The CBC’s Elliotte Friedman is reporting that Detroit GM Ken Holland and Gary Greenstin (Pavel Datsyuk’s agent) have begun preliminary discussions about the possibility of the Wings signing Datsyuk to a contract extension.
Friedman, who met with Datsyuk’s agent earlier this week in Toronto, said that although he wouldn’t go into great detail, he does believe that Holland and Greenstin have “discussed the possibility of an extension.”
Greenstin also told Friedman that if Datsyuk returns to the NHL after next season it would be with the Red Wings because “playing with one team is very important to him.”
You can read Elliotte Friedman’s entire article here: http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/opinion/2013/04/30-thoughts-craig-mactavish-poised-to-shake-up-oilers.html
Obviously there are no guarantees that Datsyuk will re-sign with the Wings when his contract expires. However, the fact that Greenstin and Holland are even talking extension at this point should give Wings fans some hope that they still have a few more years left of #13’s dirty dangles.
If Pavel chooses to hang up his winged wheel and head back to Russia after next season I think he has earned that right. This isn’t Alexander Radulov we’re talking about here.
Nope, if Pav wants to finish his out his career in front of friends and family in the KHL that’s fine with me. My only hope is that happens when he’s 40… not 35.
But, if the Wings continue to sputter next season Datsyuk’s decision might be an easy one. The pressure is on Wings’ management to retool Detroit this summer and restore the team to its Stanley Cup contender status. If Holland can do that it might be enough incentive for Datsyuk to re-up with the Wings one more time.
At the very least it’s quite comforting to hear that if Pavel chooses to leave Detroit it won’t be to join his buddy Evgeni in Pittsburgh. Take that Ray Shero!