With the trade deadline looming on the horizon, there are heaps of rumors surfacing about the Detroit Red Wings and acquiring a defenseman to help bolster their squad in hopes of a deep run into the NHL playoffs. Ken Holland joined Vancouver's TSN 1040 earlier today, and provided some insight to what's going on in his mind currently. A big thanks to Chris Nichols (@NicholsOnHockey) for transcribing the interview for us to read and analyze.
"So ideally would we like to have a right-shot defenseman, yeah; but I think it has to be the right right-shot defenseman. We’re not just looking for a right-shot defenseman. Our defense has played real good. We’ve come off it a little bit in the penalty kill. We were first or second on the penalty kill for a long time, but the last 10 games we haven’t done as good a job. We need to get better in that area."
So a quote like this tells us something - Ken Holland won't likely be picking up a defenseman who shoots left (Keith Yandle, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, etc), and will be looking towards the other choices such as Jeff Petry, Mike Green, or Tyler Myers. Myers and Green will come at a premium price, and Kenny likely won't be willing to do the dance with Tim Murray or Brian MacLellan if it means giving up top prospects like Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha, or Red Wings standout players such as Tomas Tatar.
"I like the depth of our team. Petr Mrazek’s our third goalie, he’s come up and done real well. Teemu Pulkkinen scored two goals today in an afternoon game in Grand Rapids. He’s got 26 goals on the year. He came up and played five games, I think, scored a goal. So he’s an NHL player in the making. We played Xavier Ouellet 10-15 games. He’s back in Grand Rapids. We’re now getting a look at Alexey Marchenko, we think he’s an NHL player. He played for us the other night against the Islanders."
"I like the depth of our team." Read between the lines there, but that line sounds awfully familiar, doesn't it? This means one of two things, I think.. We're on the verge of Ken Holland and company standing pat during the trade deadline, or he's trying to do some serious price control with teams that he might have been speaking to lately. However, he does state during the interview that he feels like if the team can keep putting up points that they will end up being a good buyer at the trade deadline, and will see what prices end up being like.
I think the team continues to put up points, and stays at the top of the division, and I think it would be silly to not heavily inquire Edmonton for a player like Jeff Petry. He's technically a rental player, but the odds of him re-signing with him hometown club are high. Please read the rest of that piece by Nichols for more quotes from Holland, and make of it what you will. Just don't be surprised if the "we like our team" narrative resurfaces itself come March.