Roughly translated: Pius Suter talks with about his opportunity to stick with the Wings

New Red Wings forward Pius Suter spoke with’s Oliver Jensen regarding his signing with the Red Wings and his expectations for the upcoming season (as part of’s analysis of the Red Wings as they stand today). What follows is roughly translated from German:

In the future, he wants to use his effective play in the service of the Detroit Red Wings. 25-year-old Pius Suter signed a 2-year contract [with the Red Wings] and should do his part to ensure that the once-glorious franchise becomes a successful team again after five years without a playoff appearance.

“I was a bit surprised,” says Suter of the Blackhawks’ decision to not retain him. The playmaking forward thus became an unrestricted free agent after last season, so the Chicago team could have kept him with a qualifying offer. They let the opportunity slip by.

Suter didn’t expect it. Nonetheless, it was clear to him that such personnel decisions aren’t uncommon in the NHL. “I knew this could happen. I didn’t think too much about it. It all happened very quickly. I didn’t get a qualifying offer and became a free agent.”

It was all the better for Suter as other teams immediately signaled their interest. He chose to sign with the Red Wings. “It’s a great feeling to be with this team now,” he said. “It’s a big team with a big history. It’s an honor to play for such a team. I will definitely enjoy it.”

Suter has positive memories of the Red Wings. On January 24th, he scored a hat trick against Detroit. It was the only game thus far where he’s scored more than one goal in a game, and his only game with three points. “It worked out well for me to play against Detroit,” says Suter, with a grin.

GM Steve Yzerman and coach Jeff Blashill may have remembered that game when they signed him. Because one thing is clear: the Red Wings must be more effective in front of the opposing goaltender. Averaging 2.23 goals a game, they averaged the second-worst goals for in the NHL. No Detroit player scored more than 11 goals last season. So that means that nobody was as effective as Suter was with the Blackhawks.

“I think he fills a need for us,” says Yzerman. “He’s a very talented player. He has good hands, a good understanding of hockey, and also a certain amount of versatility.”

It’s possible that Suter will play as the center on the second line. “I want to prove it to myself,” he says of the possible role. “That’s one of my goals. I try to score goals and improve myself. The team should grow in the same way. This way we can win more games and benefit from each other.”

Even if Suter has only played in one season in the NHL, he’s very familiar with the preparations NHL teams make for their seasons. In 2017 he tried his luck with the Ottawa Senators; in 2018, he tried out for the New York Islanders.

At that time, however, he was aware of the fact that making the leap to the NHL was slim. “Before, when I went to training camps, I always knew that I would go home afterwards,” he says. “It was just about gaining experience, learning from it and seeing what I had to do better.”

To outsiders, it may appear that Suter’s breakthrough season happened very suddenly. For himself, however, it felt completely different. “For me, it was just about getting a chance and showing myself. It’s not that my development went crazy in one year.” Rather, it was a long process that took years: “So I was a bit older when I got my chance.”

Now a new chapter is dawning for Suter in his still-young career. This is the first time that he doesn’t go into the preseason as a prospect, but instead, a potential key player on an NHL team.

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.