Eaves to IR, Conner called up

On Saturday, Red Wings winger Patrick Eaves took an errant shot just above the right ear. It was a scary scene as Eaves went down in a heap, appeared to lose consciousness for just a second, before writhing in pain on the ice. He was able to get himself onto a gurney — for the most part — and be taken to the hospital, where he was held overnight for observation after confirming that his jaw was fractured by the Roman Josi shot that likely ramped up a stick. After a successful surgery where his jaw was wired shut, it was determined that he will miss the next six to eight weeks.

Despite being ruled out until mid-January, Eaves had not been placed on injured reserve.

Until just now. According to a team official, Eaves has been removed from the active roster, and added to the short-term injured reserve list, joining Jan Mursak who is on LTIR (he’s set to return from a broken ankle at the end of December). Players placed on STIR must miss seven days, but Eaves will not be physically able to perform for at least twenty-five games, according to the timeline.

With Eaves coming off of the roster, the team is back down to 22 active players. The team has also announced that they’ve recalled Chris Conner from the Grand Rapids Griffins.

The Griffins leading scorer is the veteran pro and Michigan native. He has 7 goals and 16 points in 20 games, good enough for sixth in AHL scoring. Conner played 60 games with the Penguins last season, netting 7 goals and 9 assists. In total, he’s played 139 games in the NHL and was signed this past July for depth and in case the Wings needed a solid pro during the season.

It appears that time is now. Conner will be eligible to suit up for the Red Wings on Friday evening, when they take on the Sabres. The team must be really unhappy with Fabian Brunnstrom’s performance tonight… discuss.

Potential dates for Patrick Eaves’ return
:: January 12 vs. Phoenix
:: January 14 vs. Chicago
:: January 16 vs. Buffalo
:: January 17 at Dallas
:: January 19 at Phoenix
:: January 21 vs. Columbus
:: January 23 vs. St. Louis

Potential dates for Jan Mursak’s return
:: December 26 at Nashville
:: December 27 vs. St. Louis
:: December 30 at Chicago
:: December 31 vs. St. Louis
:: January 3 at Dallas
:: January 7 at Toronto

Photo Credit: Duane Burleson, AP

Wings Ground Lightning: Doodle Postgame Edition

We’re doing something a little different tonight, since the artsy one has the reins. This is my first time writing a postgame and I’m banging it out before my own game tonight, so bear with me.

SCORE: 4-2 Wings (Hi, Mr. Petrella!)

First period:

  • Call it woman’s intuition, but I could feel that Datsyuk goal coming as soon as the puck popped free to center ice. The puck skittered around awkwardly while what seems like every single player touched it, and then Datsyuk got a moment of clear ice and whipped it in.  I’d like to thank Downie for releasing stupidly early and not playing defense.
  • Um… Ericsson scored a goal?! Filppula fed an excellent pass to center ice, continuing his point streak, and Riggy managed to drop into the slot at an appropriate time. While we were all still reeling from from the Shitbox actually doing something right, he went and had one of his typical giveaways shortly afterwards.
  • For the majority of this period, the Wings had the momentum stemming from that early goal, and ended with a power play.
  • Second period:

  • Suddenly the Wings took their foot off the gas, losing all that momentum that they had built up, despite starting with the remainder of a power play. And then Bertuzzi takes a stupid penalty by mouthing off to the ref, which is incredibly annoying in the light of his assist on the Datsyuk goal in the first.
  • After Bertuzzi’s shitty penalty, reality seeped back in even further with Ericsson heading to the box. Helm and Cleary have a good shorthanded chance, but moments later Martin St. Louis rips it from the center slot. Miller fails to keep up, making himself look like he’s the older one, with the slower pace and the greyer hair.
  • And then the Lightning get a Budd Lynch special, when someone (Bertuzzi I believe?) lets Stamkos trickle into his Stamkos spot and he rips one past Jimmy to tie it up.
  • Third period:

    • After a scrambly start, Datsyuk draws a penalty by being squirrelly, and lo and behold, Holmstrom scores a goal! The goal, although not a deflection comes from Homer’s usual M.O. of hovering around the net, and then jams the puck past Roloson. I didn’t see the replay initially, but he does, in fact, go in off a deflection from Homer, just from the side of the net, instead of in front like he usually does.
    • The fourth goal for the Wings comes from my personal favorite, Darren Helm, rifling it past Rolo after settling a bouncy pass from Kindl.
    • The afterglow from Helm doesn’t last long, because shortly afterwards, on a shorthanded chance by Gilroy, Howard makes a monster of a save. Everyone fires up Twitter to ask again about Howard’s absence on the All-Star ballot.

