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Red Wings might opt to keep Ritola at the expense of Miller

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Guest Heaten

How come Ritola doesn't own up the ahl?... he could have been a full time wing by now had he done that...

No player on the Griffins is particularly "owning it up". Most of the Red Wings highly regarded offensive prospects aren't in the AHL. Plus the fact that Ritola hasn't found his scoring touch. No guarantees he will, but his work ethics and skill level is off the charts.

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Millers only argument for being on this team is his PK ability which while solid, he is not as good as Helm or Eaves. Now with Abdelkader coming into the lineup, Babcock stated he would be starting the year on the PK. Miller is being replaced by Abdelkader on the PK which by Abby's ability in GR I am completely fine with.

Miller is not physical, he's a beanpole that cannot hit effectively. He had a career year last year and now his stock is as high as we can hope for so yeah trade him first, and if a nice deal for a good defenseman comes up we have a few trade possibilities. If the other team wants young talent send them Ritola and Meech or we can trade Miller and Meech or Ritola ad Miller.

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Guest mindfly

Millers only argument for being on this team is his PK ability which while solid, he is not as good as Helm or Eaves. Now with Abdelkader coming into the lineup, Babcock stated he would be starting the year on the PK. Miller is being replaced by Abdelkader on the PK which by Abby's ability in GR I am completely fine with.

Miller is not physical, he's a beanpole that cannot hit effectively. He had a career year last year and now his stock is as high as we can hope for so yeah trade him first, and if a nice deal for a good defenseman comes up we have a few trade possibilities. If the other team wants young talent send them Ritola and Meech or we can trade Miller and Meech or Ritola ad Miller.

Trust me, you'll get a mid-round pick - at best, if you trade miller.

Edited by mindfly

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TBH I would be sad to lose Miller after the great job he did last season - especially to a kid who really hasn't done a great deal to catch the eye. Consecutive 42 point seasons in the AHL don't shout much scoring potential to me (for comparison Filpulla and Hudler put up 70 + 96 points respectively)

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Guest EZBAKETHAGANGSTA

I love Miller's work ethic, but I can't really argue with the logic of this. Granted, Ritola has never been regarded as a high end prospect, but still his upside is probably greater then Miller's.

dump both and get a dman that can PK.

I like this guy already.

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Trust me, you'll get a mid-round pick - at best, if you trade miller.

Yeah and youll get even worst for Ritola or lose him completely on waivers, which is dumb to not get any return. Kenny has said he is gonig to trade Meech pretty much so a package deal of Miller and Meech could shore up that 6th defenseman spot, Miller+Meech = stabilizing 6th defenseman. Miller+Meech+pick could equal solid #5 guy and let E and Kindl battle it out for the 6th spot on any given night

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Guest Hatethedrake!

Now that Modano is a Red Wing, Miller is likely the odd man out. Miller did well for the Wings but his role is now redundant. He will not be getting any regular playing time. The other side of the coin is that neither will Ritola. Is he going to stagnate sitting in the Press Box most nights? We still have Draper but he could sit the whole season and it will not affect things in terms of developing our young players. If Kindl and Ritola are both on the team then they need to get some games in to continue their development. Maybe Ritola plays when Modano needs a game off. Maybe Ericsson and Kindl have some kind of a rotation. It's Babs to decide. Then we never know when injuries will hit and Ritola and Kindl may end up playing alot.

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Drew Miller is a great plug... I didn't mind having him on the team but I think we have seen the max of what he can do. We need to gamble now and then and I would gamble on Ritola at the expense of a plug like Miller without even thinking about it. Look at what happened with Leino... he was given time but perhaps not enough. I was one who wanted him off the team but its proven to be the wrong choice. At least give Ritola an opportunity, there will be other Miller types available if the gamble doesnt work.

Exactly my stance on the matter, well said.

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Ritola does not have the nack for finding the back of the net, but man is he amazing and such a smart player. He sees the ice almost as well as Datsyuk. He has crazy puck handling skills, and can do take-aways as good or better than Datsyuk. His work ethics are off the charts and he isn't afraid to go in the corners and dig the puck out... and win.

Did you watch him in some of the games he played last season? I can remember several key plays that was just 'PURE STUD' written all over it. I think he made Datsyuk say "Wow" from the bench. Even Babcock had a big smile as Ritola was getting back on the bench. I particularly remember after Ritola sat down, Babcock walked over to him and give him a big pat on the back like "that's my boy!".

