by: Chris Zadorozny (@Zads07)
The NHL season is now officially two months old and the Detroit Red Wings have already had their ups and downs.
The Red Wings started out strong, but up until the last couple of weeks, were on a losing streak, trying to find their scoring touch. The injury bug has hit the Red Wings hard and now, are just $31,000 under the salary cap.
This isn’t something fans are accustomed to each year. Heading into the first weekend of December, the Red Wings are without Pavel Datsyuk (concussion), Henrik Zetterberg (back), Todd Bertuzzi (shoulder) and Danny DeKeyser (shoulder).
The roster has changed a bit since opening night, due to injuries, a forward-heavy roster and some uninspired play over the course of three-to-four week period.
Gone are Patrick Eaves and Jordin Tootoo, who were sent to Grand Rapids in mid-November. Brought up to replace these two, Gustav Nyquist, and Darren Helm, who returned in early November from a back injury.
With the mounting injuries, the Wings were forced call up defensemen Adam Almqvist and Xavier Ouellet, along with forwards Luke Glendening, Tomas Tatar and goalie Petr Mrazek.
Cory Emmerton was also lost in the shuffle. He was sent down in mid-October, but is now back up because of injuries.
With Ken Holland’s back against the wall, there’s mounting pressure to make a move to relieve some of the salary cap pressure.. Once Danny DeKeyser comes off of injured reserve, the Red Wings won’t have enough room to bring him back without going over the cap.
The next few weeks will really tell Red Wings fans if this team is for real. Life without Datsyuk and Zetterberg, at least for at least a few more games will also show this team can survive without their top two leaders.
To read the original post on Sports Radio Detroit, on December 4, 2013, go to www.sportsradiodetroit.com