The Detroit Red Wings are just days away from the beginning of training camp, and with that comes the finalization of their training camp roster. They’ve invited back a familiar face on a tryout basis, ensuring that training camp will be a very competitive environment. Prior to training camp, though, many members of the team have enjoyed each other’s company out and about at various events throughout the east side of Michigan.
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Bobby Ryan Returns on PTO
The Red Wings announced on Tuesday that they had signed veteran winger Bobby Ryan to a professional tryout agreement (PTO). The 34-year-old will participate in training camp and preseason in hopes of earning a full contract with the Red Wings once again.
Ryan played 33 games with the Red Wings last season while also missing time due to various injuries throughout the season. His last game was on March 28 against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Losing him to injury was a small blow to the Red Wings as he not only was an effective middle six forward for the team, but he also provided a nice veteran presence for guys such as Filip Zadina and Michael Rasmussen. Many predicted that Ryan would be dealt away at the trade deadline, but his injury prevented that from happening. He had seven goals and 14 points last season.
The 2020 winner of the Masterton Trophy (awarded to the player “who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey”) was the second pick of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, the first player picked behind Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby. Across 14 seasons with the Anaheim Ducks, the Ottawa Senators and the Red Wings, he has 261 goals and 569 points through 866 regular season games.
Red Wings Take Ann Arbor, Ford Field
One thing that was missing from the 2020-21 season was the overall comradery that comes with playing on the same team. That is because, due to Covid restrictions put forth by local governments as well as the NHL, players were not allowed to do much outside of their hotel rooms. The most “bonding time” that teams had were during practices and games.
That has already changed prior to the start of the 2021-22 season as players that are fully vaccinated are able to participate in events outside of the rink as normal (though they are subject to testing every 72 hours.) Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin seized the opportunity to introduce the team’s top prospects, Moritz Seider and Lucas Raymond, to Michigan Stadium and the University of Michigan’s football team. Larkin spent a season with the Wolverines during the 2014-15 season. Also in attendance were Jack and Quinn Hughes of the New Jersey Devils and Vancouver Canucks, respectively.
After that, a larger group from the Red Wings took in the home opener for the Detroit Lions at Ford Field, located just a few blocks down the road from Little Caesar’s Arena.
For players that joined the team last season, such as Marc Staal and Vladislav Namestnikov, this offers an opportunity to bond with their teammates in a way that they were not able to last season. Hockey is arguably the ultimate team sport, and the product on the ice benefits from activities such as this. Red Wings fans have to hope that this all translates to a fun training camp, which will then turn into a fun team to watch this season.
Red Wings Sign Carter Rowney
In a move that probably fell under the radar for some, Detroit announced that they had signed forward Carter Rowney to a one-year deal on Sept. 2. The deal carries a cap hit of $825,000.
The 32-year-old spent the last three seasons with the Ducks. Prior to that, he spent two seasons with the Penguins, including the 2016-17 season where they won they repeated as Stanley Cup champions. The undrafted forward has experience playing down the middle as well as on the right wing. Through 223 regular season games, he has 20 goals and 57 points.
This move was more than likely executed to shore up the Red Wings forward depth heading into the season. If he makes the opening night roster, Rowney will more than likely play on the fourth line. Otherwise, he can either be an extra forward for the Red Wings, or head down to the American Hockey League and provide a veteran presence for the Grand Rapids Griffins.
- The Red Wings signed their final restricted free agent by bringing back abrasive winger Givani Smith on a two-year deal. Now without waiver exemption status, this season should be his first as a full-time Red Wing. Through 37 games, he has three goals and seven points. He was drafted in the second round of the 2016 draft, 46th overall by the Red Wings.
- The Red Wings announced that the Michigan-based, Midwest grocery store chain Meijer will serve as the team’s helmet sponsor for the 2021-22 season. Here’s a look at how the helmet will look:
On a side note, this video also represents the first time that fans have seen Tyler Bertuzzi in a Red Wings sweater since his season-ending injury in late January. This should serve as a good omen that the scrappy forward is healthy and ready to go for training camp.
I am a Western Michigan University alum whose passion for hockey knows no limits. Dr. Pepper enthusiast. Catch me and my fellow Red Wings writers’ YouTube show “The Hockey Writers Grind Line” which drops every Saturday.