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Red Wings Prospect Notebook: McIsaac Loaned to Swiss Club

Buchelnikov leading team in goals



jared mcIsaac, griffins
The Red Wings are loaning D Jared McIsaac from Grand Rapids (AHL) to Ambri-Piotta of the Swiss League.

There were some eyebrows raised when the Detroit Red Wings were opting last summer to sign veteran minor-league defenseman Jared McIsaac to a new contract. The 2018 second-round draft pick (36th overall) had never been able to crack the NHL lineup in four seasons as a pro with the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins.

With an influx of young drafted rearguards to the Grand Rapids roster this season, it was seeming unlikely that there’d be a spot for McIsaac. As things have unfolded, that’s proven to be the case.

He’s been surpassed on the depth chart in GR by the likes of prospects Simon Edvinsson, Albert Johansson, William Wallinder and Antti Tuomisto. Tuesday, McIsaac’s time with the Griffins came to an end. The Red Wings are loaning the 23-year-old rearguard to Ambri-Piotta of the Swiss League.

McIsaac has four points (1-3-4), four penalty minutes and a minus-three rating in 15 games with Grand Rapids this season.

Curiously, there is a Red Wings flavor to Ambri-Piotta’s history. For six seasons from 1985-92, their star player was none other than Dale McCourt. The center was the first overall selection of the 1977 NHL amateur draft by the Red Wings. He would play for Detroit from 1977-82, connecting for a trio of 30-goal seasons.

In fact, you can currently purchase a limited edition Dale McCourt watch. It’s been issued in celebration of the club’s 85th season. Norqain is the watch maker responsible for this timepiece. The company is co-owned by ex-NHL defenseman Mark Streit and current Nashville Predators rearguard Roman Josi.

Buchelnikov Lighting Lamps

Going on loan from SKA St. Petersburg to KHL bottom feeder Admiral Vladivostok hasn’t enabled Dmitri Buchelnikov to partake in much winning. However, it’s given him ample opportunity to be gaining ice time and the Red Wings draftee is making the most of his chance.

Tuesday action saw Buchelnikov (52nd overall, 2022) opening the scoring and later adding an assist in Admiral’s 4-2 win over Barys. It would mark the first time since November that Admiral won successive games.

With 13 goals, left-winger Buchelnikov is leading the club in tallies.

James Finding His Game

It’s no secret that college hockey is proving to be a struggle for Red Wings draftee Dylan James (40th overall, 2022). His freshman year at North Dakota last season was underwhelming and his sophomore campaign wasn’t looking to be much more productive.

However, it would appear that the 20-year-old left-winger his getting his legs underneath him and settling into his role in NCAA hockey. Over his past 14 games, James is showing five goals and nine points on his ledger.

“He always has his feet moving, but his hands and making plays and different things – he’s feeling confident,” North Dakota coach Brad Berry told

Over 28 games this season, James has accounted for 6-7-13 numbers with the No. 2-ranked Fighting Hawks. All of his goals have come in conference play.

James is skating on North Dakota’s third line with Louis Jamernik V and Jake Schmaltz.

“The guy can fly like the wind,” Jamernik said. “He’s got National (Hockey) League speed already. He’s just going to continue to grow and develop into an even better player.”

Stevens Locates Home

It didn’t take long for Nolan Stevens to find a home. Let go Monday from the Griffins and out of his contract with the Red Wings, Stevens will remain in the AHL. He’s signing with the Utica Comets.

Stevens also was with the Comets last season on an AHL deal.