Detroit Red Wings defenseman William Wallinder is making a strong case to make the roster out of training camp this season. Wallinder has played well through both prospect camp and training camp, thus giving him a bit of an advantage when Detroit makes the final call before the season begins.
Detroit Red Wings’ Wallinder Proving he Belongs
The 6-foot-4 and 191-pound defenseman was chosen in the 2nd round (32nd overall) in the 2020 NHL Draft. He signed a 3-year/ $2,775,000 deal with Detroit on March 27, 2023, and made his pro debut ;ast season with the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins. Although he only played one game in the AHL, he made himself known by not looking out of place and he took care of his own zone by keeping things simple.
While he spent one game with the Griffins, he spent most of last season with Rogle SK of the Swedish Hockey League. In 50 games, he s cored seven goals and added 19 assists fro 26 points and was a +3.
Wawllinder played in Detroit’s 4-3 preseason win on Tuesday night at home against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first game for both teams. He looked great as he showcased his speed, displayed his reach in the defensive zone, and cut down the Penguins as soon as they reached the blue line of the Red Wings. He was solid in all three zones, showed patience with the puck, as he continues to show improvement and the hunger for earning a spot.
Wallinder has an excellent shot at making the team out of training camp with fellow defensive prospect, Simon Edvinsson, still recovering from shoulder surgery as he might not be at full strength. The best case scenario for Wallinder would be making the roster as a seventh defenseman and using his size and reach on the penalty kill.
Wallinder, along with Edvinsson and Albert Johansson, gives the Detroit Red Wings a solid, young crop of left-handed defensemen who could assemble the best defense the team has seen in years in the near future. While Johansson is a year or two away from making the roster full-time, Wallinder and Edvinsson are much closer and appear ready to take spots sooner than later.