Red Wings of Tomorrow is assessing every prospect in the Detroit Red Wings system and what they are projecting to be in the future. We’ll be looking at the strengths and weaknesses of their game, as well as what the future holds for them as they advance through the Detroit organization. Today, we look at defenseman Wyatt Newpower
How Acquired: Free agent signing in 2021
2021-22 Stats: (GP G-A-Pts) 53-3-7-10 (with Grand Rapids Griffins).
Contract Status: Second year of two-year deal; $800,000 AAV ($70,000 in the AHL)
Anticipated 2022-23 Team: Grand Rapids Griffins (AHL)
When Wyatt Newpower broke his hand last season while playing for the Griffins, he played with it for four games before he left the lineup.
“He’s a little bit of an old soul,” Grand Rapids Griffins coach Ben Simon said. “He plays with his heart on his sleeve.”
Simons says simply the Griffins got more than they anticipated from Newpower after the Red Wings signed him as a free agent. He had turned pro the previous season after graduating from college. He played a limited number of games for Cleveland in the AHL.
— Grand Rapids Griffins (@griffinshockey) April 11, 2022
“We didn’t know if he was that sound of a defenseman in Cleveland because the AHL was a little watered down last year, it was a little younger, wasn’t that much depth,” Simon said. “So he blew our expectations away this year. He’s got a little bit of a throwback mentality. He’s a little bit old school. He blocks shots. He’s defensively sound. He’s got some offense to him.”
The Red Wings like his mental toughness and the fact he knows how to use his 6-foot-3 frame. “I’ve got a lot time for Wyatt,” Simon said.
Estimated Time of Arrival in Detroit
As much as Simon appreciates what Newpower offers, the clock is ticking on Newpower’s prospect status. He played all four years at the University of Connecticut. He was 23 when the Red Wings signed him and he will be 25 in December.
Newpower is not a high-end prospect, but Simon has some hope he can play in the NHL. Newpower makes you notice him.
“He works extremely hard and he’s a great team guy,” Simon said. “We’re looking forward to having him back next year and seeing what steps he can take this summer to become an NHL player. He’s a big body that can skate pretty well, gets around pretty well. He’s got a bright
future as well.”
Defenseman Wyatt Newpower skated in his first season as a Griffin and logged 10 points (3-7—10) in a career-high 55 games.
— Grand Rapids Griffins (@griffinshockey) July 7, 2022
Simon said Newpower boasts physical tools that you don’t see in today’s game.
“He’s got a little bit of that throwback mentality where coaches really appreciate that,” Simon said. “Coaches and players have a lot of respect for that.”