With the eventual return of Colaiacovo Detroit will have 9 NHL defenseman on the roster. The obvious yet unpopular 1st move made would be to send Lashoff down to GR. That leaves 8 defenseman left. Kindl and Huskins could sit eating up roster space in the press box, but it may not be that simple. Lashoff has proven too valuable to the Red Wings to honestly send him down while claiming they are icing the best defense possible. He plays in all situations, not only being trusted to be out defending a 5-on-3, but doing it extremely well in the process. If you were looking for a Brad Stuart replacement look no further than Lashoff.
Click the jump for my thoughts on the Wings D. Now and beyond.
Huskins may never see the ice again in a Wings jersey and that's ok. He played well as a bandage, and that's all we should expect. That leaves us with 8 NHL defenseman as much as you don't want to admit it Kindl is. They have put in a lot of time cultivating him, he's a RFA at seasons end and has too much size and ability to move the puck (at times) to let go via waivers.
Where do they stand? White was a scratch last night, probably just a way to get a fire going in him. He hasn't been as effective as last season, but that's understandable. He played with the greatest defenseman of all-time last year, who wouldn't drop off? If White gets scratched tonight, then something is up. Trade? Who knows.
What I do know is for 2013-14 the Wings have.
All locked in. This is under the assumption that Smith (RFA) will be signed. White is a UFA and Kindl an RFA. One or both of them may not be back next season. If Kindl isn't traded, or waived he will get a qualifying offer leaving White the odd man out. This leads me to believe that the Wings may be looking to unload him now for a pick, or defensive depth in GR before they lose him for nothing.
I wouldn't expect a big splash in the FA market this summer. Detroit seems to have their pairings set, and there really isn't much to choose from.
Not a bad place to be considering most thought we would implode with the loss of Lidstrom and Stuart.