Red Wings Free Agency: Ryan Suter a Perfect Fit for One Reason—Family

Isaac SmithAnalyst IMay 10, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - APRIL 29:  Ryan Suter #20 of the Nashville Predators in action during Game Two of the Western Conference Semifinals against the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Arena on April 29, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Coyotes defeated the Predators 5-3.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Detroit Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch and Nashville Predators defenseman Ryan Suter have more in common than they might realize.

For Mike Ilitch, family has always come first; a close second could be his sports teams winning.

Ryan Suter was quoted on as saying that "Wherever I sign, I want to be there for the rest of my career," he said, "and that affects my family, my wife, my kid, if we have more kids…everything plays into it."

Well Mr. Suter, welcome to the Detroit Red Wings.

Given, Suter joining the Red Wings is far from official and might never even come to pass.

But given the management that Detroit is under with Mike Ilitch and company, Ryan Suter can certainly be assured of a "family friendly" atmosphere.

Mr. Ilitch started a family business (Little Caesar's Pizza) and has seven children of his own.

Ilitich has been instrumental in bringing players on as scouts and other personnel after their playing days with the Detroit Red Wings are done.

Ilitch loves bringing both current and former players into his "hockey family" of sorts. The Red Wings have a habit of giving players a chance to finish their careers in Detroit regardless of how many seasons they might have left.

Names like Steve Yzerman and Nick Lidstrom come to mind.

By Ryan Suter's comments, we might expect him to give Detroit some serious thought.

Here's a recap.

(1) The Detroit Red Wings have a lot of salary cap space to use this offseason—upwards of $20 million to be exact. They also have 17 players on their NHL roster for next season.

This means any player they re-sign will get a significant chunk of that money.

(2) Hockeytown is one of the most family friendly environments thanks in large part to Red Wings' owner Mike Ilitch.

(3) The Red Wings are apt to signing players until they retire, and Suter says he wants to retire with the next team he signs with.

So Mr. Suter, how about it?

Come wear the Winged Wheel and we'll show you what being a hockey family is all about.

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