Abel to Yzerman

Abel to Yzerman

Ranking The Atlantic Division

09/29/2021 at 6:19pm EDT

Adam Proteau of The Hockey News ranks the teams in the Atlantic Division,

7. Detroit Red Wings: Only the Sharks, Sabres, Ducks and Blue Jackets won fewer games than Detroit did last season. Nineteen wins in 56 games was a clear indication of how far the Wings still have to go to become a genuine playoff threat. But that doesn’t mean GM Steve Yzerman hasn’t improved them; he acquired 2021 Calder Trophy finalist Alex Nedeljkovic from Carolina, and he brought in veteran blueliner Nick Leddy from the New York Islanders. Along with 2019 sixth-overall pick, D-man Moritz Seider, Leddy and Nedeljkovic make Detroit’s defense better, but still not good enough to run with the beasts of the Atlantic.

Slowly but surely, Yzerman has made his roster younger – the Wings have only two forwards older than 28 – but the tough road ahead for Detroit speaks to the struggles virtually all formerly great teams endure as the winning generation retires and a new competitive cycle kicks off. Like the Senators, the Red Wings could and should win more games than they did in 2021, but like the Sens, it probably won’t be enough to propel them into a playoff spot.

the rest of the teams...

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