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Red Wings Recall Tyler Bertuzzi, place Thomas Vanek on LTIR

NHL: Preseason-Detroit Red Wings at Toronto Maple Leafs John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

DETROIT — The Red Wings announced Monday morning that they have recalled forward Tyler Bertuzzi from Grand Rapids, and placed Thomas Vanek on long-term injured reserve:

This is a complete shocker to most Red Wings fans. While Tyler Bertuzzi has been absolutely brilliant in Grand Rapids, Anthony Mantha has been on a goal-scoring tear, and was thought to be the next player to make the big club.

The Red Wings have been playing with 12 forwards for some time, and were expected to make a call-up sooner or later, but the difficulties with their cap situation had kept them from doing so. Now that Vanek is on LTIR, the Red Wings cannot activate him for 10 games, or 24 days.

Tyler Bertuzzi is a tenacious winger who has shown touches of offensive skill, but the fact that Mantha, the organization’s top prospect, did not get the call is very odd.

More from the Red Wings:

The Detroit Red Wings today recalled left wing Tyler Bertuzzi from the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins and placed left wing Thomas Vanek on long-term injured reserve retroactive to Oct. 25.

Bertuzzi, 21, has appeared in nine games for the Griffins in his second professional season, notching four points (2-2-4), a plus-three rating, six penalty minutes and is tied for the team lead with 28 shots on goal. The 6-foot-1, 198-lb., winger tied for ninth on Grand Rapids in 2015-16 and placed second among the team’s rookies with 30 points (12-18-30) and led the team with 133 penalty minutes in 71 games. He also led the team in the AHL Calder Cup playoffs with seven goals among his eight points (7-1-8) in nine games. Bertuzzi got his first taste of professional hockey at the end of the 2014-15 season, scoring one goal in two regular-season games and racking up 12 points (7-5-12) in 14 postseason contests.

Originally drafted by Detroit in the second round (58th overall) of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Bertuzzi, who is the nephew of former Red Wings forward Todd Bertuzzi, spent four seasons with the Ontario Hockey League’s Guelph Storm prior to joining the Griffins. In 201 OHL games from 2011-15, he registered 172 points (72-100-172) and 325 penalty minutes. The Sudbury, Ontario, native was a 2014 OHL champion with the Storm and totaled 27 points (16-11-27) in 38 playoff games. Bertuzzi was also named to the 2015 OHL Second All-Star Team following a career-high 98 points (43-55-98) in 68 games in his final season of junior hockey.