Detroit Red Wings: 3 pressing questions for the 2023-24 season

MONTREAL, CANADA - JANUARY 26: (L-R) Associate coach Bob Boughner, assistant coach Jay Varady head coach Derek Lalonde and assistant coach of the Detroit Red Wings Alex Tanguay, handle bench duties during the third period against the Montreal Canadiens at Centre Bell on January 26, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Montreal Canadiens 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
MONTREAL, CANADA - JANUARY 26: (L-R) Associate coach Bob Boughner, assistant coach Jay Varady head coach Derek Lalonde and assistant coach of the Detroit Red Wings Alex Tanguay, handle bench duties during the third period against the Montreal Canadiens at Centre Bell on January 26, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Montreal Canadiens 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Red Wings, Red Wings, Ville Husso
Apr 4, 2023; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Detroit Red Wings goalie Ville Husso (35) against the Montreal Canadiens during the second period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports /

Detroit Red Wings’ goaltending is a question in terms of performance.

At this point, anyone who has invested even the slightest amount of care into the Detroit Red Wings knows that the men ordered to stand guard between the pipes did a less-than-satisfactory job overall. Yes, Ville Husso performed admirably and, quite honestly, was the best player on the ice most nights.

The organization cut off the fat this offseason and let both Magnus Hellberg (17 GP, 3.29 GAA, .885 SV%) and Alex Nedeljkovic (15 GP, 3.35 GAA, .895 SV%) walk in free agency. Together, they combined for a total of 9 wins in the Red Wings 2022-23 campaign.

While Husso’s numbers were only slightly better at 3.11 GAA and a .896 SV%, his numbers trailed off dramatically after December, which could be explained by overuse and, later on, an abandon ship attitude after the team’s moves at the trade deadline, shipping out a few key players.

In the first three months of the season, Husso failed to drop below a .901 SV% despite posting a 12-10-1 record in those starts. The hope is that Husso can be a mainstay in net for the next year or two and buy time until coveted goaltender prospect Sebastian Cossa is fully developed into a player that can claim the net in the Little Caesars Arena.

This is a very attainable goal for both the player and the team to achieve if at least one viable backup can come in to spell a few more starts away from Husso, giving him rest while not hindering the team’s chances of winning.

Proven veteran James Reimer was signed along with Alex Lyon, formerly of the Florida Panthers. It seems as if Yzerman is putting his eggs in the hope that one of them will take the opportunity to earn a “1B” role in Detroit while simultaneously being the stopgap that they need to wait for Cossa to be the unquestioned starter.