Abel to Yzerman

Abel to Yzerman

Jeff Blashill Says Justin Abdelkader Needs "To Play A Little Bit Better"

12/19/2019 at 4:22pm EST

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

“You’re disappointed, but hey listen, I just want to go out and be better and try to maximize each time I’m on the ice,” Abdelkader said Thursday. “When things aren’t going well, it’s tough and you’re going to see different lineups, different things happen. I just have to be ready and work to make sure when my number is called again, I am ready to go.”

“First of all, I think Justin is a great person, a great pro, has been a really good Red Wing, cares a ton about being a Red Wing,” Blashill said. “I don’t even like to put him in a position where we have to talk about this, because he works hard. He competes hard.

“What’s the message? He’s just got to play a little bit better. At the end of the day, he’s in a group of guys that different guys could sit at different times. We made the decision to sit him the other night. Whether that moves forward or not, we’ll see. I’ll decide the lineup on Saturday. But I expect him to do a couple of things – one is to work like crazy to get back in and I know he will, and one is to be a great mentor in how he handles this adversity, and I know he will do that as well.”

more

added 6:13pm, Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News on Tyler Bertuzzi,

Tyler Bertuzzi is a hockey player, which fans around Detroit know.

But then, there are numerous times when Bertuzzi is called a “hockey player” by coaches and teammates that takes the term to another level.

There’s a respect factor that comes with the phrase, which means a lot. The connotation is you're a tough, honest and team-first player.

continued

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