Not Making the Playoffs May Be Good for the Red Wings
The Detroit Red Wings are on the verge of missing the playoffs for the first time in 24 seasons. The Red Wings have been a solid team in the NHL since the early 1990s, winning four Stanley Cups in that time.
This season has been consistently inconsistent, with ups and downs over its course. Even though the points are on par with the last few years, the players are underperforming with the exception of Dylan Larkin. The team is older and running out of gas down the stretch with no clear goalie stepping out in front since Petr Mrazek returned from injury in mid-February.
Under current GM Ken Holland, the team has had their most success, making the playoffs 24 times. He has tried to keep the team together for the most part in keeping aging players for long past their prime such as Danny Cleary. He hasn’t made a meaningful trade since the team won the Cup in 2008. If the team does miss the playoffs this year, they need to look at making a change at the top and bringing in a different vision to lead the team into a new direction, including making the team younger to be able to compete in the future. Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Kronwall, and Franzen all are aging at a rapid pace and haven’t all played together in over a year. Management is trying to keep the team together with silly putty and tape. That approach isn’t working and hasn’t worked in some time and especially in a strong and young Eastern Conference. The team no longer has any good young talent to fill the holes that are popping up. The time for patch work is done. The team now needs to rebuild, especially with Zetterberg and Datsyuk contemplating retirement.
Maybe missing the playoffs and trading some players is a good idea to get the team to where they need to be. Fans may not like the idea of missing the playoffs, but fact is fact and the way Ken Holland has been running the team for the past several seasons has made it into one that cannot win, and they need to change course. Should Ken Holland be let go, maybe Steve Yzerman could be a possible replacement.
Red Wings owner, Mike Ilitch would love to bring back the former Red Wing captain and Hall of Fame inductee to run the team and turn them around like he did with the Tampa Bay Lightening. This could be what it takes to make the team a contender once more.