Zetterberg optimistic he’ll return Thursday; Brunner misses practice; Quincey, DeKeyser ready to go

DETROIT — Forward Henrik Zetterberg (groin) skated Wednesday at Joe Louis Arena, but Damien Brunner missed practice with an undisclosed injury.

“We think one of them is playing,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said after practice.

Zetterberg is quite optimistic he’ll play after missing the last two games.

“We had a couple of days of good treatment and the goal was coming in here today and feeling good,” Zetterberg said. “That was achieved and hopefully no setbacks at the (morning) skate.”

The defensive pairings could be the same as they were Monday or there could be changes with either Kyle Quincey (jaw) or rookie Danny DeKeyser getting inserted into the lineup.

“(DeKeyser) practiced today like he was playing,” Babcock said. “I’ll talk about it with the coaches in on the flight. When we put Danny in it’ll be because we think he’s going to help us win. It’s not because we think we owe him a game or anything like that.

“I think I’m going to put (Quincey) in against Colorado,” Babcock added. “I talked to him already. But I’ve got a long flight to figure that out for sure. I was going to play him back to back, but we’ll see.”

Quincey said he’s getting more used to wearing a cage, which he’ll have to wear the rest of the season.

“As a hockey player you always want to play,” Quincey said. “When you’re out of the lineup for two to three weeks you always want to get back in it. I’m good to go for sure one of these next two games. I’d play through anything, but the doctor’s know how bad the break was and how fragile I am so they’ll talk with the coaching staff and make a decision.”

Jimmy Howard will start in goal against Phoenix.

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