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Guest blueadams

How bad are we if our roster is now finalized?

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I'd like to remind everyone that we have a surplus of Forward's at the moment so we need to remember that it is possible that Kenny could use one as trade-bait to get some depth. BTW can any of our current prospects become the 7th guy or would we be better off looking in FA?

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I'm going to try and paste this article in it's entirety because ESPN's dumbass "insider" crap won't allow most of you to see it. The article is captioned "Tough Offseason Leaves Detroit Lacking Firepower":

"This offseason wasn't kind to the Red Wings. Blueliner Brad Stuart took a pay cut to return to San Jose. Jiri Hudler, who scored 25 goals and helped on 25 others, signed a big contract with the Calgary Flames. Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, the top two free agents this offseason, both chose the Minnesota Wild rather than suiting up for home games at Joe Louis Arena. And Nicklas Lidstrom, who won seven Norris Trophies as the NHL's top defenseman and helped the Red Wings win four Stanley Cups in 20 seasons with the franchise, decided to call it a career.

Detroit has made the playoffs 21 years in a row, winning four Stanley Cups in six trips to the finals over that span, but it has been clear over the past few seasons that this team is regressing. If the Red Wings aren't able to add one of the top remaining free agents -- Shane Doan and Alexander Semin -- or can't swing a trade to add some offense, will there be enough firepower in Hockeytown for a turnaround?

Line Combo/D Pairing EV Points Filppula-Hudler-Zetterberg 104 Bertuzzi-Datsyuk-Franzen 70 Lidstrom-White 45 Cleary-Helm-Miller 29 Datsyuk-Franzen-Holmstrom 20 Datsyuk-Holmstrom-Zetterberg 19 Filppula-Franzen-Zetterberg 14 Kronwall-Stuart 14 Datsyuk-Franzen-Zetterberg 13 Cleary-Datsyuk-Zetterberg 12 Abdelkader-Cleary-Miller 12 Kronwall-Lidstrom 10 Filppula-Franzen-Hudler 10 Abdelkader-Helm-Miller 10 Ericsson-Kindl 8

Lidstrom or Hudler was a key component on four of the 10 highest-scoring combos the Red Wings put on the ice during even-strength play last season. The trio of Hudler, Valtteri Filppula and Henrik Zetterberg was the team's most prolific, producing 104 even-strength points last season, 34 more than the second-best trio of Todd Bertuzzi, Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen. If five-time 20-goal scorer Tomas Holmstrom retires, Detroit loses a veteran presence in front of the net that would need to be replaced.

With Lidstrom and Stuart not suiting up in Motown next season, that leaves Jonathan Ericsson, Jakub Kindl and their eight points as the best defensive pairing still intact from last season.

Making up the lost points at even strength is tough enough, but the Detroit power play has been headed downhill since the Wings' last championship in 2008 and likely won't be able to make up any shortfall.

Conventional wisdom points us to a team's power-play percentage as an indicator of the unit's success, but the efficiency of a team's power play -- especially their shooting percentage -- regresses heavily to the mean. In fact, a team's shooting percentage has almost no predictive value from one game to the next. Shot volume, expressed as shots per 60 power-play minutes, however, is a persistent talent, making it a better indicator of future performance.

Detroit Red Wings Season Results 2007-2012

Season Standings points Reg Season PP Shots For/60 Playoffs PP Shots For/60 Playoffs result 2007-08 115 61.9 63.9 Won Stanley Cup 2008-09 112 64.5 68.1 Lost Stanley Cup finals 2009-10 102 58.4 70.3 Lost conference semifinals 2010-11 104 57.4 57.0 Lost conference semifinals 2011-12 102 50.0 57.6 Lost conference quarterfinals

Detroit's shot volume on the power play has seen a huge decline in the years following its back-to-back appearances in the Stanley Cup finals. The losses of Lidstrom, Hudler and Holmstrom (if he retires) will exacerbate the issue next season unless some of Detroit's other players -- such as offseason additions Jordin Tootoo and Mikael Samuelsson -- take bigger roles, but that is a longshot.

Samuelsson, 35, is on his third team in three years. Tootoo set career highs in points (30) and assists (24) last season, but Nashville earned only 46 percent of even-strength shots in its favor while lining up against third- and fourth-liners. The rest of Detroit's bottom six has some youth and speed but combined for just 68 points in 2011-12.

As Craig Custance noted Monday, the Wings' prospect pipeline could produce some help. However, those expecting to see another Zetterberg/Datsyuk-caliber talent emerge may want to curb their expectations. Since the lockout, the average production by a Red Wings forward in his first two seasons has been four points in 21 games and 223 minutes of ice time. That list includes Filppula, Franzen, Hudler, Darren Helm, Ville Leino and 19 others. If you're looking for a best-case scenario, Franzen has turned in the best early production over that span with 12 goals and four assists in 80 games as a rookie in 2005-06, and 10 goals and 20 assists in 69 games a season later. It's also worth noting that Franzen's rookie campaign came in his age-26 season.

