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Detroit Red Wings

Yzerman Interested In Re-Signing Shayne Gostisbehere



Shayne Gostisbehere, detroit red wings

DETROIT — The Red Wings’ defense situation for next season is complicated. With Simon Edvinsson showing this spring that he’s ready to play in Detroit full-time, Detroit GM Steve Yzerman now have seven defensemen under contract.

The Red Wings also have Albert Johansson playing well for the Grand Rapids Griffins. He won’t be waiver-exempt next season. That means he must make Detroit’s roster or go through waivers to be sent down to the Griffins. He is a quality young defender with a penchant for sharp outlet passes. He won’t clear waivers.

All of that makes it more challenging to bring back soon-to-be-unrestricted free agent Shayne Gostisbehere next season. But Yzerman made it clear Friday that he plans to try.

“I’d like to see if we can figure out a way to do it,” Yzerman said. “He’s a valuable player for how we’re set up on the back end.”

Gostisbehere was Detroit’s No. 1 point man on a much-improve power play. He has 10 goals and 56 points this season.

“A different player that adds to our defensive corps,” Yzerman said. “You need to be good defenders but you also gotta have some defense that generate offense and play on the power play. He was good at that. It is something I would like to consider, strongly consider. Contract aside, it’s making all this fit. One fitting into the cap. I’m probably comfortable carrying eight defensemen.”

The seven defenseman under contract includes Moritz Seider, Ben Chiarot, Simon Edvinsson, Jeff Petry, Olli Maatta, Justin Holl and Jake Walman.

Wants UFAs To Return

Yzerman said he is interested in talking to all of his UFAs (Gostisbehere, Patrick Kane, Christian Fischer, David Perron, Daniel Sprong, and James Reimer), but he may not have enough cap space. The priority signings have to be rising young stars Moritz Seider and Lucas Raymond who are restricted free agents.

If they re-sign Gostisbehere and promote Johansson that would be nine defensemen. It seems likely that he will try to deal one of his defensemen, maybe Justin Holl. He has two seasons left on a deal worth $3.4 million. Maybe it won’t be easy to move him, but teams are always looking for veteran defensemen. Maybe it will require Yzerman to add a sweetener, like retaining a small portion of his salary. That would be preferable to buying him out.

And all of this will be happening while Yzerman is looking for his team’s defensive play to be significantly improved next season.