Tag Archives: Andrej Nestrasil

Nestrasil placed on waivers; Smith out with hand infection from fight; Mrazek starts Thursday

DETROIT >> Quick update from Wings’ practice at Joe Louis Arena before they head out to Winnipeg for a game Thursday against the Jets.

The team placed forward Andrej Nestrasil on waivers. He has until noon Thursday to be claimed by another NHL team. If he’s not he’ll head to Grand Rapids.

“He needs to play in the American Hockey League,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “He’s not quite ready for this level. It’s just one of those things, we need him to play in the American League. Maybe one day he’ll play. His pace was good at the start but you know the league changes.”

Nestrasil has played in 13 of the Wings’ 18 games this season, registering two assists and a minus-3.

Defenseman Brendan Smith didn’t practice Wednesday and will miss Thursday’s game due to an infection in his hand he suffered during a fight midway through the third period with Columbus’ Nick Foligno.

Smith could rejoin the team in Toronto.

Pavel Datsyuk (groin) and Jonathan Ericsson (maintenance day) also didn’t practice. Babcock said Datsyuk will make the trip to Winnipeg.

Petr Mrazek will start in goal against the Jets.

“He’s been great,” Babcock said. “He’s like lots of kids, he plays better than he practices, he’s got to learn how to practice good so he can play good consistently. But he’s a real gamer and he’s been good.”

Stephen Weiss will leave and meet up with Grand Rapids to play a pair of games with the Griffins this weekend. His first conditioning stint with their AHL affiliate was cut short when he suffered soreness in his groin.

“We tried to do it two weeks ago and it didn’t happen,” Babcock said. “He’s got to get himself going. This business is straight forward. The coach and the management, they play the guys they think can help them win. When you haven’t been healthy, you’ve got to get yourself playing. We got an obligation to help him help himself so that’s what we’re trying to do but his part is to play well so he can get in the lineup and get playing.”

Weiss has played one game with the Wings this season.

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Babcock: Nestrasil has “earned the right to start today”; Weiss, Cleary heatlhy scratches; Kindl in over Lashoff

DETROIT >> Quick update from the Wings’ morning skate prior to their game tonight against the Boston Bruins at Joe Louis Arena.

Andrej Nestrasil will indeed make his NHL debut, skating on a line with Darren Helm and Gustav Nyquist.

“The good thing for me is it’s right after camp so I’ve played five games,” Nestrasil said. “I’m sure I’ll be nervous before the game, but it’s a little different when you get called up from the AHL and you don’t know the guys here. I’ve been here for a month and a half so I’m really familiar with the things we do here and I think I’ll be fine.”

Nestrasil was just informed he was playing Thursday morning.

“I slept like a baby,” Nestrasil smiled. “It doesn’t make me nervous that I’m playing tonight. If it’s something you expect maybe you’d be nervous so because maybe I didn’t expect it all I just didn’t have time to catchup with the whole thing.”

Wings coach Mike Babcock also has Nestrasil playing on the second power play unit.

“I kind of thought I was going to play based on what line I was practicing with so I was almost sure I would,” Nestrasil said. “It’s really good I am because so many people from back home texting me expecting me to play. I told them all the calm down, it’s day by day. I’m glad so know they call can watch it tonight.

“I felt like someone put glue in my hand two days ago and stuck my phone in there because I seriously the one day I had 100 percent battery and two hours it was all gone,” Nestrasil added. “Today, I’m turning off my phone to get a rest and get ready for the game.”

Nestrasil was impressive during training camp after totaling 16 goals and 20 assists in his first full season with Grand Rapids last year.

“You want to share that with the people you love and the people that helped you along the way,” Babcock said. “I thought Nesty played well. We’re in a situation without Pavel (Datsyuk) that we need another body. He played well and he earned his right to start today.”

Datsyuk (shoulder) will miss his first season opener since joining the Wings.

Datsyuk, who is on short-term injured reserve, separated his right shoulder on Sept. 22. He was slated to sidelined four weeks.

He began skating with the team this week, but has not taken part in many drills and has yet to be cleared for contact.

Jakub Kindl got the nod over Brian Lashoff on the blue line. He’ll be paired with Kyle Quincey.

