Back in 2020, during the first season of Steve Yzerman’s reign over the Detroit Red Wings, he would make a trade that, in all reality, did not matter too much. But looking back, it would give the Red Wings a player that truthfully has made the Red Wings much better off.
In the trade mentioned above, the Detroit Red Wings shipped Andreas Athanasiou and Ryan Kuffner to the Edmonton Oilers for a second-round draft pick in 2020 and 2021, forward Kyle Brodziak, and forward Sam Gagner.
The acquisition of Gagner has led to him staying with the Red Wings organization for the last two seasons. While he’s no top-line scoring threat or even remotely close to the player that he was back in his early days with the Edmonton Oilers.
Gagner’s veteran presence has brought to the Red Wings has been awesome. He’s been great for this organization and not just on the ice. He’s filled that role of Justin Abdelkader well, except Gagner finds ways to score from time to time and has value on special teams.
Beyond that, he’s been active in the community. Soon after coming to the Red Wings, he was already giving back to the community throughout the pandemic with donations and helping out where he could. GIt’s a great gesture from Gagner and one that made it even easier to renew his contract for the 2021-22 season.
Detroit Red Wings veteran Sam Gagner has been a quality acquisition.
The Red Wings have allowed Gagner to be an anchor in the bottom-six of their forward core. He’s a veteran leader in the locker room and someone that can help these younger forwards learn the ropes of being with the Red Wings.
In 2021-22 Gagner has played in 27 games where he has three goals and seven assists for ten total points for the Red Wings. He may not be lighting up the scoresheet, but being a depth role in the team’s bottom-six, he’s slotted into a great role for this Red Wings team.
Having someone like Gagner around has been beneficial for the Red Wings these past few years. While his time in Hockeytown is likely going to come to an end sooner than later, being that he is a free agent once again after this season ends.
Gagner is a perfect veteran for this organization and has indeed been beneficial. It was a great move to bring in someone like him, even if the highlight of the trade was the draft capital. It’s worked out great for the Red Wings either way.