    Since I’m at a loss at what else to say, I’m going to let you nominate your Horsecop and Riggy Shitbox of the game in the comments.

    Nov. 30 :: Baby Now I Got the Flow

    First of all, I haven’t done one of these in like two weeks, so you know it’s going to be rough. Things that don’t help: I’m stuck in San Jose for the week and have to go to a Sharks game on Thursday.

    Wings v. Bolts. Stevie Y is back in the house, which spawned today’s theme of  “Return of the Mack.” 7:30. JLA. Not going? No worries. VERSUS has you covered tonight.

    Bruno Gervais sounds like a pornstar. Winner, Aisle 1.

    :: Barry Trotz and Co. got worked 4-1 on Saturday by the Winged Wheel.
    :: The Wild dropped the Lightning 3-1 on Monday.
    :: The Wings clowned the Lightning in their last meeting, a 6-2 drubbing in Tampa on February 17th of last year. Pavel Datsyuk scored a pair, Danny Cleary had a goal and two assists, and Niklas Kronwall, Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm rounded out the scoring effort.

    No former Wings on the Bolts. (I think.) Somewhere, Mattias Ritola cries softly into his pillow.

    Nobody registers as having played on the Wings. That said, I’m waiting for Petrella to bust through the wall like the Kool-Aid guy and tell me how wrong I am.

    (Ed. Note: Fail. Thx @detroithockey96.) Drew Miller. Duh.

    MORE FAIL! Petrella tells me that Doug Janik also played for the Lightning, to the tune of 136 games. See kids, this is what happens when you drink beer and try to write a pre-game. Or, it turns into a Disch type post. You prefer the latter.

    Johan Franzen :: Pavel Datsyuk :: The ‘Tuzz
    Valtteri Filppula :: Henrik Zetterberg :: Jiri Hudler
    Dan Cleary :: Danger Helm :: Fabian Brunnstrom
    Salt N Pepper Miller :: Justin Abdelkader :: Tommy Holmbanger

    Nicklas Lidstrom :: Ian White
    Johnny Shitbox :: Niklas Kronwall
    Jakub Kindl :: Brad Stuart

    Tiberius Howard
    Ty Conkblock

    Jan Mursak [left ankle]
    Patrick Eaves [face]
    Cory Emmerton
    Mike Commodore

    The TPL Name Game “Three Stars”
    Just like last season, submit your nickname suggestions (follow the theme!), and we’ll use our Facebook page to allow people to vote for the best… the winner gets a free TPL t-shirt!
    DISCH: Pavel “Watch My Flow” Datsyuk
    HOLLIS: Fabian “Here I Am Once Again” Brunnstrom
    STEVIE: Jiri “All the Nasty Things You’ve Done” Hudler

    :: Of course, this is Stevie Y’s return to the Joe, which means we are in for an evening full of classic Yzerman highlights and Ken Daniels gushing over The Captain after every commercial break. I’m not saying this is a bad thing, mind you. I’ve just never seen FSD cover something like this without cramming it down your throat every five seconds. Deep down, though, I’m secretly hoping John Keating sneaks into the GM’s box and interviews Yzerman instead of a Wings player at the first intermission.
    :: Sidenote: I wrote most of this last night over a couple of beers and some room service. Pass or Fail: Sweet Potato Waffle Fries. Leave your thoughts in the comments.
    :: The Lightning haven’t won in Detroit since 1994. Let that sink in. Can’t remember what 1994 was like? Well, here’s a few notable things that happened that year to help jog your memory:

    • Nancy Kerrigan got clubbed in the leg via Tonya Harding and Co. (Hey, that happened in Detroit!)
    • Schindler’s List won Best Picture at Academy Awards. Whoopi Goldberg hosted the event.
    • The NFL announced that the Jacksonville Jaguars would become the league’s 30th franchise.
    • O.J. Simpson didn’t do it (according to the court.)
    • The New York Rangers won the Stanley Cup.
    • In their win over the Red Wings on January 12th, the Lightning got goals from Shawn Chambers, Chris Joseph, Denis Savard and John Tucker.
    • In the same game, Steve Yzerman had an assist and went -1.


