After another trouncing at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks Sunday evening, I can’t help but fire off another small rant regarding the Detroit Red Wings.
I understand it’s a rebuilding team, but why can’t this team rebuild along with something intriguing to watch? It’s one thing to rebuild, but my goodness, why can’t the Detroit Red Wings put something on the ice that fans can look forward to?
It took injuries to Tyler Bertuzzi, who missed all of February with an injury, along with Robby Fabbri and Dylan Larkin, to finally see former first-round pick Evgeny Svechnikov crack the Red Wings lineup.
The Russian winger immediately rewarded the organization for his promotion, scoring in back-to-back games along with adding an assist. Svechnikov got off to a hot start with the Grand Rapid Griffins, recording a goal and an assist in his first three games before being placed on the Red Wings taxi squad.
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Before his three-point outburst in his first two NHL games of the 2021 season, Svechnikov had only recorded four total NHL points through 20 career games.
Svechnikov should see plenty of opportunities moving forward after his line, whether he’d been skating with Frans Nielsen and Valtteri Filppula or Mathais Brome seen plenty of success over this past weekend in the two contests against the Blackhawks.
It’s time to see the Detroit Red Wings commit to their youth.
I understand the organization’s top two prospects are playing overseas, but there are plenty of players here who should see some NHL ice-time over the coming weeks.
General Manager Steve Yzerman may hope to insert Moritz Seider, Lucas Raymond, and maybe even Joseph Veleno into the Red Wings’ lineup for a handful of games to close out the 2021 regular season but not enough to trigger their entry-level contract.
Yzerman is also allowing the Red Wings farm team in Grand Rapids to field a competitive team. Surely, that does play into his decision to leave players like Michael Rasmussen, Givani Smith, Taro Hirose, and Dennis Cholowski in the minors.
By doing that, he’s forcing fans to suffer through watching Nielsen, Helm, along Filppula. All players that offer very little. There is no reason all four of those young players mentioned in the previous paragraph need to be in Grand Rapids; please give us two of them, Steve! Meet us halfway.
When you look at the Detroit Pistons and the Detroit Tigers, both organizations are also rebuilding, but at least they lose with some intrigue. Despite being 9-25, the Pistons are in nearly every game, plus we’re getting a glimpse of three exciting rookie prospects each night.
Last season the Detroit Tigers struggled but ran out starters Casey Mize and Tarik Skubal every fifth-day last summer for fans to watch.
Through the first seven games of the AHL season, the Griffins are 4-3, which is good for second in the Central Division, yet eight points behind the 7-1 Chicago Wolves.
The Detroit Red Wings may be forced to purge the Griffins’ roster following the NHL trade deadline that is scheduled for Monday, April 12th. Yzerman is expected to be somewhat busy trying to add much-needed draft capital in exchange for some of the teams’ expiring contracts.
Playoff-bound teams may be looking to add some depth, role players like Luke Glendening, who leads the league with a stellar 67.6% faceoff success rate.
Other players who may garner some trade chatter are Filppula, Helm, Jonathan Bernier, and maybe Marc Staal.