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Where Are They Now?:  Detroit Red Wings Edition

Detroit Red WIngs GM Ken Holland has traded away a fair amount of prospects/young players in recent years, in addition to losing several more on waivers.  Detroit fans have fretted, gnashed teeth, and more still over most all of these losses in some form.

So... where are these guys now, and what are they actually doing?

C - Calle Jarnkrok - NAS

At one point, Jarknrok and Pulkkinen were considerd DET's potential 1-2 punch of the future (pre Mantha and Larkin).  Jarnkrok was traded ot Nashville in the ill-fated deal that brought David Legwand to DET to do.... whatever it was Legwand was supposed to do and didn't..

Jarnkrok, now in his 3rd full NHL season, has regressed.  He put up a line of 16-14-30 last year in 81 games and there was hope this season might see another increase.  It has not happened.  Jarnkrok has 6G and 5 A in 44 games and is struggling to find a place on a team with plenty of other good young forwards who are playing more effectively than he is.  Jarnkrok is regularly mentioned as a piece NAS might lose in the expansion draft to Vegas.

W - Teemu Pulkkinen - MIN/Iowa (AHL)

Thr other half of that 1-2 punch was Pulkkinen, a young Finn with a cannon of a shot who scored 34 Goals in 46 AHL games several years ago.  Pulkkinen had trouble maintaining anything in Detroit and ultimately was lost on waivers in a numbers game.

Pulkkinen lasted 9 games in Minnesota, managed only 1 goal, and was sent down to AHL Iowa, where he has 12 goals and 26 points in 31 games.  Minnesota was expecting a Top 9 player to possibly mesh with Mikael Granlund, and it never materialized.  Minnesota currently leads the Central division without his services in the lineup and as time marches on, hopes of him rejoining the Wild are sowly disappearing.

D - Mattias Backman - Texas (AHL)

Backman was traded to Dallas in the deal for Erik Cole.  With 8 points in 25 contests and at  +13 so far, Backman is settling in as a good AHL regular, though his NHL potential remains murky.

F - Mattias Janmark - DAL (IR)

Another piece of that Erik Cole deal, Janmark had 15 goals and 29 points in 73 contests with the Stars last year and was a big help to them... but has yet to play at all this season due to a serious knee injury that may have lasting impact on his playing career.  Overall though hopes still remain fairly high for Janmark's eventual return and contributions to the Stars' lineup.

F - Andrej Nestrasil - CAR/Charlotte (AHL)

Nestrasil was lost to waivers last season to a Canes team interested in adding a bottom 6 young forward.  Nestrasil was serviceable in DET but did not stand out, and thus was viewed as expendable.  In Carolina he had 23 points in 55 games last season, and was a bit of a surprise.  This season he's seen 18 NHL games and managed 5 points and a -3, while also 2 points in 4 games in AHL Charlotte with the Checkers.

Nestrasil has been a decent pick-up for Carolina, but there's not much argument to be made that he would have a spot on or improve this Red WIngs team right now, to be honest.  That's not to say he's been a bust or anything either.  He likely fits in better to Carolina's organization and plans.

C - Landon Ferraro - STL/Chicago Wolves (AHL)

Ferraro was a speedy checker in DET's system and was claimed off waivers last season to the Boston Bruins.  Similar to Nestrasil, Ferraro was fine in his time but there was never goign to be room for him long-term.

Ferraro saw 58 game sin Boston last year for 20 points and was a -8.  In the offseason he moved to the St. Louis Blues organization, and is currently playing for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL.  Ferraro has 15 points in 22 games for the Wolves and has seen no action yet with the Blues.  His NHL future seems murky at the moment but not dead.

W - Martin Frk - DET/Grand Rapids (AHL)

Cheating a bit here, but a lot of people have completely forgotten about Frk's odyssey.  Lost earlier this season on waivers to Carolina, Frk played 2 scoreless games for the Canes before being exposd again to waivers and DET snapping him back up.

Frk has 13 goals and 23 points in 31 games with Grand Rapids and remains in DET's call-up picture and future.

Take this info I have provided and make of it what you will.  I have yet to see anyone compile these guys into one list, so I thught it's be interesting.  I'd be curious to hear anyone's thought/comments below, whether they are about the individual players, or Ken Holland and the organization.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

Comments

A-A-ron's avatar

Noting that this wasn’t necessarily the author’s objective, no one of these transactions, hindsight aside, makes for a particularly compelling case against Holland. The Legwand trade helped the team accomplish the then-objective of continuing the playoff streak. That said, Patrick Eaves has bounced back nicely. Cole was positioned to be a good pick-up prior to the career-ending injury. Pulkkinen looks to have been over-valued, and Ferraro wasn’t taking anyone’s job. An argument can be made that too many of these guys were lost for nothing, but, with apologies to those young players in the organization that we all hope to be successful, those losses do not appear to be appreciable.

