Detroit Red Wings
Red Wings Stock Index: The Season’s Value Returns
The Detroit Red Wings have been finished for over a week now. Coaches and players have weighed in on the season. The playoffs are underway.
With the season now in the rearview mirror, here’s a look at a few players who produced from a value standpoint.
Earlier in the season it was Filip Hronek, who saw an offensive surge in November. General manager Steve Yzerman parlayed that surge into a first and second round pick from Vancouver. Walman was the next defenseman to see his play improve as a result.
Paired often with Moritz Seider, Walman enjoyed career bests in points, assists, and points. Heading into the season, Walman had 12 career points. A season later, he boasts 30 career points (13-17), and had a 150% return on his career points just this season alone.
All at the low cost of $1.05M. Though his AAV has now increased to $3.4M over three seasons, the return on investment certain benefitted both Walman and the Red Wings.
Blue line partner Seider attributes the person and the play as a reason the pairing worked so well.
“I think we just vibed really good,” Seider said. “I like him as a person a lot. Then it’s really easy to make plays out there. I just really like coming to work with him. Hopefully we’ll be even better next year.”
The Red Wings are certainly hoping for that, too.
One of the more maligned Red Wings in season’s past, Rasmussen’s strong second half last season bloomed into an impressive 2022-23 campaign. Only a season-ending injury could slow Rasmussen’s career year.
In 56 games, Rasmussen potted 10 goals and registered 29 points. He’d already topped his season-best point totals (15-12-27) and had been a crucial two-way player for Detroit. His absence was certainly felt but there’s no doubt that a healthy Rasmussen may very well be developing into the player the Red Wings envisioned on draft day.
His contract with an AAV $1.46M is signed through next season and he’ll certainly get a raise. But 56 points in two seasons is quite the return for Rasmussen and the Red Wings.
“I think it was a positive year for me,” Rasmussen said. “Definitely improved on things in the summer. Took it into the season and just kind of got to a point in my game where I felt good, confident with how I was playing and contributing.”
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He received a show-me contract, taking a pay cut to prove he could still produce. He certainly did. Kubalik started the season hot and though he cooled, he ended up with 45 points (20-25) and came within just a point of tying his career best. Though he was 10 goals shy of his career best, Kubalik was the third highest scorer on the team and had a strong season to build upon.
Taking a $1.2M pay cut and responding by tallying 13 additional points certainly improves the value of the deal.