The Detroit Red Wings’ defense could look much different to begin the season than many expected. With top pair defenseman Mike Green already shut down and confirmed to be out for at least the team’s opener due to a viral infection, coach Jeff Blashill revealed today that banged-up blue liners Danny DeKeyser, Jonathan Ericsson, and Trevor Daley are all considered questionable to begin the season. As Ansar Khan of MLive.com points out, it could be a very young, inexperienced defensive corps to start the year in Detroit. Niklas Kronwall and Nick Jensen could be the only regulars healthy enough to play, joined perhaps by a veteran like Brian Lashoff or Dylan McIlrath. Outside of those options, rookies will likely make up the rest of the top six. 5’8″ Joe Hicketts, who got a brief look last season, leads the way, with 2016 first-rounder Dennis Cholowski, second-rounder the same year Filip Hronek, and Czech import Libor Sulak in the mix as well.
- Injury news about Zach Bogosian usually isn’t good and unfortunately, this could be trending in that direction as well. Bogosian has been taking it easy in training camp, working his way back from major hip surgery, but the Athletic’s Joe Yerndon reports that he has still managed to get injured. According to head coach Phil Housley, Bogosian is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. Even worse, Yerndon notes that it is a new injury, unrelated to his hip issues. Bogosian’s career has been marred by frequent injuries and an inability to bounce back quickly. The Sabres have to hope that this case is different, as Bogosian and Marco Scandella will be needed to lead a young defensive unit and groom top overall pick Rasmus Dahlin.
- It didn’t take long for the New York Rangers to get clarification on Matt Beleskey’s status. After head coach David Quinn said yesterday that it was “too early to tell” the extent of Beleskey’s injury, suffered during a fight on Monday night, the Rangers released an update today. Beleskey will be out two to four weeks with a separated shoulder, the team determined. Since Beleskey was a likely training camp casualty anyway, the only change for the Rangers is that he cannot be placed on waiver while injured. Instead, he will be placed on the injured reserve with only a minor salary cap charge.
- Montreal Canadiens’ free agent addition Matthew Peca is currently sidelined. The team revealed that he is dealing with a minor groin injury. No timeline has been established for his return. Peca’s NHL ability and role for the Habs is still unclear, so missing preseason action and potentially the start of the season is unfortunate. The former Tampa Bay Lightning prospect will have to hit the ground running upon his return.