Of Red Wings-related note this afternoon:
- At one end of the spectrum, DetroitRedWings.com’s Dana Wakiji filed a locker room clean-out day article about Niklas Kronwall, who wants to continue playing through the 2018-19 season:
“I think it’s awesome when you have guys coming up,” Kronwall said. “And I think obviously with where we are at, we’re destined to have some young players, especially on D, taking steps. We’ve seen (Dylan Larkin), (Anthony Mantha), (Andreas Athanasiou), (Tyler Bertuzzi), we’ve seen some guys up front, and I think it’s definitely time for the back end to also get rejuvenated with some young players.”
As with Zetterberg, Kronwall knows that his career is closer to the end than to the beginning, but he is not ready to retire as he has one year left on his contract and he feels better than he has in previous seasons.
“The last two seasons after the year, I wasn’t really sure what was going to come out of the training,” Kronwall said. “That part I do feel like if I stick with the program and do what gave me a chance to play this year, I’ll be just fine. Hopefully, tweak the training regimen a little bit and make it even better.
“I don’t think It’ll be any different than it was last year. I’m trying to train as hard as I possibly can and just be ready to go come training camp.”
2. At the other end of the spectrum, the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan posted a list of the top 20 available-to-draft NHL prospects, now that the NHL has released is 2018 draft rankings, and the Free Press’s Helene St. James posted an article in which she surmised which of the available-to-draft prospects might intrigue the Wings;
3. And in Grand Rapids, the Grand Rapids Press’s Peter J. Wallner eschewed end-of-season grades for a look at the Griffins’ stat leaders and “best and worst” of the Griffins’ 2017-18 campaign:
MOST IMPROVED: The Griffins, having seen Filip Hronek briefly at the end of last season, had high hopes for the defenseman this year. The rookie didn’t disappoint as he finished second among league rookie defensemen in points (11-28-39).Hronek’s 39 points tied for most for a rookie defenseman with the Griffins and earned him a place on the AHL all-rookie team.
…BIGGEST SURPRISE: Dominic Turgeon had an OK first season in 2016-17 with 18 points (6-12-18) but really broke out this year. The center finished with 32 points (14-18-32), ninth in the team, in 69 games with three game-winning goals.The downside was Turgeon was found to have a blotclot in his arm and will miss the rest of the playoffs.