After a slow start to the season, Red Wings forward Pius Suter has stepped up his play to help fill some of the gaps left by missing players and take advantage of the opportunity that has presented itself to him.
In the first nine games of the season, Suter was only able to notch one goal and two assists. Since then, Suter has been playing on the top line with Dylan Larkin and Lucas Raymond over the last five games now and has been able to record two goals and an assist in that time.
Suter was picked up by the Wings before the 21-22 season after the Blackhawks let him go following his rookie year. Suter had a solid first season with the team by playing all 82 games and posting 15 goals and 21 assists for 36 points last season. With those numbers last season, I’m sure the Wings leadership had hoped for Suter to do even better this season.
Injuries have hit the Red Wings this season, so they have needed someone to step up, and Pius Suter has.
The start of the 22-23 season has seen quite a few injuries hit the Red Wings, leaving some gaps in the lineup that the team started the season with. They have lost some big hitters to injuries, such as Tyler Bertuzzi, Oskar Sundqvist, and Jakub Vrana, who has entered the NHLPA Player Assistance Program. The Wings have needed some guys to step up and fill the holes in the team.
I was concerned early on in the season since Suter did not look like the player he was last season. His fundamentals seemed off as he was mishandling the puck, missing easy passes, and had some untimely turnovers and penalties. It’s been great to see him turn around his play and earn an opportunity to play on the top line with captain Dylan Larkin and gain some valuable experience early in his young career.
Suter has been contributing all over the ice as he can center a third or fourth line and can jump up to the top line to play on the wing for Larkin. Suter has also been solid on the penalty kill, with his PK highlight so far this season being the awesome short-handed goal that he was able to put up against the Islanders recently. That goal helped kill any momentum that New York had that afternoon and secure the win.
If Suter can keep his excellent play, he can undoubtedly match his numbers from last season and possibly do a little better. There is every opportunity for him to earn a critical role with the team this season, and I hope that he does. What do you think of Suter’s season to this point? Where do you think his ceiling is in the Red Wings organization? Let me know what you think in the comments section below.