Red Wings’ Yzerman Seems Ready to Make Blockbuster Move

Things around the Detroit Red Wings might seem quiet at the moment with the offseason ready to kick into high gear in short order. But don’t think for a second GM Steve Yzerman isn’t up to something.

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Just look back to last season. Who saw the Anthony Mantha deal coming? In typical Yzerman fashion, he saw an opportunity to get a good return for someone in Mantha that ultimately wasn’t part of their long-term plans.

In addition to draft picks, the Red Wings got Jakub Vrana in the deal. He’s under team control for two more seasons. Although he was limited to 26 games this past season, he scored 13 goals which would have put him on a pace to score over 40 in an 82-game season. With an expanded opportunity and good health, Vrana could eventually reach that plateau.

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This is the way Yzerman works. He does a great job of keeping everyone guessing as to what he’s thinking. Very few clues slip out. Even the most connected insiders can’t get a read on him. That’s the way he likes it too.

A Blockbuster Feels Inevitable

I don’t know about you. But don’t you just get the feeling that Yzerman is up to something? We don’t know who or what he’s up to. But I can’t shake the feeling that he’s going to strike a blockbuster move of some kind that’s going to catch everyone off guard. It feels way too quiet around the Red Wings to not think something is up.

Steve Yzerman, Detroit Red Wings General Manager
Steve Yzerman seems like he’s up to something big. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Look at the current situation around the Red Wings. They have ample cap space. Their financial flexibility is astounding given where other teams are at. This opens up a whole host of options for them. Basically, they can pursue any situation they want to because of how well off they are in that aspect.

Now why would the Red Wings want to pull off something massive? In short, it’s time. It’s time for them to get to the next level of their process.

The Red Wings have added quality pieces through the draft. They have the reigning Calder winner in Moritz Seider. They also has Simon Edvinsson eventually coming. That defense is going to be set for a long time.

Then up front, Lucas Raymond appears to be the real deal. If not for Seider we could have had another Calder contender on the team to consider. Then in net, Sebastian Cossa is coming off a stellar season in the WHL.

The Red Wings are flush with high-end future talent. There’s no question about that. But now they need to proceed to the next step. It’s time to put a team around them.

Examples of Blockbuster Moves

With over $35 million in available cap space, the Red Wings have the money to go huge. They also have other assets available to if they want to pull off a big trade.

Consider some of the things the Red Wings could do that is not out of the realm of possibility. Let’s say Johnny Gaudreau tests free agency. Why not consider the Red Wings? They can offer the term, dollars and situation that Gaudreau would be interested in. It’s also exactly the kind of move Yzerman is capable of pulling off.

Johnny Gaudreau Calgary Flames
The Red Wings could easily afford Johnny Gaudreau in free agency should it get there. (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

What about Gaudreau’s teammate Matthew Tkachuk? If the Flames can’t get anything done in terms of a new contract, the Red Wings could eventually become a suitor here too. That’s what having financial flexibility does.

If the Nashville Predators can’t agree with Filip Forsberg, watch the Red Wings. Yzerman can afford to pay up. Why wouldn’t he consider one of the best scoring wingers in the game?

What if Yzerman wishes to pursue a trade? Why not look at the hometown kid Alex DeBrincat? The Blackhawks aren’t going to want to pay what it will take to keep him if a rebuild is coming. Would the eighth pick be enough for the Blackhawks to consider? If Yzerman can secure a long-term contract, why wouldn’t you do that?

Related: 5 Most Logical Trade Destinations for Blackhawks’ Alex DeBrincat

The Red Wings can afford a new DeBrincat contract, easily. Add that sniper to Raymond and captain Dylan Larkin and you have a crazy fun line waiting to unleash on the league.

Endless Possibilities

Yzerman’s plan is working to perfection. They have talent at all levels of the Red Wings. They have oodles of cash to spend if they find a desirable outcome. They are more than ready to take the next step under a new coach in Derek Lalonde.

Not only can they afford every big name on the market, they can afford to add depth pieces. It’s really starting to look like the early days of the Lightning under Yzerman’s watch, isn’t it? From a fan’s perspective, it’s hard not to be excited about where these Red Wings are going. The possibilities are truly endless.

The Red Wings also have a top-10 pick in this draft to add to their talent pool. There’s plenty of good centers available should they go in that direction. They could also dangle it in a trade to land an elite talent. When you allow Yzerman the chance to control the situation, good things usually happen.

In Conclusion

It might seem a little too quiet around Yzerman and the Red Wings at the moment. It’s anything but quiet within their walls. Knowing his past history, it suggests that something big is coming. It might be a blockbuster trade. It might be a huge free-agent signing. It could be both.

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Something is coming though. The Red Wings have to start to parlay what they’ve built into more winning. The time has come for them to take the next step in their development. Knowing this is a big sign that moves are coming.

The conditions are exactly right for Yzerman to drop massive blockbusters on the league. When the dust settles, the Red Wings will be well on their way to becoming the NHL’s next juggernaut.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.