3 Best Detroit Red Wings prospects in the AHL playoffs (so far)

Over the last 2 games, these are the 3 best Detroit Red Wings players in the AHL playoffs for the Grand Rapids Griffins and why.
2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits
2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits / Minas Panagiotakis/GettyImages
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Marco Kasper

The first few Grand Rapids Griffins games I attended, I tried focusing on certain players. When it came time for Marco Kasper, I was stoked. 

Rögle buddies of mine had pumped up Kasper for so long I knew it was going to be entertaining watching him play. Learning his style and his quirks, it’s always fun with new players.

Something strange happened when I tried to focus on Kasper. For the life of me, I couldn’t.

Partly, it was my ADHD kicking in where I saw Berggren dancing or Edvinsson hypnotizing me with his skating for the umteenth time stealing my attention. 

Another part, Kasper was still finding his groove in the American Hockey League (AHL). 

Personally, I think Grand Rapids Griffins head coach, Dan Watson, took a while to learn Kasper’s style and the best linemates for him. As a new coach to the league with so many new players, it was completely understandable. Midway through the season both Watson got the hang of things.

From the second half of the season on, Kasper found a new level. He’s always had the effort, but now he’s finding the best ways to be effective on the ice. 

Especially in the playoff games thus far, Kasper’s breaking pucks out of his own zone, clearing his goaltender’s crease as well, if not better, than Grand Rapids Griffins defensemen, and mucking it up with anyone and everyone he can.

In the offensive zone, Kasper works just as hard. He’s winning board and one-on-one battles, while working his opponents over. I think it’s part of the reason Berggren and Kasper played so well together in the regular season. It’s also why I am impatiently waiting for Watson to put them back together again (or maybe staple Amadeus Lombardi to Kasper’s wing). He’s crying to put in the elbow grease with his pops of flare (as his shot and passing is underrated in this league) alongside Berggren or Lombardi.

I’m not sure when the offense will come for Kasper, but I know he’s playing the right way, and it’s a matter of time. In the 2 games thus far, Kasper has finished with 2 penalty minutes and a plus/minus rating of minus-1.