The Detroit Red Wings should have at least one option at forward, and maybe another on defense, by mid November.
With Thomas Vanek, one of their leading scorers, out another 2 3 weeks, the only possible lineup change right now is on defense, where the Wings carry seven healthy players. After taking today off, the Wings return to work Friday http://www.detredwingsjersey.com/petr...
, against the visiting Winnipeg Jets 7 30 p.m, FSD, NHL Network , followed by a Sunday evening game against the Edmonton Oilers.
General manager Ken Holland told the Free Press that everyone who played in Wednesday’s 4 3 overtime loss at Philadelphia is expected to be available. The lineup could gain a forward soon http://www.detredwingsjersey.com/xavi...
, as Tomas Jurco should be cleared for contact practices next week. He has been sidelined since off season back surgery.
“He’s doing great, he’s just about ready to be integrated into practices,” Holland said. “The trainers think, middle of next week, he should practice full out.”
Starting the season on the sidelines is an especially tough setback for Jurco, who, at 23, is trying to gain a foothold after two disappointing seasons.
On the back end, Holland said that Niklas Kronwall is “feeling good and is not far away,” but cautioned that it remains a matter of pain management as Kronwall attempts to play with a permanently bad left knee.
One problem for those trying to play catch up after missing training camp is that practice days are at a premium because of the compact NHL schedule.
Vanek traveled with the Wings to Philadelphia, limping through the dressing room after the loss. The Wings sorely miss his 6 foot 2, 214 pound presence and his scoring touch eight points in seven games , but he is dealing with a muscle strain in the right hip area and is unlikely to reappear before late November.
The Wings are carrying 22 players but are tight against the salary cap. Should they decide that their lineup could be boosted by calling up someone from Grand Rapids, that could be alleviated by backdating Kronwall or Vanek, for that matter http://www.detredwingsjersey.com/jimm...
, onto long term injured reserve.
Eye on Athanasiou Following Wednesday’s game, coach Jeff Blashill said he needs better consistency from Andreas Athanasiou. “His first half was really good. I didn’t like the second part of the second period. He’s got to make sure he plays complete for the whole time. He’s got to make sure he’s on it. He wasn t winning as many battles, he wasn t as engaged Brendan Smith Jersey
, skatingwise, and he wasn t on the puck.”