Detroit Red Wings Must Trust The Yzerplan
Ryan Griffin: I’ll tell you what, it’s a nice change of pace for the Detroit Red Wings now, who are two and zero at the time of the recording, going for three, against the Los Angeles Kings. We are about to bring in Shae Brophy, who you mentioned earlier, so I don’t know if you want to give him a more proper introduction, but he is waiting on our count to roll out the red carpet for him.
Matthew Bassin: I’m pretty sure you just did it. Bring the man in. Wait, I, man, I’m not even ready to see. Damn it, Shae, I’m not ready for you yet. And I got a different jersey on now I have to throw a hockey sweater over a basketball jersey. Who booked this? Who did this? This is not professional.
Shae Brophy: How’s it going? Can you hear me?
Ryan Griffin: Yes, sir.
Matthew Bassin: Yeah, buddy.
Shae Brophy: It’s always good to talk hockey, especially when the Wings are two and Oh.
Ryan Griffin: Yeah, buddy.
Matthew Bassin: Damn
Ryan Griffin: Talking about going for three against the Kings.
Shae Brophy: Yeah. I don’t know if you guys have been watching the game. It’s one, one right now. Adam Erne had a snipe of a goal so far tonight.
Matthew Bassin: No kidding. Already getting into 1, 1 already, huh? Yeah, we’re a little busy running a show. we don’t have it like that with ESPN. We got TVs in front of us, behind us, and all that.
We can just watch everything going on now. We aren’t that rich yet. We’ll have to talk to Jeff about that. Get some extra TVs put in our rooms.
Shae Brophy: We’ll get there.
Matthew Bassin: All right, Shae, so you have been the resident hockey man at DSN for a while. And we wanted to get you, especially with hockey season finally underway definitely.
I wanted to get you on here a few different times to talk about our beloved Detroit Red Wings. And just find out where we are and what our expectations should be coming to this year. We have talked about this a few different times Ryan and I. The other guys, when we had our podcast Sports Carnage where we were talking about its seasons of hope for the Detroit fan base in general between the Tigers, the Pistons, the Lions, and the Detroit Red Wings were, the fourteens have been so bad for so long.
The Detroit Red Wings were great for so long, and instead of getting ahead of the curve, they tried to hold on for as long as possible to that greatness. And it just took a terrible turn that everybody should have expected, but nobody did. And now we are digging our way out of that hole. And I hope that it seems like.
For Detroit, who has been so bad for so long, just in professional sports in general. We’re at a point where it looks like a bright future is coming where maybe all four teams are good simultaneously. Maybe we can be like Boston of the early two thousand, where everything worked for the Red Sox, the Patriots, the Bruins, and the Celtics.
I’m hoping we can get the same for the Pistons, the Detroit Red Wings, the Tigers, and the Lions. The Lions, we’ll see. But the Detroit Red Wings, what should expectations be this year under a brand new head coach, second year, third year? Second year with Iceman. The third year, second, third, they’re all melting. They’re all melting together now.
Shae Brophy: So, that’s a great question, Matt. It’s a good one to start with. For me, the biggest thing I’m looking for out of the team this year is I don’t want to put a points total on it, or they’re going to be this much better than they were last.
I just want to see improvement, especially from the younger guys on the team. They’ve finally got a good young core developed, or we’re trying to develop it, but we’ve got it established. You’ve got young guys, Dylan Larkin, Tyler Bertuzzi, who, of course, is out for the next four to six weeks now, you’ve got Lucas Raymond and Moritz Seider as well, and the other guys that you’ve drafted since Steve Yzerman got there.
So for me, this year, the biggest thing to look for the team as a whole is to show that they’re starting to move this thing in the right direction. It’s not a certain point number. It’s just improvement.
Matthew Bassin: It definitely makes sense, Ryan.
Ryan Griffin: Yeah. So how long until we can start judging the results instead of just the improvement? Like how long of a leash does Erne get? Cause I know the homecoming, the eyes are playing all of that. He here. Great. Yep. When does the if the Detroit Red Wings keep being bad because it sounds like you think they’re going to be pretty bad, at least this year, and then the coach just comes out and says the other day you don’t gain 25 points in one season?
Shae Brophy: Yep.
Ryan Griffin: So even he might not have such high expectations for his team this year. So, how, when can Detroit Red Wings’ fans expect to be in contention again, to be in the conference finals, to be maybe sniffing Stanley Cups? Let’s go one step at a time, buddy.
