More likely is that despite him being a good player, he was terrible in Detroit. Best all-round when he left.
Right, but there was no 04-05 season due to the lockout and then the salary cap came into effect starting the next season (05-06). As I mentioned, I am only speculating.... based on the fact that the season he played in Detroit was the final season without a cap and he was not back the following season (the first with a cap).... I'm guessing they couldn't afford him. You are right, though, that his season in Detroit was far from the peak of his career, and that may have played a part as well.
Franzen could stand to drop some weight since he doesn't utilize his size at all. I really think his apparent compete level is because of his poor conditioning. He used to be a bully in front of the net and scooped up a lot of garbage goals but he has shied away from that so he better start skating