The Detroit Red Wings are dealing with a myriad of issues resulting in a record of 5-7-2 in December.
Between injuries to key players like Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Jimmy Howard and Darren Helm, and dealing with the spectacle from the upcoming 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, Detroit has managed to hold onto its wild-card spot.
Injuries have also allowed the Wings to use the injured reserve designation to tiptoe around their ongoing salary-cap issue. Zetterberg, Helm and Howard have all returned as of Monday, but Johan Franzen, Stephen Weiss and Jonathan Ericsson have all landed on injured reserve.
Detroit needs to ensure it will possess the cap room to get healthy. It has time, as Weiss currently resides on the long-term injured reserve after undergoing sports hernia surgery, but when he returns after the Olympic break, so does his $4.9 million cap hit.
By the time the March 5 trade deadline rolls around, general manager Ken Holland’s hand will be forced and a move will have to be made. With seven roster players scheduled to be unrestricted free agents in the offseason, it would be a shame to see them all go without something in return.
Fans worship players but can turn on them at the drop of a hat. As is the business aspect, it’s the nature of the beast. Here are five Detroit Red Wings who should be on the trade block.