We’re in the midst of a prolonged break from Red Wings hockey and, with the lack of team news and activity, I thought it might be fun to do some wild speculation.
The first round draft pick has always been a valuable asset. There’s a reason it’s frequently at the heart of blockbuster trades. The first round pick has the potential to completely change the outlook for an organization. The higher you pick in the first round, the better those odds are. So the further you go down the standings, the more valuable the pick becomes. For the Red Wings, there’s a good chance that this year’s first round pick is going to be at its highest value in nearly 30 years.
In the midst of a rebuild, the odds that the Red Wings move this first round pick are very close to zero. But if they want to get bold and do something crazy, it could fetch them a hell of a return.
So here’s the exercise I want you to partake in, dear reader: imagine you are now the general manager of the Detroit Red Wings. You have your reserved parking spot and keys to your box at Little Caesars Arena. Your phone is buzzing with trade requests from GMs around the league and hockey insiders trying to get the scoop. The future of the Detroit Red Wings franchise is in your hands. What would it take for you to trade your 1st round pick this year?
For me, I have a hard time seeing any scenario where this works, but if Keith Gretzky called me up and said, “Nick, let’s talk Connor”, I would be begging him to take my 1st. But when I think about it, there are players around the league who aren’t at McDavid’s level who would be worth it too. Would I do it for Erik Karlsson if he okays a sign-and-trade? Probably. I would also do it for a Mitch Marner or Nathan MacKinnon or Nikita Kucherov.
But would I do it for a Quinn Hughes or an Adam Boqvist or a Noah Dobson? No. I think the player I can pick in the first round might offer me a better chance than those guys.
In short, it would take a proven, elite-level NHL player for me to even start talking about moving my first round draft pick in 2019. If you don’t have one of those on the table, then don’t even bother calling me.
What would it take for you to move the 1st round pick? Let me know in the comments below.