3 areas the Detroit Red Wings need to focus on improving this summer

Following what feels like a heartbreaking ending to a roller coaster-like season, the Detroit Red Wings have work to do to improve in three specific areas this summer.
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The Detroit Red Wings need to solidify their group of defenders.

The Detroit Red Wings need to tweak their backend this summer. With Moritz Seider set to anchor the group fresh on what is expected to be a massive new contract extension. Ben Chiarot, Jake Walman, and Justin Holl are all signed for two more seasons. Chiarot rebounded this past season after a horrible first year with the organization. Over the past few weeks, he found himself paired with Seider, and the two performed well together, but if the Red Wings want to go top-heavy, maybe elevating Edvinsson to play with Seider wouldn't be the worst idea. Edvinsson is only going to improve and looked every bit the part of a top-four defenseman with top-pairing potential to close the season.

Although Walman found himself on the outside looking in to close out the year, he and Chiarot will maintain their roster spots. That leaves (as of right now) Olli Maatta, Jeff Petry, Holl, along with, say, William Wallinder and Albert Johansson, to battle it out for the final three roster spots, assuming Detroit will only carry seven defenders to begin the season. Oh, and as he's not mentioned, I predict that the Red Wings will let Shayne Gostisbehere walk in free agency as they likely hope to replace some of his offense with Edvinsson.

So, without adding anyone that group doesn't seem much better than this past season, although having Edvinsson slotted in from day one will be an upgrade.

The Red Wings should look to add more of a rugged defender to this group if the price is right. Again, they will need to allot for contract extensions with Lucas Raymond and Seider, plus fill out their roster with players that will improve the club from this season. If you hope to re-sign Patrick Kane and bring in a player like Stamkos, as I mentioned on the page prior, and address what will be on the next page that doesn't leave a ton of funds to add a five or six-million defender.

One player I'd love to add if a deal could be done is Radko Gudas. He fills a couple of needs. Gudas plays a physical brand of hockey and plays with an edge, which is required in the postseason. Also, the Anaheim Ducks are currently in the early stages of a full-blown rebuild, so they might be willing to part ways with a 34-year-old defenseman who is under contract for the next two seasons. Gudas is also a right-handed shot and that is something Detroit should look to add as they have a plethora of lefties, they could use another right-hander. Gudas would make the perfect third-pairing partner for Olli Maatta and serve as a bridge-gap defender until Detroit's highly touted prospect Axel Sandin Pellikka is ready to debut. Gudas is also a right-handed shot, which Detroit should look to add as they have a plethora of lefties; they could use another right-hander.

This past season, Gudas averaged nearly 20 minutes of ice time per night with 151 blocked shots and 228 hits. He totaled six goals and 18 points over 68 games and maintained a plus-11 rating.