A bigger wild card is Damien Brunner, who had 24 goals and 36 assists in 45 games last season in his native Switzerland. When coach Mike Babcock was asked if Brunner could adjust his play for the smaller North American rink, Babcock felt he could.

"We're going to give him every opportunity," Babcock said. "He'll be a top-six forward to start with us and see where he goes."

The roster is depleted, and the Red Wings play in a tough division that sent four teams to the playoffs. Detroit may still be a star on America's hockey map, but that star appears to be getting dimmer by the season."

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All I hear is wah wah wah. I'll be smiling in May when we are in the playoffs yet again.

Agree 100%. I kind of like where the team's at right now... assuming we get at least one solid veteran D. The whole league is writing the Wings off... But I think the league's in for a big surprise. If Babcock... with Renney... can get these guys to dig in and compete... I like our chances. Everyone on the team knows they'll have to bring more to the ice every night because Nick's not there to bail them out any more. I'm actually pretty excited to see what Brunner, Nyquist and Smith can bring to the team.

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Agree 100%. I kind of like where the team's at right now... assuming we get at least one solid veteran D. The whole league is writing the Wings off... But I think the league's in for a big surprise. If Babcock... with Renney... can get these guys to dig in and compete... I like our chances. Everyone on the team knows they'll have to bring more to the ice every night because Nick's not there to bail them out any more. I'm actually pretty excited to see what Brunner, Nyquist and Smith can bring to the team.

I'm really not trying to bust your balls here, but just so I know what it is that you're optimistic about, would you mind throwing out a line combo so I can see what you see? Again, I'm really not trying to be a smart ass...I just want to follow you more accurately.

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We're so bad that even Crymson and Nightfall probably believe deep down that we'll miss the playoffs.

Haha, I wouldn't go that far. Its really tough to tell how we are going to do. We have to put in youngsters in the lineup, and that adds some unknowns. how will they respond? No one knows until the season starts. I think the Wings are probably going to make the playoffs, and thats all that matters. With an 8 seed winning in 2012, anything can happen come playoff time.

We're so bad that even Crymson and Nightfall probably believe deep down that we'll miss the playoffs.

Haha, I wouldn't go that far. Its really tough to tell how we are going to do. We have to put in youngsters in the lineup, and that adds some unknowns. how will they respond? No one knows until the season starts. I think the Wings are probably going to make the playoffs, and thats all that matters. With an 8 seed winning in 2012, anything can happen come playoff time.

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Alright, so I've been thinking about this, because much like the majority of fans on here I've been anxiously awaiting some exciting news. If you take a step back and look at what we've already got to work with, it's really not as bad as some are making it out to be. Perhaps after a few boring off-seasons we were all just itching for some big splash - something exciting, not necessarily because we needed it, but because we'd kinda earned it.

There's no denying the fact that we are weaker on D than we were last year. Suter or no Suter, this was inevitable - Lidstrom alone makes this so. Stuart, as much as some liked to bash him, was great and will be missed. This only adds another large hole in our defense. We could use one more depth defenseman especially given the departure of both Exelby and Janik. Now that they are gone, if there is an injury, which there almost always is, we really have nobody to call up. As sickening as it is to even say it - someone as crappy as Lebda would suffice as his only purpose would be 'bandage.' Luckily we still have a few viable options via free agency, not to mention the fact that we have WAY too many forwards and will likely trade a few for something. If that something isn't picks, it should be a depth defenceman.

I see a lot of complaining regarding Quincey and Smith. Yes, Q was not what we'd expected after the trade deadline, but keep in mind he was really good in Colorado and we were all a bit sour over losing him. He is better than he showed, and perhaps it was merely the adjustment from one team to another. I would expect an impressive effort from him this season and I feel that our first round pick was most certainly not wasted. Smith - what can be said about the kid? He is our best prospect, and our prospect pool is pretty damn decent. Rated as high as 4th was it? If teams like Philly can just throw their underripe prospects into the roster and see results, I would expect good things. I already liked what I saw last year and I, like many, didn't want to see him sent back down. Did these two fill the gaps left by both Lidstrom and Stuart? Of course not. Will they keep our team competitive? Bet your ass they will.

