Hagg, 27, was swapped twice in the last year, first as part of the Buffalo Sabres’ return from the Philadelphia Flyers for Rasmus Ristolainen, and then to the Florida Panthers at the deadline for a sixth-round pick. He’ll see his salary cut in half after carrying a $1.6MM cap hit the last two seasons, and joins an organization where it is not immediately clear how much playing time is available.
The Red Wings have already added Ben Chiarot, Olli Maatta, Mark Pysyk, and Steven Kampfer this offseason, and have several prospects pushing for NHL playing time. No matter how it shakes out, Hagg offers 300 games of NHL experience, an intimidating physical presence, and a propensity for blocking shots. That kind of versatility could be of use on the bottom pair, though it’s hard to imagine him playing big minutes on the upstart Red Wings, who appear ready to start challenging for a postseason position once again.
In his 300-game career, Hagg has racked up nearly 900 hits and 500 blocked shots, while contributing just 56 points. He won’t contribute much offensively, but he and Chiarot could form quite the intimidating shorthanded pair, making life miserable for players in front of the net.