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So... are Wings really better next year?

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07-27-2013, 05:18 PM
  #1
InjuredChoker
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So... are Wings really better next year?

As offseason additions/subtractions pop on just about every thread, I though this one deserves on of it's own. As it looks like now moves are left (at least big ones) Kenny added Alfie and Weiss; likely Tatar too. Lost Flip, Brunner, Cleary. Don't count White as he wasn't regular.

I think Tatar is an upgrade over Cleary. The one we saw last season. Something like 35-40 points is my expectation for Tatar if he gets at least 3rd line mins with 2nd unit pp time, with high goals to assist ratio.

Weiss vs. Flip/Roy/Vinny/Grabo. This one is little trickier.

Vinny would have been the best fit imo, but not with those terms. 5 years is too much. 3 yes, 4 maybe, have to think hard about it, 5 thanks but no thanks.


Flip has had better ES production than Weiss, depending on what time period you look at. Kind of hard one in a sense that Flip's best season came at wing and his on-ice sh% is an outlier as of now and Weiss had injury-riddled season last year. But still, Flip has the edge here over the past 4 years or so.

Weiss has produced more but it can also be factor of more ice-time and Flip did miss fair amount of games in 09-11.

0.5 goals per 60, 9-10 season
0.47 in 10-11
0.86 in 11-12

That is how much Wings have outscored the opposition when Flip has been off the ice compared to Florida when Weiss has been off the ice. No Q, Flip had better support and better team and Weiss was relied on offensively and Florida was much better offensively when he was on the ice. Wings were better with Flip in 11-12, around same the year before and worse in 9-10 and also this season.

Weiss has definitely had to be the man in Florida, he was the one who had to carry the team, was closest to Franchise C they've had, the one who was up there against toughest assignments.

Neither has been very dominant possession player. Last year was actually Flip's best year possession wise, usually he's been one of the worst in top 6.

Weiss has been playing around 15 mins on ES per game in Florida. With Wings, that number may drop a bit as Dats and Z have only been playing around that much lately. May stay the same, it depends on how Babs rolls the lines, who he relies on pk and different assignments etc.

On to the pp production. This is where the major difference has come between the points with Flip and Weiss.

Flip hasn't been good on pp, last year he had the lowest pp production, even Cleary had twice better, though it's likely an outlier with very low sh%. He had p/60 in pp the previous years for 3.33, 3.38, 3.61. For Weiss the same numbers were 3.99, 2.64, 4.63. Weiss has played more on pp but generally, his production has always been better. Maybe Weiss could get that 2nd unit going if/when he ends up there.

Weiss has also been slightly better pker and generally used little more on it.

Hard to say on ES defense before we see Weiss under Babs, guess they are around wash. Same with skating.

Weiss is older and coming of worst season. Might be nothing, might be age has caught up with him. He doesn't play soft imo, though he isn't physical. Tries hard but that is likely to mean he will wear down sooner.

Arguments for Weiss

- better point production in total, more consistent record.

- fwiw, Wings brass clearly wanted him over Flip. Not that they won't make mistakes.

- Weiss isn't as soft. He isn't a tough guy but no softie, and based on his comments and actions, wants to win really bad.

- hockey sense, making players around him better, creativity. Just based on my observation and their pp production.

- now Weiss doesn't have to be 'the man', gets easier assignments. Wings crew also feel that with the support in Det, his best years are ahead of him.

Arguments for Flip.

- 'sometimes the devil you know is better than you don't know'. By Babs. We know what one gets from Flip. Not so with Weiss. How is that wrist from now on? How does his game fit, what happens to production with less ice time, etc?

- Weiss is little older and coming of bad season there is a risk.

- Flip has had better production ES per icetime. What if Weiss has only produced more bc of more ice time and bc no else could do it in Florida? Questions raised by RWN and very good ones.

- Flip doesn't take a lot of penalties and draws a fair amount of them. Some by diving, but still. Had best penalties taken/drawn relationship last year, that accounts a little.

