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Trainwreck, the offseason of the Detroit Red Wings


yave1964
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  The offseason of the Detroit Red Wings was filled with promise. After a year in which the Wings squeeked into the playoffs and managed to retool on the fly, outsourcing and handing the gold watch to veterans such as Bertuzzi, Samuelsson, Cleary and Tootoo and showing them the door while young kids like Nyquist, Tatar, Jurco, Glendening and Sheahan claimed jobs with a combination of hard work and skill the Wings entered the offseason with high hopes and over ten million dollars in cap space. The Wings who have made the playoffs every year since the first Bush administration looked ready to retool the defense and maybe even add a forward and be a force in the East going forward.

  And then the wheels fell off.

 

Dan Boyle, who was their first choice took less money to go to the Rangers.

Matt Niskanen turned the Wings down for the same money in Washington.

Stephane Robidas thanked them politely then chose the Maple Leafs.

Anton Strallman chose the Lightning.

Radam Vrbata got frustrated waiting on the final offer from the Wings and chose the Canucks.

 

  And to make it worse, after swinging and missing on every defenseman in the league they resigned Kyle Quincey. for a raise. Really.

 

  And now Daniel Alfredsson has the Wings cap space held hostage, they would love to have their 41 year old leading scorer back for one more year but his back is ailing (See Bertuzzi, Todd) and he wants to wait until August, right before camp to decide if he wants to keep playing. There are still a few guys out there, Ribiero, Ott, Setoguchi who would help the Wings as top nine forwards, but by waiting on Alfredsson they already missed Vrbata who signed a very reasonable deal with the Canucks (2 years, 6 million) and the other forwards will be gone by the time that Alfie decides to likely ride into the sunset.

 

  The Wings are supposedly looking for a trade for a top pair defenseman, but Mike Green and Tyler Myers are off the market, the Capitals and Sabres saying neither will be traded. Keith Yandle has been mentioned for years but the price would be too high. Same with Big Buff in Winnipeg. Everyone knows the pressure the Wings are under to make a move and are asking for Nyquist, Tatar or top prospect Mantha. After giving up solid prospect Calle Jarnkrok to the Predators for six weeks of David Legwand, the Wings need to keep the forwards they have.

 

  So in short, the entire bland defense is back. I love Kronwall, hell I REALLY love the guy, he is my favorite player. He is the best number three d-man in the game but as a number one, he is lacking. The rest of the defense is bland and lacks an identity. Brendan Smith has underachieved but has shown promise, Danny Dekeyser is gonna be a good one, but the rest are boring and ordinary.

 

  Jimmy Howard needs to bounce back next year after a wretched season. The kids need to avoid the sophomore slump. Mantha may need to bypass the AHL and earn a top six spot right out of juniors. And the defense? God only knows.

 

  They still have cap space galore, if Alfie hangs them up which the whispers which are getting louder seem to be saying, perhaps they can take someone's overpriced d-man on. Brian Campbell, warts and all has been mentioned and while I know he has many holes in his game he would be a good fit.

  Unless the Wings trade for him and he breaks his wrist signing an extension on his contract. Which the way the Wings offseason has went I could almost see happening.

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The offseason of the Detroit Red Wings was filled with promise. After a year in which the Wings squeeked into the playoffs and managed to retool on the fly, outsourcing and handing the gold watch to veterans such as Bertuzzi, Samuelsson, Cleary and Tootoo and showing them the door while young kids like Nyquist, Tatar, Jurco, Glendening and Sheahan claimed jobs with a combination of hard work and skill the Wings entered the offseason with high hopes and over ten million dollars in cap space. The Wings who have made the playoffs every year since the first Bush administration looked ready to retool the defense and maybe even add a forward and be a force in the East going forward.

  And then the wheels fell off.

 

Dan Boyle, who was their first choice took less money to go to the Rangers.

Matt Niskanen turned the Wings down for the same money in Washington.

Stephane Robidas thanked them politely then chose the Maple Leafs.

Anton Strallman chose the Lightning.

Radam Vrbata got frustrated waiting on the final offer from the Wings and chose the Canucks.

 

  And to make it worse, after swinging and missing on every defenseman in the league they resigned Kyle Quincey. for a raise. Really.

