It seems I am marginally more optimistic than the majority. Possibly because my philosphical stance is that if you can't apply hope to sport, then you may as well just watch the news about Gaza, Russia the economy etc...
1) The team will be healthier than last year, particularly our top 6 ; partly a lack of Olympics, partly less issues entering the season (gotta love those early playoff exits for healing), and partly because Weiss will be able to play and if clearly can't skate he'll be beaten out in camp. Having no trade value makes him easier for KH to waive. Inevitably Dats, Zatta, Ericsson, Franzen, Alfredsson and Kronwall will all miss a few games, but I think all will pass 60 having been rested.
2) While Nyquist won't get as hot and there will be more attention on Sheahan and Tatar, I still think the kids will take a step forward as a whole, and the 3 will combine for comfortably over 100 points.
3) Weiss will play most of the year and be underwhelmingly solid for 40 points.
4) The D will be a little better, partly because Quincey & Smith will be kept apart more and because both will start the year considerably better than they started last year. Dekeyser will produce a little more offence and Ericsson will play more down the stretch. Kindl will still infuriate but will put up 5-10 more points (or at least in terms of pace) due to a forward core more able to take advantage of his longer outlet passes.He'll occasionally be bumped out for Oullett/Marchenko/Sproul, but with either largely hold onto his spot or be packaged in a trade.
5) Howard will be a little better, Gus will be a little less lucky, but they'll be a solid tandom. Mrazek will put up great %'s in a few games against bad teams.
6) Helm's improved scoring touch will stay, and his PPG will increase again. Same to a lesser extent with Abdelkader, despite less top 6 ice-time.
7) Miller will continue to quietly effective in his role, never exciting anyone, but never letting anyone down and will get slightly higher point totals.
8) Glendenning will play less or on the wing.
9) If alfie comes back, his play will be remarkably similar to this year, but a lack of Olympics will stop him being useless down the stretch.
10) Franzen will get more time with Nyquist, and as a result will put up more than 0.75PPG and will get 25 goals+ despite going on a run of 5 points in 20 games at some stage.
Mantha will be out-played by Jurco (before he sticks in the big club) in the Minors but will finish with 30+ goals in GR. The Grand Rapids PP will miss Almquist, but Sproul will get much improved points totals.
Babcock will continue to get half the team to over-perform, despite line combinations that make no sense in half the games. Holland will continue to get blamed by fans for things beyond his control, while journalists try to give him credit for things equally beyond his control.
The Wings to finish 5-7 in the conference but with a bit more breathing room and to get a better playoff match-up before losing in the ECSF in a blackhawks style tight series. Babcock to ride off into the sunset to much mixed opinions, and the team to do better in FA next summer as the wings splash out to get the 1 last shot for D & Z.
These predictions are dependent on Alfie re-signing.
Holy crap, it is. Feels like I'm in the 6th grade.
Lol, no doubt. The last couple years, this has become one of the most overly PC and heavily censored websites I have experienced in my 15+ years of internet.
Especially absurd when you consider this is a hockey website.
Relax, fellas. You're not in a police state.
A few years ago there was a rampant problem with overly gratuitous cursing on the forums (particularly in the GDTs, where scores of entire posts would be made up of nothing but f-bombs and such). The community was warned that if such behavior continued that a curse filter would be enabled. This curse filter is just a huge word blacklist that was loaded into the database -- it wasn't something that myself or one of the moderators simply added one by one, manually.
That said, the behavior continued, it grew tiresome to continually delete/edit posts that were going over the line -- and the curse filter was enabled. I hate the fact we have to have a curse filter here. It annoys me to no end. But if the community can't handle that maturely then it's here to stay.
"Dick" was an unfortunate victim of blacklist collateral damage. You should be happy to see your dicks have henceforth been freed.
Yeah, I understand that. I'm not saying I don't like the deal, I just think it is over payment right now. I think he definitely has the potential to be worth more than that and for this to be a great deal in a couple years. But that's just what it is, potential. I just think RFA's can't negotiate with any other teams so their leverage goes down significantly. I think it's over payment, but because Tatar doesn't deserve it, but more because I don't think Holland 'had' to over pay that much...
The Detroit Red Wings have long had the philosophy that prospects need to be "ripe" before they make the jump to the National Hockey League. That means after getting drafted, our prospects spend around 3-5 years between junior or overseas and the AHL before finally getting their shot in the NHL. This has proven to be successful for many years now and I don't see them drastically changing that system any time soon.
