fromTed Kulfan of the Detroit News,
Life in the AHL isn’t always easy, and hasn’t been this season, as Zadina, just 19, is learning.
Zadina, the Red Wings’ first-round draft pick, No. 6 overall in 2018, didn’t register a point Saturday, the fourth consecutive game he’s gone pointless since scoring twice (and adding an assist) in Belleville Jan. 11.
In 33 games, Zadina has 10 goals and 10 assists (20 points) with a team-worst minus-15 rating.
“It’s pretty tough, so far, to play here,” said Zadina of his adjustment to pro hockey. “But it can make me a better player, so I have to learn down here.”
He has so many things to learn.
To use his linemates, and not try to do it all himself. To play within the system coach Ben Simon wants. To be accountable defensively. To be ready to play every game in a league where you can’t get away with stuff you were able to in junior hockey.
“He’s not ready for the NHL yet,” Simon said. “If he was ready, then he’d be going up. But right now, he’s not ready. He has things to work on in his game, and he’ll put in the time and commitment in it to get better.”