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Ottawa Senators right wing Alex DeBrincat moves the puck during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes, April 4, 2023, in Raleigh, N.C. The Detroit Red Wings acquired Michigan native DeBrincat from the Ottawa Senators on July 9, 2023, in exchange for two players and draft picks.The Associated Press

Steve Yzerman made a major move to give the rebuilding Detroit Red Wings a desperately needed boost.

Yzerman has preached and practiced patience for four-plus years as Red Wings general manager, but the bold move seems to signal a shift in his plan to get the franchise in gear quicker.

The Hockey Hall of Famer, who spent his entire playing career in Detroit, acquired goal-scoring winger Alex DeBrincat from Ottawa on Sunday and signed him to a four-year extension worth about US$7.8-million annually.

Yzerman made a series of subtle deals earlier this summer, adding depth at every position, before making a splash with DeBrincat.

“I hope all the changes we’ve made, additions we’ve made to the roster, make us a more competitive team,” Yzerman said Monday.

Detroit dealt one of its first-round picks next year, a 2024-fourth round selection, 20-goal scorer Dominik Kubalik and defensive prospect Donovan Sebrango to add a proven talent to its offensively challenged team.

The 25-year-old DeBrincat, who scored 41 goals in two of his six NHL seasons, has 187 goals and 373 points in his career with the Senators and Chicago Blackhawks. He had 27 goals – including 11 on the power play and six that won games – and 66 points last season.

DeBrincat, who is from Farmington Hills, Mich., was a fan of Detroit’s 2008 Stanley Cup championship team. His favorite player was dazzling centre Pavel Datsyuk.

“Growing up here and rooting for the Red Wings when I was younger, it’s definitely a dream come true,” he said. “I don’t think anyone is happier than my parents. Everyone’s happy. It’s a good spot for me.”

The Red Wings have been in a bad spot for several years, failing to make the playoffs for seven straight seasons, after winning four Stanley Cups during a run of 25 consecutive postseason appearances.

“They were just so successful through my childhood,” DeBrincat said. “It was so fun to watch. It’s a big reason why I play the game. Hopefully, we can be successful here again.”

Scoring more would be a step in the right direction after Detroit averaged fewer than three goals a game last season to rank toward the bottom of the league.

Finding players who can put the puck in the net was a priority this summer, particularly after trading wingers Tyler Bertuzzi to Boston and Jakub Vrana to St. Louis last season. Yzerman had bolstered depth up front this summer with newly acquired players such as 2022 Stanley Cup-winning forward J.T. Compher.

The Bruins gave Yzerman a first-round pick for Bertuzzi, who signed this month with Toronto, and he used that asset to help him acquire DeBrincat.

“You see a team that’s frustrated with the rebuild that wants to get out,” DeBrincat said. “I hope I can be part of the solution.”

Filip Zadina will not be part of the team’s plans moving forward after agreeing to terminate his contract to become an unrestricted free agent. He had two years at US$1.8-million per season left on his contract.

Yzerman tried to trade Zadina, drafted by Detroit No. 6 overall in 2018, and put him on waivers in the hopes of moving a player that may have been relegated to playing in the minor leagues.

“I’d rather have a $1.8-million in cap space than potentially having a player playing in the American Hockey League,” Yzerman said. “Filip wanted a fresh start and he’s able to do that.”

The 23-year-old winger singed a one-year deal with the San Jose Sharks on Monday.

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