I don't see there being much of a chance that Mantha makes the big club this season, despite how highly fans, media and management regard him, nor do I think Jurco will start the season in the NHL. I'm actually a fan of the Red Wing way, of over ripening players, and I like the idea of having a farm oozing with talent. Depth is probably the biggest key to a teams success in the league today, and because of our drafting, development and ripening methods, we are definitely stacked with depth in the minors.
There is a reason players like Nyquist and Tatar were able to jump into the NHL with little to no growing pains, while highly regarded players drafted by other teams get thrown in the fire too early and flame out due to not being ready, and having their confidence destroyed. I'm just as excited for all these kids as anyone but I think it would be a huge mistake to throw them in the best league in the world before they're fully ready, both physically and mentally. In my opinion, on the back end, Marchenko could be ready for full time duty in the NHL, other than that I think Backman, Ouellet, Sproul and Jensen can all use more seasoning in the AHL. Up front, Jurco is the closest to being ready, but could still use another season down in the minors, along with Pulkkinen, Mantha, Athanasiou, etc.
Anyway, point being, I don't think there is any harm in resigning a future hall-of-famer, veteran like Alfredsson, allowing all of our forward prospects another season in Grand Rapids to round out there game. Having these guys getting top line minutes and loads of PP time down in Grand Rapids, to me is a lot more beneficial than getting 3rd line minutes and no PP time up in Detroit.
As for our RFA's that are not waiver exempt, I don't think there is any chance whatsoever that any team picks up Nestrasil, with a slim chance a team takes a chance on Ferraro, although that may be even less likely now with uncle Tony now as the assistant coach. My only fear is that we lose Callahan. The kid is coming off a career year with the Griffins, is an absolute warrior and would be a great addition to any teams 4th line. I hope Holland doesn't give any team the chance to claim him. No he's not going to put up a lot of points but I think he would be a huge loss...
No one here is saying they could do a better job as GM. All people are saying is that there are other potential GMs out there that could have better addressed the team's needs. Looking at other organizations like Dallas and Tampa, there is an argument to be made.
Dallas, a team that was the last place team in the Western Conference to secure a playoff spot and hasn't been relevant since they lost to the Wings back in 2008.
Tampa Bay, a team that actually did pretty well last year and then got swept by Montreal. The past two seasons before that they didn't even make the playoffs. This is with Yzerman at the helm who was considered to be better than Holland.
Sure, these teams seemed to address their teams needs, but we will see how the product on the ice looks and how they do in playoffs.
I don't know. I just don't find it funny much.
Same here man. I guess I am not a butthurt fan. Sure, I wanted to see a high priced free agent come into play. At the same time though, I am ok with the moves that Holland has made so far. Giving the kids a chance is what he needed to do and he is going to do it. Cleary is just an insurance policy. He won't be beating out someone for a roster spot if they are better.
It kills me when posters cite Holland not signing all these UFAs to big deals as a good thing, and that's why we want him, when in fact, he is out there pitching the same huge deals to the UFAs as everyone else, he just keeps getting rejected. How do they conveniently ignore that? And it's not just this year! The stupidity of some of the statements in light of the facts is mind-blowing to me. Holland offers a guy the same deal or a bigger deal, guy signs with other team, and somehow we're lucky to have a GM that doesn't sign UFAs to huge deals? Seriously? I just don't even know where to start when people are so loyal that they can't begin to be even remotely objective about the realities of the situation.
Being objective would be looking at the entire situation. Suter and Parise wanted to play in Minnesota. They have ties to the area. Same with Vanek. Boyle has family in New York and requested to play there for less since the Rangers were against the cap. Players will do what it takes to go somewhere they want to go. When Dekeyser chose to come to Detroit, and the contracts were the same no matter where he went, did you give credit to Holland for this?
I consider myself a big fan of the Red Wings but knowledgable - like this blogger is pushing it - would put it way too far. Anyway, after reading news how the Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Philadelphia and Boston are handling their players I can understand why organisations don't want to give too much out.
The only point I somewhat agree is that the team and especially management aren't taking critics very well, as proven by an Email from a poster here a few days ago.
But the media has to understand one thing: The job of a hockey organisation is to ice the best possible roster, players are paid to perform on the ice not to be media-monkeys. Putting myself into Kessel's shoes I would have declined every interview with a Torontosun reporter till they are accepting that I'm shy and don#t want to talk to them, till then no comments no interviews.
Sometimes the media thinks they are way more important when in reality they aren't even important.
btw. for the 24/7 stuff the media considered it "boring" boohoo down to earth hockey players acting like always, so no forced stories or Bryzgalovs quotes for you ? Cry me a river, I thought the insight about Babcocks decisions and how he reacts to pressure have been outstanding.