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Fabbri Slotting Into Bertuzzi Spot For Red Wings vs Habs

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Robbie Fabbri, Detroit Red Wings
Robby Fabbri will play in Tyler Bertuzzi's spot for the Detroit Red Wings Saturday in Montreal.

Halloween is a week away. With that in mind, the Detroit Red Wings will give Robby Fabbri the first chance to dress and do his best Tyler Bertuzzi impersonation.

Fabbri is slotting into Bertuzzi’s slot on the top line with Dylan Larkin and Lucas Raymond. He’ll skate in Bertuzzi’s spot as the Red Wings meet the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night at the Bell Centre. Bertuzzi can’t play. He’s chosen not get the COVID-19 vaccination. Thus, he’s being prohibited from crossing the border into Canada.

Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill is choosing Fabbri because he gained some experience playing with rookie Raymond during the NHL preseason.

“Fabbs for me has been outstanding since Day 1 of training camp in terms of his competitiveness,” Blashill said. “He has got a high compete level. He’s got so many attributes that Bert brings to the table in terms of going to get pucks and stuff like that and the ability to score.

“He’s a little bit different, obviously but we think it’s the most natural guy to kind of go into that line with the little bit that him and Raymond have played together. Fabbs centered that line with Bert and Raymond when Larks was out.

“We think it gives us a good piece up there.”

Red Wings Respecting Bertuzzi’s Choice

Blashill is emphazing that they should be treating these self-imposed Bertuzzi absences as they would any other player who was missing from the lineup.

“At the end of the day, the players were allowed to make a decision and that’s the decision he’s made,” Blashill said of Bertuzzi’s choice to opt out of being vaccinated. “We all respect that. So we just treat it more like . . . that it’s just a time when a player’s missing.

“They can be missing for a multitude of reasons throughout a season – injuries, personal reasons, sickness. At this point, he’s out. So the next guy comes in and not just who comes into the lineup but also who filters into those spots. For us it’s not a big story at all.

“We’re gonna play a hockey game tonight and try to win with the 20 we got.”