Tag Archives: pavel datsyuk

Datsyuk could miss start of season

Pavel Datsyuk could miss the start of the regular season after having surgery Friday to repair ruptured tendons in his right ankle.

Wings general manager Ken Holland said Datsyuk will be in a cast four four-to-six weeks before starting rehab. He’ll be re-evaluated around the time the team wraps up training camp.

“We felt time off would get the job done,” Holland said. “He went to Russia for six weeks. He called (trainer) Piet Van Zant on Saturday and said his ankle’s not better.”

Datsyuk, who missed eight of the final 14 games of the regular season, had the procedure done by Dr. Robert Anderson in North Carolina.

“A lot has to do with how the body heals and how we go about the rehab process,” Holland said when asked if he could miss the start of the season.

In just 63 regular season games, Datsyuk had 26 goals and 39 assists.

Wings want to continue to build on the fly with young talent

DETROIT >> With a head coach in place, the Detroit Red Wings can turn their focus on how the roster will look for the 2015-16 season.

And that gets going Tuesday when general manager Ken Holland oversees things during the annual pro scouting meetings, which run to Thursday.

“We’re trying to go younger,” Holland said. “We’re trying to get better and sometimes when you’re dealing with younger people you’ve got to have patience and believe the patience is going to reward you somewhere down the line.”

The Wings’ core – Pavel Datsyuk (36), Henrik Zetterberg (35) and Niklas Kronwall (33) – are getting up there in age.

“There’s no doubt the core group of our team is old, but they’re superstars in their prime,” Holland said. “Those players can last longer. Even as their skills diminish, they may not be superstars, but they’re still good players. That’s what happened with (Steve) Yzerman, (Nicklas) Lidstrom. They could play until they’re 40. We’ve got a core that’s older, but if we can support them with youth, enthusiasm, speed, energy, it allows those players to kind of hold and maintain their status.”

The Wings have 17 players signed for next season with a cap hit of $56 million. This year’s projected cap is around $71 million.

Of the 17 players signed, two – Johan Franzen and Stephen Weiss – may not be back because of different issues. Franzen ($3.955 million per year over the next five seasons) because of his concussion issues and Weiss ($4.9 million per year over the next three seasons) having the potential to be bought out.

“I think the way things ended last year when I came back when the season started I wasn’t in the lineup, I was a healthy scratch, sat around for a while,” said Weiss, who has a no-trade clause in his deal. “They told me they were going to put me in and wanted to know if I wanted to go play a couple games in Grand Rapids. I wanted to. I went and did that, came back and got a good opportunity then. Playing with Pav there for a little bit and playing pretty well. And then, for whatever reason, I just fell down the lineup. I wasn’t playing a ton and when you’re not playing a lot it’s tough to do what you’ve always done.”

The buyout period runs June 15-30. Players receive two-thirds of the remaining contract value spread out over twice the remaining length of the deal.

If new coach Jeff Blashill feels Weiss, 32, will help the lineup he’ll be back.

A lot of the remaining cap dollars will have to go to re-sign restricted free agents Brendan Smith, Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Jurco, Joakim Andersson, Teemu Pulkkinen and Landon Ferraro.

They also have those in need of extensions next season – unrestricted free agents Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm, along with restricted free agents Danny DeKeyser, Petr Mrazek and Riley Sheahan.

Holland said Blashill will have input as well on how the roster will take shape.

“My management philosophy is we’re all in it together and at the end of the day the head coach has to have a voice as we head into the off-season as we make decisions,” Holland said. “He’s behind the bench. I can’t tell somebody ‘we trust you to run the bench but we’re not letting you be involved in any decisions. You’re not qualified to make any decisions.’ That doesn’t make sense.

“Mike Babcock was involved in lots of the decisions,” Holland continued. “Not many decisions went on where he wasn’t totally involved. Some of the decisions he was the leader on, good and bad. When I say bad, I mean decisions that didn’t work out. We’re in it together.”

Zetterberg feeling much better after being reunited with on-again, off-again linemate

DETROIT >> Henrik Zetterberg was feeling kind of down after the morning skate Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena.

A goal and an assist later in the evening after being reunited with on-again, off-again linemate Pavel Datsyuk helped change his confidence level at least for one game.

“I was obviously excited to be back with Pavel,” Zetterberg said. “It’s been awhile. It’s good when we get an opportunity to play together to produce. I have to give a lot of credit to Helmer being in front of the net on both of the goals. He really created a lot of space for us and gives us a lot of time.