    Gradient of Failure: November 29th

    Click to enlarge. Last week’s gradient is here.


    • Filppula has moved up. His play in the past two games has been great, and is probably the most impressive forward we have right now (vying with Franzen and Datsyuk for that spot).
    • Emmerton is making little mistakes and not making up for them with anything good. I feel like he’s playing solidly on the penalty kill at least, but he has to start worrying about his roster spot now that Mursak is close to returning.
    • Bertuzzi is sneakily gliding down the Gradient, staring at us from 2.5 with those dead eyes…
    • Jimmy has a White hat again.
    • Voting table behind the cut.

    Continue reading “Gradient of Failure: November 29th”

    Brunnstrom is Swedish for yo-yo

    I’m sure you’ve lost track by now, so let’s take a look at the last six days of Fabian Brunnstrom’s life, shall we?

    TUESDAY: Sent to Grand Rapids
    WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Had an assist for the Griffins
    WEDNESDAY LATE: Recalled from Grand Rapids
    THURSDAY: Sent to Grand Rapids
    FRIDAY NIGHT: Had an assist for the Griffins
    SATURDAY: Recalled from Grand Rapids
    SUNDAY MORNING: Sent to Grand Rapids
    SUNDAY NIGHT: Registered two shots for the Griffins
    MONDAY: Recalled from Grand Rapids

    Oh, and he’s expecting his first child any minute now. His wife was due to be in labor on Friday, but last we heard the big day hadn’t arrived yet.

    Brunnstrom cleared waivers on Halloween, meaning he could go up and down without having to clear again for thirty days or ten games played. That threshold arrives on Wednesday, and with Patrick Eaves out until mid-January with a broken jaw, it’s fair to assume that Brunnstrom will be sticking around the Red Wings to act as the thirteenth healthy forward. Though, if he were to be waived again, it’s unlikely he’d be claimed on waivers since he’s playing well in the AHL, but not destroying it (like, say, Chris Conner or Gus Nyquist) and he has yet to prove that he’s useful at the NHL level again.

    Brunnstrom is available for Wednesday’s game against the Lightning.

    2011-12 NHL Statistics: 4 GP, 0 G, 1 A, 1 PTS
    2011-12 AHL Statistics: 4 GP, 1 G, 2 A, 3 PTS

    Photo Credit: Ryan Gajewski, Grand Rapids Griffins

    1,000th Post is a Roster Updataganza!

    There’s a lot of to discuss from the past twenty-four hours, but first… some pleasantries.

    This post is our 1,000th if you combine both Classic TPL and TPlus. I may be biased, but I don’t think it’s too far out of bounds to say that every single word has been brilliant Nobel Laureate-worthy work. Literature, not Peace. We don’t deal in Peace in these parts.

    In all seriousness, we can’t thank you enough for being a part of it. What started as a hobby to kind of discuss the Red Wings between Disch and I has grown into a full-fledged home and we couldn’t be prouder of the dedicated readership and wonderful growth over the three years we’ve been publishing nonsense and half-naked Latinas.

    Back to business.

    First of all, Patrick Eaves was taken off of the ice on a stretcher last night after blocking a shot taken by Nashville Predator rookie Roman Josi. Somehow the puck got some elevation and made contact with the right side of Eaves’ head, right around the ear. After the game, it was discovered that his jaw was fractured, which certainly explains the pain it looked like he was in on the ice, and he was going to be held overnight for observation before determining if he would need surgery. This morning, the team let us know that he will, in fact, need surgery to repair his jaw and he will be out 6-8 weeks. He’s scheduled to return somewhere around mid-January. He has not yet been placed on LTIR, though I’m sure he may be to make roster moves a tiny bit easier.

    Speaking of roster moves, Fabian Brunnstrom — who was sent down on Tuesday, recalled on Wednesday, sent down on Thursday, and recalled yesterday — was sent down to Grand Rapids for the third time in six days. There’s a Griffins game this afternoon, and the Red Wings likely want to get Bruno some action, since he’s been a healthy scratch fourteen times as a Red Wing. He doesn’t have to clear waivers again: the CBA states that unless a team wishes to place a player on re-entry waivers, that player only has to clear waivers once every thirty days or ten games played. Wednesday, the 30th, would be thirty days since he cleared. So he can be recalled and assigned a million times before then.

