Khan discusses the battle for roster spots at forward

MLive’s Ansar Khan discusses the ways in which the Red Wings’ roster is shaping up as the team’s final cuts ahead of the regular season:

“Ultimately, the message is generally the same from the general managers – we’re not going to have a young guy come in here and play eight minutes. It doesn’t make sense,” Blashill said. “There’s always a lot that go into those decisions. It’s never as simple as one guy is tad bit better. You got to worry about your depth, you got to worry about the development of everybody, you got to worry about what’s going to put your best team together for the opener against Tampa.

“It should be readily apparent to everybody out there from the impact they have on the game that they’re going to be able to help the hockey team to be a way better team. If you just see a flash here, or ‘he’s a good skater,’ that’s not good enough. The impact on the game is what matters most. Are they thriving or are they kind of surviving? Obviously, no decisions are as easy as that. There’s a gray area in between.”

Here is where forwards on the bubble stand:

Lucas Raymond: The fourth overall pick in 2020 excelled out of the gate with his offensive ability, making crafty seam passes on the power play, displaying a wicked wrist shot and collecting two points in each of his first three preseason games. He cooled off the past two games (no points).

This 19-year-old only makes the team if he is playing significant minutes, including the power play, in a top-six role. The club isn’t likely to keep him around just as a temporary injury replacement. When he makes the roster, they would want it to be permanent.

Chances are, he’ll start the season in Grand Rapids, logging a lot of ice time in all situations and continuing his development before being recalled at some point this season.


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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.