The Malik Report
Updated 3x at 6:07 PM w/ confirmation of Pearce’s recall: Thought MLive’s Ansar Khan’s report about Nicklas Lidstrom being shut down for the weekend was bad? Well it’s not exactly shocking news that the Free Press’s Helene St. James reports that Lidstrom will head back to Detroit, but here comes the crapola: Joey MacDonald tweaked his back, sooo…per St. James...
While the rest of the team flew from Los Angeles to San Jose, where they play Saturday, Lidstrom flew back to Detroit. Goaltender Jordan Pearce flew in the other direction, called up to serve as the team’s backup while Joey MacDonald recovers from back spasms suffered in Wednesday’s 4-0 loss at Anaheim. Lidstrom has missed a career-high eight straight games since suffering a bone bruise when he was hit on the outside of his right ankle by a puck Feb. 25 against the Colorado Avalanche.
“We’re discouraged and frustrated,” general manager Ken Holland told the Free Press. “We thought he’d be back playing by now. He had a hard time putting his foot in the boot yesterday, so we decided to bring him home. He’ll be reassessed Monday morning.”
Updated with an odd “Tweet” at 5:35 PM: No surprise here: MLive’s Ansar Khan reports that the Red Wings’ trainers and medical staff have chosen to keep Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom off the ice Friday and Saturday, and after a “travel day” on Sunday, the Wings will reconvene for a morning skate prior to Monday’s home game against Washington, and that’s where and when Lidstrom will give a slightly rested bone bruise in his left ankle an on-ice test:
“We’re giving him a few days off to see how it responds,’’ Holland said. “(Trainer) Piet Van Zant told him to shut it down until we get home on Monday, keep him off ice 3-4 days to do more healing.’‘
Holland, who returned to Detroit today from the NHL’s general managers meetings in Florida, said Lidstrom was given the option of flying home today, but he’s not sure if he took that option. Lidstrom has not skated for more than a couple of minutes since getting hit with a puck that rimmed along the boards on Feb. 25. After sitting out Saturday in San Jose and Monday at home against Washington, he will have missed 10 consecutive games, four more than his previous career-high (2008).
“I talked to Piet yesterday. Based on information from Nick, he’s a little discouraged, a little frustrated. It’s not healing as fast as he thought,’’ Holland said. “The doctors really felt a couple of weeks was going to be sufficient enough to get him up and running. But he’s not ready. There’s no time frame.’’ He’s better, but not to the point he needs to be to practice full out.’‘
Holland also provides injury updates regarding Pavel Datsyuk (knee)...
Updated with more gabba at 3:37 PM: The Red Wings are flying to San Jose this afternoon, choosing not to practice after their back-to-back losses against Los Angeles on Tuesday and the Ducks last night, respectively.
The Free Press’s Helene St. James filed the following addendum to her stories about the Wings’ losses with an eye toward what will be a must-win game against a San Jose Sharks team that’s fighting for its playoff life on Saturday evening, noting that Red Wings coach Mike Babcock didn’t really have much to say about the fact that his team played without Nicklas Lidstrom (bone bruise, back Monday at the earliest), Pavel Datsyuk (knee, possibly back on Saturday), Jonathan Ericsson (broken wrist, out 3-4 more weeks) or Jakub Kindl (strained oblique muscle, no timeline as of yet):
Update: the voting page can be found here...
Here’s something to cheer you up given the lovely result of Wednesday night’s Wings-Ducks game: last month, the Red Wings encouraged local recreational hockey teams to submit YouTube videos explaining why their team should have the privilege of facing off against a team of Red Wings Alumni, and while the Wings haven’t revealed how one might vote for the five finalists, RedWingsFeed’s search engine robots (I can only afford untrained monkeys) found that the Wings have chosen the following teams to vie for your affections. In no particular order, they are…
Gustav Nyquist might be the luckiest person who left the Red Wings’ locker room after Detroit dropped a wretched 4-0 decision to the Anaheim Ducks. Nyquist’s Red Wings teammates will have to sit and stew in their own juices during a much-needed off-day as the team chose to remain in LA after both Wednesday night’s defeat and Tuesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Kings.
They’ll fly to San Jose this afternoon and try to pick up the pieces after essentially losing all hope of winning the Central Division against the Blues, who sit 8 points ahead of Detroit in the Central Division and western Conference standings, and placing their home-ice advantage over their probable first-round opponent in the Nashville Predators, who sit only 2 points behind the Wings, thanks to a 2-and-5 record in March and a perfectly hideous 3-8-and-1 record since the team set their home-ice winning record against the Sharks way back on February 19th.
