Forget talking about how poorly the Tigers are playing right now. Let's discuss the upcoming free agency period in the NHL, in which the Detroit Red Wings are expected to be big players.

A Detroit News columnist gives his reasons as to why New Jersey's Zack Parise and Nashville's Ryan Suter could very likely sign with the Wings this summer.

Besides the Wings having the money to sign the pair, News columnist Gregg Kruppa says the pair have played together in the past on the 2002 Under-18 World Championships. Also members on that team? Wings goalie Jimmy Howard and forward Patrick Eaves.

Kruppa also points out the family ties. Suter's uncle, Gary Suter, played with Chris Chelios in Chicago and has a 25-year relationship with him. Chelios is currently an executive advisor to Wings GM Ken Holland. Parise's dad, J.P., played almost 900 games in the NHL for the Minnesota Stars.

Both Parise and Suter have trained in Ann Arbor and have played together in six international competitions. Kruppa believes that they both desire the same style of play and want the chance to regularly compete for the Stanley Cup. Something the Wings have done for 21 straight seasons and have won four times since 1997.

Free agency starts July 1st.