He single handedly owned the other team. he did an amazing take-away in the defensive zone, skated the puck by 3 opposing players and skated in the offensive zone. They took away his pass so he took the puck to the corner, allowing the rest of his team to skate in and get in position. He had 3 players against him fighting him for the puck and miraculously, Ritola somehow did this amazing back pass to get the puck Helm (I think) who was standing in front of the net all alone and unrivaled because Ritola was the focus by all the opposing players on the other team. He was amazing! That shift was ungodly.

The kid is definitely, without a doubt in my mind, will be the guy Holland will want to keep. If Holland loses him, I guarantee LGWs will melt down next year when they see what kind of stud he turns out for some other team. He's the perfect 3rd line center, and I wouldn't doubt that he could develop into a 2nd line center if he finds his scoring touch like Franzen. The kid has all the skill in the world, they just need to tap into it. He reminds me of Filpulla with better puck skills, stronger work ethics, more determination, better one-on-one and sees the ice better. Filpulla is a better goal scorer. You put Ritola between Hudler and Cleary, and I think Red Wings have a stud line.

The decision should be easy for Holland, keep Ritola.

Exceptional post Heaten, I could agree more.

Ritola's numbers in Grand Rapids don't show how much of a talent he is and how well he played. He looked absolutely dominant at times with the Griffins, he would have shifts where he looked amazing and had the puck on a string. People also massively underestimate his physicality, I'm not saying he hits like Abdelkader, but he is definitely willing to throw in a check or two, if he sees a guy there to be hit, he won't hesitate. I think he's a poor man's Filppula. He's got exceptional puck skills, is a master at the takeaways, can play on both special teams and would fit our puck possession style perfectly. He has very nice upside, it'd kill me to see him lost just to keep Miller around for another season.

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Guest mindfly

Yeah and youll get even worst for Ritola or lose him completely on waivers, which is dumb to not get any return. Kenny has said he is gonig to trade Meech pretty much so a package deal of Miller and Meech could shore up that 6th defenseman spot, Miller+Meech = stabilizing 6th defenseman. Miller+Meech+pick could equal solid #5 guy and let E and Kindl battle it out for the 6th spot on any given night

How can you be so sure he'll get picked up on waivers? I think he would clear pretty comfortable.

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I like Drew. He came in and did a bang-up job on the penalty kill, at a time when we needed someone who could do the job. That said, I'd like to keep him around. Mattias is an unknown quantity, that's a given, but if you have to give up one or the other, it's almost better to keep the known quantity rather than the unknown. I guess it's a case of better the devil you know...

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How can you be so sure he'll get picked up on waivers? I think he would clear pretty comfortable.

I could see Yzermna scooping him up and Tampa is pretty high on the waiver list I believe. I just don't think a Red Wing who got in during the playoffs will clear. He is a young skilled guy not someone like Downey or May

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loyalty will mean that Drapes doesn't hit waivers. Kenny wouldn't do that to a guy who has worn the winged wheel over a 1000 times. Its his last year of his current contract and i believe that Kris will hang them up at the end of the year, Malts should do it already.

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I like Drew. He came in and did a bang-up job on the penalty kill, at a time when we needed someone who could do the job. That said, I'd like to keep him around. Mattias is an unknown quantity, that's a given, but if you have to give up one or the other, it's almost better to keep the known quantity rather than the unknown. I guess it's a case of better the devil you know...

I don't know if that is necessarily true. Ritola has so much more potential then Miller it is not even funny. It is great that Miller was able to step in and do what he did last year on a very injured team. He played great on the PK, good defensively, and even found a way to score some big goals. But we know what miller is and what he will be in the future: a very replaceable 4th line grinder. Ritola is young. He has very good skill and potential to be a solid player. If you put Ritola on a line with with some good NHL players like Hudler and Cleary, I could see him really flourish into a good player. This should be a no-brainer.

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I don't know if that is necessarily true. Ritola has so much more potential then Miller it is not even funny. It is great that Miller was able to step in and do what he did last year on a very injured team. He played great on the PK, good defensively, and even found a way to score some big goals. But we know what miller is and what he will be in the future: a very replaceable 4th line grinder. Ritola is young. He has very good skill and potential to be a solid player. If you put Ritola on a line with with some good NHL players like Hudler and Cleary, I could see him really flourish into a good player. This should be a no-brainer.