“It was going pretty good with Abby and Gus too, but sometimes you just need a little change to get a different feel,” Zetterberg added. “It’s no surprise we like to play together, but we haven’t played together that much lately. Today was good when we got a chance we went out and scored some goals.”

It was Zetterberg’s first goal in 13 games and just his second in the last 28.

“I just think the big thing there is he scored a big goal and set up a big goal,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said after the team’s 3-2 come-from-behind win over the Carolina Hurricanes. “You know, everyone here takes responsibility for their play and as a coach you take responsibility when your team’s not ready. But we’re all in it together. So it doesn’t go on one guy and you’re not carrying the weight of the world around on your back. That makes no sense.”

Zetterberg called himself out Tuesday morning after the morning skate about his lack of production.

“This time of year I’m supposed to be there, score goals, put up points for my team,” he said. “I haven’t done that lately. That’s something I’m not happy about.

“I think I create chances, but some games I’m not,” he continued. “It’s kind of a new position for me, going this long, this time of the year is not common. You start to think too much. When you’re supposed to pass you shoot and vice versa. It’s going back to the basics and believing in yourself, believe in yourself and work hard. If you work hard the offense will come.”

Babcock said he had a talk with the Wings captain after hearing what he had said this morning.

“I mean, Z’s a good player and he’s a proud guy and wants to play well,” Babcock said. “He’s trying. I think as long as you’re putting the effort in things are going to turn of you. Sometimes it doesn’t go the way you want it, but if you do good things, as I always say, good things will happen. Good for Z tonight. We’re proud of him. He’s got to be proud of himself and now we have to get ready for the next game.”

Abdelkader ruled out Tuesday; Ferraro recalled for either Datsyuk or to give offense a spark

DETROIT >> Wings general manager Ken Holland doesn’t expect Justin Abdelkader (hand) to play Tuesday, but hasn’t ruled him out returning before the end of the regular season.

Abdelkader, who has a career-high 23 goals and 44 points this season, blocked a shot on Saturday of Minnesota’s Marco Scandella 1:06 into overtime and didn’t return to the game.

The team recalled Landon Ferraro from Grand Rapids as an insurance policy just in case Pavel Datsyuk can’t go or Babcock wants to juggle up his lineup.

Holland also had no injury updates on Erik Cole and Tomas Jurco.

Sheahan out ‘for a bit’; Datsyuk status for Saturday unknown

DETROIT >> The Wings will be without center Riley Sheahan for “for a bit” according to coach Mike Babcock.

Sheahan suffered an upper-body injury during Thursday’s 6-4 loss to the San Jose Sharks.

“Obviously he brings a lot, but someone else gets an opportunity,” Babcock said of Sheahan. “I made a policy over the last few years, there’s no sense in talking about the guys who aren’t here. We’ll talk about the guys who are.”

Sheahan had played every game this season, totaling 12 goals, 22 assists and a minus-2 rating.

Pavel Datsyuk took part on line drills at practice, centering a line with Darren Helm and Tomas Tatar on wing.

Babcock wasn’t sure if Datsyuk will play Saturday when the Wings host Tampa Bay.

He’s missed the last five games with a lower-body injury.

Erik Cole also didn’t practice. He missed Tuesday’s game with an upper-body injury.

“I don’t know,” Babcock said when asked about Cole’s status. “It’s pretty obvious you come here every day and ask me about these guys. When they’re ready to play they tell me. When they’re not … What do I do?”

At age 36, Pavel Datsyuk isn’t showing any signs of slowing down

DETROIT >> You ask Pavel Datsyuk’s teammates to best describe the type of player he is and what he means to the Detroit Red Wings and they all have trouble finding the proper adjective or adjectives to use.

“He’s a special player,” Gustav Nyquist said. “It’s amazing what he can do with the puck. He means a lot to this team.

“He’s a good … pretty good player,” Nyquist added as he shook his head.

“He’s been unbelievable,” Joakim Andersson said. “He’s good every game. He’s so good holding onto the puck and so strong defensively. He does it all.”

“He’s got great hockey sense,” Jimmy Howard said. “He just puts himself in great spots to succeed. He thinks the game differently than anyone.”

Datsyuk, who was named the NHL’s first star from last week, is tied for the team lead with 12 goals and second on the team in points with 22. He’s also got a team-best plus-9 rating.

Age and injuries haven’t slowed down Datsyuk, 36.

To start the season, Datsyuk missed four weeks after suffering a separated shoulder in the preseason opener. In his return, he recorded points in six consecutive games.

