Agree about the defenseman.
Don't get me wrong, I'm all about adding an offensive defenseman. We struggle to score primarily because our defensemen struggle to move the puck and shoot the puck and put up points. Ericsson is a shutdown defenseman. Quincey is a shutdown defenseman. DeKeyser is a shutdown defenseman. We want to play the way we played in '08 and '09, but we don't have the blue line for it. We had one straight-up shutdown defenseman in that top four (Stuart) and three all-star offensive defensemen (Lidstrom, Rafalski, Kronwall). Now we just have Kronwall. That's not nearly good enough. That's why we run around in our end. It's why we trudge through the middle of the ice, often settling for just clearing the red line so we can dump it in and get a line change. It's why our power play often sucks. It's why we aren't a high-scoring team.
But we also don't have enough scoring depth up front. Even when we had Lidstrom and Rafalski and we'd just won the Cup, we thought it was worth adding Hossa. That gave us Datsyuk in his prime, Zetterberg in his prime, Franzen in his prime, Hossa in his prime, and good secondary scorers in Samuelsson, Cleary, and Filppula. (And even then, we came up short that year.) At present, we have an old Datsyuk, and old Zetterberg, Nyquist (can he be a major factor in the playoffs?), Tatar (can he be a major factor in the playoffs?), and sometimes an old Franzen (when he feels like showing up). Jurco is a possession monster, but he's not a significant scoring threat (yet). Helm's not a goal scorer. Abdelkader's having a career year, but he's not a goal scorer. Miller and Glendening don't score. The jury's out on Weiss. Sheahan's a stud, but he's not a goal scorer. I get that adding a scoring winger isn't going to fix this team's fundamental problems, but there's no such thing as too much scoring depth. If we're not going to put our late first-round pick towards a top-end defenseman like Yandle, if we're not going to use it on a rental like Green, if we're going to use it to select a pimple-faced teenager who won't be a real factor for the Wings until 2019, I think we should consider adding a gritty right-shot scoring winger. If we're loading up for a deep run (and I'm not sure that we are), better safe than sorry. Depth, depth, depth. It matters.
And at some point we do have to add some righties. That's another reason why we don't move the puck as well as we'd like - everyone's a left shot. It's a wonder we move the puck as well as we do, actually.
I've been beating this point to death lately but when I watch other teams I realize how often defenseman usually get shots on net from the point and how crucial that is. I've just gotten used to the Wings not being able to do it.
I think Dekeyser is playing great overall, but his slapshot swing is so awkward it looks like he's gonna fall over half the time. Ericsson's windup is slow as molasses. Kronwall has turned into the new shinpad assassin.
It's always great to have depth up front, but I have to think that the most beneficial move is getting a right handed defenseman who can move the puck and get shots through from the point. It's pathetic right now.