The Detroit Red Wings have been dealing with a good amount of roster juggling throughout the 2022-23 season. There has been a flurry of moves as players have come and gone from Detroit to Grand Rapids.
The recent player on waivers was Jakub Vrana, who has yet to play in 2022-23 after just recently returning from the NHL Player Assistance Program. The Detroit Red Wings saw him pass through, and he was sent down to Grand Rapids, where he has yet to make any progress.
However, the next player up on the waiver wire was Alex Nedeljkovic. The Red Wings had to make room for a Filip Zadina return and move away from carrying three goalies. Ville Husso has the starter job locked down, and Magnus Hellberg has been the team’s backup for Husso.
Steve Yzerman shocked a good number of people by waiving Nedeljkovic and even kind of started some panic amongst some fans. But the good news is that Nedeljkovic was able to make it through the waiver wire without getting claimed by any of the team’s around the league.
Detroit Red Wings goalie Alex Nedeljkovic survives waivers.
After Nedeljkovic passed through the waiver wire, going unclaimed, he was re-assigned to Grand Rapids to join the team’s AHL roster. It’s not his first time there this season, but a reset for Nedeljkovic to try and get back on track is probably a good thing.
Putting him on waivers was a risk, but it made sense. First of all, Nedeljkovic’s stats with the Red Wings in 2022-23 are horrible, a true step further in the wrong direction. He has a 2-4-2 record over nine games played. He managed a 4.09 goals-against average and a .880 save percentage.
Nedeljkovic has already been down to Grand Rapids in 2022-23, and during his time there, he was able to start getting things back on track. He settled in and started to find his footing. With Hellberg still around, being a Red Wings waiver claim of their own, sending him back through waivers would likely mean he would get claimed, so Yzerman rolled the dice with Nedeljkovic.
Between the rough start with his stats and a $3 million cap hit, it made it a bit harder for teams to just jump on the 27-year-old when Detroit waived him. Nedeljkovic remains with the Red Wings, aiming to be the goalie he was anticipated to be after a quality start to his career with the Carolina Hurricanes.
Nedeljkovic passed, and Yzerman emerged victorious once again. Trust the Yzerplan.