The Detroit Red Wings head into the preseason with a good mix of young talent, tremendous experience and a few new faces.
The Red Wings had a surprising playoff run last year, defeating the No. 2 seeded Anaheim Ducks in seven games and then pushed the eventual Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks to overtime in Game 7.
A lot of new faces are members of last year’s AHL Calder Cup champion, the Grand Rapids Griffins, and are knocking on the big club’s door. The additions of veterans Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss in place of departed forwards Valtteri Filppula and Damien Brunner create a glut at the forward position.
Detroit also chose to bring back forward Dan Cleary, thickening the plot for those hoping to secure a roster spot.
Injuries to key players and lack of production from others led to opportunities for a couple prospects who are looking to build off of their performance and parlay it into a regular NHL spot.
This team knows it can contend now but with a logjam up front, how many of these budding stars can expect to see the NHL this season?
Let’s take a look at the realistic expectations for some of the Red Wings’ most notable prospects.