As the July 1 deadline for the launch of unrestricted free agency inthe NHL draws nearer, it’s fairly certain that the Detroit Red Wings will not be retaining any of their UFAs.
Not that the club didn’t try to keep a couple of players in the fold.
According to an NHL source, the Red Wings were making contract offers to two of their impending UFAs. However, both Pius Suter and Alex Chiasson were opting to pass on the offers presented to them by the Detroit brass.
Suter was offered a one-year pact to play a third season in Detroit. However, the veteran forward wants to see if he can get a multi-year deal on the open market.
The offer to Chiasson was a one-year, two-way deal. Again, according to the source, Chiasson’s camp wants to see if he can secure a full NHL contract from another club by entering into the UFA fray on July 1.
In each player’s case, the decision to see what their worth is understandable.
Suter A Versatile Performer
In three NHL seasons, Suter has never scored fewer than 14 goals. He’s a cerebral player who can play up and down a team’s lineup and kill penalties.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) April 8, 2023
From Detroit’s point of view, Suter is not a player who is hard to play against. It was clear this past season that the Red Wings need to beef up their lineup.
Chiasson A Power Play Presence
Chiasson went unsigned during last summer’s UFA period. Ultimately, he was left to accept an AHL deal with the Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit’s top farm club.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) March 22, 2023
Signed by Detroit and recalled following the NHL trade deadline, Chiasson would deliver instant net-front presence on the Red Wings power play. He’d score six goals in 20 games, five of which were tallied while Detroit was enjoying a manpower advantage.
Considering he couldn’t get a contract offer last season, Chiasson, 32, is rolling the dice by delving into the open market. Certainly, the Red Wings are taking into account the small sample size and Chiasson’s age as factors in their offer.
As for Detroit’s other UFAs – goalies Alex Nedeljkovic and Magnus Hellberg, defensemen Jordan Oesterle, Robert Hagg and Mark Pysyk and forward Adam Erne, the NHL source indicated none had received a contract offer to date from the Red Wings.