Red Wings acquire Yamamoto, Kostin, draft local goalie Augustine in second round

Detroit News

Detroit — The Red Wings finally made a trade and went local with the first of their trio of picks in the second round.

The Wings acquired forwards Kailer Yamamoto and Klim Kostin from Edmonton for future considerations. The Oilers, under former Wings general manager Ken Holland, were strapped under the salary cap and alleviated the logjam by sending Yamamoto and Kostin to the Wings.

The Wings selected South Lyon goalie Trey Augustine, from the United States National Team Development Program, with the 41st pick overall, then added defensemen Andrew Gibson and Brady Cleveland.

Yamamoto had 10 goals and 15 assists in 58 games with the Oilers, before adding one goal and three assists in 12 playoff games.

Yamamoto, 24, is a small player (5-foot-8, 154 pounds) and was coming off a 20-goal season the year before. He dealt with numerous nagging injuries this season, forcing him out of the lineup for lengthy periods and curtailing his effectiveness.

Yamamoto, a right wing, has one more year left on his contract at a $3.1 million salary cap hit.

Kostin, 24, is a 6-foot-3, 215-pound center/wing who had 11 goals and 21 points in 57 games with a plus-12 plus-minus rating while getting his first real taste of the NHL. Kostin had a good playoff stretch, with three goals and five points in 12 games, with a plus-two rating.

A classic power forward, this was Kostin’s best stretch of hockey in the NHL and his physical style and aggression made Kostin a fan favorite in Edmonton.

But as a restricted free agent with arbitration rights, Kostin was reportedly looking for a salary of $2 million per season (Kostin was on an entry-level contract, $863,333 per) and that was impossible for the cap-strapped Oilers. Kostin could be headed back to Russia and the Kontinental Hockey League, but with the Wings possessing ample cap space, it’s likely they’ll be able to work something out.

Augustine, a 6-1, 183-pounder is headed to Michigan State after putting together one of the best seasons ever in the U.S. national program.

Augustine was 29-1-2 with a 2.13 goals-against average and .926 save percentage and had an impressive world junior tournament.

Scouts were impressed with Augustine’s calmness in net and the way he was rarely ever out of position.

The Wings then selected Gibson with the 42nd pick, a rugged defenseman from Sault Ste. Marie (OHL).

The Wings capped what would have been their third consecutive pick by sending the 43rd pick to Nashville, for the Predators’ 47th pick (second round) and 107th pick (fourth round).

Gibson (6-2, 196 pounds) missed most of this season after suffering a lacerated kidney earlier in the season.

He’s considered more of a defensive defenseman, with a strong shot and loves to block shots and plays with a physical presence.

With the 47th pick, the Wings went back to the USNTDP and selected Cleveland.

Another defenseman with some bite to his game, Cleveland is headed to Wisconsin to play in college.

Cleveland has good size (6-4, 211-pounds) and plays a physical game that translates well to the NHL. He doesn’t project to have much of an offensive game, but his defensive instincts and physical presence could translate well to the pro game.

▶ In the third round, the Wings drafted forward Noah Dower Nilsson, a Swedish player who is the brother of Wings’ prospect Liam Dower Nilsson.

Noah is a 6-foot, 175-pound left wing who had 54 points (26 goals, 28 assists) in 37 games for Frolunda in the SEL.

Noah is a playmaker with a good shot, but his foot speed is generally a concern among many scouts, as well as the need to get stronger physically.

Liam, incidentally, was a 2021 fifth-round pick of the Wings.

▶ Another defenseman, Larry Keenan, was the Wings’ fourth-round pick (117th overall).

Keenan (6-3, 185 pounds) starred at Culver Military Academy (Indiana) this past season and is committed to play at Massachusetts. Keenan led the team in scoring with 11 goals and 37 points in 49 games.

Keenan has elite skating ability and a strength is his ability to move with the puck. How well Keenan develops defensively and with his shot will determine if he can become a pro.

▶ In the fifth round, the Wings added yet another defenseman in Jack Phelan at No. 137, then selected left wing Kevin Bicker at No. 147, the pick acquired from Nashville earlier in the day.

Phelan is a rangy defenseman who played at Sioux Falls (USHL) and is headed to play college hockey at Wisconsin.

Bicker could be a dark horse. At 6-1 and 176 pounds, Bicker went undrafted last year and some analysts felt he’d be drafted a little higher Thursday than in the fifth round.

Bicker had 10 goals and 21 points in 20 games for Jungadler Mannheim (Germany) and showed the type of speed and physical play that made him a prospect. Bicker was one of the standouts on a developing German program.

▶ Goaltender Rudy Guimond was the Wings’ sixth-round pick (169th overall). Guimond had a .940 save percentage in 28 games at Watertown Taft (Connecticut). Guimond will play for Cedar Rapids in the USHL this season, and is committed collegiately to Yale.

▶ The Wings closed out the draft by selecting forward Emmitt Finnie in the seventh-round (201 overall). Finnie, a 6-foot 170-pound winger, had 35 points (nine goals) in 64 games with Kamloops (WHL).

Twitter: @tkulfan

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