- versatility, can play wing too.

Maybe something else on both sides what have come up but have forgotten now.



Next one, Grabo. Pavs friend presumably. Shot is good and not afraid to use it, better scorer than Weiss. Better ES production. Impressive possession numbers.

Knocks; Weiss has better hockey sense, uses linemates better, Grabo doesn't pk, needs to be put in situation to succeed. One might also raise big Q's as he wasn't claimed on waivers and still hasn't been signed yet. Clearly many teams didn't want him as bad as other C's in market. Not that GM's are always right in these cases (Semin says hi) but still. D isn't that good I guess.



Another thing to consider; Wings have basically 3 top 6Cs locked up for 4 years. Where does Järnkrok fit? Wing? Another smallish winger? Trade asset? 3C?

Which brings us to Derek Roy. No doubt, he isn't as good as aforementioned players. Good offensively but soft, D sucks and most certainly not doesn't have die hard attitude.

But he could have been signed for one year. Maybe Calle is ready then? Or maybe even better UFAs are available?

Now Weiss is pretty much guaranteed to be with Wings for most of his contract, I think. To the (bitter) end if he regresses much.

Planned on writing about Alfie vs. Brunner and D but this is already damn long post and I need some sleep.


Last edited by InjuredChoker: 07-28-2013 at 04:07 AM.
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Old
07-27-2013, 05:41 PM
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You said, to sum up ---
And then posted a novel.

No. I think the Wings, at best, are about the same as last year.
I'd have hope for Tatar -- but I expect more bad lines from Babcock. Wings could get a bounce from playing in an easier division. But we'll see.

Overall - Elite players are declining. Defense should be improved.

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07-27-2013, 05:44 PM
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Yep, definitely better. People seriously underestimate the necessity of a training camp and the development of a lot of our players. Obviously a ton depends on health, but good health permitting, this team will be competing for the division, I'd bet on that.

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07-27-2013, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
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Yep, definitely better. People seriously underestimate the necessity of a training camp and the development of a lot of our players. Obviously a ton depends on health, but good health permitting, this team will be competing for the division, I'd bet on that.
Every team gets a training camp

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07-27-2013, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedWingsNow View Post
Every team gets a training camp
But not every team is better, some are worse.

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07-27-2013, 06:01 PM
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I think they are better. Depends on the growth of youngsters and how the Big three play (Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Howard) who all had pretty good years without injuries. But they appear to have more answers in terms of scoring, are a little better two ways and have fixed the Second PP unit hopefully. Time will tell, but right now they are better in my opinion.

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07-27-2013, 06:09 PM
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You really should summarize your opening thread more so its more condensed.

I think we will be better next year.

I think Nyquist, Tatar, Dekeyser, and Smith are all going to continue to improve. I think Nyquist is going to force his way into the top 6 at some point. I think Weiss is an upgrade over Fil in the sense that he is a true center. I like what Alfie brings to team. Tatar should give a nice scoring spark to the 3rd or 4th line and some energy. I'm not worried about Dekeyser slumping too much he plays a careful and calculated game. It Smith goes back to how he looked on 11-12 or just gets settled I'm more that would be a huge plus too.

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07-27-2013, 06:14 PM
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I definately feel better heading into the season right now then I was last season. Alfie maybe older but I feel he might be an slight improvement over Brunner only because of his consistency, the only thing Brunner has over Alfie is age. Our top six definately feels stronger then is was last season, even with Abdelkader lined up with Hank and Pav. If we don't sign Cleary I think this season will be better for us as long as injuries don't destroy our lineup.

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07-27-2013, 06:40 PM
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Yep.

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07-27-2013, 06:53 PM
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I like Brunner, but it is hard to argue that next season Alfie won't be the better player.

Weiss is better because he is actually a 2C, and Flip is a winger.

