Former Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg spent Saturday at the Ally Challenge in Grand Blanc, Michigan, golfing with Jack Nickalus, Kid Rock and Dierks Bentley as part of the “Celebrity Shootout.” Zetterberg also reflected on his retirement, his recent move back to Sweden and his take on the Wings’ prospect tournament:
“We made a move to Sweden this summer. I’m not really sure how it’s going to be. Obviously, we’re happy to be back with family and friends and start a new chapter in life. I came over here for a week. I’m going to come over in October for a couple of weeks. We will probably come over three or four times during the season and be around.”
After watching some of the NHL Prospects Tournament and the start of Red Wings training camp in Traverse City, Mich., Zetterberg is also of the belief that people are going to pleasantly surprised with what the team has to offer this season.
“I would say it’s a little deeper this year,” Zetterberg said. “I think if you look at the D end, I think we have some young kids that are really going to push for spots. We made some nice additions.
“Health-wise, you have to be healthy. If we’re healthy, the D’s gonna be great. And then the forwards, we all saw what the three kids (Larkin, Anthony Mantha, Tyler Bertuzzi) did last year — they’re not really kids anymore, are they? But they’re gonna be one more year in the league. I just hope they keep going and taking their steps.
“I think getting (center Valtteri) Filppula back is going to be real big for us. If you look at the center position all the way through, it looks real solid. I think we’re going to be better this year, definitely deeper. But we all know the league is tight. It’s a hard division. But we’re going to win more games. I can promise you that.”
Update: Also, from NHL.com’s Pat Pickens:
Nicklaus’ team won $18,000 for the United Way of Genesee County, and Zetterberg’s side earned $7,000, which he and Bentley donated to the Genesee County Habitat for Humanity. Zetterberg also accepted a $25,000 check for the Clark Park Coalition of Detroit.
Simply playing nine holes with Nicklaus was a thrill for the 2008 Conn Smythe Trophy winner.
“It’s obviously an opportunity that I could never turn down,” Zetterberg told the Red Wings website. “I was a little nervous, but it was very exciting.
“It’s pretty special. I never thought it would happen, but here we are today, and I’m getting to spend time with him.”