The two previous seasons have both illustrated this in some shape or form, whether it be injuries that never quite seem to heal properly, or just a seeming lack of effort in the postseason when they need it the most.
It's no surprise then that rumors were circulating all summer about who GM Ken Holland might go out and get in the free agent or trade markets, and who might be leaving Motown and playing for a different team next season.
After a 4-0 start, however, those voices seem to be growing a little fainter with each win on the young season.
But 2011-12 season aside, who might the Red Wings go after in the 2012 offseason? And who might Ken Holland go after to help the Red Wings go deeper in the playoffs this year?
Read on to find out the five young guns who could make a substantial impact if Detroit picked them up via a trade.