The Red Wings are caught in a dangerous middle ground right now, they have a good amount of prospects but none are really hitting it out of the park. A game breaking prospect would change the entire make up of the team. What teams should the Red Wings be targeting on draft day?
Columbus Blue Jackets
This is a team stuck in cap hell, they need to make a trade to be able to sign Seth Jones and could be looking to trade down in the draft. Moving up thirteen spots to second would be a very tall task. The Blue Jackets want a number one center and the only player that could get the Blue Jackets to consider a move, would be Dylan Larkin. The Jackets also need cap relief as well.
The Wings don’t have a plethora of cap room to possibly take a dumped contract either.
I don’t think it would work out for either side as a move of that stature wouldn’t be met with warm feelings. A move may not be made, but the Blue Jackets should be a target for any team moving up in the draft.
However, their second round pick at 34, or third round pick at 65 could be good pieces to latch onto as part of a larger deal.
They, much like the Blue Jackets are trying to make a move to shore up a part of their team. They need defense in the worst way and the Wings may be able to fill their need. Brendan Smith is an analytics darling and with the Oilers being one of the earliest adapters of analytics they may see something that others don’t. Would he alone be enough? Unlikely, so who would need to be thrown in to sweeten the pot?
Would the Wings be willing to trade away Mantha or Bertuzzi, plus a pick for Chychrun or Juolevi? Any move would have to be a simple one for the Wings.
At fourth overall, though, it’s possible that the Oilers make a reactionary move and get tired of having too many high draft picks.
New Jersey Devils
The most likely trade of the bunch, the Devils need help all over the board. They need players and they need picks. Trading up only five spots is much more logisitically possible. It would only take a middling prospect and a couple of mid round picks in addition to the first round pick swap to get it done. If one of the big three defenders are left, Sergachev, Chychrun or Juolevi, don’t be surprised if this is a move the Wings, or at the very least the Devils, decide to make.