The Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan filed a rare non-subscriber-only article on the News’s sports page today, discussing 5 players who Kulfan believes may make decisive contributions to the Red Wings’ 2021-2022 campaign. Among them are the following:
Danny DeKeyser — With DeKeyser it’s not about offense. But the defenseman should return to the overall game the Wings have relied on from him for the last nine seasons.
DeKeyser struggled early last season recovering from back surgery that cost him all but eight games during the 2019-20 season.
It took a while, and DeKeyser, 31, was held out of the lineup for a brief time to get healthy and stronger last season.
The rest worked. When DeKeyser returned, he gradually built to the point where he more closely resembled the player he’s been.
There will be a stiff fight for playing time on defense, and DeKeyser isn’t assured of a big minutes or even a spot in the regular lineup.
But given more time this offseason to get healthy, it wouldn’t be surprising to see DeKeyser return to the type of player he’s been throughout his career.
Continued with four more players; the estimate was that DeKeyser would need a full year to recover from his back surgery, and a return to “full strength” would bode well for the Wings.