from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
He seems to be figuring out just how dominant he can be on a more consistent basis and how crucial his play will be in the rebuild.
In this edition of Detroit Red Wings Fast Forward, a series that projects how a player will perform in 2020-21, the subject is forward Anthony Mantha, who reached the 20-goal mark twice over the past three seasons and looked likely to get there again when the NHL shut down March 12 because of COVID-19....
While Mantha’s willingness to stand up for teammates is commendable, he’s far more valuable to the Wings in the lineup. At 6-foot-5, 230-odd pounds, he is their biggest forward and their best goalscorer. He, Larkin and Tyler Bertuzzi (who was the player drated with that second-round pick from San Jose) have, since spring of 2019, emerged as the team’s top line.
Mantha’s 16 goals in 43 games extrapolates to 30 over an 82-game season. His shortened 2019-20 season (even before the pandemic) is likely to lead to a one-year extension for the 25-year-old free agent, giving him further time to make an argument for what would then be a long-term deal after next season, the year before he’s eligible for unrestricted free agency. Mantha has the skill set to be a 40-goal scorer, and projects to be a key part of the rebuild.