Monday, July 02, 2012

My thoughts on Red Wings free agency so far

- Of the Red Wings three moves so far, the one I liked the most was signing goalie Jonas Gustavsson. He played OK for Toronto the last couple years, but there is an upside there, and he will push Jimmy Howard for the starting job. It wasn't like Howard was a sieve vs. Nashville in the opening round last spring, but he didn't come close to matching Nashville's Pekka Rinne. Howard was hurt late in the season - he was often brilliant before the injury. He did seem fine heading into the playoffs. His save percentage was under 90 percent, though, against the Predators. If the Red Wings are going to surge to the Stanley Cup title, or even make a decent run, they need better goaltending than Howard provided. Howard is on the last year of his contract. He should be motivated. It's not like Gustavsson is some aging journeyman - he is actually younger than Howard.

- I was surprised the Red Wings signed Jordan Tootoo. He is nasty little player. He doesn't score much, but sure gets into a lot of trouble on the ice. The Red Wings fans should enjoy this part of the game. He will crash the goalie (see below video)

- Mikael Samuelsson .is a right-handed shot for the Red Wings power play unit. He played the role extensively on this first trip with Detroit. He also scored key goals during a Stanley Cup run. Major knock on Samuelsson: He lacks consistency


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