Filip Zadina cracks The Athletic’s Wheeler’s ‘Top 50 drafted NHL prospects’ list

The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler has produced a list highlighting his top 50 drafted NHL prospects, and only one Red Wings prospect cracked Wheeler’s list:

5. Filip Zadina, RW/LW, 18 (Detroit Red Wings — 6th overall, 2018)

I’m fairly confident the Montreal Canadiens and the Ottawa Senators will grow to regret their Friday night in Dallas, at least quietly. Their loss is the Red Wings’ gain — and they needed it. Despite the team’s desperate need for a rebuild, Zadina is their lone prospect in the top 50. Though I will say this: I really liked their 2018 draft, from Zadina on down to Joe Veleno and Jonatan Berggren. Zadina, more than the three forwards ahead of him on this list, is at his best when the puck’s on his stick and he can create as a primary carrier and option. Both Pettersson and Svechnikov can be dominant off the puck, finishing off plays in a split second. Zadina is electrifying because he scores his goals with that extra touch before he releases it in order to change his angle, a darting lateral cut, or a deke.

Wheeler continues (paywall)…


NHL Network, TSN to air World Junior Summer Showcase; Wings will have 6 prospects participating at the WJSS

The World Junior Summer Showcase will take place in Kamloops, British Columbia from July 28th to August 4th. Michael Rasmussen (Canada), Joe Veleno (Canada), Jared McIsaac (Canada), Keith Petruzzelli (USA), Alec Regula (USA) and Jonatan Berggren (Sweden) will represent the Red Wings at the annual evaluation camp for potential World Junior Championship team candidates.

According to’s Adam Kimelman reports that some of the games will be televised on the NHL Network in the U.S.; TSN will cover the tournament in Canada:


United States Blue vs. Sweden, 7 p.m. ET
United States White vs. Finland, 10 p.m. ET

Sweden vs. Finland, 4 p.m. ET
Canada White vs. United States Blue, 7 p.m. ET
Canada Red vs. United States White, 10:30 p.m. ET

AUG. 2
United States vs. Sweden, 4 p.m. ET, NHLN, TSN
Canada vs. Finland, 9 p.m. ET, NHLN, TSN2

AUG. 3
United States vs. Finland, 4 p.m. ET, NHLN, TSN
Canada vs. Sweden, 9 p.m. ET, NHLN, TSN2

AUG. 4
Canada vs. United States, 5 p.m. ET, NHLN, TSN
Finland vs. Sweden, 8 p.m. ET, NHLN (TSN2 tape delay, 11 p.m. ET)

Kimelman continues, mostly noting that the WJSS will serve as the formal draft-year debuts for top 2019 draft picks like Jack Hughes.

The WJSS was held in Plymouth, MI in 2018, and the level of hockey was excellent. If you live in British Columbia, or can watch the tournament on TSN, I highly recommend that you do so as the games are anything but “summer hockey.”

On Joren van Pottelberghe’s ‘upside’’s Arthur J. Regner spotlights Red Wings prospect Joren van Pottelberghe this morning, with Wings developmental goaltending coach Brian Mahoney-Wilson weighing in on “JvP’s” upside:

Quotable: “Joren’s a big goalie that got drafted in 2015 by Detroit and has developed the last couple of years in Davos and he’s slowly starting to develop into a No. 1 role in Davos. He has to have a big year this coming year in 2018-19, but overall last year he started off very strong with a 5-2 record. Up until November 15th, he was tied with the best stats in the Swiss League with Elvis Merzlikins, the Columbus Blue Jackets prospect who is from Latvia and he also lost in the NLA Finals. From there, Joren had a hiccup in mid-December where he let up seven goals against; it seemed to fluster him a little bit and what happened, the Davos team has a New Jersey prospect, Gilles Senn, he’s going to be a very good goalie, who’s probably going to come over a year from now into their system in Binghamton. He ended up taking over for Joren, playing in 14 of the last 16 games and also playing into the playoffs. From that point on, Joren became the backup.

