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Lidstrom leaves after being hit by puck

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings
Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom skates off the ice early in the third period of Wednesday's preseason loss to Montreal. He was struck in the face by a puck.

DETROIT – Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom was helped from the ice early in the third period after he was struck in the face by a puck shot by a Montreal Canadiens player.

With the Red Wings leading 2-1 with 16:55 left in regulation of the preseason-opener at Joe Louis Arena, Lidstrom was struck by a puck fired from the point. He was helped to the Wings’ dressing room by trainer Piet Van Zant.

Lidstrom needed stitches to close a cut to his face. He later went to the Detroit Medical Center for tests.

"It's above his eye," Wing coach Mike Babcock said. "It had nothing to do with his eye, which obviously is the most positive news."

Montreal defenseman Andrei Markov scored the deciding goal in a 3-2 shootout loss for the Red Wings. The Canadiens improved to 2-1 in the preseason.

In the first period, Canadiens defenseman Mathieu Carle was taken off the ice on a stretcher after


a collision with Red Wings forward Tomas Kopecky. Carle was transported by ambulance to Detroit Medical Center.

The hit by Kopecky was of the clean variety as his shoulder came up and struck Carle in the face.

"Guys are going to hit me," Kopecky said, "so I don't know why I wouldn't hit somebody else. I know what my job on this team is. I obviously hit (Carle) very hard. I felt bad for him, but it's the NHL and you have to have your head up."

Lidstrom, a six-time Norris Trophy winner, who has logged 1,252 regular-season NHL games, missed six games last February after he suffered a sprained MCL in a game at Colorado.

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