A thread for every player: Jamie McBain
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07-26-2012, 05:48 PM
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: The Triangle
Originally Posted by
Say what you want about the last 5 years--but of their top 8 scorers, only Todd Bertuzzi at number 6 was a non-Redwings draft pick. 8 of their top 11 forwards by TOI are Detroit draft picks. Add in the goalie as being homegrown as well, and I think the Wings are the prime example of drafting, developing and keeping homegrown talent.
The Wings are the prime example of hitting gold once or twice a decade, and riding that reputation through years and years of poor drafting.
No doubt that their 1989-91 was incredibly productive, largely based on their being the first to really take advantage of the talent hidden in Europe. But from then until 1998, they were a very average drafting/developing team with their big "hits" being McCarty, Dandenault and Eriksson. That's nothing to brag about for a 6-year period.
Then they had another good stretch, grabbing Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Kronwall in successive seasons. But it's not like those guys arrived in Detroit as superstars. The fact that the Wings were in a phase of signing every major UFA they could find, and icing a team stocked with Hall of Famers, allowed their prospects an inordinate amount of time to develop risk-free outside the NHL. That's not just a great development program, that's an owner who is spending megabucks to keep rookies off the NHL roster.
In the dozen years since then, and particularly since the implementation of the salary cap, the Wings have drafted over a hundred players and none have turned out to be anything special. Their few hits, guys like Filppula and Hudler and Quincey, have either been traded or have been fantasy-traded a million times by Wings fans.
It's not like they're Columbus-level terribad, but the Wings have generally been a very ordinary drafting team in the past 20 years. Yet every year (thankfully less so lately) we hear how they are draft wizards. Every year Wings fans scoff at the idea that they will suffer from the aging of their core, on the basis that Holland will find more hidden diamonds to replace them. Guys like Tatar get elevated to "elite prospect" status based on te Wings seal of approval. It's ridiculous. Their record doesn't justify the hype.
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