The Red Wings and Twitter

As if you needed more reasons to join “The Twitter,” it’s becoming a place where it’s safe to both be a Detroit Red Wing and be savvy with the social media. In the past, we’ve heard (and seen Wingspan features) with players and management outright bashing the medium and its forefathers like Facebook — guys like Chris Osgood were especially vocal in their disdain for such a thing (despite the fact that he might have been first in creating an account… which has been inactive for 27 months). Might the attitude have come from not totally understanding the power of the internet, or not totally appreciating the opportunity to interact with fans on a quasi-personal level? Was it not allowed by the organization?

Whatever the reason, guys are starting to come around. I think it’s safe to say that we all hope that the Wings don’t have a borderline outlandish guy like Paul Bissonnette representing the organization and the team we love, as he tweets photos of homeless people or strippers. But wouldn’t it be great to be able to have Q&A sessions with one of the guys… or send a note of good luck to a call-up… or just voice your support to a player that’s eager to hear it?

With the influx of young talent into the roster over the coming years, you’ll very well get your chance. Hell, if you’re on Twitter already, you’re very likely familiar with the newest Red Wing Mike Commodore who — every night — will interact with hockey fans and answer your questions if he has a few minutes.

Below you can all of the Twitter accounts of Red Wings personnel and a sample of their tweets. If you don’t have an account yet, it might be a good idea to hop over and create one — if only to follow these guys and get yourself a little bit closer to the action. Like all good things, there are fraudulent accounts popping up that you should stay away from… and hilarious parodies that are absolutely worth following. But the following list is all of the known accounts of past, current, and future Red Wings:

Defenseman Mike Commodore :: @commie22

Actually its time to move on to a nap. 2 hours of power skating and a 7 mile run puts me to bed. Getting old sucks. #iamnotlidstrom

Future defenseman Brendan Smith :: @bssmith7

Family euchre tournament and I’m going to say that I’m pretty sure my parents hustled other couples growing up after why I just witnessed

Future power forward and past TP:60 guest Riley Sheahan :: @rsheahan4

Miley Cyrus stating she wants to marry a hockey player. What are our chances?

Prospect Trevor Parkes :: @tparkes19

#poooched from a long day of hockey and training, Hittin the hay looking forward to an am coffbanger and right back at’r again #thegrind

Griffin Mitch Callahan :: @emcy2four

Toe nail officially came off. Don’t know when I’ll see you again. How’s yours holding up @DoubleCornDogs?

Red Wing Draft Pick and Winnipeg Jet sympathizer Brooks Macek :: @MaceALace

Tigers game from the owners suite!.. #notbad #LittleCeasers

2009 Draft Pick Gleason Fournier :: @GleasonFournier

Let’s’go wings !!!

Top Wings pick in 2011 Tomas Jurco :: @Jurky13

Done with hard workout with the wings prospects , now is the time for beach 🙂

2011 pick Ryan Sproul :: @Sproully93

Once again bored outta my mind, gotta get the hell back to hockey! #onemonth #bigyear

2011 pick Alan Quine :: @Quiner26

Ladies and beauts @Cecer_83 is now one of us. Jibbs are fixed, flow is flawless all the kid needs is a few follows #biggerribsbettersauce

Hockeytown Legend Darren McCarty :: @D_Mac25

I haven’t swore on the radio yet. Contract extension

Former Red Wing Kevin Miller :: @kbmiller23

Kocur charity softball today 11:30 in Highland!! Come laugh and have fun

Former Red Wing Aaron Ward :: @aaronward_nhl

Congrats Mark Howe on HHOF.Played my first NHL shift w/ him in ’93 w/ Red Wings.Best example of a TRUE PRO to those who ever played with him

Other accounts that are, in some way, associated with the Detroit Red Wings and worthy of a follow include:

Red Wings Feed, for all of your blog post needs :: @RedWingsFeed
:: They also have a list of players if you want to follow them all in one swoop  :: http://twitter.com/#!/RedWingsFeed/drw-players-prospects

