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Abel to Yzerman

More Tank Needed

from Scott Cullen of TSN,

Off-Season Game Plan looks at a Red Wings team that has some hard decisions to make about their long-term plan.

Considering the lack of star power on the roster right now, there is a very reasonable argument to make that Detroit should plan to tank, in order to improve their chances to acquire high-end talent around which they can rebuild.

That doesn’t require dramatically sinking the team’s hopes; really it’s not much more than allowing nature to take its course with this roster. The Red Wings have seven picks in the first three rounds this year, and if they’re in the lottery next year, then that would offer a shot at another high-end player.

While this might be a reasonable approach for a team with a new management team, looking at a five-year plan, I have my doubts that the current Red Wings management is prepared to do that.

As an aside, when I do these Off-Season Game Plans, I try to come up with a plan that seems reasonable and consistent for the current management and that means their established tendencies should be part of the consideration. Thus, even if I might think that the long-term plan for the Red Wings should be focused on a long-term rebuild, I’m skeptical that Red Wings GM Ken Holland would venture down that path.

read on

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Comments

duhduhduh's avatar

While this might be a reasonable approach for a team with a new management team, looking at a five-year plan, I have my doubts that the current Red Wings management is prepared to do that.

Custers Arikara scouts returned from their reconnaissance and told the general that their were man6 more sioux than he had thought, enough fighting men to fight for 3 or 4 days. Custer then told the scouts, “Well, we’ll just have wo whip em in one, then”

 

Posted by duhduhduh on 05/12/18 at 07:50 AM ET

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“The Red Wings will have some openings for prospects. Michael Rasmussen and Evgeny Svechnikov are the top two candidates. Even if Detroit doesn’t have major expectations for next season, they can dip into free agency or the trade market to add established NHL depth

Aaah [shudder].

Remarkable they made it through “the third albatross” and ran out of time/patience to mention DeKeyser and Ericsson. How many albatrosses makes a flock?

Posted by mtta on 05/13/18 at 01:53 AM ET

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It’s almost awkward, but good reading, seeing Custance repeatedly make
his disagreement (sometimes bafflement) with the Wings management clear
in these pieces.

Would the Wings really want to trade a boatload for a number one D
who might already be at and not far from passing his prime?

Who else is going to help with carry the load so the results for him
are any different than in Arizona?

I imagine there’s a lot of muddling along in the near future, trying to make the best
of high but not impact draft picks, while very gradually turning over the roster.

Posted by Lefty30 on 05/13/18 at 02:28 PM ET

Colin's avatar

I will be absolutely livid if they trade this lottery pick for an older defenseman. Every. Single. General. Manager. should have a poster of Kevin Cheveldayoff at the draft table in their office. Patience, shrewd drafting, and picking your shots well has led to a Winnipeg team that looks like an absolute juggernaut right now. THAT is the model NHL franchise. Speed, skill, and size all in equal quantities great enough to overwhelm just about anybody. Depth that actually has impact. If your goal is to win cups, you have your benchmark.

Winnipeg’s stars:
Laine - 6’5” 206 - 2nd OVR 2016
Connor - 6’1” 182 - 17th OVR 2015
Ehlers - 6’0” 172 - 9th OVR 2014
Morrissey - 6’0” 195 - 13th OVR 2013
Trouba - 6’3” 202 - 9th OVR 2012
Scheifele - 6’3” 207 - 7th OVR 2011

6 years, 6 first round picks, ALL OF THEM STARS.

This is leaving out Wheeler, Little, Morrow, Kulikov, and Myers, who were all first round picks but were either drafted by other teams and acquired by Winnipeg through other means, or are not quite stars.

Either way, you’re looking at a team of mostly homegrown talent with a core of 7 star-level players. 6 of those came from the first round of the draft in the last decade.

Posted by Colin from Ken Holland's new yacht, "Incompetence" on 05/14/18 at 08:17 AM ET

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Patience, shrewd drafting, and picking your shots well has led to a Winnipeg team that looks like an absolute juggernaut right now

It’s true, but it looks like it took 7 years (last year the Jets were not even in the playoffs) and all indications are DRW ownership/GM are not willing to invest 5-7 years in a total rebuild, so I think we will be stuck in mediocracy for quite a while. There is already KH talking about not playing the young guys till they are absolutely ready (and better than the veterans we have now) and I am sure in September KH will be talking about the goal is to make the playoffs next season (i.e. signing more veterans).

Posted by VPalmer on 05/14/18 at 09:55 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Posted by Colin from Ken Holland’s new yacht, “Incompetence” on 05/14/18 at 09:17 AM ET

To be clear, better yet, can we put it on the record.  Colin on 05/14/18 at 09:17 AM is saying the model franchise is one that goes through 5-6 more seasons of what we did last year and the year prior?  Right?

So would you be so bold as to say that not only would Holland be doing the right thing, again doing what he did the last two years, but that you are willing to not cheer and not complaining about it?

Just checking.

 

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/14/18 at 03:25 PM ET

Colin's avatar

o would you be so bold as to say that not only would Holland be doing the right thing, again doing what he did the last two years, but that you are willing to not cheer and not complaining about it?

Just checking.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/14/18 at 04:25 PM ET

I think there’s a bit of nuance here we need to address first. Over the last 2 seasons the team has essentially tanked into the lottery while Kenny has offloaded players for very good value. I’m totally fine with that and understand it’s necessary to build a real winner.

Where I am upset with Holland is the Helm and Abdelkader deals. Terrible, long term contracts to players that are mostly pluggers and will handcuff us cap-wise. I am actually okay with the Nielsen, Glendening, and Daley contracts, and I get the DeKeyser deal even if it is hugely disappointing.

If Kenny does a whole lot of paragraph A for the next 2-3 years and no more of paragraph B, I will be ecstatic and I’ll want him re-signed. If he does the Kenny thing and tries to force his way into the playoffs by signing veteran pluggers to bad contracts that obstruct the development of our young players, I’ll be sharpening my pitchfork.

Posted by Colin from Ken Holland's new yacht, "Incompetence" on 05/14/18 at 04:04 PM ET

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Did Chevelday ever say during the rebuild “young players will play only when they are ready and when they can outperform the veterans”.
Did Chevelday ever say during the rebuild “we need to get 2% better and to make the playoffs because when you get in you never know”?
Just checking (maybe he did).

Posted by VPalmer on 05/14/18 at 04:06 PM ET

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Yzerman started playing in 1983, Fedorov in 1990 and Lidstrom in 1991. Without those three, the Red Wings aren’t able to win 40 games. With those three, they basically never win less than 40 games and never miss the playoffs.

The key is that it took ~7 years of drafting and rotating through youngsters to get them. For every Yzerman, there was an Ysebaert.

Don’t forget all the Primeaus, Racines, and Cheveldaes that came and went - good, promising young players that never were a big part of championship hockey.

A GM can’t just plan to have a great draft, ice all the picks, and win in a few years.

Posted by mtta on 05/14/18 at 11:21 PM ET

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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com