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Red Wings forward Larkin out against Predators

by Robby Stanley

RED WINGS (17-10-7) at PREDATORS (17-11-6)


NASHVILLE -- Detroit Red Wings rookie forward Dylan Larkin will be out with an upper-body injury against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday.

Forward Tomas Nosek will make his NHL debut for the Red Wings and likely play on the fourth line.

"Right now [Larkin] is day-to-day," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "This is a part of sports, it's certainly a part of the NHL is you have guys go in and out. We've said all year that for us to be successful our depth has to be real good. We're going to continue to rely on that organizational depth here tonight with Tomas Nosek."

Larkin is second on the Red Wings and third among rookies with 24 points. He leads all rookies with 13 goals and is first in the NHL with a plus-21 rating. The Red Wings begin a three-game road trip against the Predators, and there is a possibility Larkin's injury could keep him out for the entire road trip.

"It could, for certain," Blashill said. "I say day-to-day because we'll see what tomorrow brings. It's one of those injuries that you just keep seeing how he feels and whatnot. Obviously with our training staff, this is the first time we've gone through anything with [Larkin] based on him and his first year here."

Predators defenseman Shea Weber had a hat trick against the Red Wings on Dec. 5 in a 5-4 overtime loss. The Red Wings know they have to find a way to limit his chances Saturday.

"I think some of the things is to take his time and space away so he can't get shots away," Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith said. "I mean you try to do that to everybody, but maybe a little bit more because he's got such a great shot and can score against us."

Here are the projected lineups:


Gustav NyquistHenrik ZetterbergJustin Abdelkader

Brad RichardsPavel DatsyukDarren Helm

Tomas TatarRiley SheahanTomas Jurco

Joakim AnderssonLuke GlendeningTomas Nosek

Niklas KronwallMike Green

Danny DeKeyserBrendan Smith

Jakub KindlAlexey Marchenko

Petr Mrazek

Jimmy Howard

Injured: Dylan Larkin (upper body), Jonathan Ericsson (shoulder), Drew Miller (broken jaw), Teemu Pulkkinen (dislocated shoulder), Johan Franzen (concussion), Kyle Quincey (ankle)

Scratched: None


Filip ForsbergMike RibeiroCraig Smith

Colin WilsonCalle JarnkrokJames Neal

Viktor ArvidssonColton SissonsCody Hodgson

Eric NystromPaul GaustadMiikka Salomaki

Roman JosiShea Weber

Mattias EkholmRyan Ellis

Barret JackmanSeth Jones

Pekka Rinne

Carter Hutton

Injured: Mike Fisher (lower body), Gabriel Bourque (upper body)

Scratched: Anthony Bitetto, Austin Watson, Petter Granberg

Status report: Mrazek will start for the Red Wings. … Rinne was the first goaltender off of the ice at the morning skate for the Predators and is expected to start. … Fisher participated in the morning skate but is not expected to play. He has missed 11 consecutive games.

Who's hot: Zetterberg has a point in three consecutive games and leads the Red Wings with 27 points. … Weber's 15 points in December lead all defensemen and are second in the NHL.

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