Well things are going a little bit better and a little bit worse at the same time. The Red Wings have won three in a row, but they lost Jonathan Ericsson doing it. Darren Helm is potentially back no Thursdsay, but if he isn't, it'll be EIGHT regulars not dressed for the game. Some disturbing injury numbers:
--Only FIVE players have played in all 33 games: Todd Bertuzzi, Tomas Holmstrom, Brad Stuart, Nicklas Lidstrom, and Henrik Zetterberg.
--Andreas Lilja has missed 75 straight games (including playoffs).
--By my count, the Wings have lost 139 man-games to injury. Last year, they lost 193 all season.
--At this pace, the Wings will have lost 328 man-games by the end of the season. Let's hope the trend stops. Soon.
--Patrick Eaves, Brian Rafalski, and Darren Helm have each missed two different stretches of games this season.
I caught a lot of flak regarding Todd Bertuzzi's recent offensive explosion (which I welcome with open arms), but allow me to present some interesting numbers regarding our #44:
--Prior to Friday's two-goal game, Bertuzzi was on pace for 11 goals. He's now on pace for 19.
--The only players with worse +/- than Todd (-6) are Jonathan Ericsson (-7), Dan Cleary (-8), and Ville Leino (-8)
--Of the players that have played 20 or more games, Bertuzzi ranks sixth in penalty minutes-to-points ratio (1.41:1). The rest of the list looks like this:
1. Brad May (38:1)
2. Kirk Maltby (3.6:1)
3. Justin Abdelkader (3.5:1)
4. Brett Lebda (3:1)
5. Jonathan Ericsson (2:1)
For the record, the low-man on this list is Pavel Datsyuk (0.08:1, two penalty minutes and 24 points).
We've already discussed Justin Abdelkader's woes at the dot - so where does he rank now that he's had a few games on the second line? Well, still the bottom:
FACEOFF PERCENTAGE (more than 50 draws taken)
1. Pavel Datsyuk (58.8)
2. Valtteri Filppula (54.5)
3. Darren Helm (53.9)
4. Kris Draper (53.7)
5. Henrik Zetterberg (51.0)
6. Dan Cleary (48.8)
7. Justin Abdelkader (41.6)