Take out Cleary, Sammy...add Tatar, Helm, and another year + playoff experience for the D, and I don't see how Detroit isn't better.

If you add in the easier Divison and better travel, it sets up well for the Wings to succeed in 2013-14.

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07-27-2013, 07:33 PM
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I expect most things to be about the same, except the powerplay should improve, and that's enough to improve in the standings a few places.

I also like what this team did in the playoffs and with the young guns having more experience under their belt, a stronger showing isn't out of the question.

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07-27-2013, 07:55 PM
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Quote:
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But not every team is better, some are worse.
Wings are special, right? They'll benefit. Other teams will be worse.

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07-27-2013, 08:02 PM
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Wings are special, right?
They are my little snowflakes.

But I believe they have one of the better coaches in the NHL and the young defenders are going to benefit tremendously from that. He polished Ericsson into a passable #2, so my hopes for Smith, DeKeyser, and Kindl remain optimistic.

If you don't think Babcock is worth a damn, obviously more coaching contact, such as training camp, wouldn't sway your opinion.

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07-27-2013, 08:06 PM
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On paper, they are better. In practice, we'll see. I expect their winning percentage to be noticeably better, but injuries and other developments are always possible.

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07-27-2013, 08:14 PM
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Good stuff, InjuredChoker. Thanks.

My two cents:
  • Datsyuk & Zetterberg will be older. But that should be more than offset by Nyquist, Tatar, and Andersson being more experienced and (hopefully) earning more playing time.
  • Filppula/Brunner won't be back. But Weiss/Alfredsson should be just as good, if not better.
  • Helm should be back (hopefully).
  • Kindl, Smith, and DeKeyser will be more experienced.
So yes, on paper, I think we should be better next year.

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07-27-2013, 11:06 PM
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They should be better IMO, last year a lot of people especially on D got increased duties and in the beginning was a huge adjustment but as the short season got more mature so did the team's chemistry. If Cleary and Samulson can stay out of the the lineup I expect a better season than last.

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07-27-2013, 11:36 PM
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Datsyuk and Zetterberg are both a year older and no they won't get better with age.

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07-27-2013, 11:38 PM
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Originally Posted by alConn View Post
I like Brunner, but it is hard to argue that next season Alfie won't be the better player.

Weiss is better because he is actually a 2C, and Flip is a winger.

Take out Cleary, Sammy...add Tatar, Helm, and another year + playoff experience for the D, and I don't see how Detroit isn't better.

If you add in the easier Divison and better travel, it sets up well for the Wings to succeed in 2013-14.
Agree with this.

If we weren't going to use Flip as a 2C, his abilities are kinda pointless there. Since we will use Weiss as a 2C and we plan to stack D/Z together, that improves things. The kids are chomping at the bit to go get it, and they showed us last year what they could do.

As long as Holland and Babs let the youth movement happen, I think we're a better team.

And I think we underestimate the travel thing. It wears on you, to do it year in year out, for extra games every season because you make the playoffs, going back and forth from West Coast because it seems we can't avoid a series in Arizona or California every year. Eliminating that is A-Okay with me. Especially when our two best players are on the wrong side of 30, every little bit of rest and comfort will help.

I hope to jesus that Tatar gets a legit shot at the top6. I think he'd flourish there.

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07-27-2013, 11:45 PM
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Datsyuk and Zetterberg are both a year older and no they won't get better with age.
Not every player gets demonstrably worse every year, though. That's some HF obsession; when a player hits 30, every year it's "this player is older!" like they have some sort of degenerative disease...

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07-28-2013, 12:21 AM
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Not every player gets demonstrably worse every year, though. That's some HF obsession; when a player hits 30, every year it's "this player is older!" like they have some sort of degenerative disease...
That's because it's statistically true?