“That’s Pav,” Howard said. “He’s so gifted, he’s so talented that he’s able to take a week off and most guys would need a couple of games to get the rust off but he’s out there and looks like normal Pav.”

Next, he sat out four games in a row and six-of-eight with a pulled groin. In his return, he scored two goals in his first game back.

“Since he’s been back you don’t notice he’s been hurt,” Andersson said. “Most guys it takes a few games to get their legs back and going again.”

And for the first time in his 12-year career Datsyuk is scoring more goals (12) than he has set up (10 assists). He ranks seventh in the league in shooting percentage at 26.7, (12 goals on 45 shots).

“Pav is Pav,” Niklas Kronwall said. “I don’t know how you explain it, really. When he goes out there feeling good, he’s one of the best in the league. And he shows it night after night.”

“Obviously, we’re happy to have him playing,” Henrik Zetterberg said. “When he’s out there he’s such a big part of our team, we need him to play games. When he’s doing that he’s been on fire. Not just production. Overall the way he plays out there, offensively, defensively.”

Datsyuk has a three two-goal games this season and eight multi-point games, including a one goal and two assist game Sunday.

“He’s a special guy,” Stephen Weiss said. It’s not easy to do when you’ve missed consecutive games like that and a couple weeks and to come back and produce like that it’s a pretty amazing player.”

Weiss got to play wing for Datsyuk when he returned from a groin injury on Nov. 26 and witnessed a two-goal game from him.

“I haven’t been able to play with anyone like that in my career before,” Weiss said. “He’s amazing. He’s just so talented and seems to not miss a beat.

“I ask him after every game how he feels and he says, ‘Uh, OK,’” Weiss continued. “And he scored two goals. That’s pretty impressive.”

Despite producing more than a point per game this season, Datsyuk still is committed to playing defense first which has helped lead him to three Selke trophies as the league’s top defensive forward.

“First priority is defense,” Datsyuk said. “More defense, (equals) more offense.”

Wings set to debut their ‘all center’ line tonight against Flyers

DETROIT >> The center of attention, so to speak, in Wednesday’s Wings home game against the Philadelphia Flyers will be their third line.

Pavel Datsyuk will center Darren Helm and Stephen Weiss.

All three are natural centers.

“We might be the only line in the NHL with three natural centers, so we should have success on the dot, hopefully, and some pretty good skill with Pav and Weisser,” Helm said. “We have to find a way to click pretty early.

“There are definitely some different aspects to our games that could gel together if we find a way to click, and it is exciting for me at least, playing with those two skilled, confident guys,” Helm continued. “If we find a way to click or gel it will be fun and pretty exciting.”

Datsyuk has missed his four straight games with a groin injury and six of the last eight.

“It’s very important for us to have him back,” Weiss said. “It’s a big boost to our lineup to have him back. Anytime he misses a game, it seems like it’s too long.”

Former Wing Kris Draper said playing on a line with Datsyuk was like winning the lottery.

“It definitely feels that way,” Weiss said. “When I saw the sheet this morning I had a little grin on my face. He makes the game a lot easier for the guys that play around him.”

Datsyuk is considered one of the best two-way players in the game if not the best.

“His ability to get the puck back is just one of the skill sets that separate him from a lot of other guys in the league, his ability to play defensively and steal pucks and turn it into offense,” Weiss said.

Datsyuk has been limited to 45 games in 2013-14 due to a knee injury and concussion. This season he’s already missed 11 of 21 games due to a separated shoulder and groin pull.

“He’s a guy I grew up watching, really and now to have a chance to play with him, it’s pretty cool,” Weiss said. “But you can’t be worried about that too much. I’ve just got to worry about what I’ve got to do and hopefully we can find some chemistry, the three of us.”

Datsyuk has five goals and six assists in 10 games this season.

“I thought initially it took him a bit to get back and then he was on fire and got hurt again,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “The big thing for Pav is as you get a little older in your career your physical fitness and the amount of care you take in keeping your body healthy is so important.

“He’s a high-end player for us,” Babcock continued. “I haven’t put him with (Henrik Zetterberg) on purpose just because … if he gets going maybe I’ll do that but right now leave him where he is and play him on a separate power play. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with having Datsyuk in your lineup.”

Not only is the line all centers, but they’ve all missed significant playing time over the past three seasons, combining to miss 306 regular-season games over that span – Weiss (140), Helm (83), Datsyuk (83).

Weiss had two goals in his return to the lineup Monday, doubling his output since joining the Wings two off-seasons ago.

“All signs are pointing towards being over the hump,” Weiss said.