It's somewhat easier to swallow if you can just accept that our hockey team is mediocre. Trust me, it's frustrating to admit at times personally, but I think realistically most of us saw this coming. The expectations in this city are insanely high and rightfully so given the standards of success this organization has achieved recently.
Watching Z, Datsyuk and Brunner now is fun at least. I want management to give the kids an expanded role the rest of this season to see what we have for the future. These Red Wings are not championship quality and Cleary, Samuelsson and Bertuzzi have no place in years to come. At least they shouldn't if the front office would embrace playing some prospects more.
It would be nice to see what a healthy roster could accomplish. However, I still have my doubts of their ceiling as they won one playoff game last year with Lidstrom and Stuart around. There are parts I like about this group of players, but it seems to be overall severely lacking an identity and the rest of the league has caught up or surpassed Detroit in the skill department.
This off-season will be crucial. I don't think there needs to be a complete rebuild, but some significant retooling has to take place if the Red Wings want to seriously contend in the near future again.
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