The Detroit Red Wings are closing in on the 2023 NHL Entry Draft. As they continue to get closer to draft day, they will have to figure out what they will do. With two first-round picks this year, there is reason to believe that Steve Yzerman may have something up his sleeve.
Even though nothing has been said that is concrete, the Detroit Red Wings may very well be looking to move around the draft board and make a splash. Contributor Ben Heydt had already written up the idea of trading up for Matvei Michkov.
But why stop there? Could the Red Wings be looking to move up even further? There could be a scenario where the Red Wings trade up and grab University of Michigan forward Adam Fantilli, who is supposed to be the no. 2 pick in this year’s draft behind Connor Bedard.
Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press mentioned in a piece recently about Fantilli that the team has interviewed him ahead of the draft and has reportedly expressed interest in him. The basis of the piece itself is also about landing him being phenomenal for the team.
The Red Wings would have to trade up to get him but have the resources to do so if Yzerman wants to make a splash.
Detroit Red Wings may trade up for Adam Fantilli.
Fantillli is an exciting forward prospect at the top of many draft boards, being the consensus no.2 behind Bedard. He had an exceptional year with the Michigan Wolverines, where he played in 36 games, scoring 30 goals and adding 35 assists for 65 total points.
He’s your prototypical future offensive producer. He will excel in the offensive zone, be able to put up the offense and fly around the ice with a shot to pair that should be exciting to many. He’s going to be a solid pick. With a cloud surrounding 1:1 with Bedard in the picture, Fantilli could be as good as many recent No. 1 picks, so moving up to get him could be big time.
The Red Wings have the facilities to do so, so why not consider it? Considering the team has a surplus of draft capital, it’s a move that deserves to be talked about. Currently, as the draft order has been nearly set, the Red Wings will pick 9th and 17th overall in the first round.
The Red Wings earned the 9th pick in the 2023 NHL Draft Lottery, and they have the 17th pick via the Vancouver Canucks (via the New York Islanders) from the trade involving Filip Hronek that was completed before this year’s trade deadline.
It would take a lot for the Red Wings to move up, but there may be something if they can swing a move with the Anaheim Ducks, calling up old friend Pat Verbeek. Even if it takes a lot, it might be something Yzerman considers, knowing how much draft capital he has.
Adding in a prospect like Fantilli, who could slot into the NHL roster right now, must be an enticing addition for the Red Wings to consider.