Sebastian Cossa has a place in the Detroit Red Wings rebuild

The Detroit Red Wings were eager to grab a goaltender of the future in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft. General Manager (GM) Steve Yzerman would work a deal to trade up for goaltender Sebastian Cossa with the fifteenth overall pick in the draft. He flipped the Red Wings' later first-round pick from Washington and two later picks for the Dallas Stars' first-round selection.

Cossa was someone the Detroit Red Wings felt was worth the value, and after his performance this season in the Western Hockey League (WHL), it sure seems like it was a good call. The Red Wings draftee is a win away from capturing the Memorial Cup and taking home a championship with the Edmonton Oil Kings.

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He's stood on his head; the stats show that. So does this clip from Twitter that shows Cossa doing everything he can to keep the puck out of the back of the net.

Not to mention, Cossa was named his division's nominee for the Goaltender of the Year award handed out in the WHL, and he was more than deserving. He played in 46 games for the Oil Kings during the regular season, producing a 33-9-3 record while managing a 2.28 goals-against average (GAA) and a .913 save percentage (SV%) in 2021-22.

He's kept that type of performance up in the postseason, where he's been an astounding 15-2-0 with four shutouts while producing a 1.98 GAA and .914 SV% for the Oil Kings as they have gone on a run towards a championship. Cossa has been exceptional, which has to leave the Red Wings faithful excited for what he could bring to Hockeytown.

Detroit Red Wings draftee Sebastian Cossa has a place in this rebuild.

The Detroit Red Wings have not had the best luck with netminders in recent years. Jonathan Bernier had a “flash-in-the-pan” type of season before getting moved to the Carolina Hurricanes for Alex Nedeljkovic. While Nedeljkovic was expected to be a Calder candidate, it is simply not the case.

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He took some significant steps back in 2021-22, and with Cossa signing his entry-level deal already, there's a chance that he fits into the rebuild sooner than would have been expected. They will not rush him; the Red Wings will let him develop and take his time.

But do not be surprised to see him start rising through the ranks and get a promotion to the Grand Rapids Griffins to see how he handles the jump from the WHL to the AHL. Cossa's got the size and the tools to be a quality netminder, and the Red Wings obviously believe in him after trading up to take him; it's now a matter of him putting in the work.

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Cossa's 6-foot-6 and weighs in at 209 pounds, so the size piece is there. He's known to “play big,” which is something that Andrei Vasilveskiy does with the Tampa Bay Lightning. While Vasilevskiy is not 6-foot-6, he's got a big appearance and swallows up pucks.

While having an outstanding defense in front of him helps, Cossa will look to perform similarly when he gets to the NHL level. With the size advantage, he can also be someone who swallows up pucks, avoids too many rebounds, and gets the job done in the crease for the Red Wings.

It's not going to be 2022-23, and the Red Wings will need a stopgap netminder to pair with Nedeljkovic. Cossa is not the guy right now, but he will keep working on his development and climb the ladder towards making the Red Wings roster.

Sebastian Cossa has a shot to be the Detroit Red Wings goaltender of the future.

He's got the makings of a future NHL goalie; the question is if he can get there. Goalies often struggle to make that jump from the semi-professional/junior leagues into the AHL/NHL levels. Take a look at Filip Larsson, who stood on his head for the University of Denver en route to a National Championship at the NCAA level.

His contract expired, and he's no longer with the Detroit Red Wings. It's not to say that Cossa is in danger of falling off the cliff, but he's got a lot of excitement around him, and the Red Wings are going to view him as a piece of this rebuild.

Cossa is the goaltender of the future; he simply has to keep climbing the ladder, maintaining his skills along the way. Right now, it is a matter of when not if.

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