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While the Detroit Red Wings got their men in free agency, the fact remains that the Red Wings players—in the preseason at least—are still far from where they want to be as a team.
The Red Wings picked up Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss in July and re-signed a couple of their own free agents, including Gustav Nyquist, Joakim Andersson, Dan Cleary and Brendan Smith.
Detroit gets a boosted grade from having re-signed their restricted free agents. If this hadn't happened, the free-agency grade would be even lower.
Although Stephen Weiss was touted as a second line center that would replace Valtteri Filppula, Weiss has been unable to do that so far this preseason. Alfredsson has also been unable to contribute this preseason, sitting out a few games with a groin injury.
Head coach Mike Babcock stated after the Red Wings' recent 5-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins that the Red Wings don't look like they had any leadership, per Brendan Savage of MLive.com. Savage quoted Babcock as saying that the Red Wings "needed some guys on the top end of this group to lead the way and that never happened."
It is important to note that the Red Wings were without Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg and Niklas Kronwall, amongst others. When these players (i.e., the Red Wings No. 1 forward line) haven't played in the preseason, the Red Wings have been flat to say the least.
Although Weiss may end up yet doing a good job to replace Filppula, he will not give the Red Wings the breakout forward power that Filppula gave the Red Wings in his one 66-point season.
Maybe, but not yet.