The Detroit Red Wings’ season ended against the San Jose Sharks in Game 7 on May 13, but the team is generating news this week anyway. Here are two relevant bits about the Winged Wheels.
- The Red Wings will hold a press conference for Brian Rafalski on Wednesday. This announcement validates yesterday’s report that the talented but banged-up defenseman will retire.
Rafalski will end his career as a distinguished yet underrated asset during his days with the Red Wings and New Jersey Devils. He won three Stanley Cups (two with New Jersey, one with Detroit) while playing in the shadow of talented blueliners such as Scott Stevens, Scott Niedermayer and Nicklas Lidstrom. He earned 515 points in 833 career regular season games and 100 in 169 postseason contests. You can’t ask for a much better career from that, especially since Rafalski came into the league with some doubts that he was big enough to succeed at the NHL level.
- In shorter-term news, the Red Wings will play against the Philadelphia Flyers in London, Ontario an exhibition game on September 22 according to Tim Panaccio. The Flyers consider London, Ontario a home away from home in many ways. They’ve played at the John Labatt Centre eight times, but this will be their first game against the Red Wings at that venue.
“London truly is our home away from home,” said Comcast-Spectacor President and Global Spectrum chairman Peter Luukko. “The fan support here in London for the Flyers is outstanding. The John Labatt Centre is a fantastic hockey arena that our players enjoy visiting.
“To be playing the Detroit Red Wings here in London is a dream match-up for hockey fans in Southwestern Ontario and Eastern Michigan. It’s going to be a terrific night of hockey in the City of London.”