Embed from Getty Images When the Detroit Red Wings introduced Steve Yzerman as team general manager back in April, Yzerman spoke at length about how he trusts his scouts. While the Wings legend does his own scouting, he values his scouts and counts on them heavily for input.
Steve Yzerman made the choice to release amateur scouting director Tyler Wright and chief amateur scout Jeff Finley. “Our contracts were not renewed,” said Finley, who scouted for 10 years with the Wings. “Steve (Yzerman) said basically they had different plans. It’s the nature of the business, putting your own people in place. We’ve had a few high draft picks lately in Detroit and we feel we’ve made good picks.”
Finley said Wright and former Detroit pro scout Archie Henderson were hired last Thursday by former Wings GM Ken Holland in Edmonton. Detroit assistant GM Chris Draper is among the candidates to replace Tyler Wright as the team’s director of amateur scouting.
What is the underling factor in the scouting department shakeup is, the fact Yzerman is used to working with his people he has a history with so he began the process of bringing in his people. The same people whom he trusted in Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay was a top five team during Yzerman’s time as Lightning GM.
Pat Verbeek, Yzerman’s main and most trusted confidant’s while with the Lightning was the first brought in to Detroit. Yzerman also hired his brother, Chris, and booted Glenn Merkosky, who’d been scouting for the Wings since 1999.
Steve Yzerman hinted more changes are coming. But this is a big first move. One that should bay high dividends for the Red Wings moving forward. While the former Red Wings scouts did have some solid draft picks, it became clear during this past NHL amateur draft Yzerman drafted 3 defensive players with Detroit’s first four draft picks. A clear sign Yzerman was not all that thrilled the organization is forward heavy.
Perhaps, this was Yzerman’s plan all along. But he did allow the released scouts the chance to work and attend the draft. What happened at the draft is anyone’s guess.