Injuries are a part of the game. But in Detroit, they’re becoming a fabric of the team.
Abdelkader — who has four goals and eight points through 22 games this season — was averaging 16:26 TOI per night prior to getting hurt. He’d also been heating up lately after a slow start to the year, with four points in his last six contests.
As mentioned in the headline, this is just the latest in a series of injuries to hit the Wings:
— Andreas Athanasiou has been out since Nov. 11 with a knee injury.
— Darren Helm has been out since Nov. 17 with a shoulder issue.
— Jimmy Howard hasn’t played since Nov. 25 due to a groin strain.
— Alexey Marchenko was placed on IR last week with a shoulder problem of his own.
— Brendan Smith is out four weeks with a knee injury.
— Tyler Bertuzzi is out 3-5 weeks with a high ankle sprain.
The club is expected to make another recall from AHL Grand Rapids to fill the Abdelkader void. Leaning on the Griffins has been a common trend this year — in last night’s game against the Panthers, both Anthony Mantha and Ryan Sproul saw significant playing time.