Official Twitter Account :: @DetroitRedWings
AHL Affiliate Grand Rapids Griffins :: @griffinshockey
ECHL Affiliate Toledo Walleye :: @ToledoWalleye
Director of Public Relations for the Detroit Red Wings, Richard Bowness :: @rykbonus
Once-Webmaster, Current Beat Reporter Bill Roose :: @RooseBill
Official Red Wings Photographer, Dave Reginek :: @redwingdgr
Ticket Executive and good friend of TPL, Ryan Michaels :: @rwmichaels
Social Media Manager for the Detroit Red Wings, Jake Duhaime :: @jakeduhaime
Director of Game Operations for the Grand Rapids Griffins, Rich Meyers :: @richmeyers
Anchor/Host for Fox Sports Detroit, John Keating :: @JohnKeatingFSD
Reporter for Fox Sports Detroit, Trevor Thompson :: @iamtrevort
Red Wings Beat Reporter for the Detroit News, Ted Kulfan :: @tkulfan
Photojournalist for the Detroit News, David Guralnick :: @DavidGuralnick
Writer for FoxSportsDetroit.com, Dana Wakiji :: @FSDwakiji
Columinist for The Windsor Star, Bob Duff :: @asktheduffer
Writer for The Grand Rapids Press, Michael Zuidema :: @michaelzuidema

HockeyFest 2011

Just how I'd like to see #52's stall: empty.

Join the Detroit Red Wings in welcoming the 2011-12 hockey season by attending HockeyFest at Joe Louis Arena on September 10th from 11am until 6pm. Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for kids twelve and under.

Included in the ticket price are all-day autograph sessions with current members of the team (including newest Red Wing Mike Commodore who heard about the party on Twitter and volunteered himself) and Hockeytown alumni. You’ll have the chance to tour the Red Wings locker room (which I’ve had the pleasure of doing, and it’s pretty fantastic), snap a photo with the 2008 Stanley Cup Championship banner or the zamboni, ask your favorite players and management team questions and hear their answers, and win a ton of prizes.

The roster of player autographs and appearances will be announced in the coming weeks so stayed tuned or visit the Wings official site for more information (or to buy your tickets).

Putting aside Chicago-hate and helping some kids

As I’m sure you’re familiar, we’re no strangers to raising funds for children in need –and the Red Wings community has proven time and time again that they’re generous beyond words — even though a great deal of us don’t live within Hockeytown’s borders anymore.

Our good buddy @captnorris5 is helping a friend help some kids in Chicago who could desperately use your generosity. As you may have noticed yesterday at The Winged Wheel, he’s putting aside the juvenile Chicago hatred (JUST THIS ONCE!) and he’s giving away a signed Zetterberg jersey to prove it:

Hockeytown, you’ve got a hell of a track record when it comes to charity. In the last two years, you’ve raised just a bit over $14,000 for the Children’s Hospital in two epic events. You’ve answered the bell when it’s been rung, and despite what Mr. Lambert may think, you’ve proven yourselves the most generous fanbase in sports. You’re also all very attractive, and your genitals are significantly above average in both length and girth.

So what am I asking? Simple. Keep it up.

Here and at the bottom of this post is a link to the Learning Through Giving Cause from causes.com. Go there. At the absolute very least, join the cause and post it to your Twitters and Facebooks, Google Plusses and LinkedIns and Yelps, Tumblrs, Diggs, Reddits, and AOL “Fans of Wilford Brimley” Message Boards. You crazy kids and your internets.

But, if you can, do a bit more than that. Toss a donation their way. The money will be put to great use helping kids get their learning on in an environment where they won’t have to worry about toilet paper rationing. Don’t hold it against them that they’re from Chicago. Look, if I can put that aside – you sure as hell can.

Hockeytown, I am absurdly confident that you are more than capable of rising to this challenge. Mike’s got a goal of $10,000 by the time the Wings have brought home the 2012 Stanley Cup. It’s going to require everyone to pitch it to get there, so please, give whatever you can spare.

Head over to TWW for more details, and information — as well as photos and raffle details for the Zetterberg jersey. I’m told that your genitals will continue to grow in length and girth simply by clicking the links. Magic, that’s how.

And, just to be clear, I love Chicago. I called the Windy City home for five years and would move back in a heartbeat if it was in the realm of possibility. I do, however, always get a chuckle out of poking their fanbases, and have no intention of ending that. Duh.

NHL Awards: Lidstrom Wins 7th Norris Trophy, Datsyuk Drops Selke

It didn’t take long for the Red Wings to get on the board in Las Vegas, as Nicklas Lidstrom won his 7th career Norris Trophy as the NHL’s best defenseman. Lidstrom finished ahead of both Shea Weber and Zdeno Chara, riding his 62 points and 23+ minutes a game to another piece of hardware on the mantle. Lidstrom did win the award despite finishing with a -2 rating, much to the chagrin of Ryan Lambert and other “fans” everywhere. Despite that, Lidstrom’s quality of competition rating remained one of the highest in the league and his continued excellence makes him a worthy recipient of the Norris, at least in this blog’s eyes.

