players this year as compared to last year, eh?


Special teams coaches: A- Can't complain about the PK. Minor complaints about the PP. Obviously the PP had a slow start, but has come on and been regularly good to great after the first 10 games. PP continues close to like it is and the minus goes away.


Ken Holland: Retroactive A. We are now starting to see the results of his genius over the past few years, when mediocrity of play at the time made things difficult to see. He has put together a FINE team of both young and veteran players.


Agree with your other grades. Thoughtful as usual, @yave1964.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



All fair and valid points. Miller, for certain rated too low. Again, if you aren't noticing him it means he is doing his job. Hard for a guy like that to get the headlines, especially when linemate Glendening is a favorite by Redmond right now.


 Oullet, yeah, I thought of him and should have rated him, very few mistakes, good pass, calm and assured, a B rating is fair. Again Spike, all fair points.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hard for a guy like that to get the headlines


Speaking of headlines some news on your prospect........


I think he is on like a 7 or 8 game point streak...


Red Wings have simple message for Teemu Pulkkinen: Shoot the puck at every opportunity


TAYLOR - The Detroit Red Wings didn't recall Teemu Pulkkinen to fill a defensive role or be a checker.

They obviously want the rookie forward to be responsible in his own zone. But as much as anything the Red Wings want Pulkkinen do the same thing he did in the American Hockey League this season - score goals.

And that means shooting the puck at every opportunity.


Pulkkinen, who was leading the AHL with 20 goals when he was recalled Thursday, will make his NHL season debut Saturday night in Washington on a line with Riley Sheahan and Drew Miller. He'll also skate on the Red Wings' No. 2 power-play unit.

He joins the Red Wings after scoring at least one goal in eight straight games to tie the Grand Rapids Griffins' franchise record.

"Hopefully he shoots it every time he touches it," Babcock said Friday. "I don't even know if it's a hot streak. He just seems to be a good player that scores. He's scored his whole life. Now, is he ready to score in the NHL?


"We're always looking for goals. If he can score, why wouldn't we have him? And he's a right-handed shot."

Pulkkinen has a booming shot and the fact that it comes from the right side is a bonus for the Red Wings, who have been seeking more of that all season.

After playing three games in Detroit last season, Pulkkinen is getting another chance with the Red Wings after Johan Franzen (upper body) and Tomas Jurco (back) were both sidelined by injuries.


He's ready for another shot in the NHL, according to Grand Rapids coach Jeff Blashill, who gives Babcock scouting reports on the Griffins several times a week.

"It's good to be here and I'm very excited about the opportunity to play in Washington," said Pulkkinen, 23. "They want me to shoot. Of course I want to score goals and I'm feeling good right now.

"If I get the chance to shoot, I will shoot for sure."


Pulkkinen set a Griffins' rookie record with 31 goals last season and played well this year in training camp with the Red Wings. When the Red Wings didn't have a spot for him this season, he returned to Grand Rapids and focused on working hard to get another shot in the NHL.

Pulkkinen said he wasn't nervous during his three-game stint a year ago so he doesn't expect any butterflies when he takes the ice against the Capitals.

"I just tried to play the same way that I played in Grand Rapids" last year, he said. "I wasn't nervous. Now I feel I have to do the same things that I'm doing there.


We'll see what happens.

"I had a good summer, worked hard, and now when you have confidence you score goals. You play better and better all the time. Now I feel good, so it's been positive."


With his big shot and ability to find open spots on the ice for good scoring chances, Pulkkinen has been compared to former Red Wings forward Brett Hull.

He's heard the comparison to Hull but has never met the Hall of Fame sniper and considers it a compliment to be mentioned alongside somebody who scored 741 NHL goals, including 92 during three seasons in Detroit.


The Red Wings are looking forward to seeing what Pulkkinen can give them.

"Obviously he has a real good shot," said captain Henrik Zetterberg. "But also he's good at finding the open ice to be able to receive passes. He doesn't need much. It's almost like Brett Hull in a way. He doesn't need a lot of room to get a shot off.

"It's going to be interesting to see what he can do. Obviously he's done a real good job down in Grand Rapids and looking forward to having him around with us."

Pulkkinen was tied for second in the AHL scoring race with 39 points he was recalled and was named to the league's All-Star team.

"I think for him he's just got to play his game," Sheahan said. "I think we're just going to try and get him the puck and he can get that shot away of his. He's got an unbelievable shot. He's a great skater.

"I think just for him it's confidence and just coming out and playing his game.


During his first stint with the Red Wings - which lasted one week before he was sent back to Grand Rapids - Pulkkinen had five shots on goal in three games and averaged a little more than seven minutes of ice time.


He thinks just playing in the NHL last season, even if it wasn't very much, will benefit him this time around.


"It was nice so I know what's going on," said Pulkkinen, the Red Wings' fourth-round draft pick (111th overall) in 2010. "Now I just have to keep working and we'll see how it goes Saturday.


"I gotta work hard and skate hard and try to do my own things like what I do in Grand Rapids, shoot the puck and like play hard."



Link to comment
Share on other sites


Thanks for this!!


  A right handed shot in Detroit!


I have been watching him for two years in Grand Rapids, last year I thought his huge slapshot would not translate to the NHL but he was fun to watch, this year he still has the slapper in his bag of tricks but he also has a quick shot from the dot and the most ridiculous back hander, I have watched him make goalies look stupid ith it twice in the last two weeks.

 Defensively he sure don't play like a Wing but he has the speed to get back.


  He really has to be top six to get the most out of him, you cannot play him on the checking line because that is not his game. Franzen is out with a concussion so it opens up a spot for Pulkkinen to show what he has. If he is anywhere near the player I have been watching at Grand Rapids it is a huge win for the Wings calling him up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If he is anywhere near the player I have been watching at Grand Rapids it is a huge win for the Wings calling him up.


Yes i agree. I don't know what is going on with my Flyers scouting department....this is the first time in a long time they have zero Finns in the pipe work..none on the farm zero what so ever in the organ I zation.........not sure why but it is strange i think.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Think Babs is putting him on the wing with Sheahan and Miller tonight. As you say, not the most ideal line to truly evaluate his offensive capabilities. But if the kid shoots the puck and skates off of it like he should, like Nyquist last year, Babs will have no choice but to find him a better spot. He's been drooling for a righty, so if the kid does what he's supposed to, Babs is gonna have to make a choice, and I think Andersson may be the loser once Franzen returns.

Personally, I won't be missing Franzen's almost-nightly trip to the box for a lovely PK opportunity. ;-) He's great when he is on one of his hot streaks, but when he's not, he can be a real liability.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...