Photo: Riley Sheahan’s two-way play has earned him a spot in Detroit’s bottom-six forwards for the 2014-15 season (courtesy of Scott Grau/Icon Sportswire)
It has been a gradual change, but the draft picks that have been laying in wait for the Detroit Red Wings have started to make their impact on the team’s NHL roster. As some graduate to the NHL others have filled their spots in the AHL, leaving Detroit’s system very top-heavy with prospects playing professionally.
Photo: University of North Dakota forward and Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Brendan O’Donnell could be a breakout player in the NCHC in 2014-15 if he can avoid the injury bug (courtesy of Tim G. Zechar / Icon Sportswire)
In part one of this 2014-15 NCHC preview, Hockey’s Future looked at four of the eight teams in NCAA Hockey‘s newest conference. Part two takes a closer look at Denver, Nebraska-Omaha, North Dakota and Western Michigan. Read more»
Photo: Mattias Janmark’s offensive skill set makes him Detroit’s top European prospect. (courtesy of Frolunda Gothenberg/Champions Hockey League via Getty Images)
The Detroit Red Wings saw the youth movement that had slowly taking place for years start to take hold at the NHL level in 2013-14. That aforementioned youth movement has resulted in more prospects at the professional level with NHL caliber skills than the Red Wings have had in recent memory.
Photo: Minnesota defenseman Ben Marshall was part of a deep and talented blue line corps for the Gophers in 2013-14. Minnesota will kick off their NCAA tournament against Robert Morris on Saturday (courtesy of Brad Rempel/Icon SMI)
It may seem like the Detroit Red Wings have an unlimited stockpile of prospects with the way they have been calling up NHL-ready players as injury replacements, but the one area of their pool of prospects that is the thinnest is those playing in Europe or the NCAA.
Photo: Calle Jarnkrok, playing in his first AHL season out of Sweden, joined a deep and talented pool of forwards developing with Detroit’s AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins (courtesy of Jeanine Leech/Icon SMI)
It has been a gradual change, but most things associated with the Detroit Red Wings work that way. In a salary-cap constrained hockey landscape, Detroit can no longer simply outspend other franchises; Detroit knew this eight seasons ago and began to stockpile talent through the NHL Draft.