Congrats Nick!

UPDATE #1: Lidstrom’s attempt at an awards hat trick has come to an end early, as Zdeno Chara takes home the Mark Messier leadership award. Damn. I was hoping for curly fries.

UPDATE #2: “Livonia native” Ryan Kesler has finally ended Pavel Datsyuk’s three year run of winning the Selke Award for best defensive forward. To nobody’s surprise, Kesler (and his awful hair) finally de-throned Pasha, and with it prevented one of the great NHL traditions: giggling incessantly throughout a Datsyuk acceptance speech.

UPDATE #3: With Pavel Datsyuk taking his name out of the running with a fight in the first game of the season, Nick Lidstrom was the Red Wings only hope in dethroning Martin St. Louis as the nicest player on the ice. Alas, it was not meant to be, as St. Louis picked up his second consecutive Lady Bing Trophy for gentlemanly play.

That’s it from Las Vegas. Check back tomorrow for coverage of the release of the full NHL schedule, as well as some more “Pro/No” fun from Petrella.

Nickname Contest Winner!

Congratulations to our friend Partha, who has won the first TPL Nickname Contest. His winning submission came on February 13th, when the Wings faced off against the Bruins and the selected theme was The Godfather. After several rounds of voting on the TPL Facebook page, the following submission has emerged victorious:

Mike “If I Wanted To Kill You, You’d Be Dead Already” Babcock

Ah, Sollozzo. Such a cock. Anyway, congratulations, Partha — we’ll be in touch immediately to find out which design, and what size, you’d like!

FREE THE OCTOPI

By now, I’m sure you’ve heard about the Octodrama: a Red Wings fan cited for tossing the traditional cephalopod onto the ice at Joe Louis Arena. It’s been covered beautifully by our friends Matt Saler and George Malik, and we certainly won’t step on their news-reporting toes. We will say that the NHL stepping in — in between periods, no less — to try to put a stop to one of hockey’s most storied traditions is one more in a long line of spineless, stupid moves from a League that clearly has no goddamn idea how to connect with fans that have been around since before 1996.

Red Wings fans aren’t known for shutting up, sitting down, and minding their business. We make noise when something pisses us off (Operation: Curly Fries), we pay for half of the damn teams south of the Mason Dixon, we’re going to splash our glorious red all over the ridiculous White Out that’s worked a grand total of zero times in that godforsaken desert.

And we’ll probably throw some more octopuses (or octopi, if you prefer).

Show your support of a tradition older than 24 National Hockey League teams. Visit The Production Line Store and buy your FREE THE OCTOPI shirt now.

Go Red Wings.

WIIM’s Playoff Prediction Contest AND Doggie Fundraiser

Well, here we go, Hockeytown. In a few days, our boys in Red and White are going to embark on a journey that will end one of two ways — returning hockey’s holy chalice to its rightful place in Motown… or heartbreak. As we gear up for Wednesday night’s first game against the Phoenix Coyotes, some preparations need to take place. I’ll be shaving on Tuesday night and won’t be shaving again until the Red Wings are swigging their favorite beverage from the beautiful, arched rim of Lord Stanley’s grail. Chances are very good you’ll be seeing less of me on Twitter, since I can’t tweet and pace the room at the same time.

Something I’m going to be doing as soon as possible is joining Winging it in Motown’s inaugural playoff prediction contest. Each correctly predicted winner (and game totals) will bring you closer to bragging rights and immortality among Red Wings fans.

To sweeten the pot a tiny bit, the fine fellows at WIIM, On the Wings, and The Production Line are offering a prize pack that contains t-shirts and internet fame if you’re entry into the contest is accompanied with the proof e-mail that you’ve donated to Michigan Humane Society and helped to get Patrick Eaves out of the doghouse. The top predictor who has also donated $10 will win some swag from their favorite Red Wings blogs.

You remember Patrick’s hilariously gigantic doggie Rueben. When we posted last week, he was only 39% of the way to his goal. In the few days since then, he’s nearly doubled that — just under 70% as of this writing. I’m confident that with WIIM’s tournament’s help and your continued generosity, we can hit that goal and we can do it before the parade through Campus Martius.

Go Wings! Go Winging it! Go Humane Society!

