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Red Wings Rebuilding and Adapting to Maintain Dominance

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That is correct, and there is a good reason for that. The reason is because Holland traded lots of picks during the pre-cap era that affected us through 2007/08. In an old interview (after the last CBA), Holland stated that drafting and developing is more important than ever now. I remember one quote where he said "draft picks are gold". Since the he only traded one pick that I could remember, and he only traded it because his hand was forced by Stuart wanting to go back to Cali, and the inevitable Lidstrom retiring.

Look up the NHL draft from 2001 - 2007. Red Wings didn't have many picks, they gave most of them away for players like Schneider / Wooley and whoever else...

Now look at the 2009 - 2012 prospects we drafted. Our prospects are top 10 on hockeyfuture and top 3 on hockeyprospectus

I would say that is pretty damn good with all things considered.


When Nyquist and Smith show what they can do this year, you'll see how damn amazing the future is =)

This is what people who don't like Holland need to see how progressive he is in his thinking. With the state of the current FA market, drafting and development is the way to go.

As I've been saying, I'd never offer a FA a 13 year deal. I'd only offer a deal like that to someone you drafted and developed yourself. There's no surprises that way. I think Minnesota is going to regret signing Suter and Parise.

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The Wings are not in a "rebuilding phase". I'm not saying it would be inconceivable that we might be rebuilding in a few years if the Euro Twins decline and we have failed to replace them with at least one elite Top 6 forward, but this team meets none of the criteria of a rebuilding team. They don't have the base of young (as in early 20's) talent to look to the future, and they aren't making moves for the future at the expense of today. The Tootoo and Sammy moves (like them or not) confirm that Holland is not in a rebuild mindset.

I look at our forwards vs. defensemen debate in two ways:

(1) The lack of another Top 4 defenseman is the biggest threat towards the Wings keeping the playoff streak alive. In other words, while the team is still good, if the bottom falls out for this team, it will almost certainly be because the defense suddenly became terrible without 28 minutes of Lidstrom and 25 minutes of Stuart every night.

(2) On the other hand, the lack of 1 or 2 additional scoring forwards is probably the biggest limiting factor that has our potential maxed as a 1st or 2nd round playoff exit. In other words, the team is probably good enough to get there, but we lack the explosiveness on offense to overcome younger opponents dedicated to blocking shots and playing strong team defense in the playoffs.

So they both needs, in my view. It's not like we have an open choice to pick one or the other. A forward move raises our ceiling without protecting the floor. A defenseman addition would improve my confidence that this team continues to play a Red Wings type of hockey, but doesn't fix the problems that have gotten us knocked out of the playoffs since '09.

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