Detroit Red Wings: Filip Zadina’s offseason limbo could drag on

The Detroit Red Wings offseason is well underway, and it will be a busy one. They will have to figure out what to do with forward Filip Zadina, and the trade block might be the first stop for the winger. The issue with figuring out what to do with Zadina is that the team is still without a coach.

While the Detroit Red Wings are in the hands of Steve Yzerman, a new coach will likely get some input on what the roster looks like going into the 2022-23 season. Zadina has not lived up to the expectations, and it has been a rumor that he may get moved, but the offseason could stall things on that front.

The early timeline would lead me to believe that Zadina will wind up on the trade block, but no move will happen until closer to the season starting. If the Red Wings’ new head coach is someone that wants to keep Zadina, I’d expect him to play a bottom-six role and be in a bit of an ultimatum year.

After all, he is a restricted free agent, and the Red Wings will likely get him at a bargain cost, with 2022-23 being a chance for him to prove himself and prove he can be a valuable piece of the Red Wings roster. He needs to improve significantly if he wants to stay in Hockeytown.

Detroit Red Wings forward Filip Zadina’s uncertain future could lead to lengthy limbo.

Ultimately the Red Wings are going to have to make a decision with Zadina. The issue is that the decision is far from imminent. The team will have to figure out a head coach to be the team’s bench boss before they start putting together the roster, which leads to Zadina’s dilemma getting pushed to the side.

There are a few specific things that could happen. Let’s break this down into a decision tree. Here are the Detroit Red Wings options for Filip Zadina moving forward.

  • Option #1: Filip Zadina stays and signs, looking to bounce back and impress in 2022-23, essentially the “do nothing” option
  • Option #2: The Red Wings trade Filip Zadina and try to recoup any sort of value for the former first-rounder.
  • Option #3: The Red Wings extend Filip Zadina and hope that things pan out in due time.
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While all three options yield different results, the Red Wings will have to figure out what they need to do for their team moving forward. A contract extension does not seem accurate for Yzerman and the way he operates, but time will tell.

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After all, Zadina has spent parts of four seasons with the Red Wings, now failing to produce at the level that the team was expecting by this point. Zadina logged 74 games in 2021-22, where he scored ten goals and added 14 assists for 24 total points.

If Zadina is going to be kept around, the offensive tools have to shine more than they have. There must be a significant jump in goals in 2022-23, and he has to look more like the player the Red Wings thought they drafted.

However, I think Zadina’s days in Detroit are trending towards being over. It’s going to take time as hiring a coach will take priority, but once the team has its bench boss, expect Zadina’s name to be in the trade rumor mill frequently.

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I’d be on the watch for Yzerman to shop Zadina to see how he can change things up here with hopes for a bigger and better performance in 2022-23.

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