Why is Nyquist lucky? MLive’s Ansar Khan reports that the Wings sent Nyquist back to the Grand Rapids Griffins, who’ve won 2 straight games and will welcome their leading scorer back for a hard playoff push.
The Detroit Free Press’s Mitch Albom offers a passionate plea for fans who will attend this Saturday’s game between the Red Wings Alumni Association and the Shawn Burr Foundation in Fraser to take part in a painless little procedure which might help the aforementioned Burr beat another bout of myeloid lymphoma:
Drop the gloves. Shawn Burr is back for another round against cancer. This one, like most second rounds, may be tougher than the first, which he squashed in typical Shawn Burr fashion, claiming he was the only person in history to go through chemotherapy and gain weight.
Months passed. He was cancer-free, they said. He even posted a Facebook entry a few weeks back, the day the Red Wings were seeking the record for consecutive home victories. It read, “Life is good.” A few days later, he had a blood test. The results were concerning. A biopsy was taken. And “life is good” seemed like a memory.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Shawn Burr, 45, is just too damn optimistic, too upbeat, too selfless and too self-deprecating to lose to cancer. He has the goods to beat it. But he may need some equipment.
In the words of Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg, “I know this music.” And the music Mr. Zorg speaks of in The Fifth Element best represents the Red Wings’ 4-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday, representing the Wings’ fifth loss in seven March games:
It’s the sound of senseless, useless and ultimately futile combat in the film, and for the Red Wings, who have gone 3-8-and-1 since they established their home-ice winning record way back on February 19th, Wednesday night’s loss must doubtlessly mark the lowest point of their 2011-2012 season.
As noted in the game-day update thread (expect one more update prior to the game there), Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom had a bad day in terms of his attempt to recover from a bone bruise in his left ankle, and to put things bluntly regarding the captain’s issue, I’m going to repeat something I said on Twitter:
Bone bruises are quite literally the concussions of the orthopedic injury world. There is no rhyme or reason as to how long it takes for any particular bone bruise to heal, regardless of one’s relative health, and when I heard that Lidstrom had a bone bruise, I was genuinely disappointed that he hadn’t broken his ankle or even suffered one of those infamous “high ankle sprains,” because those at least have concrete timelines for recovery.
Lidstrom’s had repeated x-rays to confirm that he hasn’t broken anything, but it’s very clear that the part of his ankle which suffered the bone bruise is located exactly where his ankle and heel dig into the back of his skate when he presses down on his toe to push off and skate forward, which means that he’s aggravating the injury with every stride, and he told DetroitRedWings.com’s Bill Roose that his pesky injury remains so painful that the Wings’ medical staff is considering completely “shutting him down” for another week to try and rest an injury that’s clearly got a mind of its own:
Red Wings-Ducks game-day updates: Bertuzzi in, MacDonald starts, Lidstrom ‘shut down,’ Nyquist to GR
Updated one last time at 9:20 PM: Putting mid-day chatter behind us, the Red Wings will tangle with the Anaheim Ducks tonight (10 PM EDT, FSD/FS West/97.1 FM), and while it should come as little surprise that the Red Wings’ website reports that the Wings engaged in an optional morning skate (so did the Ducks, who NHL.com’s Curtis Zupke confirms will start Jonas Hiller, and Corey Perry and Luca Sbisa may or may not play), and our biggest lineup news comes from the Free Press’s Helene St. James, who reports the following...
Bertuzzi says he’s playing tonight against Ducks
MacDonald starting tonight, Howard back on Saturday as starter
And MLive’s Ansar Khan explains why “Joey Mac” is starting tonight:
Bertuzzi said he is playing tonight.
MacDonald starting in goal tonight for Wings. The plan was to not play Howard back to back coming off groin injury
As we wait for news from the Red Wings’ morning skate ahead of tonight’s game against the Ducks (10 PM EDT, FSD/FS West/97.1 FM), some off-day chatter merits noting:
• As previously mentioned, the Hockey News’s poll of 150 NHL’ers yielded 3 Wings players listed among the top 50 in the NHL: Henrik Zetterberg was named the 20th-best player, Nicklas Lidstrom was named the 7th-best player and best defenseman, and as the Hockey News reveals today, the players believe that Pavel Datsyuk is the second-best player in the NHL, behind Sidney Crosby:
About The Malik Report
The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.