Tag Archives: Jonathan Ericsson

Severity of Howard’s injury still undetermined

DETROIT >> For the time being, this is Petr Mrazek’s team.

Mrazek has been elevated to the Wings’ No. 1 goalie after the team placed Jimmy Howard on injured reserve with a groin injury.

“It’s a good opportunity for him,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “We’re going to have to get him settled down a little bit. There’s a point where he challenges and then over-challenges. We’ve got to get that under control. We should have no trouble with that.”

It’s still not known the extent of Howard’s injury.

He had an MRI Sunday, but will need to have an ultrasound Monday to determine the severity of the injury.

Howard, who had just been named to the 2015 All-Star Game, was injured Saturday night after he gave the puck away behind the net and then lunged his left leg backwards to try and reach the post before Washington’s Troy Brouwer scored just 1:53 into the first period.

He was taken from the ice on a stretcher.

Howard was having one of his best seasons of his career. He’s 16-7-7 record in 32 games while ranking fourth in the NHL in goals-against average (2.11) and tied for 11th in save percentage (.920).

Mrazek is the Wings’ goalie of the future.

“He’s a good goaltender, he plays the puck well and he’ll win games for us,” Babcock said.

This season he’s 5-3-1 with a 2.29 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage.

“For being a young guy he plays with a lot of confidence,” Jonathan Ericsson said. “I like the way he wants to stay in the game, he wants to play the puck for us. He looks confident doing that and that makes us confident about him.

“I think he’s been making some really nice plays, better passes than the D sometimes,” Ericsson continued. “He’s making big saves for us. I feel like he’s comfortable and confident back there. That’s everything about today’s game.”

Mrazek has played 20 career NHL games, with a 8-8-3 record.

“When I played three games in a row before Christmas, I felt great,” Mrazek said. “Always when you can play lots of games in a row, it helps you get confidence and you’re going get into the game. But it’s not nice to see Howie hurt.”

Because Jonas Gustavsson is still recovering from a shoulder injury he suffered in November, the Wings recalled Tom McCollum from Grand Rapids. McCollum is 10-8-1 this season with the Griffins with a 2.33 GAA and .911 save percentage in 21 games.

Advertisements

Howard placed on injured reserve; Mrazek elevated to No. 1 goalie

DETROIT >> For the time being, this is Petr Mrazek’s team.

Mrazek has been elevated to the Wings’ No. 1 goalie after the team placed Jimmy Howard on injured reserve with a groin injury.

“It’s a good opportunity for him,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “We’re going to have to get him settled down a little bit. There’s a point where he challenges and then over-challenges. We’ve got to get that under control. We should have no trouble with that.”

It’s still not known the extent of Howard’s injury.

He was scheduled to have an MRI Sunday afternoon.

Howard, who had just been named to the 2015 All-Star Game, was injured Saturday night after he gave the puck away behind the net and then lunged his left leg backwards to try and reach the post before Washington’s Troy Brouwer scored just 1:53 into the first period.

He was taken from the ice on a stretcher.

Howard was having one of his best seasons of his career. He’s 16-7-7 record in 32 games while ranking fourth in the NHL in goals-against average (2.11) and tied for 11th in save percentage (.920).

Mrazek is the Wings’ goalie of the future.

“He’s a good goaltender, he plays the puck well and he’ll win games for us,” Babcock said.

This season Mrazek’s 5-3-1 with a 2.29 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage.

“For being a young guy he plays with a lot of confidence,” Jonathan Ericsson said. “I like the way he wants to stay in the game, he wants to play the puck for us. He looks confident doing that and that makes us confident about him.

“I think he’s been making some really nice plays, better passes than the D sometimes,” Ericsson continued. “He’s making big saves for us. I feel like he’s comfortable and confident back there. That’s everything about today’s game.”

Mrazek has played 20 career NHL games, with a 8-8-3 record.

“When I played three games in a row before Christmas, I felt great,” Mrazek said. “Always when you can play lots of games in a row, it helps you get confidence and you’re going get into the game. But it’s not nice to see Howie hurt.”

Because Jonas Gustavsson is still recovering from a shoulder injury he suffered in November, the Wings recalled Tom McCollum from Grand Rapids.

McCollum is 10-8-1 this season with the Griffins with a 2.33 GAA and .911 save percentage in 21 games.

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.

Wings’ new found success on power play will be tested Friday against Blackhawks’ top-ranked PK

DETROIT >> We’re going to see how much the Wings’ power play has improved Friday night.

Chicago has the top ranked penalty kill in the league, allowing just four goals on 48 chances (91.7 percent).

Detroit has scored two power play goals in each of their last three games, going 6-for-13 with the man advantage.

“The power play has been working better and better here,” Gustav Nyquist said. “Obviously, we want to keep that going, so it will be a good test tomorrow, for sure.”

The Wings went 5-for-46 (10.9 percent) with the man advantage their first 12 games.

“Obviously, it was a really slow start for us on the power play and now we’ve got some goals,” Henrik Zetterberg said. “Even if we don’t score, you have to get the momentum, and we’ve done that the last couple of games.”

Detroit, which finished 18th (17.7 percent) on the power play last season, is up to 17th this year (18.6 percent, 11-for-59) with the man advantage.