Help Patrick — and Rueben — Eaves get out of the doghouse

The Detroit Red Wings organization, its players, and its fans are the furthest thing from strangers to a good cause. In the two years we’ve been involved with H2H, I’m proud to say that we’ve raised just under $20,000 for Children’s Hospital of Michigan and the Red Wings just announced that they’ve teamed with The Canadian Club to give $10,000 to the USO.

Something that hits close to home is animal rescue and safety. I grew up with dogs (and cats), worked on a television series about rescuing abused and neglected dogs, my wife and I are moving out of New York soon — and among the reasons at the very top of the list is so that we can have a large yard and rescue a dog (or 19).

When I heard about the Humane Society teaming up with Patrick Eaves, I contacted them immediately — as in, before I closed the browser window. I wanted to partner with them all season, in hopes to bring TPL’s fundraising ways to a cause that sincerely means the world to me. Sadly, we weren’t able to come together and make that happen, but I’d still like to urge everyone to spare a few dollars and help Patrick Eaves get out of the doghouse!

As of this writing, Patrick and his (outrageously massive) Newfie Rueben are about $3,000 away from their season-long goal. Anyone that loves their pet as much as Eaves does, and treats them (correctly) as a member of their family, has my vote.

If you have a few bucks to spare this month, consider giving to the Humane Society or your local shelter. Go now before I start relaying the awful, AWFUL stories I heard every day working at Animal Planet.

When you’re done, check out this adorable (and heartbreaking) video featuring both Eaves’ on the ice at Joe Louis.

Bertuzzi Kuzzi

***UPDATE***
No less than 700,000 people have already asked where they can get one of these. The man behind the genius told me to have you all e-mail him if you’re interested. Like I mentioned, he doesn’t have a store or anything, but he does have some lying around. Coordinate with him and see if you can pry one (or ten) from his hands: alvinbrant @ yahoo . com

A few weeks ago, we received an e-mail from one of our intelligent, handsome readers in South Carolina. Alvin said that he had a few of these little guys made to keep his beverages “nice and cold,” and he (correctly) thought that we might like to have a few for our Tuzz Collection. He was kind enough to send us four — one of each of us here at TPL — and we wanted to share the awesomesauce with you.

He doesn’t have a storefront or anything (YET), but he may have a handful left if there’s interest. I’ll tell you one thing — they came in handy at H2H2. All four of us had our Kuzzis and they were put to good use at Hockeytown Cafe and Joe Louis, which I’m sure Alvin will love to hear. If you ask us, it’s the perfect compliment to the Shirtuzzi.

Pledge Numbers

I know it goes without saying at this point, but I’m going to say it again: Detroit Red Wings fans are the most generous fans there are, and it shouldn’t surprise any of us to see that — once again — a group of dedicated wingnuts have pledged to donate a hefty sum to Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation later this week when we gather for H2H2.

Last year, at the inaugural Herm 2 Hockeytown, we were able to donate somewhere in the neighborhood of $6,000 — and that’s after the cost of bringing Herm to Hockeytown. Of that total, a little more than $2,500 came from TPL pledges, and we were all stunned at the success of what was essentially just a silly way to pass a few weeks and make a few games more interesting.

Truth be told, I was hoping to double that amount with this season’s pledge drive. We decided that we’d host the drive for twelve games, take as many propositions as we could handle and hope to come out on the other end able to give $5,000 to Children’s Hospital.

Well, you demolished that number. A few statistics:

:: We had 93 different pledgers.
:: When the pledges were typed onto a Word document, it spanned 17 pages.
:: In total, we received 517 different pledges to keep track of.
:: Every player was sponsored, should they score a goal — ranging from $17 for a Jakub Kindl goal to over $200 for a Johan Franzen goal.
:: Thanks to Darren McCarty’s tweeting of H2H2, we raised an additional $300.
:: Our top pledger, who wishes to remain anonymous, has pledged $1402. Second place, who also wishes to remain anonymous, has pledged $800.
:: In all, 27 different people pledged $100 or more.

In total, the twelve-game pledge period raised $8,894.62 for the Foundation. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We’ve received a handful of donations unrelated to the pledge drive, and we have a few things planned for the day of the event (bring your twenties!) and we should be able to surpass $10,000 if all goes well.

Congratulations, Red Wing Nation. That’s a massive number — particularly in a time when the economy isn’t very strong and every penny counts in your home, like it does in mine. Those of us that are lucky enough to be involved with H2H2 on a coordinating level can’t thank you enough for your insane generosity and creativity during the pledge drive. I don’t know what 2012 has in store for the event, but I’m looking forward to hosting this pledge drive again — and counting more and more propositions for you. It’s been my pleasure.