According to NHL Network on SiriusXM’s Nick Alberga, former Washington Capitals left-wing Jakub Vrana has likely played his last NHL game for the Detroit Red Wings despite scoring six goals and eight points in his last seven AHL games with the Grand Rapids Griffins.
The 26-year-old has six goals and nine points in 15 AHL games this season.
Vrana has played just 28 games over his first two full seasons with Detroit due to shoulder surgery prior to last season and entrance into the NHL/NHLPA’s player assistance program last October.
Vrana was reinstated by the NHL on December 16 and assigned to the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins recently for a conditioning stint.
Nick’s info here on Vrana echoes what I’ve been told about the situation. Very unlikely Vrana rejoins the big club this year and the Wings are intent on moving him, one way or another, this off-season.
Vrana has 1-year left on his contract after this season at a $5.25M cap hit. https://t.co/TxBxD0Qspj
— David Pagnotta (@TheFourthPeriod) February 7, 2023
Vrana has played just 39 games since arriving at the trade deadline on April 12. 2021, in the deal that sent left-wing Anthony Mantha to Washington. However, over his quick tenure in Detroit, Vrana has scored 22 goals with 32 points (including a one-goal, two-point game in a 5-2 win over the New Jersey Devils, his last NHL game on October 15).
Vrana has two years left on a contract that counts $5.25 million against the NHL salary cap.
In 284 career games with Washington, Vrana has recorded 76 goals, 157 points, and a +36 rating. He set career-highs in goals (25) and points (52) in 69 games during the 2019-20 season. He had no points and a combined -8 rating in 15 Stanley Cup Playoff games from 2019-20 when Washington was eliminated in the first round both times after recording three goals and eight points in 23 games during the 2018 tournament.
Washington GM Brian MacLellan said he saw a “frustrated player” in Vrana in terms of his body language and the team wanted to move on from that. Head coach Peter Laviolette scratched Vrana twice before the team traded him and never seemed to click with the young Czech after the team hired him.
By Harrison Brown