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Round 2
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Stanley Cup Final

Ducks vs Red Wings

Cleary to be evaluated; Abdelkader can return

Thursday, 05.09.2013 / 7:16 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  / Ducks-Red Wings series blog

Detroit Red Wings forward Daniel Cleary will be evaluated Friday morning before his status for Game 6 that night against the Anaheim Ducks is determined, coach Mike Babcock told the Detroit News on Thursday.

Cleary was injured late in the second period of Game 5 on Wednesday when he was hit into the boards by Anaheim's Daniel Winnik. Cleary was helped off the ice but returned to play in the third period.

“I’m sore,” Cleary said after the game. “My whole left side was sore -- shoulder, hand, ribs, neck, head. I didn't see him coming at all.”

The Red Wings face elimination, trailing the best-of-7 Western Conference Quarterfinal 3-2 after a 3-2 overtime loss in Game 5.

"Well, obviously, we've got to win a game," Babcock told the newspaper. "I mean, that's where we're at. That's what we'll think about for the rest of the day off, and tomorrow we'll get back at it."

Forward Justin Abdelkader is eligible to return Friday after serving a two-game suspension for a hit he delivered to Ducks defenseman Toni Lydman in Game 3.

"The bottom line for me, there's nothing we can do about any of the stuff that's happened," Babcock said. "We've got a game tomorrow. We'll be ready to go. We'll spend a lot of time today and tomorrow morning thinking about our lineup and give ourselves the best chance to win."

It means a lot to us, we're very excited. We're looking to continue to build on [our] top core talent of young players. It's just a great opportunity for us to really build high.

— Panthers vice president of hockey operations Travis Viola after Florida won the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft Lottery