After all the radio silence over the past couple of months, I still feel guilty when I’m out of touch for a while. It took over an hour to get home from Little Caesars Arena as South Lyon is a bit of a haul, and if you are interested, there’s more Wings news available this evening:
- Among the Red Wings YouTube channel’s offerings is this clip of director of player development Shawn Horcoff addressing first-day topics:
2. Also in the multimedia department, the Detroit News’s hard-working sports photographer, David Guralnick, posted a 78(!)-image gallery from the first day of development camp [edit: and Michigan Hockey’s Michael Caples posted a photo gallery, too /end edit];
3. The Detroit New’s Ted Kulfan took note of comments made by both Joe Veleno and Horcoff regarding the challenges Veleno faces as he “turns pro”:
“He had a great season last year obviously, making the world junior team, finishing first in points per game, fourth in the league in scoring,” Horcoff said. “(But) I was happy with his overall game. He showed a much better awareness in the defensive zone.”
“A lot of these young guys, they get drafted high and they think their skill is what is going to make them make the league a last a long time, and frankly, that’s not the case.
“Very few people survive on just offensive talent in the league. He’s going to be no different. If we’re going to be successful, he has to develop into a good 200-foot player much like Larks (Dylan Larkin). We used Larks as good example for Joe.”
Veleno has spent time in the weight room and feels he’s ready to take on the bigger and stronger players in pro hockey.
“It’s one of the biggest challenges coming from junior, managing how to create time and space on the ice and how to make plays at a higher pace,” Veleno said. “That’s one thing I’m definitely going to have to work on this summer and get used to next year. Guys are bigger, stronger, quicker. You have to be ready for that.
“Little things like cleaning up my game and playing more of the 200-foot game and being responsible in the defensive zone. Things like that will translate into the pros.”
4. MLive’s Ansar Khan filed a superb first-day-of-camp notebook, and he took note of Horcoff’s comments regarding Moritz Seider’s first day:
Seider’s size and mobility are what stood out to Shawn Horcoff, the Red Wings’ director of player development, while working with him for the first time.
“Today was more of a testing day than anything so we didn’t really do too much structured work,” Horcoff said. “Tomorrow we’ll start getting more into skating and some skill work. The end of June, especially for a guy like that that hasn’t really skated in a month, coming off the draft, the guys that actually end up going to the draft, it’s a tough little stretch for them. They had a good day today.
“We’re trying to give them every ounce of information that they can handle about what it takes to become a good pro and play a long time in this league. We’re here more for education than evaluation.”
After this camp, Seider will return home to Germany to train with his men’s league team, Mannheim. He’ll return in September for prospects tournament and training camp in Traverse City.
Then the Red Wings will decide where he’ll play in 2019-20 – either return to Mannheim or remain in North America with the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins. Owen Sound owns his OHL rights, but it seems unlikely the Red Wings would want him playing against teen-agers after playing with and against men in Germany.
Khan continues, discussing Zadina and Hirose’s injuries (hamstring and a “day-to-day” injury, respectively) and noting that the Wings made qualifying offers to several players and cut others…
5. Finally, DetroitRedWings.com’s Dana Wakiji posted a first-day notebook which adds a note regarding Jonatan Berggren, who remains a high-end prospect:
BERGGREN EXPECTS TO SKATE: It was a bit of a lost season for Jonatan Berggren, who played in just 16 games for Skelleftea AIK of the Swedish Hockey League.
“It’s a lower back injury I get from the season,” said Berggren, who did not go on the ice Tuesday. “It’s better now so it’s good.”
Berggren said he did not know exactly how the injury occurred, only that it was a stress fracture.
Right after the injury, Berggren said he was only able to do some biking and a few other things for 5-6 weeks, but then was able to train pretty normally.
“Before my injury, the season was good but I only play 16 games. It was tough but I got time to spend in the gym and get stronger.”
Berggren had three assists in those 16 games.
“(Berggren’s development has) been slowed obviously,” said Shawn Horcoff, the Wings director of player development. “It’s not an ideal situation for a kid to miss at least half of last season, if not two-thirds of it, and then not be able to train at full capacity, it’s not great. But he was healed up at the end of last year, their season finishes early over there, so he’s been able to put some good off-ice work in. I’m hoping that everything goes good and we’re going to see him this week.”