Shae Brophy: Let’s start talking about playoffs before we talk. Start talking about sniffing Stanley Cups.
Ryan Griffin: This is Detroit.
Shae Brophy: So, for me, that’s such a loaded question because there are so many different ways you can go with it right now. What’s, you can talk about what the team looks like five years from now? What’s it look like next year? Dylan Larkin and Tyler Bertuzzi aren’t under contract for next year, and that’s been a hot topic.
It sounds like you know both of them are going to stick around. I know Larkin says all the time he doesn’t want to play anywhere else. We’ve been down some tough negotiation roads with Tyler Bertuzzi in the past. Is he going to be around long-term? Is he a guy that you see as a long-term piece and the core of this team?
Those are the questions you have to start talking about before looking at where the overall direction of the team is going. As far as a leash for Steve Yzerman on this whole thing. It’s hard to say this has to be the year. This is year three of the ISR plant. It’s not something that just comes together overnight.
As we know, being fans of Detroit sports, these things take a long time, 35 years, in some cases, for other teams in Detroit. But at this point, I’m not going to say it’s this year or next year. It’s. recency bias is a thing for Detroit fans. I think that many of us are still living through what we saw Al Avila do to the Tigers over the last few years, and what’s left a pretty sour taste in many of our mouths.
Steve Yzerman has done great things as a general manager in the National Hockey League, and we’ve already seen some of that stuff since he’s come over here just in three years. His first draft pick was Moritz Seider, number six when he took over for the Detroit Red Wings. Overall, I remember watching that draft that night; there were guys on the board.
Three years is a long time. I can’t remember who it was exactly, but when six overall came up, and Moritz Seider was announced as the pick, I’m a hockey guy. I didn’t know who Moritz Seider was. So I hear that name come up at number six overall for my team. I’m like, Oh boy, this is not good, guys. I don’t know how this is going to go.
And now my point with that is that Steve Yzerman made that pick based on his. His research and his knowledge and Moritz Seider came in last year and won the Calder trophy, setting the NHL on fire. So Steve Yzerman knows what he is doing. He’s got a good game plan in place. The plan is a thing. The unfortunate thing is it’s not going to happen overnight.
It’s not going to happen over just one or two, or three seasons. It’s a long road, but we’re definitely on the right track. So I’m not ready to say that we have to put a lid on the ISR plan or give him a certain amount of time before calling it a failure. As I said earlier, I just want to keep seeing improvement in the team, and that’s the course we’re on right now.
Matthew Bassin: If it were just his legacy as a Detroit Red Wing alone, I would think that Steve Yzerman has the longest leash in sports history. We’re talking about one of the greatest, if not the greatest, captains in the history of sports Yankee fans can argue Derek Jeter, but. It’s not just his legacy here in Detroit.
It’s what he did in Tampa Bay before he came to Detroit. It’s what he turned that franchise into, which is a Perennial Cup contender, if not a winner. That is, Steve Yzerman built a franchise down there that is winning all these cups, whether he’s still there or not. He put so many of those pieces together that I think that, along with his legacy in Detroit, would lead fans who are so quick to want to get rid of the new regime every single time.
Whether it’s Casey or Campbell, it doesn’t matter. They are. If you’re not winning immediately, then we need you gone, which makes no sense because we’ve been so bad for so long. Maybe it’s time to have a little bit of patience and see if these guys know what they’re doing.
Nothing happens overnight, as you said. I think that Yzerman would have the longest leashes for what he has proven in Tampa Bay and what he did while here in the D.
Shae Brophy: Yeah, absolutely. And like you said, this is a, it’s a process, man. Their plan will take some time, but the results are already coming in.
Lucas Raymond comes in. Last year he was a Calder contender. Moritz Seider comes in and actually wins the Calder Trophy. And now you see it this year, Elmer Soderblom, who made the team out of camp this year, scored a goal in his first game as a Red Wing to judge and evaluate a general manager. I think the biggest thing is to see what kind of youth they’ve incorporated into the organization.
And so far, the results are outstanding for Steve Yzerman, and that will continue to build a core that the team can build around for the future. So right now, I don’t even want to say that his seed has got any temperature to it because it’s just too early on in the game, and the winds will come.
