Top 50 Detroit Red Wings

An Original Six franchise, the Detroit Red Wings have been a “streaky” team as they have had periods of either feast or famine.

Beginning in 1926 as the Cougars, the team was renamed the Falcons before adopting the Red Wings moniker in 1932.  Detroit would win two Stanley Cups that decade (1936 & 1937), with another in 1943, then after a drop, would rebound in the 1950s led by Gordie Howe. The Red Wings won Cups in 1950, 1952, 1954 & 1955, and were arguably a league-dynasty.

After years of heartache, it was not until the arrival of Steve Yzerman, Niklas Lidstrom and the “Russian Five” where their fortunes turned.  They won Cups 8 through 11 in 1997, 1998, 2002 and 2008.


This list is up to the end of the 2020/21 season.

Note: Hockey lists are based on an amalgamation of tenure, traditional statistics, advanced statistics, playoff statistics and post-season accolades.

Chris Osgood proved that he was a decent Goalie early in his career, helping the Red Wings reach the Stanley Cup Finals in 1995, but he was the backup to Mike Vernon. This changed the year after, when he led the league in Wins (39) in 1995-96, was named a Second…
When the Detroit Red Wings traded for Chris Chelios at the 1999 Trade Deadline, they could not have foreseen that they would get a decade of play from the 37-year-old.
The Detroit Red Wings were not a very good hockey team in the first half of the 1980s, but they did have John Ogrodnick, who was their best scorer at the time.
Bob Goldham was already a well-established Defenseman before he arrived in Detroit in a ten-player trade from Chicago.  He would, however, take his game to another level in the Motor City.
Jimmy Howard was taken late in the Second Round in 2003, but the American Goalie only played in nine Games for Detroit before he truly became a Red Wings rookie (2009-10).
Detroit Red Wings owner, James Norris, called Larry Aurie the franchise's heart and soul, and praise doesn't get much better than that.
The selection of Vladimir Konstantinov in the 11thRound of the 1989 Draft was as good as stealing.  This was one of the last years that it was considered pointless to take players from the U.S.S.R., and two years later, he defected, joining the Detroit Red Wings in 1991.
One of only a select group of players to have won a Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings (1997, 1998, 2002 & 2008), Kris Draper was a famed "grinder" of those teams.
When you are taken in the 10th Round in the NHL Draft, making the parent club for a cup of coffee usually is a translated success.  Tomas Holmstrom, who was selected 257thOverall in 1994, would give the Detroit Red Wings 1,026 Games.
An unheralded player who played most of his career with the Detroit Red Wings, Gary Bergman finally cracked the NHL at age 26 in the 1964-65 Season.
Paul Coffey was one of the greatest offensive Defensemen in the history of Hockey, but it is fascinating how many teams he played for at an elite level.
Igor Larionov was one of Hockey's best players in the 1980s, but he was not a member of the NHL.  This was because he was from the Soviet Union, and they were not permitted to play in North America.  Larionov finally went across the world in 1989, playing for Vancouver, the Swiss…
In Larry Murphy’s 17th NHL Season, he was traded from the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Detroit Red Wings for its playoff run.  The Defenseman had already been a Second Team All-Star three times, and when he was with Pittsburgh, he aided them in winning their first two Stanley Cups, so the…
Vyacheslav Kozlov arrived in the NHL as an early Third Round Pick in 1990, and after bouncing back and forth between the minors and the parent club, Kozlov was ready to stay in the 1993-94 Season with a 73 Point Season.
Everyone likely agrees that the Hall of Fame career of Marcel Dionne was firmed as a Los Angeles King, but it began in the Original Six with Detroit, a team that was not immensely blessed with other talents on Dionne's level at the time.
Johan Franzen played his entire 11-year career with the Detroit Red Wings after the Swedish Left Wing was drafted in the Third Round in 2004.
Viacheslav Fetisov did not enter the National Hockey League until he was 30, but the Soviet Defenseman was considered one of the best of the decade of the 80s, anchoring the U.S.S.R. to multiple World Championships and Olympic medals.  When he finally made it to North America, he was with the…
Darren McCarty is one of the few players who can boast four Stanley Cup Rings with the Detroit Red Wings, hoisting the biggest trophy in hockey in 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008.
Harry Lumley was signed by the Detroit Red Wings, but in a rare turn of events, the Goalie's first start was with the New York Rangers, when he was loaned there for a single game.  He was only 17 at the time.  “Apple Cheeks” would play in only two other NHL Games…
Steve Chiasson was a high Third Round Pick in 1985, and after debuting for the Red Wing s the following year, he had a breakout campaign in 1988-89, scoring 47 Points.