The Detroit Red Wings are preparing for training camp as the Prospect Tournament has come and gone. They have added a few players on professional tryout contracts or PTOs. While the PTO extended to Cameron Hillis was noted a while back, two more players were given PTOs to head to training camp.
When it comes to the Detroit Red Wings roster, they have 23 players under contract, but bringing in some players to serve as depth or to extend minor league contracts is always smart. For the Red Wings, it will also serve as an opportunity to get some extra bodies on the ice for training camp.
The two recent additions make sense, though, for different reasons. A PTO was extended to forward Artem Anisimov, who was with the Ottawa Senators, where he played with new addition Alex DeBrincat. It might be an opportunity for them to add another forward into the mix and possibly bring in someone familiar with the team’s new forward since the two also played alongside each other in Chicago.
The other player the Red Wings signed to a PTO was Michael Hutchinson. After bringing in two goalies in the free agent market and a tough go for Sebastian Cossa at the Prospect Tournament, it could be the Red Wings aiming to add an extra netminder for the duration of training camp.
Detroit Red Wings add a few players on PTOs ahead of training camp.
Artem Anisimov – F
Artem Anisimov is a 13-year veteran of the NHL, having served as a depth forward for several teams along the way. He played in just 19 games last season, scoring two goals and adding seven assists for nine total points. He also logged 55 games with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the AHL, with 19 goals and 17 assists for 36 total points.
In 2021-22, Anisimov played 49 games with the Senators, scoring 15 goals and adding five assists for 20 total points. The Red Wings are likely looking to add in an extra body with experience; he could serve as insurance in case of injury, as well as someone who could provide good competition during training camp.
Michael Hutchinson – G
When it comes to Michael Hutchinson, the Red Wings already went out and added James Reimer and Alexander Lyon this off-season to add to their goalie room. Reimer is the longtime veteran who’s looking to lock down the backup role. Lyon is the younger goalie who showed some intriguing numbers last season in a short stint and is looking to be a solid extra option.
Hutchinson is fresh off of a 16-game performance with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2022-23, and he played to a 2-6-3 record, a .875 save-percentage, and a 4.29 goals-against average. He also played in seven games with the Henderson Silver Knights in the AHL, where he had a 1-5-1 record, with a .897 save-percentage and a 2.74 goals-against average.
With some rough performances, he’ll likely serve as depth for the Red Wings during training camp. If not, he could be brought in as depth for Grand Rapids, but that could interfere with plans for Sebastian Cossa’s development. However, a rough performance during the Prospect Tournament could have the development staff rethinking some things.
Cameron Hillis – F
Lastly, Cameron Hillis‘s PTO was announced well before Anisimov & Hutchinson, but he’s a 23-year-old forward who’s only played one NHL game in his career. He’s a 2018 NHL Entry Draft third-rounder of the Montreal Canadiens.
He’s never really risen the ranks and has spent most of his time bouncing between the ECHL and AHL levels. In 2022-23, Hillis played 45 games with the Indy Fuel of ECHL and three games with the Trois Rivières Lions, totaling 16 goals and 36 assists for 52 total points.
He may not be coming in as a threat to make the NHL roster, but he’ll be an extra body and someone to mix into things during training camp. He’s likely competing to earn a role with Grand Rapids or Toledo. This is similar to what the Red Wings did with Riley Barber a few years back, who spent a couple of years playing with Grand Rapids.
As the Detroit Red Wings get underway with training camp, these three players will get underway on their PTOs and look to make an impact however they can as the team tunes up for the 2023-24 season.