A look at the stats of players as they age shows that about 30, actually I think it might even be before 30, they start to decline in production. Plus, it's just reality. Hockey is a fast, tough, physical game with a long grueling schedule. Once you'e past your biological prime, the only real place you have to go is down. No one is saying they're going to suck, but to pretend like they aren't going to be a little slower and less effective is pretty delusional

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07-28-2013, 12:31 AM
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We lost speed, but added skill. I like the team on paper barring no Cleary. I think we improved slightly with DD get full reps in training camp and preseason. Plus if Sammy is healthy, that is also an improvement.

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07-28-2013, 12:57 AM
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We lost speed, but added skill.
With Helmer coming back into the lineup though that may balance itself back out.

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07-28-2013, 01:26 AM
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That's because it's statistically true?

A look at the stats of players as they age shows that about 30, actually I think it might even be before 30, they start to decline in production. Plus, it's just reality. Hockey is a fast, tough, physical game with a long grueling schedule. Once you'e past your biological prime, the only real place you have to go is down. No one is saying they're going to suck, but to pretend like they aren't going to be a little slower and less effective is pretty delusional
"Statistically" true isn't the interesting notion, though. We don't just want to know that there's a trend—we want to know if Zetterberg and Datsyuk will be examples of that trend. The implication is that Datsyuk and Zetterberg will be noticably worse next season, and we don't know if that will bear out. For Christ's sake... Zetterberg is 32. If we're talking about age-related decline in play, he's not in that age range yet. We should instead worry about his accumulated injuries.

and even if Datsyuk does decline this season, does anybody really think it'll be a big decline? I mean, this past season, Datsyuk was 10th in points. Do we really want to say that 34 was good enough to be one of the best players in the league (top 10 finish, fantastic defensive play), but 35 is the year that we shouldn't get our expectations up, because NOW Datsyuk is old? That seems arbitrary. What happens to a hockey player at 35 that doesn't happen at 34?

If we accept that age will instead be a slow decline in Datsyuk's overall play, then we don't have much to worry about for quite a while. 95% of his excellent play is easily a top 15 center in the league. At that rate, he'd be a tremendously valuable player for about 4 more seasons... at 39.

Like Zetterberg, we should worry more about Datsyuk being injured than getting old. He's still a great player and will be a great player next season.

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07-28-2013, 02:54 AM
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This ageing stuff on Z and D should even out by playing less games/month like last year.

The worst thing about ageing is recovery, this year they are all 1 year older but they also gets more rest to recover. So it evens out. And thats for all players in the 28-43(Teemu range.

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07-28-2013, 04:32 AM
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Yeah, D should be be better, Kronner and co should be more used to days without Lids.

D played pretty well down the stretch but I'm not sure if they can maintain that level for full 82 games.

But maybe even bigger question mark is the depth on D. One injury and Lashoff is in lineup. If he's anything like last year, that ain't good. Two injuries and Almqvist or something is coming up. Well he might be better than Lashoff, did look like that in minors.

Depth in forward is pretty good. D or Z can go down and still there is top 6 C to back it up. Maybe if both go down Franzen plays at C, didn't look that bad on the shirt stint. Depth at wing is good too, unless if the injuries strike bad and Babs uses likes of Drew Miller in top 6 instead of Tatar and Nyquist.

Hopefully Howie continues at least on level he played last year.

Alfie vs. Brunner. Will be interesting to see how Brunner does in coming years when he is signed. I say when bc I think he will be. I wanted him signed and if he plays on level I think he can play in future, I'd have signed him above Alfie; and used the caps space to sign D depth and/or package something for legit top 4 RD.

Alfie is better for one year, I think but that's about it. I see Alfie as around 50 point player, maybe little less on reg. season. Doubt Brunner scores much more which would give clear edge to Alfie. Only thing Brunner has on him is skating imo. Hockey sense, grit, D, leadership, postseason experience etc. all those fall on Alfie.

The one bad thing for Wings I see being the Olympics. Many players are almost lock for the team, and ofc they are the best players on the team and on the old side. Lot of stress and mileage coming up. It's going to take it's toll down the stretch, I think.

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