Long Term Injured Reserve, Marian Hossa, and Niklas Kronwall

The Chicago Blackhawks announced over the summer that forward Marian Hossa would not play this season due to a skin condition.  Specific details have not been released, but the general understanding is that he essentially developed an allergy to his equipment, an ailment that was somewhat common in decades past.

The result is that Hossa develops an uncomfortable – possibly even painful – rash from wearing his hockey gear.  With medications increasingly unhelpful, the only way to avoid it is to stop wearing the equipment, which means not playing.

The NHL has investigated the situation and, per a report by The Athletic, has ruled that the Blackhawks can place Hossa on long-term injured reserve, giving them salary cap relief while Hossa is out.

Given that Hossa’s contract was one of the original back-diving deals and that this year just happens to be one of the ones that it looks like he was never supposed to play anyway, the timing is convenient.  That said, I don’t care about that.  I’m curious about how this applies to other LTIR cases.

Hossa is still physically able to play hockey.  It’s “just” uncomfortable.  Similarly, Johan Franzen may be physically able to play hockey, it would just be incredibly stupid for him to do so after having suffered such horrible repeated head injuries.

As such, it’s clear that LTIRetirement doesn’t mean that you can’t play hockey anymore, just that it’s not worth it to do so.  Exactly how far does that stretch?

About his oft-injured left knee, Niklas Kronwall said in 2016, “I don’t know if I’ll ever be pain-free, but hopefully, I’ll be able to be out there in a position where it doesn’t bite as much.”  Surgery is an option but it would effectively end his career.

Kronwall continues to play because he can and, seemingly, because he wants to.  Is it worth it for him to do so, to play through the pain, as Hossa would have to?  If the answer is no, why wouldn’t the NHL’s ruling on Hossa (and Franzen) apply to him, giving the Red Wings an out from their cap situation?

Or what if the team decides he’s no longer healthy enough to help them, even if Kronwall wants to keep playing?  That seems to be the situation Joffrey Lupul and the Toronto Maple Leafs are in.  The Hossa ruling seems to allow for that as well, though the league is investigating Lupul’s case as well.

If this is an option, I’d be using it today.  Obviously the Red Wings aren’t, but the way I read it, we could see it come up in the future.

Red Wings Fall to Leafs in Shootout

The Detroit Red Wings dropped a 2-1 shootout decision to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday night.

Tyler Bozak and Mike Santorelli scored on Detroit netminder Jimmy Howard while Pavel Datsyuk beat James Reimer. Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Tatar for the Red Wings and Joffrey Lupul of the Maple Leafs failed to score.

Reimer stopped 41 of 42 Detroit shots to get the Maple Leafs into the shootout. Howard needed to make only 18 saves on 19 shots.

Nyquist opened the game’s scoring with 2:08 left in the middle period, spinning to beat Reimer on the backhand from right in front.

Phil Kessel tied things back up at 5:09 of the third. On a break with James van Riemsdyk, Kessel drove to the net and tipped a pass by Howard.

The two teams will meet again on Saturday in Toronto. The Red Wings face the Florida Panthers on Friday.

Datsyuk, Howard Selected by Team Chara for All-Star Game

Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk and goalie Jimmy Howard were selected by All-Star team captain Zdeno Chara at the NHL All-Star Player Fantasy Draft on Thursday.

Datsyuk was the first overall selection of the draft. Howard was the last goalie selected, going in the tenth round (the round by which all goalies were required to be selected).

Team captains were Boston’s Chara, with Toronto’s Joffrey Lupul as an assistant, and Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson, assisted by Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers.

The full draft list is as follows:

Round 1
Team Chara: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit
Team Alfredsson: Erik Karlsson, Ottawa

Round 2
Team Chara: Tim Thomas, Boston
Team Alfredsson: Jason Spezza, Ottawa

Round 3
Team Chara: Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh
Team Alfredsson: Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles

Round 4
Team Chara: Marian Hossa, Chicago
Team Alfredsson: Claude Giroux, Philadelphia

Round 5
Team Chara: Kimmo Timonen, Philadelphia
Team Alfredsson: Kris Letang, Pittsburgh

Round 6
Team Chara: Corey Perry, Anaheim
Team Alfredsson: Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay

Round 7
Team Chara:Carey Price, Montreal
Team Alfredsson: Brian Elliott, St. Louis

Round 8
Team Chara: Phil Kessel, Toronto
Team Alfredsson: Shea Weber, Nashville

Round 9
Team Chara: Ryan Suter, Nashville
Team Alfredsson: Daniel Sedin, Vancouver

Round 10
Team Chara: Jimmy Howard, Detroit
Team Alfredsson: Dan Girardi, NY Rangers

Round 11
Team Chara: Brian Campbell, Florida
Team Alfredsson: Keith Yandle, Phoenix

