Atkinson, Anisimov expected to return Thursday in Detroit

Wednesday, 02.20.2013 / 2:00 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today


The Blue Jackets arrived home from California around dinner time yesterday and got back on the ice this morning for a detail-oriented practice at the OhioHealth Ice Haus.

It was a much-needed practice session that allowed the coaching staff to go over some of the finer points from both a systematic and philosophical standpoint, and the big news was the full-fledged return of two players missing from the lineup. Both Cam Atkinson (on injured reserve retroactive to Jan. 23) and Artem Anisimov (out since blocking a shot last week in Los Angeles) are expected to play Thursday night against the Red Wings, coach Todd Richards said, and it's sure to be a big boost.

As a result of both players' anticipated returns, Richards said Nick Drazenovic would be reassigned to Springfield this afternoon. The news, however, wasn't as positive for Brandon Dubinsky, who has not played since sustaining a lower body injury in Phoenix.

"Right now, it's probably more than day-to-day," Richards said. "It might be a week to two weeks, but it's nothing serious. I don't think it's anything where we'd have to (put him on injured reserve."

Both goaltenders participated in today's skate and the lines from Monday's game were essentially intact, save for the two additions.

Here are the Blue Jackets' lines from practice today:

Calvert - Anisimov - Foligno

Umberger - Brassard - Atkinson

Prospal- Letestu - Dorsett

Gillies - MacKenzie - Boll

Tyutin - Nikitin

Johnson - Aucoin

Moore/Erixon - Wisniewski

Mason

Bobrovsky

WINGS HOBBLED, BUT NOT HARMLESS
Injuries are becoming a problem for many teams around the NHL, and the Red Wings are no exception. Already without the services of Johan Franzen (hip), Todd Bertuzzi (back), Carlo Colaiacovo (collar bone), Darren Helm (back) and Brendan Smith (shoulder), Detroit may have picked up more than an overtime loss in Nashville earlier this week.

Mikael Samuelsson, who just returned from injury, was hit with a puck in practice and was supposed to be further evaluated today. Goalie Jimmy Howard left the game in Nashville in the first period with blurry vision, coach Mike Babcock said, which may have stemmed from getting hit by a shot days before.

Jonas Gustavsson, just activated off injured reserve, came on in relief and made 16 saves in the Predators' overtime win.

“He got hit in practice I guess, and I didn’t know about that,” Babcock told RedWings.com about Howard's injury. “He wasn’t seeing good, or something like that. I was watching the game and someone told me. We made the switch and tried to buy some time for Gus to get ready and put him in.”

Regardless of who's in our out of the Detroit lineup, it's still a formidable opponent, Richards said. Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg are in top form to start the season, and just two nights ago, Datsyuk scored one of the more incredible goals of the NHL season. Seconds after the Predators took a 3-2 lead, Datsyuk dangled through four Nashville players and tied the game.

"No different than any other team, we expect to get their best," Richards said. "They're a puck possession team and they'll test you in a lot of areas, your discipline and your structure to your game. Some of their guys have played together for a long time so there's that chemistry there, and the certain style they play...they'll test us in that area."

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 1 1 1 0 2
D. MacKenzie 1 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 1 1 0 1 1
B. Dubinsky 1 0 1 1 1
B. Jenner 1 0 1 -1 1
F. Tyutin 1 0 0 -1 0
J. Wisniewski 1 0 0 0 0
B. Comeau 1 0 0 -1 0
N. Nikitin 1 0 0 0 0
J. Skille 1 0 0 -1 0
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 0 1 0 .875 4.07
 
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