Tyler Bertuzzi is set to take off for the Detroit Red Wings

Embed from Getty Images During the 2019- COVID-19 shortened NHL season Tyler Bertuzzi did a thing. Bertuzzi  led the Detroit Red Wings in goals and amassed a career high in assists and points. Bertuzzi has emerged as a rebuilding block and a player who has done nothing but improve every year of his professional career.

March 12, 2020 the day the NHL shutdown due to COVID-19, Tyler Bertuzzi had 21 goals and 27 assists in 71 games along with 48 points good for second place on the team next to Dylan Larkin (53), matching his goal output from 2018-19, which was Bertuzzi’s first full NHL season.

Tyler Bertuzzi paid his dues in a little over two years in the minors with the Grand Rapids Griffins. Bertuzzi was named playoff MVP in the Griffins 2017 Calder Cup championship.

A four game stretch was the longest Tyler Bertuzzi would go without a point in 2019. When the Red Wings Christmas break roll around,  Bertuzzi was Detroit’s best player in the first half, which saw him accumulate 14 goals and 16 assists in 38 games.

Tyler Bertuzzi is a smart player, he also enjoys getting under the skin of opponent’s. Bertuzzi is a restricted free agent who has been right around 50 points in both of his seasons in Detroit. That should help his cause in a new contract.

Projections for next season (could be January if COVID-19 pushes the start of the season back) has Bertuzzi looking at 25 goals and around 55 points in an 82 game season.

Detroit Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman has said he is looking to improve the team and have some salary cap money freed up to begin to shape the Red Wings. If Yzerman can find a puck moving defenseman and a backup goalie that would greatly help.

The Red Wings need more forwards as well. If Yzerman can do the things he wants Tyler Bertuzzi could his the 30 goal mark. No matter how you slice it Tyler Bertuzzi is a very important player in Detroit both during the rebuilding stage and after.

Detroit Lions Kenny Golladay leads all NFL receivers in receptions of 20 yards or more

Embed from Getty Images To say this season has been rough for the Detroit Lions, is like saying water is wet. It is plain to see and a fact. Yet the Lions have found some building blocks (more on that in my next entry.) One such block is wide receiver Kenny Golladay.

Be it Freddie Scott, Jeff Chadwick, Herman Moore or Calvin Johnson, the Detroit Lions seem to usually have a very good receiver on the roster. That is the case with Kenny Golladay.

The third year wideout has emerged as one if not the best deep threat in the NFL. This season because of injuries, Golladay has played with three different quarterbacks. Has it slowed him down? NO! Golladay continues to make defenses pay downfield.

This season no wide receiver has more receptions of 20+ yards than Golladay. With 13 games played he has 19 catches of 20+ yards. One other important note, Golladay has the highest percentage of receptions at 35.8%. Kenny is ahead of the Chargers Mike Williams.

Perhaps the most interesting fact in this, is Golladay ranks near the bottom of all receivers in average separation per route run. Defenders blanket him because they know Golladay is the man who is being targeted downfield.

Golladay is a former third round draft pick who is about to post a second straight 1,000 yard season. Golladay, said he wants to sign an extension and remain in Detroit. His current contract runs through next season.

“I definitely feel like I’ve done my part,” Golladay told the Detroit media. The question is will Lions general manager Bob Quinn and head coach Matt Patricia be back? Or will a possible new regime come in and need to look at players and contracts?

No matter what happens, any general manager or would-be general manager can see beyond the shadow of a doubt, Kenny Golladay is the real deal. He is worthy of a new contract. I suspect he will get one.