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Tyler Bertuzzi “up to speed,” Ready for Boston; Larkin’s Status Uncertain

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Tyler Bertuzzi, Detroit Red Wings
Tyler Bertuzzi will return to the Detroit Red Wings' lineup for Thursday's road game vs. the Boston Bruins. (Photo by Sammi Silber)

Tyler Bertuzzi returns to the Detroit Red Wings’ lineup tomorrow in Boston. Who his center will be is still to be determined

Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said he had “no update” on Dylan Larkin’s availability. Larkin didn’t play Tuesday in Montreal for what Blashill termed “personal reasons.” He also wasn’t on the ice for Wednesday’s practice in Boston.

When asked whether Larkin is out for Thursday’s game against the Bruins, Blashill said:  “I don’t have that answer.”

Even though Bertuzzi is back, Joe Veleno is staying with the team at least for the game against Boston. Blashill didn’t say how the Red Wings plan to adjust their roster to fit him in.

Leading scorer Bertuzzi (six goals, three assists) worked out alone back in Detroit while the Red Wings lost in Toronto and Montreal. Bertuzzi can’t cross the Canadian border as a non-vaccinated-for-Covid-19 person.

The Red Wings have won both of the road games when Bertuzzi played and lost the three when he didn’t play.

Tyler Bertuzzi Ready to Play

“He’s up to speed, he’ll play tomorrow night,” Blashill said.  “He skated at home, he’s put himself in position to step in and have success, so I have no worries about him stepping into the lineup.

Even though Bertuzzi is back,  rookie Joe Veleno is staying with the team at least for the game against Boston. Blashill didn’t say how the Red Wings plan to adjust their roster to fit in Veleno.  Veleno played in Toronto and Montreal.

“(Veleno) played really good in the third period against Toronto,” Blashill said. “The first period he was finding his way a little bit, which is understandably so having driven in and everything is kind of new to him. I thought he played really good in the third and I thought he played OK (against Montreal) last night.

“I think he needs to be better than that, but he certainly wasn’t alone. He’s going to get another chance tomorrow night to make a claim that he’s a guy who can help us win hockey games.”

At 4-4-2, the Red Wings are at a juncture where they need to start to decide, with their play, which way this season is going to go. Their last two games were reminiscent of last season.

“I think we have a group that cares a bunch,” Blashill said. “Sometimes you lose your way a little bit. Certainly, we lost our way last night, but I thought they responded well today.”

They are facing a Bruins team that is 4-3-0 out of the gate. The Bruins have been inconsistent at times, giving up more goals than they have scored this season.“We came out and worked hard today and competed hard,” Blashill said.

“I think we have a group that cares a bunch. Sometimes you lose your way a little bit. Certainly, we lost our way last night, but I thought they responded well today.”

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