The Detroit Red Wings presently have a 21-19-8 file and path the Pittsburgh Penguins by seven factors for the ultimate wild card spot within the Eastern Conference. If they don’t climb up within the standings earlier than the commerce deadline, they’ll very seemingly be sellers. Pending unrestricted free agent (UFA) Tyler Bertuzzi can be one in every of their largest commerce candidates on this state of affairs. Although the feisty winger is having a down yr on account of damage hassle (one objective and 5 factors in 17 video games), he additionally had 30 objectives and 62 factors in 68 video games simply final season, so the Red Wings might nonetheless get an honest return for him in the event that they store him.
If the Red Wings are unable to signal Bertuzzi to an extension earlier than March 3, don’t be stunned to see him moved. He is already beginning to get consideration within the commerce market, as The Fourth Period has reported that three groups are presently linked to him. Let’s go over them now.
Toronto Maple Leafs
The Toronto Maple Leafs sport a really deep roster in 2022-23, and there’s a reputable probability that they’ll win their first Stanley Cup since 1967 due to it. Yet, when noting that they might use one other high-impact ahead, it is smart that they’re contemplating the prospect of bringing in Bertuzzi. After all, he wouldn’t solely present them with high quality offense but in addition an abundance of physicality alongside with it. Therefore, he could possibly be the right commerce goal for the Maple Leafs so as to add as they gear up for the postseason.
It can also be obvious that the Maple Leafs might use a little bit of a lift on the left wing place. When taking a look at a potential fit for Bertuzzi in Toronto’s lineup, he might exchange Calle Jarnkrok on the second line and kind a incredible trio with John Tavares and William Nylander. However, he additionally could possibly be a possible match on their third line, as he would offer Toronto with extra secondary scoring of their backside six if utilized there. Either manner, he would make the Maple Leafs look noticeably deeper on paper if he’s acquired.
With Bertuzzi having a down yr, it’s extremely unlikely that the Red Wings would be capable of rating a first-round choose for him even with retaining half of his wage. Yet, the Maple Leafs’ 2024 second-round choose and a younger ahead like Pontus Holmberg might actually get this transfer to undergo. Holmberg has had an honest begin to his NHL profession this marketing campaign, as he has 5 objectives and 12 factors in 31 video games. As a outcome, it could possibly be sensible for the Red Wings to take an opportunity on the promising prospect.
Heading into the 2022-23 season, many followers had been uncertain if the Dallas Stars can be a playoff crew. However, issues have modified drastically on that entrance since, as they presently have a 28-13-10 file and are on the high of the Central Division due to it. The Stars are actually seen as potential contenders within the Western Conference due to their success, however it’s also clear that they might profit from including one other winger to their present group. Thus, it is smart that Bertuzzi is on their radar.
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If the Stars acquired Bertuzzi, he would give them one other high quality top-six winger as they gear up for the postseason. When taking a look at a possible match for him, I might see him engaged on the second line with Mason Marchment and Tyler Seguin. This will surely make Dallas’ top-six ahead group look noticeably deeper. Furthermore, Bertuzzi’s sturdy net-front presence capability would additionally assure him time on their energy play.
Besides the Stars’ 2023 second-round choose, they might look to usher in a prospect like Antonio Stranges. After recording an 84-point marketing campaign in 60 video games with the London Knights final season, the Michigan has begun his skilled profession in 2022-23. In eight American Hockey League (AHL) video games with the Texas Stars, he has 4 factors. Meanwhile, whereas enjoying within the ECHL with the Idaho Steelheads, he has six factors in 5 contests. Overall, the 20-year-old has the instruments to doubtlessly grow to be a middle-six winger on the NHL degree, so he could possibly be a pleasant goal for the Red Wings.
The Calgary Flames presently have a 24-17-9 file and are preventing to keep up their wild card spot. Truthfully, they’ve been enjoying a bit under expectations this marketing campaign, and the first cause for that is their scoring woes. As a outcome, it is smart that they’re now linked to a scoring winger like Bertuzzi, as he might present them with the increase they desperately must cement themselves as a reputable playoff crew.
There isn’t any query that the Flames want some critical assist at left wing proper now, and Bertuzzi would give them simply that if he’s acquired. For a lot of this season, the Flames have had hassle discovering a left winger to play with Nazem Kadri and Jonathan Huberdeau, so Bertuzzi could possibly be the right reply for this ongoing drawback. After all, he would give that line much more chew and supply them with extra scoring within the course of. With that, he would even be assured time on their energy play.
To efficiently purchase Bertuzzi, the Flames would seemingly must commerce their 2023 second-round choose and a younger ahead like Matthew Phillips to get this transfer to undergo. Phillips is a participant who might use a change of surroundings, because the Flames will not be giving him many probabilities on the NHL degree regardless that he’s persevering with to dominate the AHL. In 34 video games this season with the Calgary Wranglers, the 24-year-old has 23 objectives to go alongside with 45 factors. Perhaps a transfer to Detroit might give him the possibility to be a full-time NHL participant.
Nevertheless, the Red Wings have a giant resolution to make with Bertuzzi. If an extension will not be agreed upon by March 3, don’t be stunned to see the winger find yourself being dealt to one in every of these three golf equipment or elsewhere earlier than the deadline passes.
Michael DeRosa is a contributor who covers the Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, & Detroit Red Wings for The Hockey Writers. Since 2017, he’s written and edited for quite a few web sites. Besides his work for THW, you may as well discover him on NHL Trade Rumors.