Dylan Larkin named the 37th captain of the Detroit Red Wings

Being named captain of a team is an honor. It is an honor that only comes with sacrifice, dedication, hard work and leadership. Dylan Larkin a local Michigan resident from birth who played his college hockey at the University of Michigan, was drafted by the hometown Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft. Yesterday, Larkin took his place along some of the greatest names in NHL history and was named captain of the Detroit Red Wings.

In the rafters at Little Caesars Area are not only Championship banners but also retired jersey numbers of Red Wings legends. Ted Lindsay,  Alex Delvecchio, Sid Abel, Steve Yzerman and Nicklas Lidstrom are some of the players who’s numbers are retired. They also have a common theme, those five former Red Wing players all wore the captain’s “C” .

Steve Yzerman, who is now the Red Wings general manager, yesterday announced Dylan Larkin will be the next captain of the fabled franchise. When asked what stood out to him about Larkin Yzerman stated “He stands out as a leader in his work ethic, his competitiveness, his commitment, his inner drive to be really good, to win.”

Yzerman knows first hand what is means to be captain in Detroit and for the Red Wings, he severed over 20 years as the organizations captain. As soon as he was drafted by Detroit, Dylan Larkin had been the center of much speculation that he would indeed one day be named captain.

“It’s hard to put into words,” Larkin said in a Zoom interview with media, “I understand the significance of this role. I’ve seen it, been around it, I’ve been a fan and been to games. I can’t be more honored. I try to be myself every day and I have a great support system. It doesn’t stop here. I don’t change who I am. It means so much to me.”

Dylan Larkin, becomes the first Michigander to be named captain. He follows Henrik Zetterberg as Red Wings captain. The Red Wings made the announcement on social media with a very effective picture.


Detroit Red Wings Dylan Larkin reaches 100 goals

Embed from Getty Images As Dylan Larkin skated out of the penalty box, he skated with anger. Sure he had just committed a penalty, but Larkin skated as though he was/is disappointed where the Red Wings are in the standings. He was streaking all alone towards world class goalie Sergei Bobrovsky of the Florida Panthers.

In an instant, Larkin’s teammate Darren Helm snapped the puck to Larkin and Larkin found the back of the net.  Dylan Larkin’s 100th career goal comes as one of the few bright spots in this Detroit Red Wings season.

Larkin became the sixth Red Wings player in the last 40 years to score 100 goals before the age of 24. Dylan is the second youngest of the Red Wings group at 23 years old and five months. Steve Yzerman is the youngest at 21 years old to hit 100 goals.

Dylan Larkin who is speculated to be the next captain of the Red Wings has blossomed into a solid two-way player under Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill. Larkin, works hard at both ends of the ice at all times.

Larkin is worthy of being the next team and franchise captain. In my opinion the reason has not yet been named captain, is general manager Steve Yzerman said he wanted to get to know everyone in the orgainzation first before making the call.

As each game passes, it becomes clearer and clearer, Larkin will get the “C” on his hockey sweater very soon.

Detroit Red Wings Dylan Larkin being named captain by next season

Embed from Getty Images Talking to the media Monday after the Detroit Red Wings cleaned out their lockers at Little Caesars Arena, general manager Ken Holland gave insight as to when  the Wings will have another player with a ‘C’ on his sweater.

During the 2018-19 season the Red Wings went with four alternates captains instead of one. Frans Nielsen , Niklas Kronwall and Justin Abdelkader joined Larking with an “A” on their sweaters. That is simply too many voices in the locker room.

Veteran Wings forward Thomas Vanek noted how much growth he has seen in Larkin this past season.  “For sure I can see him be a good captain, a good leader.” Vanek said matter-of-factly.

Holland left open the possibility that if the Wings sign a superstar in free agency, “maybe that affects your thinking.” It is difficult to see someone who has yet to play for the Red Wings being handed the team leader.  Henrik Zetterberg and his predecessors, Nicklas Lidstrom and Steve Yzerman, were all draft picks who spent their entire careers with the Red Wings organization.

Detroit  drafted Dylan Larkin in 2014, ahead of their rebuild. He has been a leader in the locker room, on ice and in the community. Ken Holland ended by saying this, “He’s a legitimate candidate,  He plays hard. He’s a tremendous player. He’s going to be the face of this franchise. Certainly he would be a leading candidate to be the next captain, but I’m not prepared to have that announcement today.”

The end of the season is not the time or place to name a captain. Players were packing their belongings before heading off to the homes. With the season that saw setbacks and a glimpse at a brighter future. It was time to disengage and focus on summer.

Training camp will open soon enough. A new season, a bright future, a new captain.

As the season winds down Detroit Red Wings Larkin and Athanasiou have a shot at 30 goals

Embed from Getty Images It has been one full decade since the Detroit Red Wings have had a 30 goal scorer. In a lost season for the Detroit Red Wings it is about what is next. It shows how close the organization is to returning to competitive hockey again by have two of the teams young stars closing in on 30 goals.

