Nobody is saying it would have been bad if Kindl had developed faster. Reality is most D dont come into their own until they are mid to late 20's. Now is a dumb time to give up on Kindl. He's progressing nicely.
The problem with Kindl however, is that the Red Wings have a crowded blue line going into next season with 5 guys under contract (Kronwall, Ericsson, Quincey, Colaiacovo and Lashoff) and 2 RFA's (Smith and Kindl). That gives the Red Wings 7 dmen. That's a crowded blue line for a team that will be looking to make an upgrade via UFA this summer. Based on Kindl rotating as a #6/7 guy and Lashoff pretty much being in the top 6 every game on a team that has seen a boatload of injuries, this is how the depth chart probably looks to the organization going into next season:
I'm guessing the Red Wings will probably want to make an upgrade that will fit somewhere between Kronwall and Colaiacovo on the depth chart, which would push Kindl down to #8. With so many forwards already, and the need to make space for Tatar and Andersson and possibly a UFA next season, I doubt they will want to carry 8 dmen. Based on this, Kindl would seem to be the odd man out.
Sure Kindl hasn't reached his prime yet, but after 3 seasons he still has not proved he belongs in the Red Wings top 6. They can't just keep burning a roster spot waiting for him to hit his prime. Maybe a change of scenery would be helpful to him.
He has looked better this season, but I am solely basing this on how the team has been using him.
Edited by DSM, 26 February 2013 - 11:01 AM.