Coming into last year, the Detroit Red Wings looked stronger than ever. Fresh off a dominating cup win they added arguably the best sniper on the market and seemed poised to create another dynasty, even in this cash strapped salary cap era.
This year certainly seems to be another story. Gone are Marian Hossa, Tomas Kopecky, Jiri Hudler and Mikael Samuelsson amongst others leaving the team with roughly 31 percent of the offense to replace.
Who did they bring in?
Todd Bertuzzi, Drew Miller, Jason Williams and Patrick Eaves amongst others. Those four combined for a whopping 54 goals last year, a little more than half of the 89 goals that left this past offseason. If you subtract 35 goals from last year’s totals the team still would finish 7th in scoring and not first.
GM Ken Holland planned on using rookies and young players such as Ville Leino, Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm in scoring roles, hoping it would force them to step up their games and make up the remaining 35 goals needed. What Holland did not expect were injuries. Injuries and injuries alone could derail all hope this team had to make the playoffs, let alone another return to the Stanley Cup.