“I know the power play started slow, had trouble getting into rhythm, maybe had trouble trying to find the back of the net,” assistant coach Tony Granato said on Monday. “But I think all along it’s been building. I think it’s been really big for us the last week.

“I think the confidence that group has gained certainly moving forward should be a good thing for us,” Granato added. “You put Pav back in that mix it’s going to be even better.”

The Wings’ penalty kill (90.6) is second in the league.

“We looked good for a while and maybe didn’t get the results that we maybe wanted or deserved there and no lately we’re getting pucks in,” Jonathan Ericsson said. “It’s about getting in the groove when the pucks are bouncing and things are going your way, but sometimes it’s not going to go like that.

“Like the PK, we had bounces going with us at the beginning of the season and maybe pucks have gone in a little easier lately,” Ericsson continued. “That’s how it always happens throughout the season. We’re not going to be perfect. You have to go through those things. We work on the things we need to get better at. It’s all about the confidence level and pucks are going to start dropping in.”

Wings finally have depth on the blue line within the organization

DETROIT >> The Detroit Red Wings always seem to find depth at forward within the organization.

That now looks to be the case on the blue line.

“I think the guys that are pushing are (Xavier) Ouellet and (Alexey) Marchenko,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said after practice Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena. “(Nick) Jensen’s been a real surprise. (Ryan) Sproul’s a good player. I thought there was four D, there’s actually five of them who look to be like they’re going to play in the league.”

Mattias Backman is the fifth defenseman Babcock referred to.

“Depth on the back end, we need it,” Babcock said. “We continually say we need to improve our D, I thought (Brendan) Smith was the best defenseman on the ice (Monday) night, bar none, on both teams, which is great. I’ve never been able to say that about Smitty in an NHL game ever. A lot of NHL players played, I thought Smitty was great.”

Detroit has seven defensemen on one-way deals this season – Niklas Kronwall, Jonathan Ericsson, Smith, Danny DeKeyser, Kyle Quincey, Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff.

“We’ve got guys coming,” Babcock continued. “We want some push from the bottom. We think in Marchenko and Ouellet and Sproul and Jensen and Backman that we have that. How far is it away? Last year if you would have talked to me at this time I would have told you … (Tomas) Tatar sat out the first nine games, (Gustav) Nyquist started in the minors, (Riley) Sheahan wasn’t even on the radar screen, (Tomas) Jurco, heck, was so average at the start of the year it wasn’t even funny. So you go through, it doesn’t take long. When you’re big and fast and you know how to play, you see what happens.”

Ericsson back on skates Thursday; hasn’t ruled out return in first round if series goes long

DETROIT >> Jonathan Ericsson will skate on his own Thursday for the first time since having successful surgery to stabilize his fractured finger and repair a partially torn tendon on March 19.

“We’ll see how that goes,” Ericsson said. “It’s been almost four weeks now.”

He still won’t be able to handle the puck due to the splint on his left hand.

“I think it’s too early to tell,” Ericsson said when asked if he could return sometime in the first round of the playoffs. “The round could go on for about two weeks. It’s not going to be at the beginning of this round I know that. I’ve got three more pins in there that need to be taken out. I think it’s next week, end of next week. After that I think they will know more what the timeframe it.”

Ericsson had one of the pins removed last Friday and will have the other three taken out in 10-14 days.

“The tendon is taking more time than the bones to heal,” Ericsson said. “It’s looking pretty good from what the doctors are saying. We’ll see how it looks when they take the pins out.

“It was a shot that hit me and it must have hit me badly,” Ericsson said. “The doctor had to go in there and puzzle everything back together. They did a really good job. It looks nice right now. It was a bad break, bad breaks.”

Zetterberg set to skate with team Tuesday, but ruled out for Games 1 and 2; Ericsson likely out first round

DETROIT >> Quick update from a phone interview with Wings general manager Ken Holland.

Henrik Zetterberg will be on the ice at the start of practice Tuesday as the Wings prepare for their opening round series with the Boston Bruins, which begins Friday.

“I don’t know if he’ll be in a full practice, but he’ll be on the ice at the start of it, be on for a little bit then get off,” Holland said. “Then we’ll see how he is Wednesday.”

Zetterberg underwent successful surgery on Feb. 21 in New York to remove part of a disc which was rubbing against a nerve, which caused severe back pain.

“It’s eight weeks on Friday,” Holland said. “He skated on his own a little bit last week. It’s just the next step along the line or rehabilitation. The timeframe is we need another week before we can have any discussions where he’s at.

“It’s good news he’s going to skate with the team (Tuesday), but the bigger news is how does he feel on Wednesday,” Holland continued. “Then, if feels good enough to skate on Wednesday then the next bigger news will be how does he feel to skate on Thursday.”

Holland has ruled Zetterberg for the first two games in the series, which takes place Friday and Sunday in Boston.

“He might be out for the entire first round series,” Holland said. “We have said going back six or seven weeks that after eight weeks that he will be given the green light to have physical contact. It’s good news to hear that he’s going to skate tomorrow for a little bit and then we’re anxious to see how his back responds on Wednesday.”

Jonathan Ericsson is likely out for the first round of the playoffs.

“I think he’s done for the first round of the playoffs, but I don’t know,” Holland said.

Ericsson had successful surgery to stabilize his fractured finger and repair a partially torn tendon on March 19.