After the season concluded, Derek Meech announced that he was intent on parting ways with the Detroit Red Wings. On July 1st, he signed with the newly formed franchise in his hometown, the Winnipeg Jets. As Wings fans, most if not all of us wished Derek Meech well with his new club. Questions were raised by some new Jets fans as to why the majority of us weren't upset at Meech's departure and curious as to why he would want to leave the organization.
Derek wanted a bigger role with the Red Wings. A bigger role than what the Red Wings were willing to give Derek. Derek is not a bad player by any means but when you compare him to our youth, Meech fell a little short. During the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons, Derek Meech played in 90 games of a possible 164 games he could have played in. In those 90 games, Meech acquired just 13 points. Most chalk his lack of production up to experience but if you look at Darren Helm that excuse loses steam. Darren, who is three years to Derek's junior, played in 91 games in those two seasons nearly doubled Meech's point total. Granted, Derek splits time between defense and forward but members of both positions out preformed Meech.
Being that Meech is three years older than the younger guys that stepped up and took his place on the team, you wonder if the work ethic isn't there. Jakub Kindl, Darren Helm, and Justin Abdelkader are all three years younger than Derek. But for some reason, the coaching staff put their faith in the younger guys instead of asking Derek to step up. They put their faith in the older players nearing the ends of their careers instead of asking Meech to step up. They even went out and got new players instead of asking Meech to step up. Now don't get me wrong, I don't dislike Derek Meech in the slightest. I just wonder if maybe he wasn't given the chance or advanced along in our league because he didn't try hard enough or didn't want it enough. It takes a lot to want to be a player and even more to want to break into the Red Wings line up. The Red Wing line up is notoriously hard to crack and Derek just couldn't keep the spot even when he did crack the line up.
Is Derek lazy? I don't think so. Could he have tried harder? Maybe. I hope the Derek chooses to step it up with his new club, the Winnipeg Jets, and cement his spot on their roster so that his job status will never be questioned again.
Clean slate, Buddy. Make the most of it and Good Luck.