HSJ offers 10 thoughts on the Wings

The Free Press’s Helene St. James offers a set of 10 thoughts on the Red Wings’ first 10 games today, and among here thoughts are the following items:

Rated rookies: [Lucas] Raymond and [Moritz] Seider are garnering early talk for the Calder Trophy, the rookie of the year honor awarded by members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association. Players from the same team have finished as Calder finalists before  most recently in 2014. That year, Ondrej Palat and Tyler Johnson of the Tampa Bay Lightning finished behind Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon. Likewise, in 2008, Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhawks finished in the top three, with Kane winning. The last time two Wings were finalists came in 1948, when forward Jim McFadden beat out teammate Red Kelly on defense.

In the Nick of time: What a difference defenseman Nick Leddy has made. He’s an excellent skater, plays with a lot of calm and makes good decisions with the puck. He has added an offensive dimension to a blueline that sorely lacked it. Leddy came to the Wings in the offseason from the New York Islanders, who were in a bind because of the expansion draft. Yzerman took advantage by sending a draft pick (2021 second round) acquired in 2020’s Andreas Athanasiou deadline. That trade has yielded Leddy plus the returns in the original deal: veteran forward Sam Gagner and prospects Theodor Niederbach and Sam Stange.

Net gain: Thomas Greiss and Alex Nedeljkovic are forming a nice, dependable tandem in the crease. Greiss, who struggled at the start of the last season, has provided steady goaltending. Alex Nedeljkovic seems to be gaining his footing as he adjusts to coming over from Carolina. After giving up seven goals in the season opener, Nedeljkovic has a .930 save percentage and 2.22 goals-against average in five appearances.

Continued (paywall); as St. James notes, the Wings’ special teams are still an issue, and not a good issue…

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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.