The first year of the Stephen Weiss era in Detroit is pretty close to being a complete bust.
Weiss, signed to a five-year, $24 million deal this past summer, is likely done for the season after suffering a setback in his recovery from sports hernia surgery in late December.
“He’s not on the horizon to come back,” Detroit GM Ken Holland said, per the Macomb Daily. “I was just in there talking to Steve, talking to our trainers, everybody is a little bit frustrated because we obviously thought he would be back by now, actually a long time ago.
“So they’re going through a check list. Everybody’s frustrated. He’s not getting better the way we had hoped.”
Weiss, 31, has only played in 26 games this year and underperformed while doing so, scoring just two goals and four points while averaging under 16 minutes a night. Signed in the hopes of replacing Valtteri Filppula as the club’s No. 2 center, Weiss came in with high expectations — “we explained the situation to him very clearly,” Wings head coach Mike Babcock said — but failed to meet them, and now has the additional concern of an injury that appears to be quite significant.
Weiss was expected to return following the Olympic break, then said last week he was a day away from coming back — only to suffer a setback, which has turned everything on its head.
“At this stage of the game I’m not expecting him back this year,” Holland said. “I think that’s the way we have to go forward. I mean he’s not even practicing. So I really don’t know what to tell you.”