Red Wings: The top three centers in the 2022 NHL Draft

With the Detroit Red Wings season in a free fall, it’s time to start taking a look at the prospects available in the 2022 NHL Draft.

For years now, the Red Wings have had a weakness down the middle of the lineup, and this year is no different. Let’s examine three center prospects in the draft that would immediately bolster Detroit’s depth in the middle.

Shane Wright

To anyone that’s even remotely following this year’s prospects, it should come as no surprise that Shane Wright is the best center prospect in the draft.

Captaining the Kingston Frontenacs in the OHL, Wright has 28 goals and 53 assists in just 55 games. After a somewhat slow start to the season (which is understandable, considering the OHL’s season was cancelled due to Covid last year), Wright has been on fire.

Offensively, Wright is just ridiculous. He possesses true top-end offensive IQ, made even more effective with his speed and skillset. Excellent shot? Check. Great edgework? Check. Great hands? Check. Surprisingly, he’s also not a slouch in the defensive zone (although this is obviously nowhere near his offensive ability). Wright is a fantastic prospect, and he has the makeup of being a true number one center in the NHL.

However, being essentially a lock at number one overall, it’s likely that Detroit won’t get a shot at Wright. The Red Wings have terrible luck in the draft lottery, so don’t expect that to change this year.

Logan Cooley

Right behind Wright on the draft big boards is Logan Cooley. Cooley has put on a scoring clinic in both the USHL and USDP. Combined, he’s scored 32 goals and 55 assists in just 61 games.

Cooley is exactly the type of center that the Red Wings desire  (or any organization for that matter). Of course, he’s highly skilled offensively, but he also possesses a strong 200 foot game. Offensively, he has great speed and playmaking ability. With impressive shooting and great hands, there aren’t many flaws in his game.

Again, while Cooley might be the perfect Red Wings center, he’s projected to go number two overall. A lot needs to go right for Detroit if they want to have a shot at Cooley.

Matthew Savoie

Matthew Savoie might have the best offensive toolkit in the draft . At 5-foot-9, he’s a bit undersized, but he makes up for it with ridiculous skill. He has top end skating, top end skill and a bevy of skill with the puck on his stick. Savoie is especially lethal on the power play.

With the Winnipeg Ice in the WHL, Savoie has 30 goals and 51 assists in 59 games. Needless to say, he’s putting on an offensive clinic. Any team would be lucky to get a prospect like Savoie.

Savoie is a slightly more realistic pick for Detroit, although they’ll still need some luck in the lottery.