Regardless of where they pick in the NHL Draft, the Detroit Red Wings always seem able to find NHL-caliber players to populate the team's talent pipeline. With that in mind, we preview the Wings' 2011 NHL Draft.
Top 10 prospects:
1. Brendan Smith, D
2. Tomas Tatar, C
3. Jan Mursak, LW
4. Gustav Nyquist, C
5. Teemu Pulkkinen, LW
6. Riley Sheahan, C
7. Calle Jarnkrok, C
8. Andrej Nestrasil, C
9. Landon Ferraro, C
10. Mitchell Callahan, RW
I am sitting in Centre I.C.E. Arena in Traverse City, Michigan
brother James and a group of 12 to 15 year old boys trying to develop
hockey skills with the hope of some day skating here as a part of the
Wings NHL Prospect Camp. However, while some of these boys do represent
hockey’s future it definitely is the very distant future.
As for what is at hand in the near future you may want to check out on
NHL Prospect Camps. This year Centre I.C.E. and the Detroit Red Wings
teams including: Detroit, Chicago, St.Louis, Nashville, Atlanta, and
Columbus. As a fan it is a great place to come and watch these
giving all they have as they try to earn a contract with an NHL team.
Last year’s competition was tense, the first game between Detroit and
featured a bench clearing brawl. The week was full of good hockey
future stars like Jiri Fischer and Brian Finley.
I can’t predict another bench clearing brawl, but, I am sure this year’s
will once again be a full week of good old fashioned hockey as these
fight to win one of the few open positions on the roster.
This year’s camp will tenativly be held September 2-5. Admission to
practices is free and game admission is $5.
This year’s schedule is as follows.
Saturday, Sept. 2 Read more»
At the age of 66, coach Scotty Bowman will be returning for another season behind the Red Wings’ bench. Bowman’s return, along with the re-signing of veteran defenseman Larry Murphy, could spell bad news for young defensemen Jiri Fischer and Jesse Wallin. With Murphy back, the Red Wings defense reads as follows: Niklas Lidstrom, Chirs Chelios, Steve Duchesne, Larry Murphy, Todd Gill, Aaron Ward, Jiri Fischer, and Jesse Wallin. Throw in a Mathieu Dandenault, and possibly a Yan Golubovsky, and that proves a very deep defensive corps. With so many veterans, you’d expect fatigue and injury alone to fetch some playing time for the likes of Fischer and Wallin, either also very capable of beating out their veteran couterparts for a spot in the every day lineup. But, factor in Scotty Bowman’s affinity for veteran players, and the rumored strong push by Wings GM Ken Holland to sign Unrestricted Free Agent Mathieu Schneider, and you can almost see possible playing time for youngsters like Fischer and Wallin fading into the distance. If the Wings manage to add Schneider to their already deep blueline, Wallin will likely end up wasting away in the AHL for another season, while Fischer watches the big club play from the press box. All and all, not a great time to be a young defenseman for the Detroit Red Wings franchise.
The Detroit Red Wings enter this weekend’s 2000 Entry Draft not having drafted an NHL scorer since 1990, when they took Keith Primeau and Slava Kozlov with their 1st and 2nd Round selections. Yuri Butsayev, Detroit’s 2nd Round pick in 1997, has emerged as more of a Tomas Holmstrom type grinder than a scorer, and with a decent core of defensemen, led by Jiri Fischer, the Wings will definitely look to draft a goal scorer in 2000.
With the Red Wings forward prospects cupboard bare, the chance of losing 2 promising young players in the expansion draft, an aging roster, and no #1 pick in 2001 it will be critical for the Wings to pick up 2 or 3 forwards with some skill in this years draft. With this in mind GM Ken Holland sent a large portion of his scouting staff to Europe at the end of the season, hoping to uncover a few talented forwards.
The Red Wings have only 3 or 4 forwards in their organization with a good chance of making an NHL roster, and none of them has 1st or 2nd line talent. They have not drafted a contributing NHL forward since Tomas Holmstrom in 1994, and have not drafted a 1st or 2nd line player since 1990 when they picked Keith Primeau and Slava Kozlov.
In the coming expansion draft (June 23rd) the Wings stand to lose 2 of the following young players(C-Stacy Roest, LW-Daryl Laplante, D-Maxim Kuznetsov, D-Yan Golubovsky, G-Manny Legace). The Wings decided it was more important to protect proven NHL veterans Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby, so it looks like the future is still being mortgaged in hockeytown.