 

  And now Daniel Alfredsson has the Wings cap space held hostage, they would love to have their 41 year old leading scorer back for one more year but his back is ailing (See Bertuzzi, Todd) and he wants to wait until August, right before camp to decide if he wants to keep playing. There are still a few guys out there, Ribiero, Ott, Setoguchi who would help the Wings as top nine forwards, but by waiting on Alfredsson they already missed Vrbata who signed a very reasonable deal with the Canucks (2 years, 6 million) and the other forwards will be gone by the time that Alfie decides to likely ride into the sunset.

 

  The Wings are supposedly looking for a trade for a top pair defenseman, but Mike Green and Tyler Myers are off the market, the Capitals and Sabres saying neither will be traded. Keith Yandle has been mentioned for years but the price would be too high. Same with Big Buff in Winnipeg. Everyone knows the pressure the Wings are under to make a move and are asking for Nyquist, Tatar or top prospect Mantha. After giving up solid prospect Calle Jarnkrok to the Predators for six weeks of David Legwand, the Wings need to keep the forwards they have.

 

  So in short, the entire bland defense is back. I love Kronwall, hell I REALLY love the guy, he is my favorite player. He is the best number three d-man in the game but as a number one, he is lacking. The rest of the defense is bland and lacks an identity. Brendan Smith has underachieved but has shown promise, Danny Dekeyser is gonna be a good one, but the rest are boring and ordinary.

 

  Jimmy Howard needs to bounce back next year after a wretched season. The kids need to avoid the sophomore slump. Mantha may need to bypass the AHL and earn a top six spot right out of juniors. And the defense? God only knows.

 

  They still have cap space galore, if Alfie hangs them up which the whispers which are getting louder seem to be saying, perhaps they can take someone's overpriced d-man on. Brian Campbell, warts and all has been mentioned and while I know he has many holes in his game he would be a good fit.

  Unless the Wings trade for him and he breaks his wrist signing an extension on his contract. Which the way the Wings offseason has went I could almost see happening.

I'd take Setoguchi and Ott for the right price.

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@yave1964  After years and years of being the top destination, Wings fans are naturally gonna be upset with the recent events. There is worse things than being turned down. Just cause you have cap space, does not mean you have to use it. Going forward, the Wings will be one of the only teams who are competitive, young and having a nice tidy sum of cap space. This in turn can put them in a position of strength, giving them leverage and it should mean paying less than market value for some star players. Of course, it's better to not lose assets and go the UFA route, but Holland will come up with something. He will get the job done, just not as soon as you guys want....patience is a virtue...lol.

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@jammer2

I was blown away that Erhoff took a one year deal with the Penguins rather than a three year offer from the Wings (Granted with Pittsburgh it was 4 million a year while Holland offered 3 years 10 million so a bit less per year) and then Boyle was offered 10 million for 2 years and took less to reunite with St. Louis (his best friend in the game) in New York.

  Truthfully, I thought we would get one of them. I secretly drooled over the possibility of getting both of them. But to lose out on the entire FA class and wind up with Quincey back on the club was a kick to the crotch. I never in a million years saw that coming.

  What worries me is Alfie is having serious back problems and wants to wait until late August to decide his status. He deserves it, he has been one hell of a player for a long, long time. But if he retires (as the rumors are becoming more prevalent) it leaves us with nothing. Part of me says be loyal to him, he had a great year with the Wings last year and is  a class act, but  a bigger part says make a move now while bodies are still in play. I posted in here this morning the list of remaining free agents, it is thin and bleak. A few remain, Ribiero, Setoguchi, Ott, a couple more, maybe even Jovanovski on defense but not much else. Waiting too long on Alfredsson leaves the Wings potentially with nothing except resigning Quincey for all of the cap room they had going into July.

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@yave1964  I would show no loyalty towards Alfie, sounds cold, but this is a business. You can't allow one guy who is 41 AND has a bad back to hold the franchise hostage. He will only play one more year anyways, so if another Verbata situation turns up, you jump a the chance to get multiple years out of your cap space.

 

 I think Quincy sucks, so yeah, that was a kick in the balls. But, hey....he is moveable, so you are not tied to him for life, and he does not have a NTC or anything like that, so there are ways to rid yourself of his uselessness, lol.

 

 If you think about the Erhoff situation, it's a VERY smart play by him. He gets to run the lethal Pens top power play unit, THEN he hits UFA again....this time the cap might just be 80 mill or so (if you believe the conjecture etc)....he could very well parlay this into 2-3 *more* mill per year, so either he is really smart, or his agent is top notch....either way, it's a great situation he put himself in.

 

 I would not invest even a mill in Jovo. He has been getting worse with time, and he has been hurt what...2 or 3 years in a row now...I'd be shocked if he even got a half a season in, and that is not even talking about his reduced foot speed...a big pass on him.