On a chilly day in the Motor City, Andreas Athanasiou scored goals numbers 25 and 26 as the Red Wings beat the New York Islanders 2-1  in a rare win. The two goals moved the young forward/center into second place on the team in goals scored. Dylan Larkin is at this time the team leader with 27.

Andreas Athanasiou, is a pure goal scorer who plays little defense. That was the knock on him his first couple of NHL seasons. This season has seen Andreas’ defense improve. He even checked a player from New York into the boards.

When Athanasiou’s defense is as consistent as his offense he will be a dynamic player. He will also be a force to be reckoned with. Giving the Red Wings the potential to have multiple players capable of 30 goals.

Last season the Detroit Red Wings asked Dylan Larkin to work on his passing and forecheck. He did. It came at the expense of his goal scoring. Larkin had a career low 16 goals in the 2017-18 season. Having worked on his game and clean it up, the Red Wings told Larkin to return to shooting the puck more. He did. To the tune of 27 goals this season.

This is what a rebuild looks like. It is not as easy as drafting players and sticking them out on the ice. It is draft them, see what they bring to the table and working with them. Allowing them space and time to fail and succeed.

Now Detroit has an excellent two way center in Dylan Larkin who can do it all. They have a budding superstar in Andreas Athanasiou who has improved every season he has played in Motown.

Both players are under 24 years old, and both are explosive goal scorers. Both players have gotten better every game they have played for the Winged Wheels.

Both players are above average in the face-off circle as well. Athanasiou who is transitioning to center and done very well with the move has also had to play wing for the Red Wings due to injuries to Anthony Mantha and Tyler Bertuzzi earlier in the season.

The Detroit Red Wings are not sure if Andreas Athanasiou will continue to stay at center. The Red Wings are looking at a top three lottery pick in June’s NHL draft and could take a center in the draft. It just depends where they think Anthanasiou can both excel and help the Wings.

The last time Detroit had more than one 30  goal scorer was 2008-09 the year  Detroit won it’s  last Stanley Cup Championship, when Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, Johan Franzen and Marian Hossa reached the goal mark.

This is very good news for the rebuilding Red Wings who are just about set for flight again.

Dylan Larkin ready to lead the Detroit Red Wings

Embed from Getty Images If there was any question who the next captain of the Detroit Red Wings would be that question has been answered. The Red Wings are woefully bad. But young players have taken HUGE steps forward. One player stands above all.

After the worst loss of the season 8-1 at home to Montreal, young Detroit Red Wings center was seen on the bench starting at his teammates in a moment of total anger and frustration. Larkin took his helmet off and slammed it on the ground. He walked up the tunnel to collect himself before rejoining the team.

Asked about it after the game Larking stood before the Detroit media and said “I was not happy with my performance or the teams effort. It starts with me.” Just like that a captain was found. Not that Dylan Larkin was not going to be the guy.

Enjoying a fantastic season on a personal note. With 26 goals and 61 points in 63 games. Larkin is one of the NHL’s best young players. He leads by example. He also leads by his words.

After Henrik Zetterberg retired, Detroit said no one person would be named captain for the 2018-19 season. Fair enough. As the season started and has gone along Larkin has separated  himself from the rest of the really good young talent in Motown.

He has stood in front of the media most nights after a loss like a pro as he explained the reason for another loss. That is something captains or a veteran player does.

The Detroit Red Wings are on the doorstep of being very good again. With just under $18 million in cap space this Summer Detroit is sure to add some solid veterans to go with their young core.

The Red Wings will add players. They will get better. They many even skate for a Stanley Cup soon. They will do so under captain Dylan Larkin’s watch. That is very good news for Detroit hockey.

Detroit Red Wings in a bad season youth is being served

Embed from Getty Images Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha, Evgeny Svechnikov. Detroit Red Wings fans need to commit these names to memory. They are 3 of the building blocks to the next Red Wings next great team.
In the middle of a rebuild that has netted more and more losses 35 to be exact. Hasn’t left a lot for fans to cheer about. But let’s focus on the future. It’s looking a little less cloudy.
A future that fans can see young center Dylan Larkin wearing the captain’s “C.” His growth as the man in the middle has been eye opening. Along with Anthony Mantha gives the Red Wings the making of have a nasty young line.
And young Evgeny Svechnikov. The Red Wings have handled this pure goal scorer with kid gloves. Recently they have removed them and let him go. I look forward to seeing him grow more as a player.
The Red Wings have 2 first round draft picks in the 2018 NHL draft. They also have 2 second round picks and have amassed 5 that’s right 5 third round draft picks.
This is a great year to have a plethora of draft picks as this is widely considered to be the best group of prospects is the last 15 years. That will help the franchise moving forward.
The Red Wings need to focus on two positions. Left wing and first line defensemen. Names to watch are Brady Tkachuk LW Boston University. His game is being compared to the great Brett Hull.
And defenseman Quinton Hughes from the University of Michigan. He is sure to take his place in a long list of Michigan Wolverine defensemen like Jack Johnson, Zach Werenski, and Jacob Trouba.
The Red Wings will be able to speed up they’re rebuild in this years draft. I for one will be keeping close tabes on Larkin, Mantha & Svechnikov the rest of this season.