Patience usually pays off. As Detroit Red Wings fans, we hope that’s the case moving forward. This past season Detroit fans finally had a playoff push to be excited for the first time in years in the weeks leading up to the trade deadline. Although the push was short-lived, the Red Wings gave the fans some hope, and hope isn’t something they’ve had in quite a long time. In the end, Detroit failed to qualify for the postseason for the seventh consecutive season, but that hope we experienced, albeit just for a few weeks, is something to build on as we head into the 2023-24 season.
Patience is often an afterthought in today’s tech-driven world. People are always looking to get the next biggest and greatest thing. It’s no different with sports. It’s also something that is running thin with a large part of the Detroit Red Wings fan base.
We hear about all of these top prospects but often fail to give them a chance to develop before we label them busts. Every player develops at a different pace. Some kids are ready and able to make an immediate impact as a teenager, while others might not find their way until they are 23 or 24 years old and things suddenly click.
The Detroit Red Wings remain committed to being patient regarding their top prospects.
Detroit Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman understands the urgency within the teams’ fanbase but continues to take a patient approach with the long-term goal of being a Stanley Cup contender in mind.
"“We all look around and you wish you had more of your prospects ready to go sooner,” Yzerman said in his end-of-season media session on April 14. “I think it’s most important to remain patient with them. Let them mature, grow up and develop as players at the right rate. Try to have a good environment for them whether they remain in college, junior hockey or finally turn pro.”"
Many injuries sustained early this past season allowed for a few unexpected NHL debuts. One of Detroit’s top forward prospects, Jonathan Berggren, received the call and quickly capitalized on his opportunity playing his way into being a regular on the roster. Berggren, 22, recorded 21 goals and 43 assists a year ago with the Grand Rapids Griffins in his first season in North America.
Berggren will find himself in a valuable top-nine role moving forward. The young playmaker started this year off with a bang, recording seven points in seven games before getting the call from Detroit. With the Red Wings, Berggren totaled 15 goals and 28 points over 67 games in his rookie season.