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Bad Time for Injuries




The end of the regular season is just a week away for NHL teams, and many of the key playoff teams are battling the injury bug. Injuries are always a part of the game, but there is nothing worse than having late season injuries. It is much easier to go into the difficult, and grueling playoffs when your team is healthy.

The Detroit Red Wings have been devastated with injuries all year. The Red Wings have actually looked more like their American Hockey League affiliate the Grand Rapids Griffins because of the extensive injuries. It is amazing that they are still in the Eastern Conference wild card race. As the playoffs approach it seems as if many players will be back, but some key loses still remain. Pavel Datsyuk came back last Saturday night, Daniel Alfredsson is currently day to day, and Henrik Zetterberg has began to skate again. All this is good news, but defenseman Jonathan Ericsson will not be back until late in the first round at best, and Stephen Weiss will be lost for the entire season. It has been a difficult year for the Wings. Will they be able to stay healthy or get healthy as they prepare for the playoffs?

The Pittsburgh Penguins have also dealt with the injury bug all season. Evgeni Malkin is currently out with a foot injury. The original plan was that he would be back for the start of the playoffs, but recent reports are saying that this return date may be pushed back. The next key injury is defenseman Kris Letang. He is still dealing with the results of a mid-season stroke. He has recently been cleared to play, and that date will be determined by Letang himself. When he is ready to play he will play. If that was not bad enough, Sidney Crosby was a sctratch for Sundays game against Colorado, with a lower body injury. This injury does not look to be serious, but any injury at this time of the year can be terrible.

The next team on the injury list is the Chicago Blackhawks. If the fact that dealing with the loss of sniper Patrick Kane was not enough, adding Jonathan Toews to the list may just be deadly. With just one week left in the season the Blackhawks are missing their top two offensive threats. Patrick Kane was injured on March 19th when Brenden Morrow fell into his leg. Kane has recently skated with the Hawks, and looks to be back for the first round of the playoffs. As for Toews, it has been reported that he is suffering from a shoulder injury and it also looks as if he will be back for the first round of the playoffs.

Recently the Los Angeles Kings were added to this list of key injuries when super star defenseman Drew Doughty went down with an injury. Doughty suffered an upper body injury while being checked by San Jose Sharks Tyler Kennedy on April 3rd. Doughty has been traveling with the Kings and looks to be ready for the start of the playoffs.

It has been a story book season thus far for the Colorado Avalanche. Things have been so much better than expected for the Avalanche. Thus far, injuries have not played a part in their season until recently. Matt Duchene recently suffered a knee injury and will miss the remaninder of the regular season. It looks like he will be out at least till the later part of the first round. This will be a very difficult injury to deal with. Duches]ne is a key offensive force that will be greatly missed. The good news for the Avalanche is the return of forward P.A. Parenteau who has been dealing with a difficult knee injury.

The playoffs are drawing close and it will be very important to see how these playoff teams deal with the injuries, and who will make it back in time for the playoffs.


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