Red Wings GM: Alfredsson 'only wants to play if he feels he can contribute'

Aug 28, 9:07 AM

The question of whether Daniel Alfredsson will resume his NHL career this season remains unanswered, and a decision isn't likely to be made until the Detroit Red Wings gather for training camp on Sept. 18. 

General manager Ken Holland said Wednesday the 41-year-old does have a desire to play at least one more season, but only if he can have a positive impact on the club.

“I haven’t talked to him in about a month,” Holland told the Detroit Free Press. “He’s training hard. He’s training to play. He does want to play. When I last talked to him, he said he felt good - he wanted to feel great. He would love to play another year. He wants to play for us. He only wants to play if he feels he can contribute. The best test for him is to skate a couple weeks prior to training camp."

Holland added that Alfredsson may attend camp without a contract, allowing both sides additional time to figure out the best course of action. “I’ll talk to him next week," Holland continued. "We’ll wait 10-12 days. Do we sign him to a contract? Does he just want to come to camp? I'm lobbing everything out there.”

Alfredsson co-led the team in scoring last season with 49 points, albeit with Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen missing significant time due to injury.

Sep 28, 10:33 AM

Red Wings could talk with progressing Alfredsson on Monday about possible return

Sep 28, 10:33 AM

Daniel Alfredsson, 41, hasn't been in training camp with the Detroit Red Wings this month due to a troublesome back injury, but he's not quite ready to hang his skates up officially yet either.

The condition of the skilled right wing, who was shut down after "tweaking" his back earlier this month, appears to be improving to the point where a return to action once again seems possible.

"I saw him yesterday, he said he’s feeling better every day and if he has a good weekend we’ll talk on Monday," Red Wings general manager Ken Holland told Ansar Khan of "He’s done lots on his own. He’s in the process of evaluating himself."

Alfredsson's abilities as a two-way player have diminished in recent seasons, though he managed 49 points in 68 games last season and remains a useful power-play specialist and point producer. 

Though the Red Wings have an impressive arsenal of talented young forwards who need more minutes this season, with the rate the team's forwards are sustaining injuries this month, the club will surely take any additional depth they can find. 

(H/T Pro Hockey Talk)

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Marc DesRosiers

Sep 16, 5:52 PM

Report: Alfredsson seeing back specialist, will not attend Wings camp

Sep 16, 5:52 PM

Daniel Alfredsson's status was updated Tuesday, and it appears as though the decision on whether he will return for another season could be made for him.

Alfredsson is on record as saying he won't sign on to play in 2014-15 if he's unable to make a meaningful contribution. Unless he can get his back issues straightened out sooner rather than later, retirement seems like the more plausible option.

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Marc DesRosiers

Sep 15, 6:11 PM

Daniel Alfredsson not expected to attend Red Wings training camp

Sep 15, 6:11 PM

Daniel Alfredsson hasn't skated in 10 days due to a setback in his recurring back issues. As a result, the veteran forward isn't expected to attend Detroit Red Wings training camp, as per Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press.

"The setback is a little bigger than Alfie thought," general manager Ken Holland revealed Monday. "I know he still wants to give himself every opportunity to see if his body will allow him to play. We're going to be patient — give him the time to make his decision.

"At this point, I don't expect him to be coming to camp."

Alfredsson has been waiting to see how his back would hold up prior to making a commitment to play one more season. Holland confirmed the door remains open for his return, but it appears as though retirement may be in consideration if the ailment doesn't improve.

"I think I owe him the class and dignity to allow him to get to a point where we sit down and make a decision about his future," Holland said. "Whether we sign him to a contract or not will be based on feedback from his body. Before we even get there, we have to see if Alfie's body is going to allow him to play.

"This has been, from his perspective, disappointing that, on the eve of camp, he's not been able to skate every day. Right now, Alfie doesn't feel the way he knows he needs to feel."

Sep 11, 6:12 PM

Dreger: Alfredsson won't play until pain-free, won't sign unless convinced he can still play

Sep 11, 6:12 PM

Daniel Alfredsson will reportedly not sign with the Detroit Red Wings nor attend training camp until he's healthy enough to do so.

General manager Ken Holland said on Wednesday that Alfredsson may attend camp without a contract. Holland said Alfredsson "felt a little bit of a tweak" after an informal skate last week.

In August, Holland said Alfredsson could attend camp on a tryout and that a decision on his future may not be made until mid-September.

The general manager also acknowledged that the veteran forward will only sign if he feels like he can contribute.

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Marc DesRosiers

Sep 10, 6:05 PM

Wings GM: Alfredsson 'felt a little bit of a tweak' in back, could attend camp without contract

Sep 10, 6:05 PM

Daniel Alfredsson could attend Detroit Red Wings training camp without a contract due to concerns over the state of his back, general manager Ken Holland said Wednesday.

Alfredsson “felt a little bit of a tweak” in his back after an informal skate last week, Holland told the Detroit Free Press. As a result, Holland said, “It’s possible Alfredsson¸comes to camp without a contract. We’ll see what happens over the next week.”

