The Red Wings used the No. 6 pick in last year's NHL draft to select a high-scoring winger in Filip Zadina.
If Detroit follows the same start this time around, it could be the start to acing its first two rounds of the draft.
That's the thinking of ESPN's Chris Peters, who on Thursday, unveiled how each team can "ace" the first two rounds of the NHL Entry Draft, which is June 21-22 in Vancouver.
Peters' perfect gameplan for the Wings starts with taking right wing Cole Caufield at No. 6, followed by defenseman Matthew Robertson (35), left wing Vladislav Firstov (54) and goalie Mads Sogaard (60) with their three second-round selections.
Caufield scored 72 goals in 64 games this season for a stacked Plymouth-based U.S. National Team Development Program that will boast its share of NHL draft picks, including potential No. 1 overall selection Jack Hughes.
Peters calls Caufield "the best goal scorer in the draft."
"Robertson's projections are a bit all over the map," Peters writes, "so he could theoretically be available at No. 35. In the latter stages of the second, Detroit could make another bet on skill with Firstov and look to deepen its goaltending pool with the third-best goalie on a lot of boards this draft season, the big 6-foot-8 behemoth Sogaard."
Peters cautions that this exercise isn't about projecting the picks, "but rather giving the best-case selection for the team at each spot while considering needs, value and availability."
He says the Red Wings are a bit of an unknown, having new leadership in general manager Steve Yzerman.
"The Red Wings are one of the real wild cards of the draft," Peters writes. "How much will Steve Yzerman coming in as general manager change things? I could see the Wings going a variety of different directions with their highest pick, including nabbing Vasily Podkolzin."