    Jan Mursak, who has missed all season with a fractured left ankle, is set to return at the end of December or early January. Here’s how things are lining up right now:

    1. Abdelkader
    2. Bertuzzi
    3. Cleary
    4. Datsyuk
    5. Emmerton
    6. Filppula
    7. Franzen
    8. Helm
    9. Holmstrom
    10. Hudler
    11. Miller
    12. Zetterberg

    13. Brunnstrom (available for recall from Grand Rapids)

    14. Mursak (late December)
    15. Eaves (mid-January)

    16. Nyquist
    17. Tatar
    18. Conner

    Like always, feel free to use our Chart to stay up-to-date on assignments, transactions, and injuries — not to mention everything you could ever need to know about contracts and former Red Wings playing elsewhere, etc.

    **A minor tangentially-Red Wings-related note: Griffins defenseman and captain Garnet Exelby has been suspended for one game for a “spearing incident” against Oklahoma City on Friday. Exelby is on contract with the Red Wings, but between Smith and Janik, he was a long-shot for a recall at any point during the season anyway. Gleason Fournier, also on contract, was recalled from Toledo to take Exelby’s spot.

    Smith sent to Grand Rapids

    We WILL meet again... I can feel it in my heart

    According to a team official, the Detroit Red Wings have returned Brendan Smith to the Grand Rapids Griffins after a nine-day call-up. In that time, Smith served the final game of his suspension, played three games on the West Coast road trip, and was a healthy scratch against the Calgary Flames.

    Initially, he was to return to Grand Rapids when Ian White returned from short-term injured reserve. White was cleared to play tonight, but Brad Stuart was a game-time decision with an undisclosed injury and Smith was asked to stay in case he was needed tonight. The Wings sent Fabian Brunnstrom to Grand Rapids (and he played tonight, notching an assist in the 5-2 win for the Griffs) to be able to keep Brendan Smith in town. Mike Commodore, still on the roster for some reason.

    Smith had a strong showing in his three game audition. He had two assists, three hits, four blocked shots, six shots, four penalty minutes, and a -1 rating. He improved each game, but could certainly use some more seasoning on the farm.

    Coach Mike Babcock made no secret that he’s infatuated with Smith’s skills. He told anyone that would listen that Smith “is an NHL player” and there’s little doubt that Babbles would rather have Smith on the roster than Commodore (who hasn’t played since November 15th — the first game after White’s injury, and Smith’s final game of suspension). But, alas, Smith can be sent down to Grand Rapids without clearing waivers and the safe move is demoting Smith.

    With Smith’s demotion, the Red Wings roster stands at 22 players (7 defensemen, 13 forwards, and a pair of goaltenders). They have recalled Fabian Brunnstrom now that there’s a slot for him. Brunnstrom and his wife are expecting their first child any minute now.

    11/22 :: Ian White activated from short-term injured reserve
    11/22 :: Fabian Brunnstrom assigned to Grand Rapids (AHL)
    11/23 :: Brendan Smith assigned to Grand Rapids (AHL)
    11/23 :: Fabian Brunnstrom recalled from Grand Rapids (AHL)

    Like always, stay up-to-the-minute with the Red Wings goings-on by visiting our Chart.

    Smith sticks, Bruno demoted

    It was an interesting morning for the Detroit Red Wings. First, it was announced that Ian White would make his return to the lineup tomorrow against the Calgary Flames — which is excellent news.

    However, that began the questions about Brendan Smith’s fate. He’s played well, increasingly so, in his three game audition with the big club. He was told that he’d be sent back to Grand Rapids after practice (a practice in which all 24 healthy players took part). He packed up his bags and was on his way out the door when Mike Babcock told him to unpack, he’s going to stick around a while.

    You’re only allowed to carry 23 players, and we had one too many. So, Fabian Brunnstrom was sent down. He didn’t have to clear waivers, since he was waived on October 29th, and he won’t have to clear again for thirty days.

    So, for now, it looks like Brendan Smith has made the team. It may be that someone is banged up on defense and they’re being cautious, but no one was placed on short-term injured reserve. The team will carry 8 defensemen (two extra) and only 13 forwards (one extra).

    Ian White :: activated from short-term injured reserve
    Fabian Brunnstrom :: assigned to the Grand Rapids Griffins
    Brendan Smith :: remains with the Detroit Red Wings

    Like always, keep updated to the minute using The Chart. The Transactions tab is updated daily, as is the Assignments tab.