Round 12
Team Chara: Patrick Kane, Chicago
Team Alfredsson: Milan Michalek, Ottawa

Round 13
Team Chara: Dion Phaneuf, Toronto
Team Alfredsson: Henrik Sedin, Vancouver

Round 14
Team Chara: Jarome Iginla, Calgary
Team Alfredsson: James Neal, Pittsburgh

Round 15
Team Chara: Dennis Wideman, Washington
Team Alfredsson: Alexander Edler, Vancouver

Round 16
Team Chara: Marian Gaborik, NY Rangers
Team Alfredsson: John Tavares, NY Islanders

Round 17
Team Chara: Jordan Eberle, Edmonton
Team Alfredsson: Scott Hartnell, Philadelphia

Round 18
Team Chara: Tyler Seguin, Boston
Team Alfredsson: Jason Pominville, Buffalo

Round 19
Team Chara: Jamie Benn, Dallas
Team Alfredsson: Logan Couture, San Jose

Howard, Datsyuk Named to NHL All-Star Teams

The National Hockey League announced the list of 36 players selected to the 2012 All-Star teams on Thursday, joining six player voted in by the fans.

The Red Wings will be represented by goaltender Jimmy Howard and forward Pavel Datsyuk.

It will be Howard’s first All-Star appearance. In his third full NHL season, he has a league-leading 24 wins, with a .924 save percentage and a 2.05 goals-against average.

Datsyuk will make his second trip to the All-Star Game, having previously appeared in the 2004 contest. He was also selected to the 2009 roster but skipped the game with an injury. He currently leads the Red Wings in points with 43.

A notable omission from the roster is Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom, who reportedly requested the weekend off.

The All-Star Game will be played on January 29, hosted by the Ottawa Senators.

The full list of selected players is as follows:

Forwards
Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks
Tyler Seguin, Boston Bruins
Jason Pominville, Buffalo Sabres
Jarome Iginla, Calgary Flames
Marian Hossa, Chicago Blackhawks
Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks
Jamie Benn, Dallas Stars
Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
Mikko Koivu, Minnesota Wild
John Tavares, New York Islanders
Marian Gaborik, New York Rangers
Claude Giroux, Philadelphia Flyers
Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins
Logan Couture, San Jose Sharks
Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning
Phil Kessel, Toronto Maple Leafs
Joffrey Lupul, Toronto Maple Leafs
Daniel Sedin, Vancouver Canucks
Henrik Sedin, Vancouver Canucks
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals

Defensemen
Zdeno Chara, Boston Bruins
Brian Campbell, Florida Panthers
Ryan Suter, Nashville Predators
Shea Weber, Nashville Predators
Dan Girardi, New York Rangers
Kimmo Timonen, Philadelphia Flyers
Keith Yandle, Phoenix Coyotes
Alex Edler, Vancouver Canucks
Dennis Wideman, Washington Capitals
Dustin Byfuglien, Winnipeg Jets

Goaltenders
Jimmy Howard, Detroit Red Wings
Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings
Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
Brian Elliott, St. Louis Blues

Red Wings Rally, Still Fall to Maple Leafs 4-3

The Detroit Red Wings rallied from a 3-0 deficit Saturday night but allowed a late goal in a 4-3 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Joffrey Lupul lifted a backhander from in close over a sprawling Jimmy Howard for what ended up being the game-winner at 7:10 of the third period. Lupul had picked off Niklas Kronwall‘s weak clearing attempt off the left boards and jumped out to the front of the net all alone. Howard went down quickly and gave Lupul the top half of the net, which he hit.

Phil Kessel had opened the scoring at 4:30 of the first period. Kessel broke in alone on Howard and shook off a slight hook from Ian White to get a shot off. Howard made the save but Kessel was given a penalty shot.

On the penalty shot attempt, Kessel faked out Howard and roofed a shot over him.

Dion Phaneuf made it 2-0 at 8:19 of the period on a Toronto power play. Danny Cleary‘s clearing attempt from the side of the goal went right to Phaneuf just inside the blue line. He rifled a shot right back past Howard.

David Steckel finished an odd-man rush by tapping in a centering pass from Lupul with 8:24 to give the Maple Leafs their initial three-goal lead.

Todd Berutzzi started the Detroit comeback at 6:46 of the second period, deflecting a Pavel Datsyuk shot past Jonas Gustavsson. The goal stood after video review to see if it was hit by a high stick.

Kronwall drove to the net and banged the puck past Gustavsson to pull the Red Wings within a goal with 4:11 remaining in the period.

Jiri Hudler completed the comeback at 4:32 of the third, knocking the rebound of a Brad Stuart shot past Gustavsson from the side of the net.

Howard faced only 18 Toronto shots on the night, stopping 14. Gustavsson made 37 of 40 stops.

