Detroit Red Wings shopping list for free agency: Zadorov, Stamkos, Lindholm

These 5 players are worth signing for the Detroit Red Wings and here’s why.
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game One
Edmonton Oilers v Vancouver Canucks - Game One / Derek Cain/GettyImages

As free agency approaches, I’m questioning who might the Detroit Red Wings need, want, or potentially help.

There are quite a few players who are available, all with varying degrees of compatibility and intrigue.

For me, there are important qualities that I search for and I seek someone who fulfills a void that we currently have (whether that’s with the parent club or their developmental leagues).

The Detroit Red Wings have quite a few options in free agency, but here’s who I think they should sign and why.

Who do you think the Detroit Red Wings should (or shouldn’t) sign?

Nikita Zadorov

Top of the list is Nikita Zadorovf. I need someone to believe in this team, and most importantly fight for his brothers (as Sebastian Cossa likes to put it). 

The Detroit Red Wings haven’t lacked much of a spine, literally other players break Dylan Larkin’s neck and there aren’t any repercussions. The closest anyone’s come to standing up for Larkin is David Perron, who notoriously went after some random opponent, instead of the 2 guys who caused Larkin to pass out on the ice (and possibly lose a pulse for a few moments).

I’m not sure how the team can learn to fight for each other, but I know that it starts with the veterans on the team. They set the tone and pace, of which none really have thus far.

Larkin tries when he’s not injured, Perron at times does, but we need someone consistent who is there to remind them of the value each other holds with the team and to continue to fight for each other. Zadorov is a huge part of this idea, so I vote he is the first guy that we sign as free agency opens.  

Steven Stamkos

Let’s get the gang back together, shall we?

If a player like Patrick Kane wants to join the Detroit Red Wings, there may be additional weight that general manager Steve Yzerman may bring to negotiations. Although seemingly minor, someone with his street cred holds tremendous value amongst hockey players, and should be a great bargaining chip.

Another appealing aspect might be comfortability by both parties.

Yzerman knows what to expect of Steven Stamkos, he understands the significance of his caliber of player and what it means to his team. Also, Stamkos knows that Yzerman builds dynasties. 

While there might have been contentious negotiations while Yzerman managed the Tampa Bay Lightning, there should be additional respect by both parties in that they know what each party values and needs to fulfill their duties fully.

It’s a long shot, but I think aside from Zadorov, Stamkos may have the highest impact on the team in the smallest amount of time.

Elias Lindholm

Let’s just collect all of the really great Swedes. 

One of those options would include Elias Lindholm, which might scare some fans away.

I, too, am apprehensive about the dollar amount and term that we would need to shell out to Lindholm, however, he’s exactly someone the Detroit Red Wings need.

Aside from a lack of center depth, he shoots right as well. Lindholm plays a 200 foot game, as Yzerman loves icing as part of his team. 

Although he produced his lowest number of points since the 2015-16 season, he is still likely to be an expensive, long-term investment. I’m not sure that Yzerman is ready to pull the trigger on that kind of situation, but if there’s ever a player to make that bet, Lindholm might be the best option.

Adam Boqvist

Of all the potential in the list of non-qu alified players (meaning players weren’t offered contracts, so they become free agents that any team can sign), I think that Adam Boqvist and the Detroit Red Wings are a match made in heaven.

It would be a great challenge for the Detroit Red Wings coaching staff. Since being drafted in 2018, he’s bounced around and hasn’t quite found his groove as an offensive, right-handed shooting defenseman. 

There are many question marks and concerns that I have with the Detroit Red Wings, developing defensemen isn’t one of them. If there is any team that can help a Swedish defender put all his tools together, my money is on the Detroit Red Wings.

Additionally, you might think that our team has enough defensemen, however, the Detroit Red Wings lack right-handed shooting defenseman. Currently, both the Detroit Red Wings and Grand Rapids Griffins don’t have an offensively-minded defenseman signed, either.

If Shayne Gostisbehere re-signs with the Detroit Red Wings, then he could fulfill the role in Detroit, but I like the idea of a reclamation project in Boqvist–kind of a “why not” option.

Carter Savoie

A former Denver Pioneer, I was introduced to Carter Savoie when I trekked up to Denver, Colorado, to watch Shai Buium, Antti Tuomisto, and Carter Mazur.

While I wasn’t his biggest fan, Savoie had flashes of skill and he’s worthy of a flier. At times, he and Mazur played well together. 

Savoie wouldn’t take a spot from a developing player, but could add nice depths as needed and decent leadership.

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