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How Each Offseason Departure Will Affect Detroit Red Wings

Isaac SmithAnalyst IJuly 14, 2014

How Each Offseason Departure Will Affect Detroit Red Wings

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    Paul Sancya/Associated Press

    The Detroit Red Wings have retooled this offseason. Unfortunately, much of this retooling has come via subtraction and departures rather than additions.

    The two one-way contract "signings" that Detroit made were re-signings of Kyle Quincey and Dan Cleary.

    But forget about the re-signing of Quincey and Cleary for a moment. Instead focus on the subtractions that come from letting players go in unrestricted free agency. 

    Here is how each offseason departure will affect the Detroit Red Wings in 2014-15.

     

    All numbers courtesy of NHL.com or CapGeek.com.

Jordin Tootoo

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    Duane Burleson/Associated Press

    Background

    Jordin Tootoo did nothing wrong to merit the Detroit Red Wings using a compliance buyout on him. He just simply didn't fit with the Red Wings in an offensive sense.

    Tootoo signed a three-year deal with Detroit two years ago. Coming off of a 30-point season with the Nashville Predators of all teams, Tootoo looked to be a solid fit on the third-line right-wing spot. 

    But Tootoo didn't get enough ice time (just 9:04) in his first season in Detroit, and his production struggled, with him netting just three goals and eight points. Tootoo was averaging just over 13 minutes in Nashville and was a healthy scratch most nights in Detroit.

     

    How Will His Departure Affect the Team?

    Simply put, his departure won't affect the Detroit Red Wings' NHL organization. Tootoo was a great fighter, but he just couldn't find a way to get consistent ice time from Mike Babcock. 

    Nothing against Tootoo, who has proven himself in order to get to the NHL, but Babcock just didn't see fit to use him in as many situations as he was used in Nashville.

Todd Bertuzzi

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    Dave Reginek/Getty Images

    Background

    Todd Bertuzzi's exit in Detroit was part of the "youth movement" of sorts that happened when Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar and other young forwards began pushing for roster spots this past season.

    Bertuzzi was still effective in power-play situations with six power-play goals and seven points with the man advantage overall. But it was his even-strength numbers that made the one-time 97-point man expendable. 

    Bertuzzi had just three goals and nine points in even0strength situations, while playing almost 12 minutes of even-strength ice time last season.

    His shootout numbers (one goal in seven attempts) also dipped last season from other years in which they had been as high as 50 percent. Detroit scored just 11 goals on 51 shootout shots, putting them 26th in the NHL in shooting percentage in the skills competition.

     

    How Will His Departure Affect the Team?

    Bertuzzi, for all of his struggles to get on the scoresheet consistently last season, helped others find the scoreboard with his ability to get to the net.

    Big Bert got to the net on a consistent basis and screened goalies, allowing Detroit's skilled players to find open ice that they would not have had otherwise. 

    Although his shootout numbers were bad last season—mostly due to the NHL revamping Bertuzzi's favorite "spin-o-rama" move—Detroit will have to figure out how to score in the shootout without him.

Mikael Samuelsson

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    Brian Babineau/Getty Images

    Background

    Mikael Samuelsson played 26 games last season due to injuries and being benched. In those 26 games, he had just one even-strength point.

    That point was a goal, the Red Wings' first of the season. After that point, Samuelsson had just two points, both assists. Both came on the power play.

    At a $3 million cap hit, per CapGeek, there is no way that the Red Wings could justify keeping him around.

     

    How Will His Departure Affect the Team?

    Samuelsson's departure is a breath of fresh air for Red Wings fans. Simply put, one can't pay a player who doesn't perform to expectations.

    Although Samuelsson had some glory years in the late 2000s, helping Detroit win a Cup and come within a win of repeating as champions, he is past his prime and doesn't fit in Detroit.

    His departure is nothing to sweat over, and the Red Wings will have plenty of talent to help replace his void next season.

Daniel Alfredsson

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    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Background

    Daniel Alfredsson signed with the Detroit Red Wings on a one-year deal in 2013. He was under the impression that the Red Wings represented his best option to win a Stanley Cup and ride off into the sunset on what had been a pretty solid career. 

    Unfortunately for Alfredsson and Detroit, no Hollywood director could script the number and impact of injuries that hit the Red Wings last season.

    Alfredsson led the Red Wings in points with just 49, 18 of them on the power play.

     

    How Would His Departure Affect the Team?

    Alfredsson is one of the only older forwards that Ken Holland has any interest in bringing back. But, it is about just that: Alfredsson's back.

    Is it healthy enough to take the struggles and toils of another NHL season?

    Should he be healthy and if he wants to return when healthy, it would give Detroit a huge boost on offense and on its power play.

    The Red Wings don't have a true, bonafide right wing to speak of in their first- or second-line spot, and that gap would only be magnified if Detroit doesn't re-sign Alfredsson.

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