Dear Red Wings: Notable stats after 15 games

Red Wings in the mix largely thanks to top rookies Raymond, Seider

Detroit Red Wings defenseman Moritz Seider (53) celebrates his first goal with left wing Tyler Bertuzzi (59) during the overtime period of an NHL hockey game for a win over the Buffalo Sabres, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021, in Buffalo, N.Y. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes) (Jeffrey T. Barnes, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

The Detroit Red Wings have a 7-6-2 record after their first 15 games this season. Here are some stats that stand out to me so far.

Standout stats

Bertuzzi has 15 points in 12 games played

Tyler Bertuzzi is the MVP for this team through 15 games played, and he’s only played in 12 of them due to his inability to participate in games in Canada. He has 15 points with a team best 9 goals. He boasts a staggering 31% shooting percentage, far better than his career average of 15.9%. There is no way that’s sustainable, but it’s a great start. The Red Wings are 0 for 3 without Bert in the lineup.

Raymond and Seider in race for Calder

We all expected Lucas Raymond and Moritz Seider to be good, I think that’s fair to say. They have been highly touted for a year now, especially after their success in the Swedish league, and had no problem cracking this roster during camp. But this, what the two of them are doing right now, is astounding. The Red Wings franchise has not seen this kind of input from rookies in, well, 30-40 years. Raymond now has 14 points through his first 15 career NHL games. Seider the defenseman is right behind him with 11 points. Raymond leads all NHL rookies in points and goals (6) while Seider leads all rookies in assists with 9. The race for the Calder Trophy is in Detroit.

Red Wings in 3rd place in division

The Red Wings find themselves in 3rd place in the Atlantic Division right now with 16 points. They’ve played three to four more games than some of the teams below them in the standings, sure, but let’s enjoy this. They are in the mix, battling each night and it shows in the standings. It may not be pretty some nights, but this is a big improvement over the past couple of seasons.

Special teams remain a struggle

Imagine if the Red Wings had slightly better special teams. Right now they’re struggling with a 16% conversion rate on the power play (25th in league) and a penalty kill percentage of 74.51% (26th).

They went 0/4 on the PP Thursday night against the Capitals, a game in which they could only muster 21 shots on goal and were shut out, 2-0. Again, imagine if they could convert more consistently on the power play. I think this is where Jakub Vrana can help make a big difference. Perhaps he’s back by December?

Goalies putting in work

It’s not as if the Red Wings goalies -- Alex Nedeljkovic (3-2, .914 SV%) and Thomas Greiss (4-4, .909%) -- are stealing the show every night. No, not really. Nothing close to how Jonathan Bernier was standing on his head last season. However, these two are putting in work and grinding out the wins with big saves at key moments in games. In fact, combined they have faced 511 shots, the most of any goalie tandem in the league. They are giving the Red Wings a chance to win on most nights.

Nedeljkovic seems to be trending in the right direction in his past few starts, too. He posted a .939 SV% against Edmonton the other night, and a .950(!) against Montreal a couple of games before that.

Zadina has just 2 goals through 15 games

I find it hard to believe Filip Zadina has just 2 goals and 4 assists for 6 points through 15 games. It feels like he’s been much more effective than that. Both of those goals were on the power play, meaning he has yet to score at even strength. This is slightly alarming. If he’s not scoring at even strength, he definitely needs to help get the power play going. He’s still pretty young at 21, but he’s hit the 100-game mark in the NHL. I think it’s fair to demand more offensive production from him. He’s getting his looks, and as mentioned he’s on the power play. Let’s get going Fil!

Namestnikov has 7 goals

On the contrary, Vladislav Namestnikov now has 7 goals through 15 games. A few of them have been really tasty, too. He appears to be clicking this season, whereas last season is seemed like he never really got his footing out there. He’s now in the 2nd year of his two-year contract. Is this guy getting traded at the deadline? Remember, he’s no spring chicken at 28 years old.

The Red Wings have plenty of forwards waiting to grab a spot -- Joe Veleno, for instance. Jonatan Berggren is another -- he has 6 points through 9 games with the Griffins this season. And again, we expect Vrana to be back by January, at least.

Coming up:

  • Saturday, Nov. 13 -- 7 p.m. vs. Canadiens
  • Monday, Nov. 15 -- 7 p.m. @ Blue Jackets
  • Tuesday, Nov. 16 -- 8:30 p.m. @Stars

View the full schedule here.

About the Author:

Dave Bartkowiak Jr. is the digital managing editor for ClickOnDetroit.