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Quick Hits: The Hughes Opportunity Edition

NCAA Hockey: Frozen Four-Michigan vs Notre Dame Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

In Red Wings Land

Your guide to the 2018 IIHF World Championship | Freep

Four current Red Wings are playing in the tournament for their respective countries, along with two Griffins and head coach Jeff Blashill will be behind the bench for Team USA. The one thing, however, that has me really interested in watching the tournament is a kid who doesn’t have an NHL home yet.

Michigan defenseman Quinn Hughes, expected to be a top 10 pick in June’s draft, is part of the U.S. team. The squad also includes the Blackhawks’ Alex Debrincat (Farmington Hills), the KingsAlec Martinez (Rochester Hills) and the Blackhawks’ Jordan Oesterle (Dearborn Heights).

This is an absolutely huge opportunity for Blashill to get an up close look at Hughes. I think the young defenseman’s performance could really impact which direction Detroit goes in June. Hughes has a chance to separate himself from the other defensemen — Evan Bouchard, Noah Dobson and Adam Boqvist — and the Wings have a chance to see if this kid is the right piece for their rebuilding puzzle.

Around the League

Brian Burke on Kessel trade, trying to get Tavares, and more | Sportsnet

This is definitely an interesting read and worth your time. Along with the topics mentioned in the headline, Burke talks about the whole fighting Kevin Lowe in a barn story, handing out supplemental discipline to Claude Lemieux for his hit on Kris Draper back in 1996, and his involvement with the You Can Play project.