– Valtteri Filppula
, who suffered a broken right wrist Thursday at Rexall Place in Edmonton, is scheduled to fly back to Detroit today and consult with team doctors.
A timeline for Filppula’s return to the Red Wings’ lineup will be determined after his examination. But it was assumed Thursday that he will likely miss the next 6-8 weeks.
A short time after Filppula registered his 100th career NHL point – assisting on Darren Helm
’s second-period goal – the Finnish center suffered the injury when he was checked into the boards on what appeared to be a clean check.
This season, the 25-year-old has two goals and four assists. Filppula was a big contributor during the Red Wings’ Stanley Cup championship run in 2008. In the playoffs, he had five goals and six assists, including a two-point performance in Game 2 of the Cup finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
“It's a big blow, obviously,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock told The Detroit News. “We're going to have to buckle down as a team. It doesn't matter who’s not here. It’s about who is here. We are going to miss Fil. You don't replace good players like that. But we have to find a way to win games.”
Filppula’s loss, coupled with the earlier loss of forward Johan Franzen
(torn ACL) leaves the Red Wings thinner up front. But on the positive, young players like Helm and Justin Abdelkader
will have the opportunity with expanded roles.