Red Wings Strengthen Prospect Pool on Day 2, Trade for Scoring

Detroit Red Wings, Trey Augustine. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
Detroit Red Wings, Trey Augustine. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Red Wings made nine selections yesterday during day two of the 2023 NHL Draft. They got good value on some picks, while other selections raised some questions.

These prospects may be a year or two away from the big club, but Detroit has made a trade that gives them help in the middle six. Overall, the Red Wings got what they wanted and more on day two.

The Red Wings made a trade with the Edmonton Oilers.

The surplus of prospects makes Detroit stronger in the near future. The trade with the Oilers may have overshadowed the prospects that were taken on day two. Edmonton traded forwards Kailer Yamamoto and Klim Kostin to the Red Wings in exchange for future considerations.

Regardless of what the future considerations are, this is a huge get for Detroit. Kostin is a third or fourth-line player who gives the Red Wings size at 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds. He also gives the Red Wings some scoring in the bottom six while playing a physical brand of hockey.

In a surprising move, Yamamoto was bought out and is now a free agent. He could have been a nice fit in Detroit and seen time on the second line. However, general manager Steve Yzerman thought otherwise.

Could he have acquired Yamamoto to get Kostin into the fold knowing this entire time that Yamamoto was going to be bought out? The Red Wings have plenty of cap space, so Yzerman maybe has his sights set on something bigger, as Yamamoto is capable of producing in the right role.

With this news, the Detroit Red Wings now switch their focus to the free agent period, which starts this Saturday at noon.

As for the draft, the Detroit Red Wings picked up the best goaltender in the draft with the pick of goaltender Trey Augustine in round two (pick #41). At only 6-foot-1 and 190 pounds, he is not a big goaltender, but he is a sound, technical netminder.

Blessed with incredible net awareness, he is aware of plays below the goal line. Augustine will compete and will be a prospect to watch in the Detroit Red Wings organization.

In the 2022/2023 season, Augustine played for three teams: USNTDP Juniors, U.S. National U17, and the U.S. National U18 team. He had a combined record of 40-2-2 with a 2.15 GAA, and a save percentage of .932.

He was an excellent choice in the second round, as a goaltender with a lot of promise. The Red Wings would go on to take another goaltender, Rudy Guimond out of Taft School, which is out of the USHS-Prep program. He was drafted in round six, pick #169.

The Red Wings grabbed defenseman Brady Cleveland with the 47th pick in the second round. He is massive at 6-foot-5 and 209 pounds, and he is mobile for his size.

Playing with Augustine at the USNTDP, he combined for 47 games, registering nine assists and 166 penalty minutes, while recording a +28. Good pickup to give Detroit blue line some size and physicality.

One player to keep an eye on that was drafted later is forward Emmitt Finnie. Finnie was the Detroit Red Wings’ last pick in this year’s draft, going in the seventh round at pick #201. Finnie could be useful in Detroit’s third line and play a pivotal role.

The 6-0 and 170-pound Finnie has good speed, a deceptive shot, and plays well in all three zones. During the 2022/2023 season, he played for the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL. In 64 games played, he had nine goals and 26 assists for 35 points and was a +11.

Good, solid depth player who could be used in a variety of ways, including the penalty kill and a bottom six role.

The Chicago Blackhawks’ Connor Bedard Era Officially Begins. light. Related Story

This was a good, solid draft for the Detroit Red Wings. They needed a scoring center who shoots right-handed, and they got that with Nate Danielson. They needed goaltending depth, and they got it with Augustine and Guimond. They needed size and physicality and got that with Cleveland. They needed an offensive defenseman who can quarterback the power play, and they got that with Axel Sandin Pellikka. They needed more scoring, and they got that in the trade with the Oilers.