The Detroit Red Wings finished trade deadline day making three separate deals, none of them surprises to anyone. Detroit continues building for the future as they grabbed some assets and draft picks for future success.
With plenty of offense and defensive help out there, it was only a question if Detroit was going to buy or sell at this deadline. The Red Wings will not see the playoffs this year, so they chose to be sellers, getting draft picks in return.
The first deal involved trading defenseman Troy Stetcher to the Los Angeles Kings for a 2022 seventh-round draft pick. It does not sound like much but the chances of Stetcher returning were slim as he did not look comfortable in Detroit’s system. He was often scratched and sat in the press box, not showing his full potential.
The Red Wings traded three and gained assets during the trade deadline.
The second deal came as the Red Wings traded Defensemen Nick Leddy and Luke Witkowski to the St. Louis Blues for forward Oskar Sundqvist, defenseman Jake Walman, and a 2023 second-round pick.
Witkowski was playing for the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins, and Leddy did not play well in Detroit’s system. Sundqvist could play center, which is a position Detroit is weak at. Walman and the second-round pick are nice assets, as Detroit was weak on the left side of the defense
The final trade came as the Red Wings sent forward Vlad Namestnikov to the Dallas Stars for a 2024 fourth-round draft pick. Namestnikov is an energy guy who can play anywhere in the forward group. Detroit grabs another pick, loading up for the future.
These were going to be the type of trades general manager Steve Yzerman was going to make. He had no interest in making a blockbuster, just getting rid of players who he didn’t think had a future in Detroit, and replacing those with assets that could be crucial in building Detroit into a playoff contender again. Now that the trade deadline has passed we wait for free agency.