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Round 2
Round 3
Stanley Cup Final

Big hit knocks Wings' Cleary out of game

Wednesday, 02.08.2012 / 11:56 PM / News

By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- Danny Cleary took a big hit into the boards near the Detroit Red Wings' bench from Edmonton's Ben Eager on Wednesday night at Joe Louis Arena and did not finish the game.

The Red Wings forward sustained the hit midway through the second period on a play that led to the Oilers' first goal in a 4-2 loss and is now questionable for Friday's game at home against the Anaheim Ducks, according to Detroit coach Mike Babcock.

Cleary had already been dealing with pain in his knee stemming from a baker's cyst that caused fluid buildup in his knee.

"Danny Cleary's gonna get an injection [on Thursday] or whatever and will be out a few days anyway," Babcock said. "He's in pain. He doesn't seem to be able to play with it. I don't think it's anything serious, but it gives [rookie Jan Mursak] a chance to get in the lineup."

Cleary has 11 goals and 15 assists in 54 games, but had helped his fellow third-liners -- center Darren Helm and left wing Drew Miller -- become an effective unit at both ends of the ice.

I've been getting frustrated lately, and the only thing keeping me sane was the team winning and other people stepping up and scoring. Then you just kind of let it go and realize you can end the series with one shot, that frustration goes away for a brief moment, and that's what happened.

— Montreal forward Max Pacioretty after scoring the series-winner in Game 4 -- his first career playoff goal -- to eliminate the Lightning and send the Canadiens into the second round