Two of the newest Detroit Red Wings, center Andrew Copp and Ben Chiarot, were previously teammates with the Winnipeg Jets. Last week, while attending the same wedding and with both heading into unrestricted free agency, they joked about forming a union of their own again.
“I saw Chiarot at a wedding about 10 days ago,” Copp recalled. “We were just kinda joking around. The full market hadn’t really kinda set out yet. Hadn’t had those deep of conversations yet but kinda joked about it. But otherwise had no idea how many guys he was going to add.”
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) July 13, 2022
Two of six UFAs signed by Detroit over a two-day span, Copp feels that effort is displaying just how close Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman feels his group is to being a competitive club.
“I felt like he would do a few more but to the extent he did, I think it kinda shows the belief that he has in the group and the guys that he’s adding,” Copp said. “It feels like the next step is ready to be taken.”
Griffins Sign L’Esperance
Detroit’s AHL farm club, the Grand Rapids Griffins, were adding another forward with size. They were recently inking 6-foot-2, 215-pound center Joel L’Esperance to an AHL contract.
L’Esperance, 26, played with the Dallas Stars organization since the 2018-19 season. He’s from Brighton, Michigan. Last season he was posting a career-high 49 points (24-25—49) and 30 penalty minutes in 62 outings with the American Hockey League’s Texas Stars.
Throughout four seasons in the AHL, the fifth-year pro accumulated 80 goals, 56 assists and 92 penalty minutes in 183 games. L’Esperance represented Texas at the 2019-20 AHL All-Star Game.
Red Wings In Case You Missed It
- Anticipate intense battles for roster spots in the Red Wings training camp
- Detroit GM Steve Yzerman is putting his club in a realistic position to compete in the NHL
- Former Red Wings defenseman Marc Staal found a home with the Florida Panthers
Hockey Now Network
Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh Hockey Now’s Dan Kingerski writes that Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ron Hextall handcuffed himself from making the team better via his commitment to UFAs Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin.
Vancouver: Ilya Mikheyev talking to Vancouver Hockey Now about signing with the Vancouver Canucks.
Calgary: There’s bitterness amongst Calgary Flames fans over the departure of forward Johnny Gaudreau.
Montreal: Kent Hughes, GM of the Montreal Canadiens, won’t be trading defenseman Jeff Petry unless the deal makes sense for his team.
Boston: The thought of playing for the Boston Bruins feels great to Pavel Zacha.
Philadelphia: Winger Nic Deslauriers is excited to be part of the Philadelphia Flyers.
Washington: The Capitals are viewing Dylan Strome as the ideal second-line center.
Florida: Nathan Staios is hoping to prove the doubters wrong with the Florida Panthers.
Colorado: It’s been two days since UFA season began in the NHL and Nazaem Kadri hasn’t signed anywhere. Does this mean he will be staying with the Colorado Avalanche?
Vegas: Dealing away Max Pacioretty, the Vegas Golden Knights freed up cap space to sign Reilly Smith and Brett Howden.
Islanders: Max Pacioretty is the last NHLer to escape the grasp of the New York Islanders.