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I feel like calling Kronwall a #3 defenseman is a bit harsh, yave. He's definitely top pairing IMO.


 


But he needs help in the form of another top pairing guy.


 


 


Quincey....ouch. I know it's borderline sacrilege for a Leafs fan to like the Wings, but I do and....Quincey? That one hurt me, and it's not even my primary team!


 


Such a let down.


 


I don't know what it is about the Wings (and the Leafs too apparently), but attracting the free agents seems to be a problem these days...


 


 


Still I'm sure the Wings have a prospect or two they can pull out of their asses and turn into a #1 defenseman, no?


 


You know, Kenny Holland has done a great job for the Wings over the years, but I feel like fresh blood is needed in Wings management. You can't really complain about the playoff situation, but it feels like the Wings are spinning their tires a bit. I hope I'm wrong.

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@yave1964 Helen St.James latest column discusses the pros and cons of trading for Tyler Myers. Don't think there is any legs on this one, it's just Helen speculating.

http://www.freep.com/article/20140706/SPORTS05/307060063/tyler-myers-sabres-detroit-red-wings?odyssey=obinsite

I have read several articles about a Myers trade. It seems the steaks are too high. I’m hear Buffalo want one of the following: Nyqusit, Jurco or Tatar. After the Legwand trade I’m not so sure I’d like to see another good young leave. Now if they want Quincey and a pick I’m for it.

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I have read several articles about a Myers trade. It seems the steaks are too high. I’m hear Buffalo want one of the following: Nyqusit, Jurco or Tatar. After the Legwand trade I’m not so sure I’d like to see another good young leave. Now if they want Quincey and a pick I’m for it.

 

There's a very good chance Buffalo won't let Myers go without a price that the Wings will not like. At all.

 

The Sabres are still high on him I think.

 

To me, the trade hinges on how desperate Holland is to make a move for the back end. Since it's Holland, I'm thinking he won't be desperate at all.

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@Old School Hockey  If I was Holland, Nyquist would be off the table, totally untouchable. Jurco and Tatar look impressive, Nyqusit looks like a pure star. If something can be done to land Myers without touching Nyquist, I'd explore it. I'd also consider Mantha totally untouchable also. If something like Jurco and Pulkinnen and a 1st, I'd begrudgingly pull the trigger on Myers. He's just the type of young, physical offensive force the Wings need back there. Plus, he would not be exposed in the Wings system like he was on the Sabres....there is no one like Kronwall on Buffalo, he would be surrounded by much more  talent.

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There's a very good chance Buffalo won't let Myers go without a price that the Wings will not like. At all.
 
The Sabres are still high on him I think.

 

Myers is "available" as in "if you want to pay a King's Ransom for Myers" available.

 

He's a young, developing leader on a squad that is going young and is signed for five more years at $5.5M. In a league where apparently Andrew MacDonald (two years older, 45 fewer points in 4 fewer regular season games) is "worth" $5M a year, that's a bargain of bargains for the Sabres.

 

What's the "upside" for Buffalo to deal him? Of course, for the "right deal" (first rounder, top prospect, plus... plus?) anyone is movable.

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Myers is "available" as in "if you want to pay a King's Ransom for Myers" available.

 

He's a young, developing leader on a squad that is going young and is signed for five more years at $5.5M. In a league where apparently Andrew MacDonald (two years older, 45 fewer points in 4 fewer regular season games) is "worth" $5M a year, that's a bargain of bargains for the Sabres.

 

What's the "upside" for Buffalo to deal him? Of course, for the "right deal" (first rounder, top prospect, plus... plus?) anyone is movable.

 

Exactly.

 

The Wings are no doubt heavily interested in this guy, as I'm sure many teams are. Thing is, the Wings actually have the young assets that showed themselves last year to be able to pull this off. Unfortunately for Detroit, I wouldn't be surprised if the Sabres were asking a minimum of two of the Tatar/Nyquist/Jurco/Smith types. Maybe more.

 

It ain't gunna be cheap, that's for sure.

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What about Jeff Petry? Local boy that's an RFA.

Any thoughts?

 

Like we were discussing a bit earlier in the chat, he just signed for 1 year and $3 mil I believe.

 

Not that that prevents him from being traded, as you mentioned. Just wanted to mention the RFA status.

 

I think Petry gets overrated a lot by Edmonton, but he's not a bad option. There were rumours circulating earlier that the Oilers were considering trading him, but those were, of course, just rumours.

