It has been a long time since the Detroit Red Wings did not have home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs, and it has been a long time since this team was bounced out of the playoffs early. Last year was very unusual for the Detroit Red Wings; they have played a lot of hockey over the last decade or so. They were also hit hard by the NHL salary cap, and after that the injuries made it a hill the team could not get over. They have managed their cap very well, and they get Jiri Hudler back this year from Russia. That means they should return to the typical Red Wings we have seen over the past twenty years or so.
Mike Babcock returns for his sixth year leading this club. In that time he has compiled an overall record of 257-101-52. He expects his players to hit hard, skate fast, and earn space in front of the net. He will turn to Niklas Kronwall as a breakout candidate. Niklas has all the skills to be a 60 point man, and punish the Red Wing opponents with brutal hits if he can stay healthy.
The Wings have Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, and Pavel Datsuyk locked up for the next four seasons. However we all know the players here and the key for the Red Wings this season will be to stay healthy. Numerous Wings’ players missed time last season and if they get back to where they were this team should make a strong run in the post season.
Key Additions- G Joey MacDonald, C Chris Minard, and C Mike Modano
Key Subtractions- D Brett Lebda, and RW Jeremy Williams