Stephen Weiss and Daniel Cleary are both healthy scratches.

Datsyuk to miss first season opener since joining Wings

DETROIT >> The Detroit Red Wings will have to deal with a hole in their lineup they haven’t had to deal with in the last 13 seasons … not having Pavel Datsyuk.

Datsyuk ruled himself out for Thursday’s season opener against the Boston Bruins after practice Wednesday.

Datsyuk, who is on short-term injured reserve, separated his right shoulder on Sept. 22, which was slated to sideline him four weeks.

He began skating with the team this week, but has not taken part in many drills and has yet to be cleared for contact.

It appears rookie Andrej Nestrasil will make NHL debut on Thursday, but Wings coach Mike Babcock wouldn’t make it official after doing so earlier in his press conference after practice Wednesday.

“Why don’t we just announce the lineup (Thursday), so if anything changes I don’t have to change my mind,” Babcock said.

Nestrasil is just trying to enjoy the moment after making the 23-man roster on Tuesday.

“The fact that I’m on the 23-man roster doesn’t really guarantee me anything, it’s still day to day,” Nestrasil said. “I just go with the flow and see what happens tomorrow.

“Everyone wants to play in the NHL, but on the other hand it’s not totally up to me,” Nestrasil continued. “I know if I play well it’ll give me a better chance to be here. We’ll see if I play (Thursday) and the other upcoming games.”

Nestrasil, who has come on of late after a slow start to his professional career, seemed like a longshot make the team out of camp.

“I came into camp in really good shape which obviously gives you plus points from the management point of view, but that’s not everything,” Nestrasil said. “You still have to perform on the ice. I feel the second half of last season gave me a lot of confidence. I brought that into the camp. I didn’t have high expectations, but I tried hard every day and it worked out.”

Nestrasil appears to have leapfrogged veterans Stephen Weiss and Daniel Cleary.

Datsyuk out Thursday; Babcock not ready to announce rest of lineup

DETROIT >> Quick update from Wings practice at Joe Louis Arena on Wednesday.

Pavel Datsyuk (shoulder) is officially out of the lineup for Thursday’s season opener against the Boston Bruins.

It appears Andrej Nestrasil will be in the lineup, but it’s not official.

“Why don’t we just announce the lineup tomorrow so if anything changes I don’t have to change my mind,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said.

Nestrasil was skating on a line with Darren Helm and Gustav Nyquist.

As for the sixth defenseman, it’ll be between Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff. Both split time at practice with Kyle Quincey.

The rest of the forward lines and D-pairing remained the same: Abdelkader-Zetterberg-Franzen; Tatar-Sheahan-Jurco; Miller-Glendening-Andersson; Kronwall-Ericsson; Smith-DeKeyser.

“When you look at our roster from opening day last year to this year, I’ve had some people say that the roster is the same, but there are six forwards different so it’s night and day different from what it was,” Babcock said. “It’s a much quicker team, a much more useful team. If we’re fortunate to have Pav and Z play, and stay healthy, we’re a better team that way.

“It’s just growth,” Babcock continued. “Now, you’ve done it once, you’ve got to do it again. There’s a whole bunch of guys that have done it one time. So time is going to tell. I know they’ve worked hard and competed in the summer to get stronger and quicker and they’re more confident now and it just has to translate on the ice.”

The Bruins, who open the season Wednesday, beat the Wings in five games in the first round of last year’s playoffs.

“They thumped us,” Babcock said. “They absolutely thumped us. We didn’t play as good as we thought and they’re a real good team. We played them twice in exhibition and five times at the end of last year. I know Claude (Julien) real well and lots of the players so we have a good understanding how we’re going to play and they have a good understanding how we’re going to play. Now we just have to see who’ll compete for the puck more and who wins.”

The teams also met twice during the preseason.

Ouellet, Mrazek sent to Grand Rapids; Datsyuk on IR; Nestrasil makes team for now

DETROIT >> Defenseman Xavier Ouellet will have to do what Gustav Nyquist did last season to make the Wings’ roster … wait for a call up.