Alfredsson led the team with 49 points in 68 games last season, but stated he doesn't want to play again unless he can make a meaningful contribution. 

Holland referred to Alfredsson's back pain as "nothing major," however, it does put the winger's ability to resume his career in doubt for the time being.

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Marc DesRosiers

Sep 8, 3:31 PM

Red Wings teammates trying to convince Daniel Alfredsson to return

Sep 8, 3:31 PM

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Daniel Alfredsson has the Red Wings in a holding pattern as he waits to decide whether to play a 19th NHL season and second in Detroit.

But the teammates who have been skating with him this month have been trying "every day" to convince him to come back, Red Wings defenceman Niklas Kronwall said.

"Alfie's a guy that I think it's hard to replace because not only does he bring a tremendous amount of talent on the ice, but he brings lots of leadership," Kronwall said Monday at the league's player media tour. "His veteran presence is extremely valuable and I don't think you can put a price on that. It'd definitely be different without him if that would be the case."

Alfredsson spent 17 seasons with the Ottawa Senators before signing a one-year deal with the Red Wings on July 5, 2013. Back problems hampered him and have led to this summer of indecision.

General manager Ken Holland said in a text message recently that the team was going to wait until the week of Sept. 15 — just before the start of training camp — to see how Alfredsson was feeling. The 41-year-old right-winger was noncommittal when he spoke with reporters in Detroit after an informal skate last week.

Kronwall paused before answering whether he expected Alfredsson to be back.

"It's hard to know with him, actually," he said. "We're trying to get a grip of where he stands, but it's hard. We're all hoping, obviously, like everyone else."

Younger Swedish forward Gustav Nyquist hasn't talked to Alfredsson about his future but similarly wants him back in the locker-room and on the ice in a Red Wings uniform.

"I think every team in this league would love to have Alfie," Nyquist said at the player media tour. "He's a great player and he can really help us. He has a great shot and he can help us on the power play and plays the game like we like to play it, the Red Wings style."

Pressed on if he'd bet on Alfredsson playing, Nyquist said, "We'll see."

Alfredsson had 18 goals and 31 assists in 68 games last season. Health limited him to playing in just three of Detroit's five playoff games.

Even after a career with the Senators, Alfredsson seemed to fit in well with an established Red Wings core. The longtime Ottawa captain didn't want to upset the dynamic already in place with captain Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, Kronwall and the rest of the group.

"I think everyone just kind of finds his place on the team very quickly," Kronwall said. "Alfie's just one of those guys that he just adapts to whatever the situation might be. When things needed to be said, he stood up and got guys' attention, and he scored some big goals for us."

During what's probably a Hall of Fame career, Alfredsson has scored 426 goals and added 682 assists. If he decides to hang up his skates, it could make room for someone with zero goals like 19-year-old Anthony Mantha.

Sep 3, 2:08 PM

Daniel Alfredsson taking part in informal skates with Red Wings teammates

Sep 3, 2:08 PM

In defiance of time and nature, 41-year-old winger Daniel Alfredsson managed nearly 50 points in 68 games last season. He remains a productive player who particularly excels on the power-play, but the Swede still hasn't decided whether to play this season, or hang up his skates and retire. 

That decision won't be made for a couple of weeks yet, but as Alfredsson joined his Red Wings teammates (or potential teammates) for an informal on-ice session on Wednesday, he sure didn't look like a player on the verge of filing his retirement paperwork: 

"(Alfredsson) only wants to play if he feels he can contribute," Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said last week. "The best test for him is to skate a couple weeks prior to training camp."

Aug 15, 4:00 PM

Red Wings GM: Alfredsson could attend training camp on tryout

Aug 15, 4:00 PM

Daniel Alfredsson has not yet decided whether or not he wants to play another season, but the Detroit Red Wings are willing to wait and see what the veteran forward has left.

Alfredsson has been considering retirement since the end of the 2013-14 season. He probably doesn't want to uproot his family again so soon after moving from Ottawa to Detroit, making the Red Wings the clear front-runner for his services, should he decide to play.

Alfredsson, 41, signed a one-year deal with Detroit paying him $3.5 million with up to $2 million in performance bonuses last season. He recorded 49 points in 68 games.

Aug 11, 6:09 PM

Red Wings GM Holland on Alfredsson: 'We're probably going to try to do something with Alfie'

Aug 11, 6:09 PM

Free agent forward Daniel Alfredsson dealt with a number of injuries last season with the Detroit Red Wings, the most severe to his back. Spasms saw him miss 14 games, while finishing the season with only 49 points.

Alfredsson's future remains undecided. He's healthy for now, and that's good enough for Red Wings management.

"My take is we're probably going to try to do something with Alfie," General manager Ken Holland told MLive's Ansar Khan. "He had a good year, 19 goals. When he was healthy, he was valuable."

Younger, proven players who made a name for themselves (Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar, Tomas Jurco) last season will help take the load off Alfredsson if he plays.

"Certainly, I don't look at Alfie thinking he's going to play 82 games," Holland said Monday.