Posted by A-A-ron from The Land of Unhealthy Scratching on 01/19/17 at 03:30 PM ET

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THANK YOU FOR THIS.

Posted by redwings_lifer on 01/19/17 at 03:30 PM ET

stonehands-78's avatar

Thanks for the summary, Primis.

Good stuff.

Posted by stonehands-78 from the beginning ... a WingsFan, on 01/19/17 at 03:51 PM ET

Hootinani's avatar

The Legwand trade helped the team accomplish the then-objective of continuing the playoff streak.

Again, Legwand had few points and was a negative +/- while with the Wings.  He provided no benefit to the team whatsoever, and arguably hindered their efforts down the stretch.

Posted by Hootinani from the parade following Babs out of town on 01/19/17 at 04:02 PM ET

The Meal's avatar

Really nice investigation, Primis.

Posted by The Meal from Longmont, CO on 01/19/17 at 04:15 PM ET

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On the plus side, the young players we traded weren’t very good.

On the minus side, that kind of means we blew our top picks in the 2009 (Ferraro) and 2012 (Frk) drafts, and our top picks in 2005 (Kindl), 2006 (Emmerton), 2007 (Smith), 2008 (McCollum), 2010 (Sheahan), and 2011 (Jurco) don’t look so hot either at the moment.

There’s been a lot of staff turnover and at least three of the last four top picks (I’d say the jury’s out on Cholowski) look good.  But let’s not underrate poor drafting as a reason that the rebuild-on-the-fly has fizzled.

Posted by captaineclectic on 01/19/17 at 04:20 PM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar

Thanks for this info, I’ve been one of those people who have been salty about losing all of these guys for next to nothing.  It’s good to see that losing these players hasn’t really hurt all that much, but it still makes me highly critical that Holland refuses to sell high on prospects when the team has significant unmet needs.  I’m not sure if this is a fair view to have, as I’m now glad he didn’t sell high on Mantha a year and a half ago, but ‘waiting to see’ what kind of talent he has shows how his ‘long-term view’ would make him think it takes 8-10 years to rebuild a team.

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 01/19/17 at 04:51 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

There’s been a lot of staff turnover and at least three of the last four top picks (I’d say the jury’s out on Cholowski) look good.  But let’s not underrate poor drafting as a reason that the rebuild-on-the-fly has fizzled.

Posted by captaineclectic on 01/19/17 at 03:20 PM ET

The draft is a crap shoot for every single team so that’s a little tough to say.  I think any team would be perfectly satisfied to get 1-2 NHL caliber players out of each draft.

Thanks Primis for putting together the information I’ve been interested in but too lazy to look up!

 

Posted by TreKronor on 01/19/17 at 05:02 PM ET

Avatar

A Jarnkrok, Nestrasil Pulk line would be better than OMG.

Posted by jb61973 on 01/19/17 at 05:20 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Thanks guys.  I figured since I got curious for this, others would be too, and this is a nice place to put it up for people to see.

I tried really hard to just put the info up and avoid commentary in the article (though I just couldn’t resist a dig at Legwand).

One thing I didn’t include is that none of these guys are first round picks, and many of them are late-rounders.  I guess I should have included their draft position.

I also realized I did not include Richard Nedomlel, who DET traded to STL for basically a bag of pucks to get him off the 50-contract roster.  I didn’t figure it mattered, as he’s had trouble moving up from the ECHL and is now in Czechia with Sparta Praha.  And without being too mean I don’t think a single Wings fan was sorry to see him go and worried about it.

But let’s not underrate poor drafting as a reason that the rebuild-on-the-fly has fizzled.

Posted by captaineclectic on 01/19/17 at 03:20 PM ET

Actually, I think this list shows DET has done an awfully good job drafting.  Another team wanted and valued all of these guys above at some point and time via trade, or by claiming them off waivers.  DET does a *great* job of drafting good AHLers and bottom six/3rd pairing type of guys, is the lesson here.  They just…. turn out too many of them I guess, and not enough top-end guys.  Which is understandable when you’re picking where DET has been.

That’s still better drafting than most other teams.  If even one of the above had “hit” for Detroit, things could be VERY different.  But it’s a crapshoot.

Posted by Primis on 01/19/17 at 06:36 PM ET

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Thanks Primis, i actually asked for something to similar to this the other day. It seems like the last big “shit we shouldn’t have done that” was Quincey when he went to Colorado. Then the next big “shit we shouldn’t have done that” was giving up a 1st to get him back, though to be honest he was a decently solid player.

