Not much is going right for the Detroit Red Wings this season. They have what is by far the worst record in the league, are on track for one of the worst seasons in franchise history and of the entire modern era in the NHL, and enter Wednesday’s game against the Minnesota Wild on a five-game losing streak.
They will also be without two more veterans in that game as defenseman Mike Green and forward Frans Nielsen will be sidelined after exiting Monday’s game in Colorado.
Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill announced on Tuesday that Green will likely be sidelined for a few weeks, while Nielsen’s injury seems to be more short-term.
Green and Nielsen are two of the veteran players on the Red Wings’ roster and are both struggling to produce when healthy. The Red Wings as a team have missed more than 200 man-games due to injury this season. Along with Green and Nielsen, the Red Wings are also currently without Anthony Mantha (more on him in a second), Andreas Athanasiou, Danny DeKeyser, and goalie Jonathan Bernier.
Mantha still at least a month away
Mantha’s injury has been one of the most significant. He has been sidelined on two different occasions this season, and most recently since mid-December with an upper-body injury.
Blashill said on Tuesday that Mantha is still at least a month away from returning and that it’s “going to be a while before he is healed.”
Even though Mantha has played in just 29 games for the Red Wings this season he is still the team’s third-leading goal scorer (12 goals) and fifth in total points (24 points). He scored 25 goals (with 48 total points) in 67 games a year ago. Since becoming a regular in the Red Wings’ lineup he’s scored at a 30-goal pace over 82 games. The 25-year-old forward is a restricted free agent after this season.