Dan Watson on the Detroit Red Wings Preseason

Dan Watson on the Detroit Red Wings Preseason

September 26, 2018 0 By Rachel Anderson

The Red Wings preseason has been a successful endeavor for the Grand Rapids Griffins and Toledo Walleye players participating. Many young and fresh prospects are making strides in their development – all hoping for a chance at a contract before long.

Its not surprising that Filip Zadina and Michael Rasmussen have been holding their own. With incredible talent yet to be fully developed, they are both the ones who have captured everyone’s attention. We spoke with Head Coach Dan Watson of the Toledo Walleye about his preseason thoughts so far.

Coaches Corner

Zadina and Rasmussen

“Obviously with 4 exhibition games played, I think there are some young players who have shown their abilities.  The most notable are Rasmussen and Zadina. They are exceptional talents who have had productive pre-season so far.  Both have tremendous upside and growth that can only help Detroit. Rasmussen is a big guy who will need to learn how to use his body effectively, he has the potential to play both wing and center, which is valuable as well.  Zadina is a super talented shooter. He has an NHL shot already, now it needs to be consistently on target and he or his teammates will be rewarded.”

Rising Stars

Saarijarvi, Cholowski and Veleno

Vili Saarijarvi, Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit Red Wings, AHL, DRW Training Camp
Vili Saarijarvi skates during a practice session at the 2018 Detroit Red Wings Training Camp. Photo Credit: Jenae Anderson

“A couple players to keep an eye on will be Joe Veleno, Dennis Cholowski and I like Vili Saarijarvi.  Joe has excellent skating ability with and without the puck. He can handle the speed already, it will be interesting to see how the rest of his game develops.  I think there is great potential with Joe to be an impact player for Detroit. Dennis has shown he can play at a high level. He will need to do it consistently.  I like his poise with the puck, his vision and how he read the play. He has all the tools to become a real good defenseman in the NHL. I had Vili for some games in Toledo and his game is maturing.  His ability to make plays and the ability to skate make him fun to watch. He plays with tons of energy. He will need to learn how to defend against bigger/heavier players night in and night out, something he already knows.”

Wrapping Up the Preseason

The preseason will be wrapping up shortly, and with the way things are looking, the Red Wings have immense possibilities ahead of them. The youngsters are starting to rise and will continue to do so. The veterans, like Luke Glendening and Anthony Mantha, have been doing their part in teaching the young ones. Consistency will be paramount, but these young skaters have shown they have the drive and desire to make the club succeed.