As the NHL trade deadline approaches quickly, it is important to know where all of your division rivals stand. As Editor of Bleedin’ Blue, I reached out to the editors of our fellow Fansided NHL networks within the Central Division to get their input on where their teams stand. First up is Peter Fish, Editor at Octopus Thrower, as he sheds some light on where the Detroit Red Wings are at half way through the season and what they need to make a playoff push.
April 13, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; Detroit Red Wings defenseman Ian White (18) is congratulated after scoring against the Nashville Predators during the first period in game two of the 2012 Western Conference quarterfinals at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports
The Detroit Red Wings are a team that is still searching for a real identity in the Post-Lidstrom era. With the success that they have had thus far, they have managed to stay in the playoff hunt in a tight Western Conference. Do you think the Red Wings will be buyers or sellers at the deadline?
What I would like them to do is a bit of both. Ian White right now has no spot, and with Carlo Colaiacovo coming back soon the defense becomes even more crowded. If the Wings can off-load a couple players and bring in an expiring contract for a top 6 forward it would be perfect, but the Wings would have to give up a lot to receive that. In truth the Wings will probably stay put and ride this team until next season.
What are the biggest holes you see in their roster that need to be filled at the trade deadline in order to make the playoffs?
A top six forward. Justin Abdelkader is playing on Pavel Datsyuk‘s wing at the moment and most of the time it goes very, very wrong. Once Todd Bertuzzi returns from injury I will be happier, but who knows when that will be.
Do you think the Red Wings are a team that would take a chance on a rental player like Jarome Iginla if they were made available?
Right now, Calgary’s price on Iginla is too high, but that could change as the deadline approaches. Either way, I would like the Wings to take a shot at landing him.
January 22, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Dallas Stars left wing Loui Eriksson (21) and Detroit Red Wings defenseman Ian White (18) battle for the puck at Joe Louis Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Who on the Red Wings roster is on their way out of Detroit? Has anyone worn out their welcome?
Ian White, he never stops talking and Wing fans are sick of it. Mikael Samuelsson is on his way out as well, he is never healthy and most Wing fans just plain don’t like him.
Who are the untouchables on the Red Wings roster in your point-of-view?
How far do you think the Red Wings can manage to go this season? Are they a team that could make a surprise, deep playoff run?
The Wings have been very inconsistent this season, they have beaten very good teams and lost to the worst, but when playoffs roll around everything changes. The Red Wings always have a chance to go deep into the playoffs because of Datsyuk, Zetterberg, and Jimmy Howard, but I don’t expect them to get past the second round this year.
There has been talk that the Red Wings have the advantage when it comes to signing prospect Dan Dekeyser. The Blues have also been rumored to be interested in the prospect. Do you think the Wings will be able to sign him? Why or why not?
He is from Michigan and I have a bit of insider knowledge about him, but where he is going is anyone’s guess. I do not think he wants to spend a lot of time in the AHL and would prefer to go right into the NHL and there are teams that will let him do that, the Wings won’t. The good news for the Wings though is that Jeff Blashill his former coach is the head coach for the Wings AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids which could sway Dan to sign with Detroit.
March 3, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Andrew Shaw (65) during the third period against the Detroit Red Wings at the Joe Louis Arena. Chicago won 2-1 in a shoot out. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
What are your feelings about moving to the Eastern Conference? Will the rivalry with the Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues going to be missed?
FINALLY! Blackhawks was a rivalry, then it wasn’t, now it is again, all I know is I won’t miss them. A rivalry with St. Louis? Come on, Wing fans never really considered anyone, but the Avs, Hawks, and, to a lesser extent, Sharks their rivals in the West.
What do you think the odds of a St. Louis Blues vs. Detroit Red Wings Stanley Cup battle in the next 5-10 years? Would that be something the fans in Detroit would be excited about?
That would mean the Blues would have to make it to the finals, something they couldn’t accomplish with the Great One on their team. Of course Detroit would be excited to meet the Blues in the finals though because it would mean another Stanley Cup banner hanging in the rafters of the Joe/New Arena (We will see about that, Peter).
As a Red Wings fan, what is your impression of this year’s St. Louis Blues?
The Blues’ goaltending is really hurting the team, but helping everyone else. The players are physical as always and Barrett Jackman is a thief for stealing Zetterberg’s Calder Trophy.
Next season will be a much different story than this shortened year; who, if any, of the Detroit prospects could make the team next season? Are there any names we should know?
Feb 17, 2013; St. Paul, MN, USA; Detroit Red Wings goalie Petr Mrazek (34) against the Minnesota Wild at the Xcel Energy Center. The Wild defeated the Red Wings 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
all have a shot to make the team next season. Out of them I believe Tatar, Nyquist, and Andersson have guaranteed spots, Sheahan and Almquist are tearing up the AHL right now and have an outside chance at making the big club, while Petr Mrazek will more than likely spend one more season in Grand Rapids.
I want to thank Peter for his time and information for this segment and welcome everyone to check out his work over at Octopus Thrower. Only time will tell, but the good fans of the St. Louis Blues still believe we have the upper hand on the Detroit Red Wings and look forward to all the battles with them in the future.
LET’S GO BLUES!