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What about Jeff Petry? Local boy that's an RFA.

Any thoughts?

Petry would bring local flavor (Dan's boy) but it seems whenever I watch him he is putrid. He scored an own goal against the Wings last year, the year before Datsyuk humiliated him all night long in a game. I watched a game last year against Calgary where he was a minus 3 or maybe minus 4. I know it is a rather small sample, I don't watch a ton of Oiler games but he is bad whenever I see him. Every single time.

  The opposite happens sometimes too. Michael Scarbossa, a mediocre prospect for the Avalanche plays for the Lake Erie Monsters. Well, during the lockout a couple of years ago, I went to Cleveland and watched the Monsters four times and I swear every single time I saw them play Scarbossa scored at least one goal. And I watched him twice on TV as well and he scored in those games as well. So I understand that it can just be a fluky thing, either that or Scarbossa is the second coming of Gretzky which I doubt, lol.

  How about Michael Del Zotto? He is only 24, put up a 41 point season the year he could start drinking legally. The Predators let him go, we could get him cheap and I have always been high on him.

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Petry would bring local flavor (Dan's boy) but it seems whenever I watch him he is putrid. He scored an own goal against the Wings last year, the year before Datsyuk humiliated him all night long in a game. I watched a game last year against Calgary where he was a minus 3 or maybe minus 4. I know it is a rather small sample, I don't watch a ton of Oiler games but he is bad whenever I see him. Every single time.

  The opposite happens sometimes too. Michael Scarbossa, a mediocre prospect for the Avalanche plays for the Lake Erie Monsters. Well, during the lockout a couple of years ago, I went to Cleveland and watched the Monsters four times and I swear every single time I saw them play Scarbossa scored at least one goal. And I watched him twice on TV as well and he scored in those games as well. So I understand that it can just be a fluky thing, either that or Scarbossa is the second coming of Gretzky which I doubt, lol.

  How about Michael Del Zotto? He is only 24, put up a 41 point season the year he could start drinking legally. The Predators let him go, we could get him cheap and I have always been high on him.

I think Petry has a big upside. How many times did we see Stuart score on our goalie? Lol

Del Zotto? Don't know enough about him? He not a big player.

What about (can't believe I'm saying this because loath him) Green?

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I think Petry has a big upside. How many times did we see Stuart score on our goalie? Lol

Del Zotto? Don't know enough about him? He not a big player.

What about (can't believe I'm saying this because loath him) Green?

I thought of Green when the Capitals signed Niskanen and Orpik. The Caps however say they aren't going to deal him. That may be a smoke screen to attempt to drive his price up.

  Tons of offensive upside, after all these years in the league still makes mistakes in his own end constantly however. Paired with Dekeyser he would be a solid fit.

 In all likelihood, as other teams know the Wings are feeling the pressure of swinging and whiffing on all of the defensive free agents, the Wings are going to have to dangle Tatar or Jurco to add a d-man. Tyler Myers is likely not going anywhere, right now I think if we are going to make a big splash Green or Big Buff would be the best options. Both would improve our putrid power play no end, but giving up on a kid like Tatar would be painful.

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How about Michael Del Zotto? He is only 24, put up a 41 point season the year he could start drinking legally. The Predators let him go, we could get him cheap and I have always been high on him.

 

 You should read the Metzler thread....some insight on Del Zotto....he is not what the Wings need. He might fix a pp problem, but the play in his own end makes it to risky of a venture.

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You should read the Metzler thread....some insight on Del Zotto....he is not what the Wings need. He might fix a pp problem, but the play in his own end makes it to risky of a venture.

I think we (Wings fans and the NHL) have to come to grips with the fact that Lidstrom is retired and there isn't a defenseman in the NHL anywhere close to him. And may never will be again.

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@Old School Hockey@jammer2

 

Agreed, Lidstrom is gone, one of the all time greats.

  What I am frustrated with beyond belief is that Holland in the two years, now going on three since Lidstrom retired, has done nothing. Zilch. Look at our current rotation of defenseman.

 

Kronwall

Ericsson

Quincey

Smith

Lashoff

Kindl

 

  All were in the organization at the time of Lidstrom's retirement. Kronwall IMHO is stretched thin as a number one, I loved when Lidstrom/Rafalski were our top pair allowing 2nd pair minutes to Kronwall. He is a hell of a player but just a bit out of his true role. The rest are ordinary and even boring.