It might not be quite yet, but as I said, we are two right now, so that’s pretty stinking cool.
Ryan Griffin: Also, you absolutely mentioned guys like Larkin not being under contract, and in the NBA, we see a lot where teams will shed salary eyeing a certain free agent year so that they can make a push, to sign LeBron James or something.
Is there, if you’re going to look in your crystal ball, is there. Names like that that Detroit Red Wings fans can look to in maybe this free agency, next free agency, this trade deadline, or whatever to where you know it. But when the time comes for them to make maybe a big move, who are some guys that Wings fans can be an eye eyeing to put on that winged wheel?
Shae Brophy: That’s another, that’s a really good question, Ryan. Man. The thing about it is, first off, we have to figure out if Larkin will be a part of the future. Is Tyler Bertuzzi going to be a part of the future? Cause if those guys are not going to be around, those are your first two trade pieces. The unfortunate part is that if Larkin decides he’s not going to be around, he’s got a no-trade clause, so he’s got full control over whatever destination he would want to go to.
Like I said earlier, I don’t think that will happen. I think both of those guys have long-term pieces for Detroit, so those guys get taken off the table from any trade discussions being this early into the ISR plan. I think it’s too early to start shipping guys out the guys that Steve Yzerman has drafted, and the prospect will. I think it’s too early on to start moving those guys out for the big-time players.
You might wait until this free agency comes up after the season to make a splash. Some guys are out there, like Vladimir Tarasenko. I would imagine that you’re probably going to be looking forward to free agency because the defense has been pretty well. The future has been secured on the blue line in the draft.
So maybe you want to make a splash and free agency this year with, like, Tarasenko or whoever the big-name free agents are coming up, but I’m not talking about any trades unless it’s a guy who decides that maybe I’m not going to be in Detroit for after this season.
Other than that, you start getting your guys up from the prospect pool into the big leagues, and then you can make some minor moves here and there, but as far as trading big pieces or trading four big pieces, I think we’re probably a couple of years out on that timeline. So right now, we’re just going to sit with the prospects and let them get into the NHL.
Matthew Bassin: Am I crazy for thinking that there’s no chance Dylan Larkin goes anywhere? We’re talking about a Michigan man playing for his hometown team, wearing the Captain C that Steve Yzerman once wore. It literally does not compute in my brain that Dylan Larkin would want to if we were still as bad as we’ve been and gone nowhere.
Yes. But you’re talking about the captain of all captains who is now running the ship. You are wearing the same sea he was wearing. You are from the area. You grew up seeing this greatness in person. It just doesn’t make sense in my mind that he even wants to go.
Shae Brophy: And that’s all he is saying so far too.
We’ve only heard I want to stay in Detroit. I don’t see myself playing anywhere else. So the words are great to hear, but at the same time, he did go out and hire a new agency firm to represent him in contract negotiations before this season, one that’s notoriously much more aggressive in getting their players better value contracts.
Rightfully but at the same time, it casts just that little bit of a shadow of doubt in my mind. If it comes down to dollars and cents for Larkin, we know Steve Yzerman does not budge when he sets a high limit, and that limit’s not going to be beaten. So if Larkin’s actually going to try to hit a certain number, or this new agency group is going to try to hit a certain number, and Steve Yzerman says, We’re not going past this number, maybe, who thought Matthew Stafford was ever going to play somewhere than Detroit?
I don’t think it’s likely, but until that contract is inked and you see him in the Wing will for the next few years, it’ll be on the table. It’ll be talked about.
Matthew Bassin: All right. Speaking of Larkin, we know what we’ve gotten from in the past. There’s something that I haven’t seen from him yet, and I want to use this as the year. Is this the year that Larkin hits a point?
Shae Brophy: It should be he’s the guy that progresses every year in his development. His offensive skills can’t be questioned. When you start looking at overall points for his player, you have to consider a couple of things, such as teammates, especially linemates. We’ve seen the Larkin, Raymond, and Bertuzzi line dominate for the last couple of years.
One-third of that line now is out for the next month, Tyler Bertuzzi. There are many guys capable of putting the puck in the net on this team now, which is something we haven’t said in a long time. Larkin’s got some guys that he can play with and guys that can keep up with him because he’s a very fast-paced player.
