Facing playoff elimination, the Detroit Red Wings will make a change on defense tonight.
Carlo Colaiacovo will draw into the lineup for the first time this postseason, replacing Brian Lashoff, according to MLive.com.
“I don’t know what the word is to use, I think excited is a small word,” Colaiacovo said. “It’s real gratifying obviously.
“This is the biggest reason why I wanted to come here, to play at this time of the season for this team.”
Colaiacovo, 30, only appeared in six regular-season games with the Wings this season, missing a large chunk of the year to a shoulder injury. He notched one assist and went minus-4, averaging close to 19 minutes per game.
Lashoff has appeared in three of five playoff games thus far, going scoreless while averaging 18 TOI per.
In another lineup move, forward Justin Abdelkader will draw back in after serving a two-game suspension for charging Toni Lydman.
Patrick Eaves will be a healthy scratch.
The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.
The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.
The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.
But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.
“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”
Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.
A preseason push by a number of Vancouver Canucks youngsters has left forward Linden Vey and defenseman Frank Corrado on waivers today.
The more surprising name of the two is Corrado, the 22-year-old who entered the season with an excellent chance of making the opening-day roster. However, it seems that rookie d-man Ben Hutton, 22, has been given the nod after finishing an eye-opening preseason with one goal and four assists in seven games. (This despite Hutton being waiver exempt. So it’s a risk for the Canucks, to be sure.)
It was the play of 19-year-old rookie Jared McCann that led, in part, to the waiving of Vey. (For more on that, click here.) Veteran Adam Cracknell remains with the team as well, to some surprise.
Rookie winger Jake Virtanen is also expected to be on Vancouver’s opening-day roster, though that’s no big shock.
Defenseman Alex Biega is also on waivers, as expected.