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Detroit Red Wings

Veleno, Berggren Can Take Red Wings to Arbitration



Joe Veleno, Red Wings

Detroit Red Wings restricted free agents Joe Veleno and Jonatan Berggren have until today at 5 p.m. to decide whether to opt for arbitration to determine their next contract.

Often, opting for arbitration brings the two sides together on a new contract. Only occasionally do players actually go through the arbitration process.

A source knowledgable about comparables and the arbitration process projected that Veleno (12 goals in 2023-24) would be in the $2 million range. AFP Analytics projects Veleno with a two-year deal at $1.98 million per season. AFP forecasts Berggren on a one-year deal worth $874,000. Young defenseman Albert Johansson, likely to make the Red Wings roster this season, recently signed for $775,000, but does not have the NHL experience that Berggren has.

Every dollar for these two contracts matters for the Red Wings, who want to lock No. 1 defenseman Moritz Seider and 30-goal scorer Lucas Raymond into longer-term deals. Those two deals could cost $17 million or more, leaving Detroit with just over $3 million for Veleno and Berggren.

Arbitration decisions are based heavily on statistics and comparables. Berggren has 17 goals and 34 points in 76 career games. If a team “walks away” — in other words they reject it — the player becomes an unrestricted free agent.

The NHLPA will issue a press release later today about everyone who has filled for arbitration.  Once an arbitration date is set for each case, the two sides usually start becoming serious about negotiating a new deal.  Once an arbitration is finished, the arbitrator will render a decision in 48 hours.

Some interesting potential arbitration cases include Boston’s goalie Jeremy Swayman, Carolina’s Martin Necas and Columbus’s Kiril Marchenko.

Former Detroit Red Wings’ defenseman Dennis Cholowski also has the right to take the New York Islanders to arbitration.