The Detroit Red Wings announced on Tuesday the demotions of defenseman Xavier Ouellet and goaltender Petr Mrazek to the Grand Rapids Griffins of the American Hockey League.
Combined with forward Pavel Datsyuk being placed on injured reserve, the moves put the Red Wings’ roster at 23 men leading up to the league’s deadline for roster compliance.
Ouellet had skated with Kyle Quincey on the team’s third defense pairing in Tuesday’s practice, seemingly a sign that he had made the opening night roster. Keeping him in Detroit, though, would have required waiving or trading another defenseman, such as Jakub Kindl or Brian Lashoff, who skated as a fourth pairing at practice.
Mrazek seemed to be destined for Detroit as backup goalie Jonas Gustavsson shook off an injury, but it would appear that Gustavsson will be healthy enough to back up Jimmy Howard on Thursday.