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Cleary gets knee drained, out 2-3 games

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings
Danny Cleary will miss 2-3 games following a procedure to drain fluid from behind his left knee. (Getty Images)
DETROIT Danny Cleary knew that he had a Baker’s cyst behind his left knee, which was causing quite a bit of pain and aggravation.

What Cleary didn’t know was that the cyst had company.

“There (were) two Baker’s cysts in the back of my knee,” said Cleary, who underwent a procedure Thursday to drain the equivalent of four teaspoons of fluid from the effected area. He also received a cortisone injection.

Cleary has been playing with the cysts for two months, but fluid began to build up over the last 3-4 weeks. And over time, the pain worsened, he said, even landing him in a Vancouver hospital last week when one of the cysts ruptured.

The hope was that Cleary could withstand the pain until the Wings got to a point in the schedule where he wouldn’t miss too many games. Ideally, the last week in February would have been best, but the pain began to limit the forward’s mobility.

“I'm actually very happy to get it done. It's a big relief,” said Cleary, who’s expected to miss at least two games, possibly three. “I knew I had to get it at some point. I'm hoping that it really works, the cortisone shot does it's job.”

Friday’s home game against Anaheim will be the first game that Cleary has missed this season, leaving five players on the roster who have played in all of them – Justin Abdelkader, Henrik Zetterberg, Jonathan Ericsson, Niklas Kronwall and Johan Franzen.

Cleary missed the morning skate in Phoenix last Monday, but played in career game No. 800 later that day against the Coyotes. But Wednesday, at home, against Edmonton, Cleary left the game early following a check by Oilers’ Ben Eager.

“Hit my whole rib cage, the door popped open,” Cleary said. “That didn't feel good but the knee was a lot sore before the game. As the game went on I couldn't even … nothing there.”

In 55 games, Cleary has 11 goals and 16 assists with a plus-12 rating. He has six points in his last six games.

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