One of the more under-the-radar additions to the Detroit Red Wings this off-season is forward Christian Fischer.
Fischer, 26, signed a one-year deal worth $1.125 million to join the Red Wings, a team that will provide some familiar faces. As a youngster, Fischer skated with the U.S. National Under-17 and Under-18 teams before playing a season in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) with the Windsor Spitfires. While with the U.S. Development teams, he crossed paths with current Detroit Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin. Also, during his one season in the OHL with the Spits, his head coach had been Bob Boughner, a current assistant on Derek Lalonde’s staff. During his one season with the Spits, Fischer notched a whopping 40 goals and 90 points over just 66 games.
Red Wings assistant coach Jay Varady is familiar with Fischer from their overlapping time in Arizona. Fischer was drafted 32nd overall, early on in the second round of the 2015 NHL Entry Level Draft by the Arizona Coyotes. Following a small seven-game stint as a 19-year-old where Fischer recorded three goals in 2016-17, the gritty forward became a regular at the NHL level with the Yotes. As a rookie, he amassed 33 points, which included 15 goals in 79 games. He spent six full seasons with the Coyotes, totaling 56 goals and 111 points over 398 games. Fischer also played parts of the last two seasons with newly acquired defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere in Arizona.
Christian Fischer expects to be an underrated off-season addition for the Detroit Red Wings.
Fischer recently mentioned that he knows Detroit’s coaching staff will tell him exactly what is expected of him and knows he will be an excellent fit for the Red Wings.
“It’s very cliché to say, but I value playing the D side of the puck,” Fischer said. “Over my years in Arizona, I’ve really solidified a role of playing a lot, and for the last three to four years, I was taking every D-zone draw with our team’s top line. I was PK-ing as one of the first guys out the front door. I’d like to say I do a lot of those dirty things. They’re not goals and assists, but everyone knows that’s how you win hockey games.”
“I have a personal relationship with both of them,” Fischer said. “I know they’re not going to cookie-cutter it for me. They’re going to tell me exactly what they’re looking for and why they wanted me and why they thought I’d be a good fit.
“It feels right here. I know (Larkin) pretty well through the USA program. (Shayne) Gostisbehere is a close friend of mine. I know the (Andrew) Copp family well. I’m familiar with Detroit and know how well the organization is run from top down.”
Fischer’s two-way style of play is something that general manager Steve Yzerman will always seek and appreciate. Following the end of the regular season this past Spring, getting tougher to play against was the common theme being thrown around from Larkin, Lalonde, and Yzerman. It was quickly clarified that the trio didn’t imply they needed to add players who would fight every game, but they wanted to add players with size who wouldn’t be pushed around, who would play a physical brand of hockey, and be challenging to play against.
Want your voice heard? Join the Octopus Thrower team!
In addition to Fischer, the Detroit Red Wings also added Klim Kostin and J.T. Compher upfront via free agency; all three fit that mold just described.