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by Dana Wakiji / Detroit Red Wings
On Saturday, Teemu Pulkkinen skated for the first time since suffering a dislocated shoulder against Arizona Dec. 3. (Photo by Getty Images)

DETROIT -- Both Henrik Zetterberg and Jonathan Ericsson finished the game Friday night but that doesn't mean they emerged unscathed.

Zetterberg participated in the special teams portion of practice Saturday afternoon, then left the ice.

"We hope he's good to go tomorrow but I don't know that for sure," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said.

Ericsson did not practice at all.

"He might be out tomorrow," Blashill said of Ericsson. "We'll evaluate it tomorrow. An upper-body injury. Happened late in the third. I didn't know about it until after the game. Right now it's day-to-day but it might change. When I was told this morning, it was day-to-day for now. I think those things change depending on how he reacts."

Blashill said the Wings would call up both a forward and a defenseman after tonight's Grand Rapids Griffins' home game against the Texas Stars.

The Griffins have a week off after tonight's game.

The NHL's roster freeze begins at midnight tonight and goes through midnight Dec. 27.

If Zetterberg cannot play Sunday night, whichever forward is called up will end up playing his third game in three nights.

Blashill said if Ericsson can't play, then Jakub Kindl would return to the lineup.

"That'll be a great opportunity for Kindl," Blashill said. "I think he's played well, he didn't come out because he didn't play well. He came out because I had six others that I chose to put ahead of him but certainly not because of his play. Then the other side of it is I believe he's worked hard to put himself in position to have success. This is what you have to do. You have to make sure that you're prepared that when your opportunity comes, you jump through the window. It's not his decision whether he plays or not, that's mine. But it's his decision to make sure he's ready to be great, so hopefully he's great tomorrow, if he plays."

Blashill said he had not yet decided on which players would be called up.

SPECIAL TEAMS WORK: The Wings spent a large portion of practice working on special teams.

Justin Abdelkader said the Wings' power play, currently 21st in the league overall and 26th at home, has to get going.

"Just get more pucks on the net," Abdelkader said. "Execution through the neutral zone, breaking in, breakouts. It’s been good at times during the year, but it’s also let us down. We have to hold each other accountable and each be a little better."

Blashill said the Wings' power play Friday night, which was 0-for-2, reflected the entire team's overall performance.

"I just think we made poor decisions, we fumbled the puck around, we didn't attack, we were slow," Blashill said. "When you're not ready to go and when you're not on top of your game, I think that's accentuated on the power play, it always has been."

Kindl worked on the power play but his presence depends on Ericsson's absence.

Meanwhile, Dylan Larkin, who is on one of the power-play-units, and Tomas Jurco both worked on the penalty kill.

"It's really hard to get guys reps, especially Larkin when he's on the power play," Blashill said. "So we had him on the power play early and then we switched him and put him on the PK so he could get some reps as well. At some point we need to use more guys. Even with (Drew Miller) out, we need to have more guys available to us. You'd like to have five guys available to you that have killed fairly regularly that are in the lineup that night. A lot of nights we've got four that have killed regularly. Not saying other guys can't do it, certainly Abdelkader through the course of his career has shown that he can but it's hard when you don't ever practice it."

FRIDAY'S GAME STILL STINGS: Blashill called Friday night's 4-3 shootout loss to the Vancouver Canucks maybe the team's worst game of the season.

Facing a team that was playing back-to-back and in their third game in four nights, the Wings were out-shot 17-5 in the first and didn't seem to get going until they were down 2-0 in the second.

"Last game obviously was a terrible start and it didn’t get much better, sure it got a little bit better, but that’s not the effort we want to put out every night," Niklas Kronwall said. "We have to get back to just playing. Don’t skate around just thinking. You have to be ready once the puck is dropped."

The Wings were especially upset considering they had three days to practice and rest between games.

"I was embarrassed at the job I did to get our team ready to go out and play. It's unacceptable," Blashill said. "There's no question about it. Now with that said, I have unbelievable belief in this group as people and as winners. So I believe that we're going to be totally ready to play tomorrow night. That doesn't mean we'll win, it doesn't mean we'll execute at a high level, you never know that for sure. It means I think we'll come out ready to play. Why it happened, I can't answer that exactly but I've got to make sure it never happens again."

PULKKINEN BEGINS SKATING: Teemu Pulkkinen, out since Dec. 3 when Arizona's Martin Hanzal drove him into the boards and dislocated his shoulder, skated on his own for the first time Saturday.

"Fifteen minutes by myself, just a little but skating laps, a little bit stick-handling," Pulkkinen said. "No shooting."

Up until now, Pulkkinen couldn't do a whole lot other than some conditioning and stationary bike work.

"Every day I can do more and more and I feel a little bit better right now," Pulkkinen said.

The original timeline given for Pulkkinen was six to eight weeks.

"Day by day, see how I feel," Pulkkinen said. "We do all we can so I can be back on the ice in the game as soon as possible but we’ll see. It’s going to take some time for sure."

Blashill said it's always a challenge for injured players to maintain their conditioning and readiness when out.

"I think the hardest part with injuries is keeping yourself in a spot to where once you do get healthy you can play fairly quickly," Blashill said. "It's an extremely difficult thing to do when the pace is going as high as it is and it just continues to ramp up. So hopefully he can continue to skate and feel good about himself."

Getting back on the ice is an important first step.

"Of course, as a hockey player you want to play hockey, you want to skate with the team," Pulkkinen said. "But right now I can’t skate with the team so this week for sure I’ll skate by myself. I feel better every day but still going to need some time."

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