If I were going to predict yes or no on that, just straight up, I would say yes, there’s a good chance that this will be the year he finally cracks a point per game. You must imagine Lucas Raymond’s going to continue developing. After the amazing rookie year that he had last year, who’s the four or the other guy on the outside wing going to be on this line with Bertuzzi Tuesday out tonight?
It’s Dominik Kubalik. I don’t know if that’s going to be a long-term thing, but you’ve got David Perron on this team, now you’ve got Filip Zadina, and you’ve got lots of guys to choose from. Larkin’s going to get his goals for sure. If he can find teammates that can keep up with him and produce with him on that first line, I will go 7.5 out of 10. This will be a point for game season.
Ryan Griffin: What are the biggest areas that the Detroit Red Wings need to improve? So I’m not a hockey guy, but for years I heard get bigger, get bigger on the blue line, right? And like we look at the Detroit lines like, all right, their defense is. Obviously, that’s where they need to get better for the Detroit Red Wings. What’s the area I guess I need the most improvement in?
Shae Brophy: I think that would be defense. You saw last year with the new goal-tending in Alex Nedeljkovic. He’s a group, a really good goalie, but man, he gets hung out to dry so often, and that’s not a goalie issue. That’s a defense issue.
The Detroit Red Wings were quite capable of putting the puck in the net. Last year they scored quite a few goals. They just couldn’t keep the other teams from scoring more goals than them. And in hockey, that’s a problem. They’re constantly getting hemmed into their zone. They can never get the puck out of the offensive zone.
And guys are camping out in front of the gold. Nobody’s able to move them so far through two games this year. It’s been a little bit different. You went out, and you signed Zdeno Chara. He’s there to move bodies, and that’s what he does. He even scored a goal, which is like super rare for him. But you got Ali Mah, who’s another defenseman, a big-bodied guy.
He’s not going to score you many goals, but he moves bodies. Excuse me. So I think that was a big area of improvement that was recognized, and they did a lot to improve that in the off-season.
Matthew Bassin: Speaking of you, you brought up the Del CVI. We have two guys vying for, being, our netminder going forward. And we’ve seen this dance before with multiple net minders, and who’s going to step up and take the reins and be that guy going forward for us?
We saw Chris Osgood and Mike Vernon way back when we saw this play out before. And the Delage. Husso. Thank you. That’s what I thought. I just wanted to make sure. The two Ss throw me off as European.
If it were an American, it’d be hustle, but he is not American. So Husso’s in Nadal? Do you see one of them? I know it’s early. We’re three games in right now. But do you see one of them really taking the reins of being the netminder going forward?
Shae Brophy: It’d be great if one of them would, honestly, because it’s hard to see. You don’t see many NHL teams succeed at a high level.
If you’re right, in every other game, a new Golder, if one of these guys, I think, Husso is probably the guy who was brought in here, to be the guy to take it over and run with it. Nadal. Naic is good. Who is better if you look at the way they play, who so is very positionally sound? The guy you saw a lot of times last year, Nadal Kic, made many crazy acrobatic saves, which look awesome, but he has to make those saves because he is not in the right position.
If you look at the highlight reels and if you’ve watched any Billy who, so over the last couple of years in St. Louis, he doesn’t make a whole lot of crazy, fly across the crease and grab the fuck out of midair saves because he is always in the right spot. So I think if you’re going to look at it for which one is better straight up, that guy is probably Ville Husso, and that’s not to take anything away from Nada.
Because, as I said, he’s very athletic, and he’s good at the NHL coal tending position. We saw that in Carolina. Unfortunately, we didn’t really get a good look at that last year because he was hung ultra dry. So often this year, and excuse me for just one second, I get so excited about hockey I lose my voice.
Matthew Bassin: We’ve been there, trust me.
Shae Brophy: So, as I said, I don’t want to take anything away from Naic. He’s a very good NHL goalie. And now we’ve got two very good NHL goalies. But I think Huso was really brought in to be the guy for the job. He got the start on opening night and pitched a shut-out. So that didn’t hurt his case for that, either.
Matthew Bassin: No, definitely not. It is rare, but we’ve seen it. I think Tampa Bay did it for a little bit. I think Chicago did it for a bit where they had two very good goal tenderers, and you just kind of had to pick your poison on who was going to be hot that night and ride them out.
Shae Brophy: Yeah, it works.
