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Zetterberg Jokes Red Wings Haven’t Room For Him

Zetterberg softening stance on future hockey mangement involvement



Henrik Zetterberg, ex-Red Wings
Former Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg now suggests he might one day entertainment the notion of working with the team's management.

On second thought, perhaps former Detroit Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg could see himself having a future in the front office of the club.

Last spring, upon his induction into the IIHF Hall of Fame, Zetterberg was casting serious doubt upon any thought that he could one day be a full-time NHL executive.

“There is no other desire to work with hockey in the future,” Zetterberg was saying at the time.

Thursday, as he was receiving enshrinement into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame, Z was humming a different tune.

“I could see myself doing it in the future,” Zetterberg said. “I’m not quite sure if I’m ready right now but I could see myself in the future getting involved.”

Currently, Zetterberg does fill an unofficial role as a consultant with the Red Wings. From his Swedish home in Angelholm, he’s been able to get an up-close view of Detroit prospects like William Wallinder and Marco Kasper as they were playing in the SHL with the local club Rogle. He’s been serving as a source and a sounding board. Zetterberg is often sharing his observations with former teammate and close friend Red Wings European development director Niklas Kronwall.

“The good thing with that, I’m still involved,” Zetterberg said. “I know what’s going on. “We’ve have a lot of Detroit prospects in Sweden in my hometown, or where I live now in Angelholm – Kasper was there, Wallinder was there.

“Everytime Nik comes into town, I have a chance to be involved. It’s something that interests me.”

Is There A Spot For Zetterberg With Red Wings?

Zetterberg knows that if he does come back to pro hockey, it will be in a front-office role. He possesses no desire to work behind an NHL bench as a coach.

He’s currently helping out on the ice with the youth hockey team of his eight-year-old son Love.

“I’m not really coaching my son, I’m moving pucks around and that’s probably the level of coaching I will get to,” Zetterberg said.

Oddly enough, the MSHOF induction ceremonies came exactly five years to the day of Zetterberg’s retirement from the NHL due to a degnerative back condition.

He does pose one curious question about the potential of working in the Detroit front office. Does the Red Wings management team have any room for him at the inn?

Besides Kronwall, the Red Wings front-office group includes such prominent alumni as GM Steve Yzerman, assistant GM and director of amateur scouting Kris Draper, vice president of hockey operations Nicklas Lidstrom, pro scout Kirk Maltby and assistant development director Dan Cleary. And that list doesn’t include another ex-NHLer, assistant GM Shawn Horcoff.

“Right now, I don’t think they have room for me,” Zetterberg joked. “There’s so many good guys up there – Kronner, Nick, Drapes, Cleary, Horc, Malts – everybody basically I played with. And Stevie in charge now.”