This next series of articles will be discussing the good (and the bad) of the Detroit Red Wings’ upcoming Free Agents. Each player’s final analysis will be an opinion on that player’s contribution to the team overall. His play will either warrant a new contract or will hit the Free Agent market on July 1st. Next up in our series is Kyle Quincey…
OVERVIEW: Sometimes it’s good to get a second chance to prove yourself. That proved to be the case in point for Kyle Quincey who was subject to waivers after GM Kenny Holland decided to go with Derek Meech in their quest to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions in the 2008-09 season. Quincey bounced around to Los Angeles and Colorado before a near deadline deal was made by Holland and Lightning GM Steve Yzerman. Since that day Kyle has been a consistent defensive force in the back end for Detroit. This restricted free agent is looking to have stability in the NHL and stay with the team that made him a draft pick in 2003.
THE GOOD: There were stretches of this season where Detroit’s defenseman just kept getting injured. Quincey was able to provide stability and also another defensive presence on the ice. Between both the Avalanche and the Red Wings he registered 101 hits and threw himself in front of 94 shots. With the potential of seeing Brad Stuart leave via Free Agency there will be a need for a shutdown defender in the Wings core. Quincey also reads the ice well and handles the puck well in his own zone. Add in his 21:52 average in ice time this past season and the Red Wings are fortunate to add a quality defensive defenseman that is only 26 years old.
THE BAD: During the brief stint with Detroit in the regular season and playoffs, there were points where Kyle was a turnover machine. It almost felt that he would clear his own zone and then cough the puck up in the neutral zone and get back on an odd man rush. This is a concern for a player who got paid $3.125 million dollars with Colorado to be their defensive specialist. His +/- is also a concern. If a defenseman can get a efficient breakout going he gives his team a good chance to score and thus +/- goes up. Quincey’s final +/- was even and a -2 in the series against Nashville. This can be worked out over time by Coach Mike Babcock as he should be paired with Niklas Kronwall or Jonathan Ericsson.
THE VERDICT: It is understandable why Holland made a trade for Kyle Quincey. When he is on the ice, his smarts and defensive grit prove to overwhelm teams. There are still things that Quincey can work on offensively and also in the neutral zone, but being back where his career started should help with furthering his development. One can only expect him to get better as he gets older with the intangibles he already has. When he is paired with the right defensive partner Quincey will be worth every single penny that the club signs him to and gave a first round pick for. He made $3+ million dollars on his first pro contract and expect a figure near there for this new contract.
I predict that Quincey will receive a 4 year, $13.5 million dollar contract.
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