Ouellet, along with goalie Petr Mrazek were assigned to Grand Rapids on Tuesday to help get the Wings to the 23-man roster limit prior to the 5 p.m. deadline.

Pavel Datsyuk was also placed on injured reserve, which allowed the team to keep Andrej Nestrasil on the roster for now.

“You’re talking to the wrong guy,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said when asked about the roster after practice Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena. “I think there are lots of players knocking on the door.

“I got my two cents in, so I get one vote,” Babcock continued. “He (Ken Holland) gets two. So he can win, 2-1. It’s almost exactly like that at home, I get one vote and my wife gets two, and I lose 2-1 lots.”

Babcock had Ouellet paired with Kyle Quincey for a second straight practice.

“I come to practice every day to get ready for Thursday so we’ll see what’s going to happen,” Ouellet said prior to finding out the news. “I do feel good. I think I’ve had a pretty good camp. I’ve played some good hockey. I’m really happy to be here right now. I’m going to enjoy it and try and have a little chemistry with Quincey here.”

Ouellet was battling for a spot on the roster with Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff, who are both on one-way contracts.

Ouellet, who doesn’t have to clear waivers to be sent down, finished tied for the team lead with two goals this preseason.

“For sure I’ll be disappointed (if I get sent down), but at the same time I’ve got to keep working,” Ouellet said. “I’ve got to keep doing my stuff. I’ll go down there and play hockey and do my best and get ready if they need me up here.”

Nyquist was a victim of being waiver-exempt when he was sent down last season, but due to a rash of injuries was called back up and finished the season in Detroit.

“You have to try not to under (the business side of things) actually,” Ouellet smiled. “You just have to go with the flow and see what happens. It’s a big business. There’s a lot of stuff as players that we don’t know. All you can control is your game and as players that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Nestrasil made the biggest leap from Monday’s practice, going from a gray jersey to white to skate alongside Darren Helm and Gustav Nyquist.

“I’m more than pleased,” Nestrasil said. “If you would have asked me a couple weeks before the camp I would tell you 99-percent they would send me down. I thought I was going to get two exhibition games and I ended up playing five. Camp was really and I’m glad to still be here.

“For me when I’m thinking about it either way is going to be good,” Nestrasil added before he knew he had made the roster. “I think I’ve done the most I could during camp. I did even better than I expected to do. If I stay here and play with the Red Wings or if I’m going to go down and play 20 minutes a game in Grand Rapids I’m still at the age where I’ve got to get my game better. I still have to get better every year. Either way is going to fine with me.”

Nestrasil would have to be placed on waivers and clear them before being assigned to Grand Rapids.

Babcock even had Nestrasil on the second power play unit with Tomas Jurco, Tomas Tatar, Riley Sheahan and Danny DeKeyser.

“Yesterday I was on the gray line, today I was on a power play line, we’ll see what happens tomorrow,” Nestrasil smiled. “If you try and find a sign you can find a sign in everything. If my sticks are on one side or the other it doesn’t change anything. We’ll see what happens these next couple of days and then see on Thursday if I’m going to play or not.”

Babcock outvoted when it comes to roster decisions

DETROIT >> If Detroit coach Mike Babcock knows what the Wings’ final roster is going to look like at 5 p.m. today when it’s submitted to the league he’s not letting on.

And neither are his players.

Defenseman Xavier Ouellet and forward Andrej Nestrasil both still had no idea if they had made the 23-man roster or not when practice was over at Joe Louis Arena, Tuesday.

“You’re talking to the wrong guy,” Babcock when asked about the roster. “I think there are lots of players knocking on the door.

“I got my two cents in, so I get one vote,” Babcock continued. “He (Ken Holland) gets two. So he can win, 2-1. It’s almost exactly like that at home, I get one vote and my wife gets two, and I lose 2-1 lots.”

Babcock had Xavier Ouellet paired with Kyle Quincey for a second straight practice.

“I haven’t been told anything yet,” Ouellet said. “I come to practice every day to get ready for Thursday so we’ll see what’s going to happen.

“I do feel good,” Ouellet continued. “I think I’ve had a pretty good camp. I’ve played some good hockey. I’m really happy to be here right now. I’m going to enjoy it and try and have a little chemistry with Quincey here.”

