Niklas Kronwall wonders if knee will ever be pain-free

Getty
2 Comments

Every now and then, there’s an article that pops up that makes you a little worried about the Detroit Red Wings’ record playoff streak.

Maybe the biggest issue is the “D” in Detroit. Far too many important blueliners seem to be dealing with nagging injuries that may never go away.

(Let the bleakness of that thought sink in for a moment.)

Not that long ago, Jonathan Ericsson acknowledged his ongoing hip-related struggles. Fellow Swede and Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall spins a similarly sad story.

“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,” Kronwall said to the Detroit Free-Press.

“The surgery that was talked about was something that probably wouldn’t be the best idea if I wanted to play again.”

Yikes.

To recap, Kronwall and Ericsson both seem like they’re adjusting to the reality that they’ll rarely – if ever – feel “100 percent.” That’s $10 million in cap space wrapped up in banged-up defensemen … and Mike Green‘s injury history doesn’t inspire much optimism, either.

Combine those issues with all the mileage Henrik Zetterberg has accrued and the departure of Pavel Datsyuk, and you start to wonder how long Detroit can keep this up.

Don’t take this as a burial by any means; betting against the Red Wings is a foolish gamble.

(Just watch Dylan Larkin speed around the ice for a few shifts and it’ll be a lot easier to find positives.)

Still, it’s not the greatest sign when Kronwall and Ericsson aren’t even providing the usual positive spin during the off-season.