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Sore back sidelines Hasek

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings
Hasek had played in a season-high four straight games before his injury last Sunday.
DETROIT – Veteran goalie Dominik Hasek left the Red Wings’ practice early Wednesday with a sore back.

The six-time Vezina Trophy winner said he has felt varying degrees of discomfort in his lower back since getting hit behind during the Red Wings’ 4-3 win over Nashville on Sunday.

“It didn’t get better these last two days, so I decided to leave the ice and get a treatment,” Hasek said. “I don’t think it’s anything serious. It came from the hit that I got against Nashville. I could feel it the next day and it never got better; it got worse unfortunately.”

Late in the second period, Hasek cruised behind the net to play the puck away from a Predators’ player. Just as he cleared the puck, the Wings’ goalie was knocked to the ice by Nashville defenseman Dan Hamhuis, who was assessed a two-minute penalty for goaltender interference.

The injury is frustrating for Hasek, who recently returned after missing six games between Feb. 12-23 with a sore hip flexor.

“I felt that I had a few, like 7 to 10 days of good practice and playing games, and all of a sudden this happens,” he said. “It’s a drawback and I want to be back by this weekend.”

Chris Osgood will get the start Thursday when the Red Wings host the Dallas Stars at Joe Louis Arena. Osgood stopped 19 shots in Detroit’s 3-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday.

Thursday’s start will be the first time Osgood will start back-to-back games since games at Colorado (Feb. 18) and Calgary (Feb. 22).

“Dom doesn’t think it’s anything big,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “There’s no sense aggravating it, so he left practice. His scheduled start is now postponed for two days.”
Samuelsson is helped by linesman Dan Schachte (47) after Chicago's James Wisniewski crosschecked the Red Wings' forward in the throat on Tuesday.

WISNIEWSKI GETS ONE-GAME: In the Blackhawks’ media guide, James Wisniewski lists Christmas as his favorite holiday.

Chicago’s defenseman was certainly in the giving mood Tuesday when he delivered a vicious crosscheck to the Adam’s apple of Red Wings right wing Mikael Samuelsson.

“I was surprised, but I don’t think he meant to do that though,” Samuelsson said. “It’s no big deal. I just hope he didn’t mean to do it.”

After Samuelsson slashed Wisniewski, the Canton, Mich. native retaliated with his stick, which drew a match penalty and earned Wisniewski a one-game suspension without pay.

According to, under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and based on his average annual salary, Wisniewski will forfeit $3,475.93.  The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Wisniewski will miss tonight’s game against Carolina.

Referee Mike Leggo assessed the match penalty to Wisniewski for what the game official perceived as intent to deliberately injury Samuelsson.

With his voice still hoarse and his throat sore, Samuelsson said after Wednesday’s practice that he doesn’t hold a grudge against the Blackhawks’ defenseman.

“A couple of days and it will be good,” said Samuelsson of the soreness. “It’s really a little scary because you don’t know what to expect. It was a situation where you are pumped up out there. Like you say, I retaliated a little bit and he crosschecked me. I shot it toward the net and he came – not late – but kind of late. It was no big deal until this happened.”

The Wings and Blackhawks have two more regular-season match-ups left on the schedule. They will play at the United Center on April 2 before finishing the season on April 6 at Joe Louis Arena.

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