“I actually went and saw Joren firsthand play in a game live in Switzerland and he played well, but his game from Christmas on wasn’t at the same level it was in the fall of 2017. From my standpoint, I met with Joren for a couple of days in Davos and expressed my interest in him and ways we could develop him further from the current ways he’s being developed in Davos. In the long term, he’s got one year left and hopefully he makes a bold statement with that organization and gets the majority of playing time over the New Jersey prospect, Gilles Senn, and by the spring of 2019, hopefully he puts us in a situation where we’re forced to force our hand and sign him. But right now, we have five other goalie prospects and two that we drafted this year from Sweden. A goalie in Filip Larsson at Denver, who’s a very good prospect; Kaden Fulcher, who just won an OHL championship; Keith Petruzzelli, who’s getting on a better track we think and hopefully he’s going to have a rebound year at Quinnipiac. So, it’s a tough road ahead for Joren, but I truly believe that he could do it. We’ll see, but that’s to be determined.” – Brian Mahoney-Wilson, Detroit’s goaltending development coach



Kulfan profiles Jonatan Berggren

The Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan authored a profile of Red Wings 2018 draft pick Jonatan Berggren, an undersized but highly-skilled Swedish forward:

At Skelleftea in the Swedish junior league last season, Berggren had 18 goals and 39 assists in 38 games. Berggren scored 22 goals in 26 games three years ago playing Bantam level in Sweden, and during the camp at Little Caesars Arena, showed a goal-scorer’s touch.

“Real speedy forward, great intensity, and he has a good feel for the net,” [Hakan] Andersson said. “We’re happy to have him for sure.”

And make no mistake, Berggren is glad to be in the Wings’ organization. As a youngster growing up in Sweden, Berggren was a big fan of the Wings, and specifically, Henrik Zetterberg.

“Oh yes, because of all the Swedes (on the roster),” said Berggren, after a development camp practice last month. “The Wings were my favorite team when I was a child. Zetterberg was my favorite player. I haven’t met him yet. I’m happy to be a Red Wing.”

But not happy, entirely, about the entire draft process. Berggren had a fine season in juniors, and was one of Sweden’s best players during the world under-18 tournament (five goals, five assists in seven games).

But despite the good offensive numbers and physical skills, teams passed on Berggren during the first-round of the NHL Draft.

“It was a little disappointing not to be picked (in the first round),” Berggren said. “I was sad. I had a good season. So to be picked by Detroit, it was amazing.”

Kulfan continues

A few afternoon Tweets of note

Of Twitter-related note this afternoon:

Griffins sign forward Bryan Moore

From the Grand Rapids Griffins:


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday signed forward Bryan Moore to a one-year contract.

During his three-year professional career, Moore, 24, has totaled 122 points (56-66—122), a plus-33 rating and 400 penalty minutes in 126 ECHL games between Utah (2015-16), Orlando (2016-17) and Allen (2016-18). He shows 15 points (6-9—15) and 48 PIM in 21 Kelly Cup Playoff appearances. Moore has also tallied nine points (3-6—9) and 53 PIM in 40 career AHL contests with San Diego (2015-16), Manitoba (2016-17) and San Jose (2016-18).

In 2017-18, the 5-foot-11, 200-pound winger played in 57 games with the ECHL’s Allen Americans and placed among the team’s leaders with 48 points (6th), 21 goals (2nd) and a career-best 27 assists (6th). His career-high 218 PIM paced the team and ranked fifth in the ECHL. Moore tallied two points (1-1—2) and 11 PIM in seven Kelly Cup Playoff games.

Moore also skated in seven games with the San Jose Barracuda last season and recorded six PIM.

A native of Indian Trail, N.C., Moore played three seasons in the Ontario Hockey League and two in the United States Hockey League prior to turning pro. In 181 games from 2012-14 between Sarnia and Sault Ste. Marie in the OHL, he posted 143 points (59-84—143), a plus-33 rating and 255 PIM. Moore skated in 92 games with the USHL’s Sioux Falls Stampede from 2010-12 and recorded 36 points (17-19—36) and 101 PIM.

With the release of the Griffins’ 2018-19 schedule, group tickets for all home dates at Van Andel Arena are now on sale, along with 2018-19 season ticket packages. Single-game tickets will go on sale to the public on Sept. 14. Fans can secure their full-season, select-season or group ticket packages by calling (616) 774-4585 ext. 2 or visit for more information.