Sometimes you don’t see it happen very often, and I think it’s for that reason. Goaltending, it’s hard on its own. And it’s a very. Position, you have to get a good feel for it. If you’re not in a good groove, you’re not going to stop a lot of pucks. I think that’s why we see NHL gold tenderers.
50-30 is a good split for any good season. If you get a really who’s so playing 50 games, and then you give it Allic or whoever it might be, the other 32, that’s a pretty fair split. And that’s that, that’s what I’m looking for this year. And it’ll be interesting to see what they want to do moving past this year because a Nadel ES contract is up after this year also.
So I don’t know if he will be a guy who’s pegged as a career backup goalie or what the plan will be there, but it’ll be interesting to see how that plays out after this season. Also,
Ryan Griffin: I can’t wait, try to get some, somebody back there to just be a stonewall.
Matthew Bassin: Go all over.
Ryan Griffin: Big goons.
Matthew Bassin: We got a few new names joining the Detroit Red Wings this year. Jakub Vrana, Andrew Cogliano. Dominik Kubalik, David Parr, and you talked about how the Detroit Red Wings can put the puck in the net.
So I wanted to get your assessment on these guys, and can we expect 20, 25 goals, maybe 30 for many of the guys I just listed?
Shae Brophy: With the first name you listed there, Jakub, I actually made five bold predictions for DSN last week. I’ve got him to impact at 40 goals this year.
And then, right after I do that, he misses tonight’s game for personal reasons. So hopefully, that’s not a long-term thing, but man, that guy has got so much puck skill. I don’t see any reason if he can play 75 or 80 games in the season. I don’t think it’ll even be a struggle for him to have.
So that’s what I’m looking at for Verana. I think he’s a guy who’s going to flirt with 40 goals this season. Dominik Kubalik, you brought him in two years ago. In his rookie season, he scored 30 goals for Chicago. Then last year, he had that sophomore slump and only scored 15 with a lot of talent around him.
He could. I don’t think it’s unfair to expect 20 out of him this season, his first year with Detroit. Andrew Copp is the guy who hit his career high last year, playing for a couple of different teams. He was traded at the deadline, but he scored 20 goals last season from an abdominal surgery that he had in the off-season.
But, 20 goals for a guy just coming into his prime. He’s done it once. I think you can expect that from him again this season. And I am missing one other person. Who was it? Perran? Yeah, Perran guy who flirted with, Yeah. David Perron almost scored 30 goals last season for St. Louis, and all he’s done in his whole career is score 25 to 30 goals in a season.
So somewhere around that ballpark would probably be a good bet for him as well. The cool thing about it is these guys are all capable of putting the fuck in the net and out. They’re all on the same team together. So, goal-scoring sounds so simple, but goal-scoring. Excuse me, man.
It’s not easy to score goals in the NHL, actually, but these guys are all really good at that, the guys that they brought in this off-season, and that’s the kind of thing that becomes contagious when you’ve got guys that know how to puck and put the puck in the net. They’re able to find their opportunities, and they’re able to make opportunities for other guys too.
Matthew Bassin: He said Puck Ryan, calm down. It might have been close. It was. I heard the P. I heard the P, so we’re good.
Ryan Griffin: I know, I don’t know, I don’t know. Puck in’s the word fix that post.
Matthew Bassin: I don’t know, that might be fun actually to start working that into every show telling someone to shut their puck-ing mouth.
You just have to make sure you say it real slow. It’s that first. Shae, we appreciate you joining us on Griffin and Bass. Obviously, we’ll have you on a couple more times, as the Red Wing season is just underway, and we’ll have a lot more to talk about going forward. We haven’t even.
On our new coach Thelan. We’re definitely going to get into that next time, though, so we’ll have you back next week so we can get some more Detroit Red Wings information out there for those dying for their ice news. And yeah, we appreciate you joining us on Griffin and Bass and can’t wait to have you on again.
Shae Brophy: Looking forward to it, man. Thanks for having me again. Go Wings!
Ryan Griffin: Yes, go, Wings. Watch them because they’re losing out. They stole you away.
Matthew Bassin: See what happens. You can’t stop Shae you gotta at least have the game on, like on the side or something.
Shae Brophy: It’s that stinking Ville Husso who even brought him to Detroit.
Matthew Bassin: Yeah. All right, Shae. We’ll see you.
Shae Brophy: All right, see you guys. Thank you.
Ryan Griffin: Have a good night.
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