DETROIT – Defenseman Derek Meech also took part in his first informal skate this season, just days after not being claimed off waivers.
And like all his time in the Wings’ organization, he’ll have to fight for a spot on the roster coming out of training camp. He’ll head into camp as the eighth defenseman on the depth chart.
“The only thing I can worry about or think about is playing the best hockey that I can right now,” said Meech, 26. “I just need to get better as camp goes on and carry that into the exhibition season and see what happens after that.”
Meech had hoped to battle for the No. 6 spot along the blue line in camp after agreeing to a one-year deal worth $500,000 in the summer. However, after the Wings inked veteran Ruslan Salei to a deal his chances of doing that were put in jeopardy.
“There was an opportunity to get picked up (off waivers),” Meech said. “But that’s just the way the league is right now. There’s not a whole lot of movement. Teams got what they need right now. I guess we’ll see if there’s going to be any changes after camp throughout the league. All I can worry about right now is just going out there and playing well in camp.”
Rookies Jakub Kindl and Brendan Smith, along with veteran Doug Janik are also looking to claim a spot along the blue line.
“You never know what’s going to happen,” Meech said. “As long as I keep myself in good shape here, keep a good mindset, try to stay positive and just hope for the best after camp. Anything can happen … injuries, different guys moving to different places. We’ll see.”
Other new faces at the informal skate were goalie Joey MacDonald and forward Jordan Owens, who the Wings obtained in a trade last season.