Derek Lalonde comments on the decision to waive Jakub Vrána

Inside the Article:

Derek Lalonde, coach of the Detroit Red Wings, stated that Jakub Vrána's absence during the current season was a factor in the team's decision to place him on waivers on Tuesday. Although the final decision to potentially lose a top-line winger without compensation belonged to general manager Steve Yzerman, Lalonde faced questions about the move during Wednesday's morning skate at Little Caesars Arena.

“We talked about it thoroughly,” Lalonde said. “Steve and I discuss everything together. We are on the same page on everything. Ultimately it’s Steve’s decision, it’s exactly why you probably need that manager-coach layer, but weighing everything, ultimately that’s what we came up with. 

“Really don’t want to go into the details of it, especially with the situation where Jakub is, in his coming back. Want to be kind of private, personal to him. But ultimately, we had to make a decision and that was the decision.”

Derek Lalonde – Media Availability

On Tuesday, the Detroit Red Wings placed forward Jakub Vrána on waivers. This move came two weeks after Vrána returned from the player assistance program, a service provided by the NHL and NHLPA to assist players and their families with mental health, substance abuse, and other issues. The 26-year-old Czech native has played in 323 career regular-season games, recording 98 goals and 91 assists.

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Why it Matters:

The decision to waive Vrána is notable as it follows his assignment to the AHL's Grand Rapids Griffins on a conditioning loan just last week. Vrána has only played in two games this season, scoring a goal and an assist in a win against New Jersey in October. He was not in uniform for the following game against the Los Angeles Kings due to personal reasons.

Jakub Vrána By the Numbers:

Jakub Vrána
  • Jakub Vrána has played in 323 career regular-season games
  • He has recorded 98 goals and 91 assists
  • The NHL and NHLPA have provided the player assistance program since 1996, offering players access to confidential phone lines and counselors in every city in the league.
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