Posted by weswolverine on 01/19/17 at 06:42 PM ET

bigdee89's avatar

Great post Primus!!

A Jarnkrok, Nestrasil Pulk line would be better than OMG.

Too bad we can’t hang onto everyone.  Pulk was horrible defensively (and offensively in the NHL), Jarnkrok isn’t physical and probably not effective on a 4th line.  I think only Nestrasil would have been nice to keep but not sure how good he is on a 4th line.

As much as I dislike the OMG line they’ve been…entertaining.  Ott takes the worst penalties at the worst time but his energy and jawing has been good to see.  Glenny tries hard and fails often.  I feel bad for him.  Miller just isn’t the same.  He looks like a fish out of water most games.

Hindsight is 20/20 I guess

Posted by bigdee89 from The Great White North Eh? on 01/19/17 at 07:33 PM ET

alwaysaurie's avatar

“I’d be curious to hear anyone’s thought/comments below, whether they are about the individual players, or Ken Holland and the organization.” —Primis.

Thanks for the write-up.


I take this re-evaluation as another chance to say that, “I like the way this organization develops talent.” It’s a list with some nice players. This list reminds me that we have a separate list of players we’ve developed that’s even better than this list:

The players we’ve kept.

 

Posted by alwaysaurie on 01/20/17 at 06:26 AM ET

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I think it is ridiculous another team can claim a player off of waivers and doesn’t have to keep him on their NHL roster for a longer period of time. Detroit spends years and dollars working with the likes of Pulk and Frk and someone else can claim them to only play 9 or 2 NHL games, respectively. That’s barely fair to the player. If teams are going to quickly claim and waive, the rights should return to the original team.

But I guess it is up to league and NHLPA to set these rules. Unfortunately for the young guys, the representatives are more focused on veteran issues.

Posted by evileye on 01/20/17 at 12:04 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I think it is ridiculous another team can claim a player off of waivers and doesn’t have to keep him on their NHL roster for a longer period of time. Detroit spends years and dollars working with the likes of Pulk and Frk and someone else can claim them to only play 9 or 2 NHL games, respectively. That’s barely fair to the player. If teams are going to quickly claim and waive, the rights should return to the original team.

But I guess it is up to league and NHLPA to set these rules. Unfortunately for the young guys, the representatives are more focused on veteran issues.

Posted by evileye on 01/20/17 at 11:04 AM ET

The Wild *did* have to waive Pulkkinen on Oct. 28 when they sent him down, and nobody claimed him, including DET.

Carolina tried to waive Frk and the Wings did reclaim him,

The system is working fine in that regard.

Posted by Primis on 01/20/17 at 01:34 PM ET

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I thought a team had to put them on the NHL roster to claim them off waivers? I guess that wasn’t true for Frk. Nuances. I never did get around to reading the entirety of the collective bargaining agreement.

Posted by evileye on 01/20/17 at 01:55 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I thought a team had to put them on the NHL roster to claim them off waivers? I guess that wasn’t true for Frk. Nuances. I never did get around to reading the entirety of the collective bargaining agreement.

Posted by evileye on 01/20/17 at 12:55 PM ET

They do have ot be on an NHL roster, unless you were the team that the player was originaly claimed from.

The NHL figures if you claim a player and then put him back on waivers, and the original team wants him, they should just let him go back to the original team and be sent down and protected rather than continue the waiver dance another 2 or 3 times.  It’s tot he benefit of the player, so he doesn’t get re-exposed again, and possibly claimed again to a 3rd team, and… you get the idea….

Since Frk came from DET, reclaiming him meant they could send him down withotu exposing him again.  No other NHL club could have done that waiver-free.

Posted by Primis on 01/20/17 at 03:11 PM ET

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Thanks for the clarification.

Posted by evileye on 01/20/17 at 03:29 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

Patrick Eaves has 17 Goals +/- this year. Now that sucks for our Scorers who won’t shoot and when they do they are too late.  No PP and one of the lowest GF.in the league.

KH goes 1st, d needs a major rebuild. If Green didn’t produce offense???, Kronner has to retire, DeK (off year. I hope), Sproul is actually on the team being punished (forever??) for lacking assertiveness (Only RH Shot that has a chance of hitting the Net, Ericsson can not play NHL/AHL D, XO playing pretty good after 63 Games total, Jensen (too early).

5 New D with some rotting in GR

Even Z is starting to slow down as the season progresses, on the ice for most of OT. He has a lot of Heart and class. Helping prospects to avoid the lunatic coach as he puts his invisible processes in place.

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 01/24/17 at 12:16 AM ET

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