Restricted Free Agents: Mitch Callahan and Andrej Nestrasil have re-signed with the Detroit Red Wings on one-year, two-way contracts.
Mitch Callahan ended his last season fourth in points and second in goals, while Andrej Nestrasil ended his season fifth in points for the Grand Rapids Griffins.
Both players were drafted by the Detroit Red Wings in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft and neither player can be sent down to Grand Rapids without going through waivers this coming season.
Mitch Callahan made his NHL debut last season with Detroit in March and played about nine minutes in the loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Andrej Nestrasil has not played a game in the NHL, but could get a chance to do so this year.
With Mitch Callahan and Andrej Nestrasil having to clear waivers before being sent down to the Grand Rapids Griffins in the AHL, the Detroit Red Wings are in a bit of a bind.
The Red Wings only have one more roster spot on the offensive side of the puck, which will be filled once Tomas Tatar and Detroit comes to an agreement on a contract.
Tomas Jurco can be sent down to the AHL without having to clear waivers, but he was a solid forward for Detroit last year and the only way he should be sent down is if Detroit re-signed Daniel Alfredsson.
This effectively puts Callahan and Nestrasil on the outside looking in, which means they will probably play another year in the AHL. Mitch Callahan could be a call-up candidate during the season if a couple of players in the bottom six get hurt, but the fact he will once again have to clear waiver could work against him. Andrej Nestrasil does not have a legitimate shot at playing in the NHL this season, but he has gotten better each season.
Because of that we could see both players in a different sweater next year if they are claimed off of waivers from Detroit, but I doubt either one will end up being claimed if/when they end up going through waivers because by then most NHL teams will have a finalized roster heading into the season.
Re-signing both players was important to shoring up their depth in the AHL, but I doubt either player will be truly happy unless they receive a shot to make the team this coming season.