As far as forwards go... well, we may not have acquired any flashy free agents, but our team has improved. We lost Hudler - Jiri Hudler. With the exception of Eva and maybe two other people, he will not be missed very much. He wasn't as bad as we made him out to be, but there's the whole KHL thing, and oh yeah he's the smallest guy on the team. Sammy will not only replace the offence Hudler took with him, but will bring size and grit. Judging by about half of the rosters I see from various posters, it seems most of us have forgotten about the acquisition of Damien Brunner. He was the winger version of Schultz, and nobody really gave two craps when we learned of his interest in Detroit. He is a gamble, but then again so is Alex Semin. He could very well out score Hudler, and although unlikely, score more goals than Parise, who was signed for like 6 million more than Brunner. We don't know how well his game will translate into the NHL, but the potential is there, and that, to me, is as exciting a signing as any. We also have Jordin Tootoo. Tootoo may have inadvertently caused the death of miscellaneous computer hardware by signing here, but he will also cause death to those who f*** with our young guys, which is my next point.

We need to give our young prospects a shot in the NHL. There's a reason why most of you wouldn't want Nyquist included in a trade; He is the real deal. I don't understand how we can discourage trading them for proven players such as Nash or Ryan, yet be perfectly content with letting them rot in the AHL while we sign DOAN or whoever else. Doan is great, but he is old and he is not ours. For every Mueller, Prust or Doan we sign, a prospect loses his wings. For another season at least... Babcock guaranteed Brunner a spot. Tootoo is not sitting out at that salary, and neither will Samuelsson. We already have too many forwards, so as far as Doan and Semin go, we really don't need them. Nyquist is ready for the NHL and he will only become as great as he has been projected to be if we give him the chance.

Our team may not be stacked, but it will make the playoffs. We lost out on the Thunder Buddy sweepstakes, but we landed Brunner. This will be an exciting season and it could be full of pleasant surprises which will benefit our team in the long run. All we need is more depth on the back end and Holland will address this. The sky is not falling.

Agree with almost everything you wrote... Which is rare for me because I like to debate just for the sake of debate. All things considered, I'm excited about next year. Sure, I'd love to see Semin join the team and get back to his 40-goal form. But I'm also ready to see Brunner, Nyquist and Smith...

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Haha, I wouldn't go that far. Its really tough to tell how we are going to do. We have to put in youngsters in the lineup, and that adds some unknowns. how will they respond? No one knows until the season starts. I think the Wings are probably going to make the playoffs, and thats all that matters. With an 8 seed winning in 2012, anything can happen come playoff time.

Haha, I wouldn't go that far. Its really tough to tell how we are going to do. We have to put in youngsters in the lineup, and that adds some unknowns. how will they respond? No one knows until the season starts. I think the Wings are probably going to make the playoffs, and thats all that matters. With an 8 seed winning in 2012, anything can happen come playoff time.

Well, if history is any indication or youngsters will probably respond like this: "Since the lockout, the average production by a Red Wings forward in his first two seasons has been four points in 21 games and 223 minutes of ice time. That list includes Filppula, Franzen, Hudler, Darren Helm, Ville Leino and 19 others. If you're looking for a best-case scenario, Franzen has turned in the best early production over that span with 12 goals and four assists in 80 games as a rookie in 2005-06".

So here's hoping Brunner and Nyquist step WAY up. If not, then here's hoping that Smith, Sammy, and Tootoo were the pieces we needed to put a post season run together.

Obviously, another acquisition or two changes that considerably.

WingsAlways likes this

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I'm really not trying to bust your balls here, but just so I know what it is that you're optimistic about, would you mind throwing out a line combo so I can see what you see? Again, I'm really not trying to be a smart ass...I just want to follow you more accurately.

Any team with Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Helm down the middle and Howard in the net has a great shot of winning on any given night. We need a solid veteran D, a decent season from Smith, and good health on the back-end and we'll be fine.

We can't replace Lidstrom, so I won't even discuss that.

We're going to be harder to play against with Tootoo and Samulssen replacing Hudler.

I expect a better year from Franzen because of Tom Renney (players coach).

We actually have better balance up front with the addition of a bunch of RH'ers: Brunner, Sammuelsson and Tootoo.

Hopefully Eaves will be back because he'll help on the PK.

We have more speed with Brunner and hopefully Eaves back in the line-up.

I can go on... but for my money... we just have a different team now. We're not stacked like we have been for the past 15 years. But there's not a bad player in the lineup.

And if it doesn't work out, we still have a ton of cap-space to add some real firepower at the trade deadline. Or, if the cap drops significantly because of the new CBA, there will probably be some pretty good players available as teams like the Bruins, Wild, Cunucks, Sharks and so on have to shed salary.

Maybe I'm just an optimist... but I'm looking forward to next year.

55fan likes this

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I agree with you that it will be fun to see, but as it stands I'm not expecting a lot considering all those forwards can't play at the same time. And I've already mentioned what is reasonable to expect out of Red Wings' rookies.

But like I said, it will definitely be interesting.

Edited by kipwinger

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