The Detroit Red Wings have a lot of goaltending prospects in their system that could make a difference sooner than later. However, none of those prospects, except for Sebastian Cossa, were showing a lot of promise. This goes for their depth at the NHL position as well.
With the 2023 NHL Draft behind us and free agency slowing down, the Red Wings no longer have that problem. We look at who they have in the system and where they could be in the 2023/2024 season.
The Detroit Red Wings now have depth between the pipes.
Detroit had little to no prospects in the system that they could count on. Entering his pro debut, Cossa struggled big time, and some were questioning him being the 15th overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft.
He turned his season around by the middle of last season and was lights out, including being part of an 18-game winning streak by the ECHL Toledo Walleye. Cossa has improved his all-around game greatly. Look for him to get a serious look with the Detroit Red Wings’ AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, next season.
The main roster goaltending situation looks to be starter Ville Husso and free agent acquisition James Reimer for the time being. Alex Lyon, another free agent pickup, will start the season in Grand Rapids unless he plays lights out in training camp and the exhibition season.
This may be a shock to the system of Lyon, who was playing Stanley Cup Playoff games last season. He will get plenty of time in the nets at the AHL level, as he is likely the starter going into next season.
As for the others, John Lethemon, the goaltender of the year last season for the Walleye in the ECHL, may get the starting job in Toledo next season. With Husso and Reimer being the duo in Detroit, and Lyon and Cossa in Grand Rapids, this may be the best thing for Lethemon.
In Toledo, he will get most of the starts unless he is summoned to Grand Rapids at some time during the year. 2023 NHL Draft pick Trey Augustine will be playing the 2023/2024 season with the Michigan State Spartans after a successful stint with the USNTDP program.
In 2022/2023, he had a record of 29-1-2 with a 2.13 GAA and a .926 save percentage.
Other goaltenders in the system that could make a difference down the road are Jan Bednar and recent draft pick Rudy Guimond. Bednar spent last season with the Acadie-Bathurst Titan of the QMJHL and the Walleye of the ECHL. He had a record of 5-6-1 with a 3.73 GAA and a .887 save percentage.
Despite his overall stats, he played well and put his name on the map of Detroit Red Wings goaltenders to watch out for in the coming year. Guimond will likely play for the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders of the USHL as he continues to develop in the Red Wings system and organization.
All in all, the Detroit Red Wings are solid in goaltending throughout the organization, something that could not have been said until recently. The Red Wings have a group of solid goaltenders that will make a difference in the organization.
For the first time in a long time, the Red Wings have goaltenders in their organization that could be number one goaltenders in the future.
The future looks bright for every one of these goaltenders, and the Red Wings are blessed to have such a good group of netminders ready to go.