Alfredsson, 41, signed a one-year, $5.5-million contract with the Red Wings last summer.

Aug 5, 10:00 PM

Daniel Alfredsson to resume skating next week, still undecided on continuing NHL career

Aug 5, 10:00 PM

Detroit Red Wings winger Daniel Alfredsson will resume on-ice workouts next week, but remains undecided about continuing his playing career next season. From the IIHF's Syzmon Szemberg:

So Alfredsson won't play in Europe next season, as fellow Hall of Fame-bound forward Teemu Selanne is reportedly considering, but still hasn't made up his mind about continuing his playing career. 

If Alfredsson suits up next season though, it'll be with the Red Wings. 

[H/T Kukla's Korner]

Jul 26, 6:37 PM

Report: Alfredsson to wait until 'late August' to decide if he'll play another season

Jul 26, 6:37 PM

Veteran forward Daniel Alfredsson is reportedly going to wait until the last minute before deciding whether he'll suit up for one more season.

As per Ted Kulfan of The Detroit News:

Alfredsson, 41, will decide in late August whether to return for another season. Plagued by an aching back at points during the regular season and playoffs, Alfredsson will see whether he’s healthy enough to endure another season.

Limited to 68 games for the Detroit Red Wings in 2013-14, Alfredsson did prove to have some gas left in the tank by recording 18 goals and 31 assists. He was, however, held pointless in the three of Detroit's six playoff games that he was healthy enough to play in.

Alfredsson previously stated he will only play for the Red Wings if he does indeed decide to return to the NHL.

Feature photo courtesy of USA Today/Greg M. Cooper

Jun 27, 5:54 PM

Report: Alfredsson will retire if he can't re-sign with Red Wings

Jun 27, 5:54 PM

The Detroit Red Wings don't want to make a decision right away on pending free-agent forward Daniel Alfredsson. Even though he wants to play another season in Detroit, nothing will be decided until the end of the summer.

If Alfredsson and the Red Wings can't come to an agreement, he will reportedly retire instead of continuing his career elsewhere.

Alfredsson continues to struggle with a back injury that hampered him for most the season.

Jun 26, 11:01 PM

Report: Alfredsson returning to Detroit 'a toss up'

Jun 26, 11:01 PM

Ageless 41-year-old forward Daniel Alfredsson can still play hockey at a high level. He proved it again last season, scoring 18 goals and contributing 49 points in 68 games during his first tour of duty with the Detroit Red Wings.

Alfredsson's back issues flared up at times throughout the season though, and he's reportedly undecided about whether or not he'll play again next year.

The Swedish Olympian spurned the Ottawa Senators last summer to sign a one-year contract in Detroit, that deal has since expired and the Red Wings and Alfredsson are discussing a new contract this summer. While the two sides have talked about a new deal already and will presumably continue to do so, Alfredsson's return next season remains "a toss-up" according to Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press

Jun 23, 6:29 PM

Red Wings GM Ken Holland on Daniel Alfredsson: 'He wants to play again'

Jun 23, 6:29 PM

Daniel Alfredsson doesn't want to hang up his skates just yet, at least that's what Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland told Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press.

"He wants to play again."

Alfredsson missed games through the year with recurring back pain, and his back isn't fully healed either. Holland said "[Alfredsson] says his back feels pretty good, but he wishes - he wants to it feel a little bit better."

That's not exactly a ringing endorsement to re-sign the veteran forward.

The Red Wings want to meet in the coming week before Alfredsson hits free agency, they want to be on the same page if they are to move forward with the center.

"The thing about Alfie is - I've only got one year experience with him, but he's a pro. He wants to win. He understands where we're at."

In 68 games last season, Alfredsson scored 49 points along with four game-winning goals.

May 7, 10:06 AM

Red Wings' Alfredsson considering retirement: 'You've got to end it sometime'

May 7, 10:06 AM

Daniel Alfredsson is taking his time deciding if he will play a 19th NHL season.

"There’s a lot of factors that play in, mentally, physically and family," Alfredsson told The Windsor Star. "I still love the game, there’s no question about that. At the same time, you've got to end it sometime."

Alfredsson, 41, recorded 49 points in 68 games with the Red Wings, but the biggest obstacle to his return appears to be the offseason and the training involved in preparing for next season:

It comes to a point where you know you have to put the work in during the summer or you won’t have any fun in the winter, and if that work in the summer becomes too much of a load and a time commitment, then you know it’s time. That’s one of the things I’ve dealt with the last few years. Do I have it in me to put that work in and not just do it because I want to do it? It’s got to really feel like it’s something that you’re excited to do again. That’s a tough one.

Another important factor is family. Alfredsson is the father of four young children and wants to be involved in their lives. Vancouver Canucks general manager Trevor Linden, who retired in 2008, knows how the game's physical toll can make that difficult.

"I certainly have friends, guys I played with for a long time, who have trouble walking a golf course with their son," Linden said.

Alfredsson is not sure when he will make a decision, but the Red Wings are not rushing him. Detroit general manager Ken Holland told Alfredsson the team will wait until the middle of June to make a decision on offering him a new contract.