Xavier Ouellet garnered a two-year contract extension from the Red Wings in an offseason that tested GM Ken Holland's cap-crunching ability, which shows just how much the defenseman is valued. The Frenchman plays a composed and patient game, and his output of 25 assists in 61 appearances with AHL Grand Rapids from the 2015-16 campaign cast a spotlight on his passing skills. Still, Ouellet's primary role for Detroit is killing penalties -- he averaged 1:55 of ice time in shorthanded situations with the parent club last year -- so the 24-year-old's skill set may not translate into a tangible amount of fantasy value in the foreseeable future.
Ouellet is shaping up to be a spare NHL defenseman this season, MLive.com reports. Having signed a one-way, two-year contract extension in July, we figure the "X-Man" will be on the Opening Night roster. However, the Red Wings acquired savvy defenseman Trevor Daley to push Ouellet down a peg on the depth chart. He drew into a career-high 66 games last season -- adding three goals and nine assists -- but seeing that much action largely came out of necessity as the Wings were perpetually injured on the back line. Unless his role expands dramatically, Ouellet won't be much of a contributing factor in the fantasy realm.
Ouellet agreed to terms on a two-year contract with the Red Wings, Ansar Khan of MLive.com reports. The contract is expected to average $1.25 million per season. Ouellet has spent his entire four-year career with the Red Wings and is coming off his best season as a professional. During the 2016-17 campaign, Ouellet played in a career-high 66 games, finishing with 12 points (three goals), 73 hits and 87 blocked shots. The 23-year-old defenseman is still young and has time to develop and add to his game, so the Red Wings will bring him back for two mores years with the hope he improves on this past season.
Ouellet, a pending restricted free agent, received a qualifying offer from the Red Wings on Monday, MLive.com reports. The 23-year-old from the back line defied the odds and wasn't lost to Vegas in the expansion draft -- the Red Wings surrendered forward prospect Tomas Nosek instead. Giving the Frenchman a qualifying offer means Detroit will have exclusive negotiation rights with Ouellet, who has recorded 16 points (five goals, 11 assists) in 96 NHL games.
Ouellet is eligible to be picked by Vegas at the expansion draft, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet.ca reports. The 23-year-old blueliner finished his first full-time NHL season with three goals and nine assists, while racking up 51 PIM. Detroit has a young defensive core anyway, and it seems like Ouellet is just the odd man out. Still, Vegas is more likely to be attracted to one of the high-caliber goaltending options the Red Wings will have available.
Ouellet scored Detroit's first goal during Friday's win over Chicago. The tally snapped a 19-game goalless stretch, and Ouellet had just four assists during that stretch while averaging only 18:28 of ice time per outing. The Red Wings are a basement-dwelling club in the Eastern Conference, and Ouellet is not receiving enough power-play time to provide a worthwhile fantasy floor. It's difficult to rely on him in any virtual setting at this point.
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