Detroit Red Wings: Debuting a new top line in ’21-22 is smart

(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)
(Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Detroit Red Wings are going to be in a new spot when the 2021-22 season rolls around. While the organization has already moved on from Anthony Mantha, the team is going to have to adjust to being without Mantha now that Tyler Bertuzzi has returned.

The Detroit Red Wings have relied on Dylan Larkin to center Bertuzzi and Mantha as the teams’ top line. Without Mantha, there are going to be some changes within the team’s top-six forwards. While some may opt for Filip Zadina to be bumped up to the first line, there is a better alternative.

If the Red Wings want to seriously make some drastic changes, then they could bring the Czech connection into play. The team should be looking to debut a new first line, one that switches things up.

When the 2021-22 season rolls around, the team should go out and debut a first line of Jakub Vrána, Dylan Larkin, and Filip Zadina. The two Czech forwards would excel on the first line with one another.

The Detroit Red Wings need to debut a new first line in 2021-22.

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With talk of Zadina being bumped up to the first line as it is, there is no reason that the Red Wings should not consider pairing Larkin with the two Czech forwards.

While this may be a slight to Bertuzzi, there is going to be a rough return period for the forward.

Bertuzzi is going to have to work his way back into the lineup as it is given that he essentially did not play during the 2020-21 season due to injury.

If the Red Wings really want to spice things up without Mantha being around, that might just be the way to do it. The organization is going to have to adjust and make changes regardless, with the departure of Mantha.

Given Bertuzzi’s injury, why not let him work back in at his own pace and let the two Czech forwards try to spark something on the team’s top line.

Bertuzzi can work with Robby Fabbri and company on the second line, leaving an opportunity for Zadina to figure out his scoring on the top line. Change is coming to the Red Wings, and it seems silly not to let it happen even on the top line.

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Vrána and Zadina would likely be a great combo on the first line; the two of them would both excel. With Larkin centering, they should be able to actually produce some offense, something the Red Wings have not had in a long time.