The Maple Leafs had only two shots in the second period, compared to 14 for Detroit as the Red Wings began their comeback.

Each team had one power play try. The Maple Leafs scored on theirs while the Red Wings did not. The Leafs also had their penalty shot goal.

The Red Wings are back in action on Sunday when they visit the Chicago Blackhawks.

Postgame: Red Wings @ Maple Leafs – 1/7

We’ve seen far too many games like tonight’s loss to the Maple Leafs from the Red Wings in the past. Give up a big lead early, dominate from there on out to make it close, end up coming up short.

Yeah, in this case they actually completed the rally, only to allow the GWG, but it was the early deficit that did them in.

And, aside from the Phil Kessel penalty shot goal (which I’ll get to shortly), the Wings earned that deficit.

The second Toronto goal was the direct result of a bad clearing attempt by Danny Cleary. He put that right on Dion Phaneuf‘s stick. Jimmy Howard didn’t look good facing the shot, either, like he didn’t expect it and moved to make the save too late.

David Steckel’s goal scored on an odd-man rush… I feel like Henrik Zetterberg should have been able to get back there. I won’t call it lazy but he sure didn’t seem quick coming back.

The Joffrey Lupul goal that ended up being the game-winner was awful all around. Lupul never should have gotten the puck as it was a terrible turnover, then Howard completely overplayed it. Howard went down way early, no one was there to clear Lupul away, he had all day to hit the top of the net.

And the penalty shot. For the second time in four games, Jimmy Howard had to face a penalty shot for an infraction so weak that the rest of the times it happened all game it wasn’t called. That’s the part that bothers me, that it got called once early against Detroit and then wasn’t called again. Convenient for Toronto, for sure.

The Wings did show some great effort in their comeback, at least.

Bertuzzi’s goal may have been a high stick, I don’t think there was conclusive video and the NHL’s War Room must have agreed. It was good to see him get to the net on the play.

Niklas Kronwall driving to the net looked like Johan Franzen. I don’t want the defensemen to have to do it, I’d rather see Franzen do it. That said, I liked the result.

I love plays like Jiri Hudler‘s goal, where Huds stuck with the puck and knocked in a rebound from in close.

So on one hand you have the Maple Leafs gifted a penalty shot that they scored on and then they go on to win by one. On another hand, the Red Wings had two horrible giveaways that were followed by weak goaltending. On a third hand, Detroit mounted a strong comeback and seemingly deserved something for their efforts.

In short, there are a lot of reasons for the Wings to be unhappy with tonight’s loss, plenty of blame to go around.

Red Wings Lose Howard in 4-2 Win over Maple Leafs

The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2 Saturday night but lost starting goaltender Jimmy Howard in the process, as he suffered a shoulder injury early in the third period.

With the Red Wings leading 2-1, Joffrey Lupul drove to the net and bumped Howard, then fell on top of him and swept the rebound of a Phil Kessel shot into the net. Howard could not continue after the play and was replaced between the pipes by Joey MacDonald.

Jiri Hudler would put Detroit back in front just 38 seconds later, slapping a shot from the left faceoff circle past Toronto netminder James Reimer.

Todd Bertuzzi rounded out the game’s scoring with an empty net goal in the final minute.

Henrik Zetterberg had opened the game’s scoring 5:05 in, swatting a backhand rebound chance under Reimer with the Red Wings on a power play.

Nazem Kadri made it 1-1 with 2:04 left in the first, snapping a shot from the right faceoff circle through a Darryl Boyce screen and past Howard on the short side.

Tomas Holmstrom gave the Red Wings a second lead at 9:17 of the second period, deflecting a Niklas Kronwall shot from the blue line past Reimer on another Detroit power play.

The Wings finished the night two-for-two with the man advantage while the Leafs were scoreless on four power play attempts.

Howard stopped 15 of 17 shots before his injury. MacDonald stoped all seven shots he faced in picking up the win while Reimer made 25 saves on 28 shots.

The win puts the Red Wings at 1-1-1 in their current five-game homestand. They next host the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday.


Detroit was without forwards Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen due to injury. Ruslan Salei was a healthy scratch on defense… Red Wings general manager Ken Holland later said that Howard’s injury “doesn’t appear to be anything significant.” With normal backup goalie Chris Osgood on long-term IR recovering from a sports hernia, Detroit is expected to call up either Thomas McCollum or Jordan Pearce to back up MacDonald on Monday.

Red Wings Hold Off Ducks with Wild Third Period

Henrik Zetterberg scored three third-period goals for the first Detroit hat trick since 2008 and the Red Wings held off a comeback by the Anaheim Ducks for a 7-4 win Saturday night.

The Wings had taken a 2-1 lead into the game’s final frame before the teams combined for eight goals in twenty minutes.

“He kind of took over,” Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall said of Zetterberg. “He’s been playing really strong for us of late and he had some chances early. He stuck with it and he really came through when we needed him the most.”

