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Red Wings pre-Ducks off-day update: Rafalski still out for Wednesday

Updated at 9:43 PM: Fiddlesticks. According to MLive’s Ansar Khan, the Wings will battle the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday sans Brian Rafalski:

Detroit Red Wings defenseman Brian Rafalski will miss his third game in a row Wednesday in Anaheim (10 p.m., FSD) due to back spasms.

Rafalski skated today at the Honda Center and said he feels better. He thinks he might play Thursday at San Jose.

Johan Franzen is scheduled to arrive tonight from Detroit, where his wife gave birth to a boy on Sunday. Franzen will be in the lineup against the Ducks.

As for the Ducks, who added Brad Winchester, Joel Perreault and Brian McGrattan prior to the trade deadline, the Orange County Register’s Curtis Zupke reports that Several Ducks are banged-up:

Corey Perry left the ice with what Randy Carlyle said was a lower-body ailment. Carlyle said he had not yet been given an update.

Asked what Perry’s status was, Carlyle said, “It’s too early to even talk about Corey.”
...
Saku Koivu skated before practice and will continue to get treatment for a sore groin that has kept him out the past three games. Carlyle said he’s getting “much better” and vaguely indicated that Koivu might be a possibility in the “near future.”
...
Here were the line rushes (with [Sheldon] Brookbank filling in for Perry) …

Bobby Ryan-Ryan Getzlaf-Sheldon Brookbank

Jason Blake-Brandon McMillan-Teemu Selanne

Jarkko Ruutu-Todd Marchant-Dan Sexton

Brad Winchester-Kyle Chipchura-George Parros,

Zupke also reports that Jonas Hiller still hasn’t recovered from his vertigo issues, so it’s safe to assume that Dan Ellis will start opposite Jimmy Howard on Wednesday night.

Update 9:43 PM: Here’s a bit more from Khan about Rafalski...

“I think (Thursday) is a good possibility,’’ Rafalski said. “It’s getting better. I was encouraged by what I was able to do today compared to two days ago.’‘

As well as Mike Babcock talking about the Wings’ road dominance:

“We play shorter shifts on the road; we’ve been a better team for whatever reason,’’ Babcock said. “As much as we haven’t been great at home, I’m not overly concerned about it. I think we’re going to be a good team there.We’re a veteran team that’s been through this many times and understands what’s coming. It’s a grind and yet we all want to be playing the best we can going in (to the playoffs).’‘

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Comments

SYF's avatar

Brad Winchester-Kyle Chipchura-George Parros

Yep.  The biggest goon line in the NHL.  And not a skill of worth on that line.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 03/01/11 at 08:39 PM ET

HockeyTownTodd's avatar

Expecting Joey to start in net on Thursday.  4 games in 6 days is too much for Howard.

Posted by HockeyTownTodd on 03/01/11 at 08:59 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

Fiddlesticks. According to MLive’s Ansar Khan, the Wings will battle the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday sans Brian Rafalski:

Perspective is a funny thing.  Wings win two straight sans Rafalski, and I’m not missing him.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 03/01/11 at 09:00 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

“Back spasms” =

Babs: “Raffi, I know you’re a veteran player, and I respect that. So when I scratch you the next few games for your piss-poor play we’ll just tell the media it’s some kind of minor injury”

Rafalski: “Okay, Mike, thanks. Can we say ‘back spasms’? That one seems to work”

Babs: “Spasms it is”

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 03/01/11 at 09:32 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Wings win two straight sans Rafalski, and I’m not missing him.

I’m with you 100%. Kindl looked just fine out there, and even Big E looked much better without Rafalski. I sure wish this was the last year of his contract. That $6M would go a long way in the UFA market this summer.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 03/01/11 at 09:39 PM ET

SK77's avatar

If Rafalski picks it up for the playoffs and plays at a level on par with what he did at the Olympics, then I’m a huge fan.

Posted by SK77 on 03/01/11 at 10:21 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Perspective is a funny thing.  Wings win two straight sans Rafalski, and I’m not missing him.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 03/01/11 at 07:00 PM ET

Sans Rafalski seems to be a good place to be right now.  I’m happy with Sans Rafalski.  Looks like others are too.

I don’t know what his problem is, I really don’t.  But he’s not skating well, he’s not positionally well, his shot has never been any good… a lot of negatives in his game right now.

Addition by subtraction right now.

Posted by Primis on 03/01/11 at 11:28 PM ET

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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.