Stephen Weiss appeared in just 52 of the Red Wings’ 82 games this season, and only two in a seven-game playoff loss to Tampa Bay.
So, not surprisingly, he’s a bit concerned about his future in Detroit.
“After the way things ended this year? No, not really,” Weiss told the Detroit Press, when asked if he thought he had a role on the team next season. “I gotta earn a spot, there’s no doubt about it.”
Signed to a lucrative five-year, $24.5 million deal in 2013, Weiss’ tenure in Detroit has been an injury-ravaged disappointment; the 32-year-old has missed 86 games to ailments (and, healthy scratches) since joining the club, tallying a mere 11 goals and 29 points.
Weiss carries the third-largest cap hit among Detroit forwards ($4.9M annually) and with some key RFAs needing new deals this summer — Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Jurco chief among them — it’s possible Weiss’ name will come up in buyout talks. Though the financial hit would be a tough pill to swallow and carry on for a lengthy period of time (click here for more detailed analysis), it’s important to remember that, during last week’s end-of-year media availability, Wings GM Ken Holland said “money is no object” when it came to retaining the services of head coach Mike Babcock.
Does the same mantra apply to the roster? If it’s in connection with keeping Babcock, one would have to think yes.