Detroit lost three leads in the game after going up 2-0 in the first period.

Bobby Ryan tied the game at two just 3:47 into the third on a power play goal.

Pavel Datsyuk put the Wings out front again with a power play goal of their own at 5:17 only to have Joffrey Lupul tie it again 1:09 later.

Zetterberg’s first put the Wings up 4-3 at 9:10 but Ryan Getzlaf tied it on an Anaheim five-on-three with 5:33 remaining.

Zetterberg scored again to put Detroit up for good just 1:02 later, beating Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller with a fluttering slap shot from the top of the right circle.

Darren Helm snapped a shot from the left circle over Hiller’s shoulder to restore Detroit’s two-goal lead with 2:15 remaining.

Zetterberg completed the hat trick with an empty-net goal in the game’s final second.

Dan Cleary had opened the game’s scoring with 6:28 left in the first period, tipping a Niklas Kronwall shot past Hiller on a Detroit power play.

Brian Rafalski extended the lead with 44 seconds remaining in the first on another power play goal.

Corey Perry pulled the Ducks to within a goal in the second, taking a feed from Getzlaf after a Jonathan Ericsson giveaway in the Detroit end.

Wings goalie Jimmy Howard finished the night with 19 saves on 23 shots against in his third consecutive start. Hiller stopped 30 of the 36 Detroit chances he faced.

Detroit went three-for-six on the power play. Anaheim went two-for-four with one goal on a five-on-three.

The Red Wings are now off until Wednesday when they host the Dallas Stars.

Red Wings Score Three Unanswered Goals to Beat Flyers, 3-2

The Detroit Red Wings scored three times in a row Tuesday night, bouncing back from down 2-0 to earn a 3-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Wings didn’t score their first goal of the night until only 2:33 remained in the second period, by which time Scott Hartnell and Joffrey Lupul had already scored for the Flyers.

Hartnell scored on a partial breakaway with 3:26 left in the first period, fighting off Marian Hossa while coming down the right wing and beating Detroit netminder Chris Osgood with a snap shot.

Just 4:28 into the second, Lupul scored on an odd-man rush to extend the lead for Philadelphia.

Pavel Datsyuk got the Red Wings on the board, skating down the left wing and putting a quick shot past Flyers’ goalie Martin Biron.

At 9:47 of the third, Datsyuk grabbed the puck on the left wing board and fed it to Johan Franzen. Franzen beat Biron on a one-timer from just inside the right faceoff circle, tying the game.

Just 1:38 later Henrik Zetterberg gave Detroit the lead, scoring off a pass from Mikael Samuelsson as Jonathan Ericsson led a rush up-ice.

Osgood stopped 24 of 26 shots on the night to earn his third win in a row. Biron made 45 saves on 48 shots against.


The win moved Osgood into sole possession of eleventh place all-time in the NHL… The Red Wings dressed eight defensemen as the were without forwards Valtteri Filppula and Tomas Holmstrom.

Red Wings Fall to Oilers in Shootout

A goal by Raffi Torres in the seventh round of the shootout lifted the Edmonton Oilers over the Detroit Red Wings Saturday night, just one night after the Red Wings fell to the Calgary Flames.

Edmonton had a late 3-2 lead but Jiri Hudler tied the game with just over three seconds remaining in regulation, deflecting a shot from the right circle by Dan Cleary past Edmonton goalie Dwayne Roloson.

The Red Wings never led the game, with Shawn Horcoff opening the scoring for Edmonton at 4:38 of the first period beating Detroit netminder Joey MacDonald on a one-timer from Ryan Smythe.

Kris Draper tied the game 2:50 later on a shorthanded 2-on-1 with Henrik Zetterberg, putting a shot into Roloson’s glove which was – after lengthy review – determined to have crossed the goal line.

Joffrey Lupul put the Oilers back out in front 3:18 later, bouncing a shot from behind the goal line off of MacDonald’s pad and into the net.

Danny Markov‘s first goal as a Red Wing pulled Detroit even again at 5:11 of the second period but Torres snuck a shot past MacDonald at 8:52 of the third to restore Edmonton’s lead.

In his first NHL start, MacDonald stopped 18 of Edmonton’s 21 shots. Roloson made 38 saves on 41 shots.

Neither team scored on the power play, with Detroit getting two tries and Edmonton taking three attempts with the extra attacker.

Having closed out their road swing through western Canada, the Red Wings will return to the ice on Wednesday when they host the Vancouver Canucks.


Jason Williams made his return to the lineup after missing three games with a concussion. Darryl Bootland and Evan McGrath were returned to Grand Rapids to make room in the lineup… Continuing the effort to keep Dominik Hasek from playing on back-to-back nights and with Chris Osgood still injured, Stefan Liv backed up MacDonald.