Rafalski was the second d-choice on the PP and we'll certainly see Kronwall moved into that role. Rafi didn't play a second on the PK while Ericsson certainly will. I don't think it's fair to say E is Rafi's replacement in any sense of the word. Ericsson's going to be the 4th d-man on the Wings where-as Rafi was the 2nd best offensive defenseman. The Wings will expect growth from Kronwall (a fair bet) as he shows whether he can be the legit #1 option on the PP and PK.
There really wasn't a player of Rafi's offensive calibre on the UFA market his year. Rafi is certainly one of the best offensive defensemen to come out of the US.
Very level-headed view of things, I like it. I don't like Ericsson's contract either, but with the way everything went down, it's right in line with the inflation seen across the UFA signings. I like us bringing in Commadore as he has a lot prove and will effectively take over Salei's spot and be much more aggressive (something this team has been missing since Fischer).
I honestly do not feel that Holland is done looking at d-men via trade. I think he'll certainly look at Ian White and Anton Babchuk as options, relegating Kindl/Commadore to depth positions (competing for playing time). I also wouldn't be surprised with over 9 million in cap if Holland doesn't look at trade options as well.