Skip to content

Ken Holland: “We might not make the playoffs”

Jan 17, 2013, 11:11 AM EST

Ken Holland

The last time the Detroit Red Wings missed the playoffs, the Edmonton Oilers won the Stanley Cup.

That was in 1990, the same year Owen Nolan was taken with the first overall draft pick and Jaromir Jagr was picked fifth.

But according to Wings general manager Ken Holland, his team’s streak of 21 straight postseason appearances could come to an end in 2013.

“There’s the possibility that we might not make the playoffs this year,” Holland said Wednesday at the Detroit Sportscasters Association luncheon, per the Detroit Free Press. “But nobody can run and hide from you any longer in this league. You can’t stockpile players. You’re constantly tweaking. You’re constantly changing. And that’s why all 16 teams that make the playoffs now can win the Stanley Cup.”

Of course, the biggest difference in Detroit this season will be the absence of Nicklas Lidstrom, one of the greatest defensemen of all time.

Holland tried to address that massive hole this summer, but ultimately failed to convince Ryan Suter to sign.

The Wings still have Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg up front, but a couple of stars don’t guarantee a postseason berth.

Detroit has a handful of intriguing prospects, such as defenseman Brendan Smith and forward Gustav Nyquist. But the team’s regular-season success hasn’t made it easy to keep the system stocked.

In fact, the highest pick the Wings have had in the last 20 years is No. 19 (Jakub Kindl) in 2005.

“If we get the improvements we want, we can be the best team in the Western Conference,” Holland said, “but if we don’t get them, it might be a struggle even making the playoffs. But you’ve got to understand that we’re doing this on the fly. We want to compete for the Cup this year, but we also want to compete for it in 2016.”

Related: How will Detroit adjust to life without Lidstrom?

Latest Posts
  1. Former NHL player Sheldon Kennedy a recipient of the Order of Canada

    Dec 26, 2014, 8:30 PM EST

    Calgary Flames v Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Getty Images

    Long-time play-by-play man Bob Cole also recognized.

  2. Sharks recall Haley from the AHL

    Dec 26, 2014, 7:00 PM EST

    New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils Getty Images

    Will be filling the spot vacated by the suspended John Scott.

  3. Eichel earns assist and scores in shootout as U.S. squeaks by Finland

    Dec 26, 2014, 5:38 PM EST

    United States v Finland - 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship Getty Images

    Decent start for the Americans at the World Juniors.

  4. The Devils are old, and that’s a problem no coach can fix

    Dec 26, 2014, 4:30 PM EST

    Jaromir Jagr Getty Images

    New Jersey has three of the five oldest skaters in the NHL.

  5. Five team stats you may find interesting

    Dec 26, 2014, 3:30 PM EST

    Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry Getty Images

    The Anaheim Ducks have been good — or is it lucky? — in one-goal games.

  6. Canada enters World Juniors as 11/10 favorite; USA next at 9/4

    Dec 26, 2014, 2:30 PM EST

    Canada Training Sessions - 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship Getty Images

    Connor McDavid headlines a loaded host side that hasn’t won gold since 2009.

  7. Devils fire DeBoer

    Dec 26, 2014, 12:43 PM EST

    Head coach Peter DeBoer works the bench against the New York Islanders during a preseason game at the Barclays Center on September 21, 2013 in Brooklyn borough of New York City.The game is the first professional hockey match to be held in the arena that is slated to be the new home for the Islanders at the start of the 2015-2016 season.
(September 20, 2013 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

    New Jersey off to a disappointing 12-17-7 start. The coach pays the price.

  8. More love for 3-on-3 overtime

    Dec 26, 2014, 11:59 AM EST

    Matt Duchene Getty Images

    Put Matt Duchene on the list of supporters.

  9. Orpik reflects on ‘outside pressure’ in Pittsburgh

    Dec 26, 2014, 11:17 AM EST

    Marc-Andre Fleury, Brooks Orpik, Paul Martin, Brandon Dubinsky AP

    “That was something that wore on guys.”

  10. Expect Ekblad to shatter Florida’s rookie D records

    Dec 26, 2014, 10:20 AM EST

    Aaron Ekblad Getty Images

    He already grabbed the franchise’ assists mark in that category.

  11. Canada tabs Fucale for WJC opener

    Dec 26, 2014, 9:39 AM EST

    Zachary Fucale AP

    They picked him over Eric Comrie.

  12. PHT’s top 14 of ’14: Viva Las Vegas?

    Dec 25, 2014, 10:00 PM EST

    LasVegasHockey

    The waters are being tested with a ticket drive.

  13. PHT’s top 14 of ’14: The NHL gets the mumps

    Dec 25, 2014, 9:00 PM EST

    crosbyface

    Sidney Crosby and Corey Perry are just two of the players that have been inflicted by the NHL outbreak.

Featured video

Holiday wish lists for NHL teams
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. B. Bishop (2486)
  2. C. Perry (2082)
  3. B. Elliott (1962)
  4. S. Crosby (1958)
  5. S. Weiss (1880)
  1. J. Howard (1699)
  2. S. Varlamov (1677)
  3. J. Schwartz (1512)
  4. N. Kronwall (1333)
  5. S. Mason (1311)