Three things: Wings and Tigers partner to avoid sensory overload; Walleye sign a scorer; on friendship

Of Red Wings-related note this morning:

  1. The Red Wings and Tigers have partnered with a company called KultureCity to avoid creating sensory overload at their facilities:

You can read more about the partnership here;

2. The Toledo Walleye have made a player signing today, hoping to bolster their scoring with forward Greg Wolfe. From the ECHL:

Forward Greg Wolfe has agreed to terms with the Toledo Walleye for the 2018-19 season.

The Walleye are the ECHL affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League and the Grand Rapids Griffins of the American Hockey League.

A native of Canton, Michigan, Wolfe joins the Walleye following a year in Norway in which he collected 33 points (16g-17a) in 26 contests for Sparta Sarpsborg. Since finishing his college career at Michigan State University, Wolfe bounced between the AHL and the ECHL for three seasons. In 23 AHL contests, the 28-year-old tallied two assists playing in 23 games with Iowa and Albany. In 174 career ECHL games with Adirondack, Alaska and Reading, he has produced 139 points (55g-84a).

The biggest point production for Wolfe came in his rookie season with the Alaska Aces when he landed 60 points (22g-38a) in 59 games. In both 2015-16 and 2016-17 with Adirondack, he finished with 40 points and 36 points respectively. A captain in both his junior and senior seasons at Michigan State, Wolfe appeared in 147 games with 89 points (35g-54a). As a senior in 2013-14, he picked up a college best 31 points (13g-18a) in 36 contests. Wolfe was awarded the Big Ten Medal of Honor on June 6, 2014 after graduating with a 3.6 grade-point average.

3. This is tangentially Red Wings-related, but The Athletic’s Joe Smith penned an article discussing the friendship between Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper, now-Lightning assistant coach Derek Lalonde and Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill:

They​ call it​ the “Champion’s League.”

There’s​ no​ big-money​ purse for​ this informal golf outing​​ each summer in Michigan, but plenty of bragging rights. And bruised egos.

“You’ve got to have a really thick skin,” said Bob Daniels, long-time Ferris State University hockey coach.

The members you may know. Lightning coach Jon Cooper, 50, and Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill, 44, are the headliners, along with Daniels, who is dubbed “The Godfather” after his three decades on the Big Rapids, Michigan, campus.

Blashill’s brother, Tim, who works at Ferris with Daniels, plays, as does Lightning video coach Brian Garlock, a former Ferris student.

Another regular is Derek Lalonde, 45, who was recently added to Cooper’s Lightning staff as an assistant.

The story continues (paywall)

Eric Tangradi bids farewell to Grand Rapids

Eric Tangradi signed a 1-year, 2-way contract with the New Jersey Devils today, and the former Grand Rapids Griffins forward bade farewell to Grand Rapids this evening:

Wyshynski not optimistic about Wings’ rebuilding (or lack thereof)

ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski offered a set of “rebuild rankings” today, and he doesn’t feel very good about what the Red Wings are doing:

8. Detroit Red Wings

The strategy: Let us know when you locate one.

The Red Wings missed the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1983. That futility ended the following season when Steve Yzerman arrived in Motown, but there isn’t anything resembling that kind of transformative player on the Red Wings’ roster or in their system. The Gustav Nyqvist generation has yielded to the Dylan Larkin generation, which will yield to the Rasmussen and Zadina generation up front.

But the foundational defenseman the Red Wings have been seeking since the retirement of Nicklas Lidstrom still eludes them. At the very least, coach Jeff Blashill has stated he will defer to younger players when it comes to ice time if a roster spot is between a newbie and a veteran. “I say that because we need different results, and part of having different results is improving internally, and that can come with new guys being in spots,” he told the Detroit Free Press.

Is it working? It’s a roster with more players older than 34 (six) than under the age of 24 (five), so to call this a team in transition would putting it mildly. It’s also a team that currently has $2.828 million in cap space, and has entrusted the general manager who got them in this pickle (Ken Holland) with getting them out of it.

Estimated return to relevance: This is a team that needs to get worse before it gets better, purging the roster of veterans and cap space, and then hoping a combination of the draft and shrewd veteran acquisitions can position them as a contender. But the current management hasn’t inspired much confidence to that end. There’s way too much loyalty to veterans past their expiration date or, failing that, an overvaluing of them.

Wyshynski continues