Abel to Yzerman

Abel to Yzerman

Questions Will Be Answered

09/19/2021 at 8:20am EDT

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

Answers will begin to emerge during the practices and scrimmages that run Thursday-Sept. 28, with the Red-White game scheduled for Sept. 26. After that, the Wings return to Little Caesars Arena for an eight-game exhibition schedule that runs Sept. 29-Oct. 9.

With an eye towards continuing the improvement shown last season, here are the top points of interest headed into camp.

Hej du

That’s Swedish for “hey you,” a handy greeting to know given the contingent of Swedish Hockey League alums vying for spots. Up front, that includes Swedes Lucas Raymond and Jonatan Berggren, and Canadian Joe Veleno. The trio, linemates at the prospects tournament, boast high-end skill and youthful vigor. Raymond, 19, was the fourth pick in 2020; Berggren, 21, the 33rd pick in 2018, and Veleno, 21, the 30th pick in 2018. Berggren said Friday that he and Raymond have been teaching Veleno “some good Swedish words, and he helps me with the English.” More importantly, given Swedes start learning English at age 7, Veleno serves as their chief transporter.

“He drives me and Lucas because he has a car here," Berggren said. "He’s our Uber driver.”

Veleno did well in a five-game audition with the Wings at the end of last season. Berggren has spent three seasons in the SHL and Raymond two, so both are used to playing against men. They need to adapt to the smaller ice surface, but they project to be a big part of the Wings’ future, even if early odds have Raymond and Berggren starting the season in Grand Rapids.

read on ($$$)

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