Abby soars, Holland faces tough decisions on Ozzie and Draper

On Wednesday, one Red Wing player will take his career to new heights.

That’s when Justin Abdelkader will make a special guest appearance with the world-renowned U.S. Navy Blue Angels at Willow Run Airport in Ypsilanti. Abdelkader’s ride will take place at 10:00 a.m. and last approximately 45 minutes. This special flying demonstration by the Navy’s elite jet team is open only to members of the media.

Abdelkader will accompany Blue Angel #7, Lt. David Tickle, as he demonstrates the skill, power and grace of the F/A-18 Hornet while performing dives, rolls and reaching speeds approaching Mach 1. The Blue Angels will be in Ypsilanti as the headline act for the 2011 Thunder Over Michigan Air Show, taking place July 23 and 24.

Stay tuned to this space and for more coverage of this event.

* * *

By all accounts, the Red Wings Prospects Camp in Traverse City was a major success with players, coaching staff and management alike.

From George Sipple:

Don’t be surprised if the Red Wings continue to hold their summer prospect development camp at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City rather than in Detroit.

Assistant general manager Jim Nill said feedback from the players was positive about the decision to move the camp Up North this year. When the players weren’t at the rink, they hung out on the beach, dined together and played miniature golf.

One night, the team had a barbecue on the beach. “Chris Chelios, Aaron Downey and Jiri Fischer were out there just talking hockey, sharing their experiences with the kids,” Nill said.

* * *

The Commodore 64 movement has picked up steam across the media, with Yahoo’s Puck Daddy blog leading the charge. The site says that they have received $6,000 in potential pledges by fans should @Commie22 make the switch to #64. The grass roots effort has also caught the attention of the company that makes an updated version of the vintage machines.

* * *

Ken Holland has a pair of tough decisions on the horizon with the future of longtime veterans Chris Osgood and Kris Draper. The two have won a combined seven Stanley Cup titles with the organization and have shown a fierce loyalty to the City of Detroit. In Draper’s case, he has been insistent several times over the course of the offseason that this city is considered home for his family.

The Wings currently have 13 forwards under contract with Drew Miller and Patrick Eaves back in the fold. It is possible that Draper would have to fend off Cory Emmerton in training camp. Making things more complicated, Emmerton must clear waivers if he doesn’t make the Wings roster.

* * *

It was a dramatic conclusion that defined the purity of sport, all wrapped up in a bow of patriotic glory.

Abby Wambach’s goal in added time of extra time not only saved Team USA’s hopes in the 2011 Women’s World Cup, but it could be the most important goal in the history of American soccer. Not only did it allow a new generation of young girls to embrace a hero, just as they did 12 years ago with Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain, but it allowed the strength of social media to shine for a sport that doesn’t usually see the spotlight.

Blake Griffin, LeBron James, Candace Parker, Seth Meyers and Larry Fitzgerald were just some of the celebrity Tweet-aholics that sent props to the United States women.

Credit must also go to the folks at U.S. Soccer for enhancing the World Cup experience via social media. Their Twitter feeds and Facebook page have been one-stop shopping for all soccer related information and content. Players have also shared the first-hand experience from Germany through their own various social media accounts and promotions.

Also of note, U.S. Soccer ran a 122-minute Facebook promotion on Monday offering customized jerseys with free overnight shipping, so fans would receive their new swag in time for Wednesday’s game. Mine was right there at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday morning.

Not too shabby. Wouldn’t it be cool to have a Red Wings show like this in the future?

About Jake Duhaime

Social Networking Manager for the Detroit Red Wings
This entry was posted in Community, Detroit Red Wings. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Abby soars, Holland faces tough decisions on Ozzie and Draper

  1. Bring back Ozzie and have Drapes hang around the beer leagues then bring him back for the playoffs

  2. ralph allocco says:

    yes bring them back they are not ready to retire yet they still got lot hockey in them draper still has a lot speed in him which is good for the team and for ozzie he also has lot left in him we need them both

  3. Pete Lathrop says:

    I’m a big fan of Chris Draper and Chris Osgood. They’ve been great for the team. They’ve been loyal and played hard. NHL hockey, just like any other professional sport, has two important elements to be successful: youthful vitality and experience. Unfortunately, those who have the experience don’t have as much time as those who have youth. The men who have the experience are just as important as the up-and-coming stars, but ironically, as the seasoned veterans teach the young players how to become stars, they are giving away their foothold on job security. You can’t say that the hockey knowledge both Draper and Osgood have isn’t valuable anymore. Maybe not as a competetive player on the ice, but as an assistant coach on the bench. Draper was probably the best “one dollar” deal that Detroit ever made when McLean picked him up from Adirondack in ’93. He was once a up-and-coming star that turned out to be the consumate grind-line player that everyone looked to as an example for a consistant, hard work ethic. Who could ever blink at Ozzy’s record! Three time all star, lifted the cup three times, two-time Jennings winner, 400+ wins, etc. Both guys entered the NHL in ’93 and played their hearts out since then. Draper’s 40 yrs old, and Ozzy is 39. Now, am I saying these two guys can’t play hockey anymore? Not at all. I’m sure they can still contribute. You hate to think their time is up, but this is the nature of professional sports. It’s like sending your kid off to college. You hate to have them leave home, but it’s best for them to go. Let them enjoy retirement with their families for a few years. Bring them back as coaches!

  4. Joe Krueger says:

    It may be time to say goodbye Ozzie, although was not impressed with his replacement last year. Ozzie is a great guy and it would be tough to see him go. Drapes still has some wheels and is still a good 4th line player. Good chaser!

  5. Edgar says:

    Both these guys have to realize that it’s time to move on from hockey. Just treat them right Wings management. Both the C’s had a part in the Wings long run and Cup wins in the past and should be respected for that.

  6. john says:

    i to think it is time for osgood and draper to retire and give our youth player’s a chance before we lose them to waiver’s.

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