Detroit Red Wings: 3 defensemen to pursue in free agency

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Detroit Red Wings, Patrik Nemeth
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Red Wings should consider a reunion with Patrik Nemeth.

I’m not usually a fan of retreads, but the Detroit Red Wings need to consider bringing back Patrik Nemeth.

Nemeth was one of general manager Steve Yzerman’s first moves upon taking office with the Red Wings.  Yzerman flipped Nemeth to Colorado, where Nemeth left in free agency following the 2019-20 season.

The Red Wings retained $1.5 million of Nemeth’s $3 million contract in the deal.  The Red Wings landed a 4th round pick in the 2022 NHL Entry Level Draft in exchange for Nemeth, who’d become a rental for the Avs.

Things didn’t work out for Colorado as Vegas disposed of the Avalanche in the Stanley Cup Playoffs second round.

With Nemeth set to enter free agency once again, Yzerman needs to consider a reunion with the rugged defender on a short-term deal.  It would be nice to add the left-handed defender on a two-year deal that averages $3.5 million per season.

It’s a Red Wings unit that is expected to see an overhaul in the next couple of years.  Danny DeKeyser enters the final year of his lucrative agreement that pays him a whopping $5 million per season.  Troy Stecher also enters the final year of his deal, Marc Staal is currently a free agent, and the organization has a host of youthful restricted free agents.

If the organization doesn’t welcome back Staal, Nemeth can be a perfect placemat for the next two seasons while the youthful Red Wings on the backend find their footing at the professional level.

Nemeth averaged a touch over 18 minutes for the Red Wings, and Avalanche combined last season. He totaled three goals and 10 points over 52 contests.