If Detroit Red Wings defensive prospect Simon Edvinsson ever desired to open a bakery, today would be a good day. In the annual Red & White game at the club’s training camp in Traverse City, Michigan on Sunday, Edvinsson committed enough turnovers to stock the shelves.
“You don’t have to be a trained hockey guy to see I’m sure he led the entire group today in turnovers,” Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde said of Edvinsson. “It’s something we’re going to work on with him.”
Detroit’s top pick, sixth overall, in the 2021 NHL entry draft, there’s plenty of expectations that the 19-year-old Swede will be making the Red Wings roster out of the preseason.
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It’s apparent that in Edvinsson’s case, there are are still some rough edges to be smoothed out.
“I think with Simon, he might have had six or seven turnovers in that first half,” Lalonde said. “That’s something he’s going to have to manage. That’s something we’re going to have to work with him.”
Turnovers Plagued Red Wings Last Season
Lalonde was quick to point out that Detroit was 31st in the NHL in scoring chances surrendered from turnovers. At the same time, he was also allowing that a teenaged rookie making errors in the first game he’s ever played involving actual NHLers isn’t cause to push the panic button.
“I don’t know if it’s so much going to be a negative early on,” Lalonde said. “We understand it’s a process with him. Unfortunately for him, a lot of turnovers ended up back at him and caused him to defend on shifts where obviously we’d like him to be playing north.
“It’s all part of it. It didn’t surprise me today with him. There were also a lot of positives. You see that special skill set.”
Lalonde is implenting systems with the Red Wings that are founded in simplicity. The organization is also stressing with their young defenders like Edvinsson that the simple play on the ice is always the best play. And they’re citing a pretty soild source as the basis for that argument.
“What I do think particularly with the puck on the smaller ice, Dmen need to learn to move it quicker,” Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman. “Less is more.
“We always refer to (seven-time Norris Trophy winner) Nicklas Lidstrom. He got it, he moved it. He kept the game very simple, he never really put himself in bad spots.
“In watching him last week, Simon looks pretty comfortable on the ice. He gets it, he moves it. When you do it against NHL players, that’s really the highest level and the most speed.
“He will adjust. I think his play on North American rinks throughout his junior career gives him a good idea on what to do.”