Albin Grewe recognizes that his opportunity to grow into a role with the Detroit Red Wings is now or never. The sands of time are running out on his NHL dream.
Not all that long ago, there was appearing to be a future for Grewe as a piece of Detroit’s puzzle. The fiesty 5-foot-11, 187-pound left-winger, selected 66th overall in the 2019 NHL entry draft, posted back-to-back 100 penalty minutes seasons with Djurgardens of the SHL J20 league.
He even scrapped with 6-foot-8 Elmer Soderblom during a scrimmage at the Red Wings’ 2019 development camp.
— SwehockeyGIFs (@swehockeygifs) August 24, 2022
A plan for Grewe to play for the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit fizzled out when the COVID-19 pandemic ended up scuttling the 2020-21 OHL season.
“It was tough,” Grewe told HockeyNews.se. “I would have liked to go over and play in the OHL. I think it would have been good for me to play over there high up in the lineup and get a lot of confidence, which was the plan.”
Toward the end of the 2020-21 campaign, Grewe finally came to North America. He ended up playing 11 games for the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins, collecting two assists and six penalty minutes.
Finnish Placing Of Grewe Finished Early
Last season, the thought was for Grewe to spend the season with Ilves Tampere in the SM-liiga, Finland’s top tier. It was a similar plan to the method in which both Moritz Seider and Joe Veleno continued their development by playing in Sweden’s SHL.
In Grewe’s case, though, things went off the rails almost from his day of arrivial in Finland. He was dropped by Ilves just four games into the season.
Anyway, here's that third goal!
🚨 Albin Grewe
🍎 Gregor MacLeod, Joe Hicketts pic.twitter.com/6fq5YkBYnw
— Grand Rapids Griffins (@griffinshockey) April 17, 2021
“It wasn’t that I wanted to go home, it was more that it didn’t click,” Grewe told HockeyNews.se. “It is difficult. Sometimes you come to a team where it doesn’t quite work, and I felt that it didn’t work for me there. I was not trusted, in my opinion.
“I think it was weird that they brought me in in the first place to be honest. It was like they didn’t even want me there, so then I felt it was just as well to leave.
“I don’t know what it was, but they didn’t want to play me and why should I just stand over there and watch the matches?”
Mora Comes Calling
Next stop for Grewe was back home in Sweden with Mora IK of HockeyAllsvenskan, the country’s second tier. Even here, though, he ran into issues. After seven games, Grewe went on the shelf with an injury.
“Of course it was very tough and it felt like crap here and there with the injury,” Grewe explained. “Well, what to do now then? I came here to play hockey and I’m not doing that now.
“But I think I came back pretty good after that. It felt really good, so I will take that with me into this season.”
Finishing with 4-13-17 totals in 32 games, and another five assists in eight playoff games, Grewe will be starting the 2022-23 campaign with Mora.
“I am with it from the start, which feels good,” Grewe said. “It is a security to know that you are included here.”
Is Grewe included in the future plans of the Red Wings? At this juncture, that answer would appear to be no. However, he’s got one more season to utilize in order to be carving out a place with the Detroit organization.