The Detroit Red Wings reached the playoffs in 25 consecutive seasons, including winning four Stanley Cup Finals, before failing to reach the postseason in 2016-17 as they went just 33-36-13. Since then, the Red Wings have missed the playoffs another two years and finished 2018-19 with only 32 victories. Being eliminated from playoff contention in three straight years after playing deep into the postseason for nearly three full decades is a major wakeup call.
The Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche had the two lowest point totals for playoff teams with 93 and 90, respectively, while the Red Wings finished the year with just 74 points. To get to the playoffs next year, the team will have to drastically improve and increase their win total by at least six victories. This means they have a lot of work to do over the offseason.
With that said, there is some positive news. Steve Yzerman, 10-time NHL All-Star and four-time Stanley Cup champion, was named general manager and executive vice president of the Red Wings on April 19, 2019. Yzerman will look to help bring Detroit back to relevance. One thing that the Red Wings will look to become more effective at is power plays, as they ranked 24th in the league.
With the return of Yzerman as general manager, he could help the Red Wings not only make good deals but also push them to be better on the ice. Their contracts with the players that can no longer keep up with the speed and skill type of game the NHL has become, could be terminated with the return of some veterans such as Wayne Simmons.
They might have a better chance with the possible signing of Finnish defender, Oliwer Kaski, whose manager has stated that Kaski intends on joining the Red Wings after the World Championship which ends on May 26 in Slovakia. The Red Wings will put their main focus into the upcoming NHL Draft which will begin on June 21 in Vancouver, British Columbia.