We’ve seen a little bit of eveything over the decade with the Detroit Red Wings, eh? Playoff battles, individual break outs, and teams that didn’t come close to sniffing the playoffs. Through all this, players at each position have stood out at each position. Here is my best attempt at an “all-decade team” for the Red Wings.
Center: Henrik Zetterberg
576 games played, 131 goals, 354 assists, 485 points
Unquestionably the heart and soul of the Red Wings during the 2010s, Zetterberg retired at the conclusion of the 2017-18 season. He left the game after playing in a total of 1,082 games, with 337 goals and 623 assists, good for 960 points.
Right Wing: Johan Franzen
283 games played, 94 goals, 112 assists, 206 points
Quite fittingly known as “The Mule”, Franzen provided fans with numerous highlights during his time with the Red Wings. Though not officially listed as “retired” today, Franzen’s NHL career is over as a result of head injuries. Although he only played in 283 games during the decade, his 602 game career was complete with 187 goals and 183 assists. He left the game after providing fans with a four goal playoff game (2010 playoffs), as well as a five goal game (2011 season vs Ottawa). While Franzen was one of the more entertaining players of the decade, the fact that he makes the “all-decade” team despite only playing in 283 games shows that the team has been a little shallow at the right wing position over the past few years.
Left Wing: Justin Abdelkader
636 games played, 103 goals, 143 assists, 246 points
Sure, the last couple of seasons for Abdelkader have been…. rocky, shall we say. But, he’s scored 103 goals and 243 points this decade. It would have been easy to go with Tomas Tatar at this position, since he is overall a better player, but if you are looking to define this decade for the Red Wings, Abdelkader deserves to be a main piece of that conversation.
Defense: Niklas Kronwall
525 games played, 52 goals, 167 assists, 219 points
Talk about a no-brainer. Kronwall was the model of consistency for the Red Wings blue line during the duration of the decade. Most notably known for “Kronwalling” opponents with devastating body checks, Kronwall was a pure joy to watch during his entire career, all of which was with Detroit.
Defense: Danny DeKeyser
433 games played, 29 goals, 90 assists, 119 points
Not bad for an undrafted free agent out of Western Michigan University, eh? Over the course of the decade, DeKeyser has been one of the most consistent stay-at-home defenders the team has had to offer. On one hand, that may not be saying much. But, his ability to contribute to the team over the course of the decade lands him a spot on the all-decade team.
Goalie: Jimmy Howard
444 games, 206 wins, 2.59 goals against average, .913% save percentage
Another no-surprise pick here. Howard has been everything the Wings could have possibly hoped for him to be over the course of the decade. Although slightly spelled by former Red Wing Petr Mrazek, Howard quickly regained form after Mrazek was traded. Despite his name popping up in trade rumors seemingly every single season, Howard has continued putting up numbers. Although he’ll likely be let go in the near future (either by trade or free agency), his play over the course of this decade lands him a high-praise spot on this all-decade team.