The 2023 rookie camp of the Detroit Red Wings has come and gone. With surprises and disappointments during the tournament, there is hope and reason for optimism. The Red Wings now move to the main camp but let us look at the good, the bad, and the ugly of what happened this past weekend.
Detroit Red Wings Prospects Show Promise at Rookie Camp
Some of the Red Wings biggest prospects showed up in a big way this past weekend. 2023 first round pick, Nate Danielson, was great offensively. While missing the last game of the tournament, he still managed to produce five assists in two games. Danielson looked good in the two games he played and fit in well with his linemates. Elmer Soderblom was terrific as well, scoring three goals in three games. He used his size along the boards and played physical in the neutral and defensive zone.
Two other bright spots for the Detroit Red Wings were forwards Riley Sawchuk and Cross Hanas. Sawchuk produced one goal and five assists for six points to lead Detroit prospects this weekend. Cross Hanas has a promising camp and was on fire on special trams, recording four goals including three power play goals.
First round pick Marco Kaspar played well during this tournament, registering two assists in three games. He is in the bad category is that he may not have worked his way to the main camp. His offensive production was not horrific but he did not blow management away this weekend. He overall play was solid but he did not have a jaw dropping performance in any game.
The defense was outplayed in all three games, allowing 20 goals in three games. While the other teams were not loaded with talent, they seemed to have their way with the Detroit defense. The Red Wings prospect defense needs some adjusting before the season starts before it is too late. The defense is filled with young talent and there is time to fix this before it becomes a disaster.
Consistency was another issue. the defense allowed four goals, then 10, and six in three games. Some pressure on the fore check could have helped or physical play may have eliminated some mistakes in the defensive zone. At points during the games, the goaltenders were hung out to dry on some opponent chances. Offensively, they were inconsistent too. They scored two goals, then seven, and five in game three. Throughout the tournament, the Detroit Red Wings prospects had chances but did not capitalize on many of those chances.
The goaltending was not good. Sebastian Cossa allowed six goals in the first period against the Columbus Blue Jackets. None of the other goaltenders who played had a good outing either, but Cossa struggled in what was possibly the biggest camp of his young career. The goaltending depth in the organization is solid but no goaltender showed up this weekend. Like the defense, they are all young and could be a work in progress. Cossa is still the best goaltending prospect in the organization but this may have sent him back a year of development.
Overall a solid camp by Detroit. Some prospects played better than others and therefore will likely be invited to the main camp. Danielson, Hanas, Soderblom, Sawchuk, Antti Tuomisto, William Wallinder and Nic Suma may be the ones who get invited to the main camp. These are the guys who stood out the most and could be rewarded with some Detroit Red Wings camp time and an exhibition game or two.