Detroit — If he’s stressed about his contract negotiations, defenseman Danny DeKeyser certainly doesn’t show it.
A guest coach for the Red Wings Youth Camp on Wednesday at Joe Louis Arena, DeKeyser expects a new contract to be worked out before training camp begins.
“I’m very confident,” said DeKeyser of his expectations a new deal will be worked out before Sept. 18, when the Red Wings invade Traverse City.
A restricted free agent, DeKeyser and unrestricted free agent Daniel Alfredsson are the only two players general manager Ken Holland needs to sign.
Holland and DeKeyser’s representatives have talked, and are expected to speak again later this week.
DeKeyser, from Macomb, is agreeable to a longer-term deal.
“It would be nice, but I don’t know, we’ll have to see what happens,” DeKeyser said.
“It would be nice to figure something out long-term. But we have to see where everybody is at (on that thinking).”
DeKeyser, 24, figures prominently into the Red Wings long-term plans.
Last season, DeKeyser played 65 games, scoring 23 points (four goals, 19 assists), with a plus-10 rating and averaging over 21 minutes of ice time.
DeKeyser feels there’s room for improvement.
“I just want to overall round my game and be more consistent game in and game out,” DeKeyser said.
“Take another step forward.”
Alfredsson is expected to begin skating this week in his native Sweden.
Alfredsson, 41, will skate with the other Red Wings after Labor Day, when players begin group skates in preparing for training camp.
If Alfredsson’s back holds up — it bothered him late last season — he and the Red Wings will work out a one-year contract.
Alfredsson, an unrestricted free agent, said he will not play anywhere else but with the Red Wings — if he decides to play and forgo retirement.
No worries about Babcock
Forward Drew Miller said the uncertain status of coach Mike Babcock —Babcock isn’t signed past this season —has no impact on the team.
“The only way we’ll get caught up is if you guys (media) keeping asking us every day,” Miller said.
“I don’t think we’ll be worried about it. He’ll get it figured out and taken care of.
“We just have to play the game; that’s what our job is. I don’t think he’ll be negotiating during the season, so it’s not something we’ll have to worry about.”
Exhibition tickets on sale
Tickets for all of the Red Wings’ home exhibition games will go on sale Friday at 10 a.m.
The Red Wings games include Chicago (Sept. 25), Boston (Sept. 27), Toronto (Sept. 29) and Pittsburgh (Oct. 1).
Tickets can be purchased at the Joe Louis Arena box office, all Ticketmaster outlets and online at DetroitRedWings.com.