I'm not sure what's confusing about it. If the season had gone "as planned", Bert, Sammy and Cleary would all have regular roles, probably in the top 6, they'd all have PP time, even though they may not have produced effectively. The Wings would still have been floundering, but we'd hear all about the veteran leadership, and these guys have been through the battles, he has faith in them, can't rush these guys from Grand Rapids etc. Guys like Tatar and Nyquist would have been eased into the lineup with a few minutes on the 4th line with Drew Miller and Patrick Eaves and a healthy scratch every other night with Babcock unsure if they were ready because they can't produce. Sheahan and Jurco would have never gotten a sniff of the big club.
Had Babcock said last summer we're going to give the kids regular jobs and go in a different direction, we wish Dan Cleary well with Philadelphia, we thank Samuelsson for his service, but we have decided to use the compliance buyout on him and Todd Bertuzzi will be our guy off the bench, THAT would have been a bold move for the Red Wings.
The old vets were pathetic, the massive amount of injuries forced the Wings to do the call ups and the kids delivered. So it's not really going out on a limb to say, hey these kids have jobs now and the other guys won't get theirs back when they're "healthy" (wink, wink).