Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Last Night on "The Knee Jerks": Icing the Puck with MLive.com's Ansar Khan

First, a semi-major announcement: "The Knee Jerks" will be moving up a couple of hours!

Beginning December 14, you'll be able to get your jerkosity two hours earlier. The show will debut its new 9:00-11:00 ET time slot, so everyone can get some sleep on Monday nights!

The first quarter of the Red Wings' season is almost done with, so on "The Knee Jerks", my weekly gabfest with Big Al Beaton, we figured it was time to get a perspective on the team from someone who covers it, day in, day out.

Our guest was Ansar Khan, the team's beat writer for MLive.com. Ansar has been on the Red Wings' beat for about a dozen years, starting with his days at the Oakland Press.

Ansar gave us some good ice time, going up and down his wing and not committing any costly turnovers, as he gave us an insider's look at the Red Wings. It was worthy of two points.

After talking Red Wings, including Ansar's experience of being at Steve Yzerman's Hall of Fame induction ceremony, Al and I got down to Detroit sports talk business.

Al wanted to riff on the Tigers' off-season plans, particularly as they relate to the rumors swirling about the team possibly shopping Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson. So we plunged into that, along with chiding some of the so-called "experts" who have been reporting some pretty zany things that GM Dave Dombrowski is supposedly considering. Al's voice went up a couple of octaves upon the mentioning of pitcher George Sherrill, and I went off on all the people in town who look at Granderson through rose-colored glasses.

After that, it was on to the Lions.

Al likes QB Matthew Stafford's toughness, and feels that the kid won over some teammates after enduring the brutality that was Sunday's game in Minnesota. I crabbed about the less-than-accurate throws and the drops of the accurate ones. We both agreed that if the Lions lose to Cleveland this Sunday, they may be looking at having the No. 1 overall pick two years in a row.

We took a few minutes to grind Patriots coach Bill Belichick into the turf for his boneheaded decision to go for it on fourth down late in the game against Indianapolis. I called Belichick unlikable, and Al said the decision smacked of hubris. I know--a $20 word, eh?

Then, as Al said, we had to "hustle" and go to our "Jerks of the Week."

Don't forget to follow us on Twitter, for updates on scheduled guests, time changes, etc.

Upcoming guests/topics:

Nov. 23 U-M/MSU football post-mortem
Nov. 30 TBD (likely Pistons-related)
Dec. 7: NHL Central roundtable with Bleacher Report writers from Columbus, Chicago, Nashville, and St. Louis
Dec. 14: Gregory Shamus, one of the best sports photographers you'll ever know (Getty Images, Pittsburgh Penguins, Red Wings, Cleveland Cavaliers, and others); don't forget---this will be our first 9:00 show!

Some highlights from Monday's show:

Big Al

On the Tigers:
"I can't believe they're going to dump payroll now. They could have up to $60 million come off the books before the 2011 season. And some of the rumors coming from out-of-towners are ludicrous!"

On the Lions: "How many different ways can we say that they suck?"

On Matthew Stafford: "He didn't have happy feet. He showed a lot of toughness against the Vikings. Way more so than Joey Harrington or Scott Mitchell."


On talks of trading Granderson:
"There are a few bloggers in Detroit who I respect, who went on as if the Tigers had announced they were going to start drowning puppies!"

On the Lions-Browns game: "Maybe the NFL can black it out in Cleveland, too."

On the No. 1 overall pick in 2010: "If they lose to the Browns, I think the Lions WILL get the No. 1 overall pick. They'll have lost to the Browns AND the Rams."

You can listen to the episode by clicking below!

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