Detroit Red Wings need more from underperforming Nick Leddy

(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)
(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports) /

In the summer of 2021, the Detroit Red Wings would complete a trade that brought them veteran defenseman, Nick Leddy. The extent of the deal Leddy came to Hockeytown in exchange for a second-round pick and forward Richard Panik, who had been acquired at the 2021-22 trade deadline.

The Detroit Red Wings have not gotten a lot from Leddy thus far. The hindsight will always be 20/20, and this trade is looking pretty rough for the Red Wings as it stands. Leddy has not done much at all, resulting in the Red Wings not getting what they wanted from him.

Early on, it seems like the Red Wings were going to possibly pair Leddy with Seider in a bit of a tutoring role, but Leddy belongs in the depths of the Red Wings defense pairings with his performance so far.

Throughout 2021-22, Leddy has logged 36 games where he has one goal and nine assists for ten total points on the season. While it’s not to say he should be blazing hot heading for a Norris Trophy, but Leddy needs to do better.

Detroit Red Wings Nick Leddy needs to perform better.

Beyond simple goals and assists in terms of his statistics, he’s a minus-19 on the season, which is certainly not what the Red Wings are going to want from their defense core. That sounds a lot like a Jonathan Ericsson plus/minus from three-ish years ago.

It’s not even just the plus/minus either, Leddy’s Corsi rating sits at 46.9, which is 1.3% better than the team average, but the hope would be to see that get higher. Leddy was one of the players who needed to step up before the COVID-19 outbreak ruined things around the holidays.

The same remains true now. Leddy needs to do his best to turn things around in the second half. Looking at the Red Wings payroll for the 2021-22 season, he’s the most expensive defenseman on the roster with a $5.5 million cap hit.

He’s an unrestricted free agent after this season ends. If he wants to earn a contract extension with the Red Wings, he needs a serious uptick in performance. Either that or Yzerman will send an offer to Leddy with an AAV that is much lower than Leddy is going to want.

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While almost every deal General Manager (GM) Steve Yzerman has made thus far looks beneficial to the Red Wings, this one might wind up being one that gets swept under the rug. However, there is plenty of time for Leddy to turn things around if his performance improves as the season continues.