I'm writing a quick blog about my thoughts on the Wings lineup for the opener against Buffalo. And addressing why I think this is the best lineup to get points.
Injury call ups: Emmerton, Jurco, Jarnkrok, Sheahan
I think for the most part the Wings are done tinkering, now they could move Emmerton, Bertuzzi or Eaves and possibly look at resigning Cleary.. although at this point in his career Cleary is a fourth line grinder for this team that can chip in a few goals and provide some leadership with the young Griffins (think Kris Draper.) Does this happen? Probably not. He can likely get more playing time elsewhere in the league, but if he wants to stay with the wheel, it's a vastly reduced role.
Some people mention that the Wings need to inject Tootoo into the lineup for grit and protection. I think not. We need a combination of speed and skill or skill and grit. And we can get the grit with the skill in players like Justin Abdelkader, Drew Miller and Johan Franzen just fine. Last time I checked it's the team with the most goals that wins the game, not the team with the most penalties or fights.
A quick word about the defence.
I'm fairly confident by mid-season the second line pairing will be Smith/DeKeyser. DeKeyser is just too good to not get top four minutes. If there is one player that i'm worried about in this roster (other than Gustavsson) it's Quincy. I don't think he makes it through this season. I think his role will be greatly reduced and he'll be moved for a 4th round pick allowing Lashoff to move into the 5th/6th spot with Kindl.
What are your thoughts on the Red Wings opening day roster?