Marco Kasper Likely Done for the Season

After Wednesday’s optional skate, Red Wings’ head coach Derek Lalonde announced that Marco Kasper would likely not be available for the rest of the season due to a lower-body injury.

The 18-year-old skated in his first NHL game this past Sunday versus the Toronto Maple Leafs, centering the second line with Andrew Copp and Lucas Raymond flanking. In that game, Kasper finished with 14:59 time on ice, ranking fourth among Red Wings forwards, and recorded one shot on net and three hits.

The eighth overall pick from the 2022 NHL Entry Draft is coming off of an impressive campaign in Sweden. After playing the wing for the majority of his draft season, Kasper jumped into a top-six center role and never looked back. 

In 52 SHL appearances, Kasper scored eight goals and 15 assists, which ranked fourth among U21 skaters in the entire league. Kasper also added four goals and five assists in ten games in the Champions Hockey League.

Lalonde also added that Kasper’s injury wouldn’t require surgery but could potentially cut into his offseason training, but he would be ready for the start of training camp.

With the trade of Tyler Bertuzzi, the Red Wings desperately lack a player on the roster who can contribute to the top six while also playing strong on both ends of the ice with tenacity. Albeit a small sample size, Kasper looked more than comfortable playing that style against one of the league’s best teams.

Depending on what the Red Wings’ offseason looks like and Kasper’s performance in the preseason, he could be a key contributor next season.

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