Ouellet is battling for a spot on the roster with Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff.

He finished tied for the team lead with two goals this preseason.

“For sure I’ll be disappointed (if I get sent down), but at the same time I’ve got to keep working,” Ouellet said. “I’ve got to keep doing my stuff. I’ll go down there and play hockey and do my best and get ready if they need me up here.”

Last season, Gustav Nyquist was a victim of being waiver-exempt when he was sent down.

“You have to try not to under (the business side of things) actually,” Ouellet smiled. “You just have to go with the flow and see what happens. It’s a big business. There’s a lot of stuff as players that we don’t know. All you can control is your game and as players that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Nestrasil made the biggest leap from Monday’s practice, going from a gray jersey to white to skate alongside Darren Helm and Gustav Nyquist.

“I’m more than pleased,” Nestrasil said. “If you would have asked me a couple weeks before the camp I would tell you 99-percent they would send me down. I thought I was going to get two exhibition games and I ended up playing five. Camp was really and I’m glad to still be here.”

“For me when I’m thinking about it either way is going to be good,” Nestrasil added. “I think I’ve done the most I could during camp. I did even better than I expected to do. If I stay here and play with the Red Wings or if I’m going to go down and play 20 minutes a game in Grand Rapids I’m still at the age where I’ve got to get my game better. I still have to get better every year. Either way is going to fine with me.”

Nestrasil would have to be placed on waivers and clear them before being assigned to Grand Rapids.

Babcock even had Nestrasil on the second power play unit with Tomas Jurco, Tomas Tatar, Riley Sheahan and Danny DeKeyser.

“Yesterday I was on the gray line, today I was on a power play line, we’ll see what happens tomorrow,” Nestrasil smiled. “If you try and find a sign you can find a sign in everything. If my sticks are on one side or the other it doesn’t change anything. We’ll see what happens these next couple of days and then see on Thursday if I’m going to play or not.”

Nestrasil, Ouellet survive another round of cuts; Wings’ roster at 26, needs to be down to 23 by 5 p.m. Tuesday

DETROIT >> Forward Andrej Nestrasil and defenseman Xavier Ouellet survived another round of cuts as the start of the NHL season approaches.

But the two promising Detroit Red Wing prospects haven’t locked up spots on the final roster just yet.

“We think he’s played the best out of all the kids,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said of Nestrasil. “Has Nestrasil knocked one of those other veteran forwards out of the box? That’s what we’re going to talk about.

“Ouellet has been the best of our young D, but he has to knock one of the seven out of the box,” Holland continued. “That’s what we still have to talk about.”

Detroit placed forwards Mitch Callahan, Landon Ferraro and Kevin Porter on waivers. All three have till noon on Monday to clear before they can be assigned to Grand Rapids.

The Wings, who open the season Thursday at home against the Boston Bruins, still have 26 players on their roster and need to get down to 23 by 5 p.m. Tuesday.

“We’ve got three more players to make decisions on by Tuesday,” Holland said. “The story will play itself out.”

If Pavel Datsyuk (shoulder) won’t be ready to open the season, Nestrasil could earn a spot on the roster. The team should know more Monday on Datsyuk’s status for the opener.

The Wings will carry 14 forwards into the regular season. They could also send Tomas Jurco to Grand Rapids since he doesn’t have to be placed on waivers, but coach Mike Babcock said last week he wanted him in Detroit.

If Ouellet, who also is waiver-exempt, stays he’ll have to play which means winning a job over Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff.

One of the roster moves that’ll likely be made is assigning goalie Petr Mrazek, who’s waiver-exempt, to Grand Rapids.

“These decisions are very difficult,” Holland said. “Some young players looked better the first week of the preseason and then had a tougher second week. It’s all about the caliber of competition and they didn’t play their way onto the roster. If they did they’d still be here.”

Callahan appeared to have won over the coaches during camp. He’s an abrasive player that posted his best offensive numbers (26 goals, 18 assists) with the Griffins last season.

The team also sent defensemen Alexey Marchenko and Nick Jensen to Grand Rapids, along with forwards Tomas Nosek and Teemu Pulkkinen.