Detroit Red Wings: A look at their past five first-round picks

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Detroit Red Wings
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Tonight, The Detroit Red Wings will select sixth overall for the second straight season. In honor of the upcoming draft, let’s look back at the past four NHL drafts, and see where the players are now. 

While Steve Yzerman and the Detroit Red Wings prepare for their first draft together, it’s always a bit nostalgic to look back at who we have selected in the previous drafts. The first round is typically where cornerstone players are chosen and thought to become a tremendous part of any team’s future. This draft will serve the same role. Another top-10 pick gives the Wings’ another chance to select another highly talented player to take part in the rebuilding process.

The NHL draft never guarantees anything; whether you select first overall or 31st, you can never know for sure. Nail Yakupov was selected first overall by the Edmonton Oilers back in 2012, after six-season in the NHL, he left for the KHL after the 2017-18 season with the Colorado Avalanche. This goes to show you aren’t guaranteed anything. The draft is crucial to a team’s success; if you repeatedly fail to grasp young talented player’s, you will find it challenging to be a competitive team.

The draft has become a can’t-miss opportunity for all 31 NHL teams. Veteran’s have been pushed-out mainly due to the ability of kids coming in and changing how the game is played. Just a few seasons ago, enforcers were a main staple for the team’s success, now they have become obsolete. A new youthful wave has changed the NHL landscape with GM’s vouching to envision a fast, talented roster, over physicality.

Detroit Red Wings have managed to select five players across four drafts. In this article, I will talk about where the player currently sits in the organizational depth chart, as well as what I believe their potential as a player is. I will, however, not talk about what players could have been drafted as it’s always a 50-50 hindsight type of situation. Let’s look at the past five NHL first-round draft picks by the Detroit Red Wings.