Detroit Red Wings: 3 of Steve Yzerman’s offseason mistakes in 2020

(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)
(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Detroit Red Wings, Steve Yzerman
(Kim Klement/ USA TODAY Sports) /

Detroit Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman is amid a busy offseason; he’s made plenty of good moves, but he’s made a few questionable decisions as well.

First off, as always in Steve Yzerman, we trust.  I tend to view most of Yzerman’s decisions optimistically because of his positive track record with the Tampa Bay Lightning.  The second reason is that Yzerman will always continue to be my favorite player of all-time, so I want to see him do well in his management role especially now with the Detroit Red Wings.

Putting my fandom aside and sifting through the Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning roster, Yzerman had been the one who primarily assembled the core of that unit.  After taking over in Tampa, Yzerman had to make some tough decisions, one of which was to buy-out the team captain and Stanley Cup winner Vincent Lecavalier along with trading fan favorite Martin St. Louis.

Both moves at the time certainly were something to question, but eventually worked out for the best.  Yzerman also opted to move on from Ben Bishop, who was performing as one of the best goaltenders in hockey, but Steve had drafted a young, cheap Andrei Vasilevsky who’d eventually be ready to board it up in goal.

As Yzerman continues to re-tool the current Detroit Red Wings roster, tough decisions will continue to loom. Yzerman wisely decided to buyout Justin Abdelkader’s contract, brought in veteran Bobby Ryan on a cheap one-year deal, along with signing Thomas Greiss to replace Jimmy Howard.  Yzerman also signed depth defenders Troy Stecher and Jon Merrill.

The Detroit Red Wings also signed scoring forward Anthony Mantha to a lucrative contract extension.  Yzerman also landed a second-round pick in the 2021 draft as a kicker for taking on the final year of Marc Staal’s contract.  All good moves.

After being reminded of some of the good moves Detroit has made so far this offseason, here are three swings and misses.