 

  The only addition to the blue line was Dekeyser who as a non drafted college player from Michigan fell into the Wings laps. That is it. An untested college kid, a few minutes from people like Colaiacovo and Huskins but really nothing has been done to help our dreadfully boring defense.

 

  You cannot replace Lidstrom. Agreed one thousand times over. You CAN improve the blue line and the power play. That is Holland's number one sin, forget the wretched contracts to Samuelsson, Tootoo, Bertuzzi, Cleary, Weiss and the rest, his number one unforgivable mistake is not improving our blue line with a power play specialist. I know Del Zotto has weaknesses, so does Jovanovski, but can anyone truly say that they aren't better gambles than Lashoff? Or Quincey? Or Kindl? Until we address the power play, especially the point, this team is ordinary at best.

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@Old School Hockey@jammer2

Agreed, Lidstrom is gone, one of the all time greats.

What I am frustrated with beyond belief is that Holland in the two years, now going on three since Lidstrom retired, has done nothing. Zilch. Look at our current rotation of defenseman.

Kronwall

Ericsson

Quincey

Smith

Lashoff

Kindl

All were in the organization at the time of Lidstrom's retirement. Kronwall IMHO is stretched thin as a number one, I loved when Lidstrom/Rafalski were our top pair allowing 2nd pair minutes to Kronwall. He is a hell of a player but just a bit out of his true role. The rest are ordinary and even boring.

The only addition to the blue line was Dekeyser who as a non drafted college player from Michigan fell into the Wings laps. That is it. An untested college kid, a few minutes from people like Colaiacovo and Huskins but really nothing has been done to help our dreadfully boring defense.

You cannot replace Lidstrom. Agreed one thousand times over. You CAN improve the blue line and the power play. That is Holland's number one sin, forget the wretched contracts to Samuelsson, Tootoo, Bertuzzi, Cleary, Weiss and the rest, his number one unforgivable mistake is not improving our blue line with a power play specialist. I know Del Zotto has weaknesses, so does Jovanovski, but can anyone truly say that they aren't better gambles than Lashoff? Or Quincey? Or Kindl? Until we address the power play, especially the point, this team is ordinary at best.

I'm with you 1000%. IMO Holland lost it all when Suter went to Minn. He knew Stuart was leaving. He should have blown and I mean blown Suter out of the water with his offer. Give him no reason to look elsewhere. I'm talking Weber money. But no he put out an equal offer (give or take) and depended allure of Detroit to push Suter to Detroit. Funny part we'd probably have Parise too instead of Weiss.

Holland needs to get over the fact that Detroit does NOT have the allure it did before.

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@Old School Hockey  @yave1964 @jammer2

 

I do recall Helene St. James mentioning that fact in one of her articles.  Seems Detroit is no longer the gold standard as a hockey franchise...it appears Pittsburgh is now.  It's one thing if they missed out on the hot defense commodities in Boyle and Ehrhoff, etc.  But I would have rather seen Holland scoop up a younger, fresher defenseman with promise than to re-sign Quincey.  That's just silly.  Having Quincey around again is a gamble, and since no one else signed him, there's no way Holland will be able to trade him.  Nobody wants him.  

 

This season is going to depend on health...not just Alfie (and by the way, I would offer him the time he needs to make a decision).

 

Just pretend for a minute that things go right this season.

 

1) Alfie comes back strong (see what I did there?..."back strong"?  Get it?)

2) Everyone stays healthy

3) Weiss has a good season, like they expected him to last year

4) The kids avoid the sophomore slump 

5) Howard improves to where he should be (note - I'm not asking for stellar goaltending; just where he should be)

 

If 4 out of 5 of the above items happen (which is very possible, I'm not asking for much), the Red Wings can easily stick themselves firmly in second place in the Atlantic Division.  There is enough talent on that team to make that happen.  Add to that the notion that Franzen actually "plays!" this year (which in my opinion is a much more lofty goal than anything else), then come the trade deadline, there is the opportunity to take a hot defenseman who is looking for hardware....then the price goes down.  

 

Detroit was the place to be because there was serious possibility of winning a Stanley Cup year after year.  That's not the case anymore.  Yes they're in the playoffs every year, but that doesn't mean anything for players who have to pick up and move their families.  

 

It's time to hunker down and develop the team you have and *prove* you have a shot, and those trades will be there in February.  

 

I've been saying it all along...give Weiss a chance.  He did not have a bad season last year.  He had NO season last year, so it's unfair to pass judgement on how good or bad his acquisition was.

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