But he wont be playing with cleary and Hudler. Whichever player stays will be on the 4th line, not the second or third. Does that change the situation at all? Miller obviously fits the role of a 4th liner better, which is the position that is available, but do we want to lose a potential 2nd or 3rd liner in by keeping him because hes not NHL ready yet? It seems like a tough decision to me. On one hand, Ritola could end up being a bust and the wings wouldnt look bad for getting rid of him while keeping your 4th line and PK strong and fast, but on the other hand he could turn out being the next Franzen or something and the wings look like fools for keeping a 4th liner over him.

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Guest Hatethedrake!

Unless Ritola has a lousy Training Camp, he will be on the team. The Wings have to at least give him a shot to see what he can do. Holland will not get rid of him just because Miller is more proven. Miller was picked up off waivers and did well in his role with the Wings when injuries hit. The Wings have developed Ritola for years now and see some potential in him. Will he be an effective NHL player? Time will tell. But he will be given every chance to succeed with the Wings. Guys like Miller are a dime a dozen and are always available on the waiver wire during the season. His loss will not hurt us.

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I guess the big question is, why did they re-sign Miller in the first place? It seems to me that the whole Modano discussion came about before Miller was signed (he was qualified but not signed) so why didn't they hold off like they did with Helm and Abdelkader? And he has almost zero trade value... like someone said, players of his ilk are a dime a dozen on the waiver wire. I don't see teams climbing over each other to get Miller, why not just wait til Detroit has to waive him and get him for nothing? Ritola, though, I could see getting claimed as he has more offensive upside.

Someone asked if Draper could retire and the Wings could keep Miller and Ritola... No. Draper's current contract took effect after he turned 35, so his salary would count against the cap if he retired. They'd have the roster space but likely not the cap space. They could waive Draper if they need to at some point... I don't think anyone would claim him at his age and cap hit, at least not until later in the season when the Wings have absorbed most of his salary. $1.5M for a 4th liner/faceoff man is a bit much. "Loyalty" should absolutely not prevent waiving Draper if it's necessary. It's not like they're dumping him in the Detroit River...

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Ok I just want to make a few points about the whole Miller/Ritola situation.

1. The decision about who they keep and who they trade depends majorly on what they have to lose. If they trade Miller they just lose Miller. If they trade Ritola, Miller is on the team this year as the 13th or 14th forward at the end of the seasen he become a UFA and decides not to play for Detroit the next year because he didn't get to play much this season. Basically trade Miller you only lose Miller, trade Ritola and you lose Ritola and Miller in a year.

2. Draper is not a option to do anything with. The Wings can't trade Draper because he has a no trade clause on his contract. Draper can't retire without him still counting against our cap. We also can't waive Draper because if we sent him to the minors, you guessed it he still counts on the teams cap minus a $ 100,000. So moving Draper is not an option in any realm he will be a Wing this year no matter what.

3. Ritola will get a chance this season to play on the fourth line. How much he plays will depend on how he does in training camp, the preseason, and when he gets a shot during the season. It is foolish to assume that the Wings will go the entire season with out any injuries so if Ritola ends up being the 13th forward he will be the first one to get a shot when there is a injury. If i had to guess how quickly you will see Ritola on the fourth line, I would say that with in the first three games of the season. The beginning of the season is always plagued with injuries due to the fact the players are not used to playing NHL games. Four months is a long time to not play and when they start playing there will be pulled muscle injuries. If Ritola impresses Babcock you can see Ritola playing more frequently then one would assume. It would be beneficial for the fourth line if there was 4 players fighting every practise to get the spot on the fourth line.

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But he wont be playing with cleary and Hudler. Whichever player stays will be on the 4th line, not the second or third. Does that change the situation at all? Miller obviously fits the role of a 4th liner better, which is the position that is available, but do we want to lose a potential 2nd or 3rd liner in by keeping him because hes not NHL ready yet? It seems like a tough decision to me. On one hand, Ritola could end up being a bust and the wings wouldnt look bad for getting rid of him while keeping your 4th line and PK strong and fast, but on the other hand he could turn out being the next Franzen or something and the wings look like fools for keeping a 4th liner over him.

Whichever player stays will be in the pressbox when the team is healthy.

That makes potential much more valuable, IMO. I think it will come to camp performance, but for now I'd give Ritola the edge.

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