Jeff Riger: How Bad Is It?
Detroit Red Wings
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At about 11:40 in the morning I got a call from Khang, the Karsch and Anderson producer telling me that there is a rumor claiming that Henrik Zetterberg is out for the remainder of the year, including the postseason with a torn ACL in his left knee and he wanted to know what I knew about it. I made some calls, and nobody could substantiate the rumor so I headed down to the Joe to see what is up with one of the Wings best players? As I walked into the dressing room, the media was huddled around Kris Draper and by the tone of his voice and the words he was using, the first thought I had was that the rumor was true and that Zetterberg was indeed out for the remainder of the year. So I asked Draper, and he squashed the question pretty quickly saying he knew nothing and that any talk about the length of injury would have to come from the training staff or Mike Babcock.
After Draper finished talking different members of the media gathered around various members of the team while I went to the center of the room and proceeded to wait for Babcock to conduct his daily press conference. While I was waiting I noticed that not only was Zetterberg in the room, but he was working out with a giant knee brace on his left leg. Zetterberg seemed to have no difficulty doing chest exercises however when he stood up and walked I could tell that he wasn’t going to be skating anytime soon.
Babcock seemed very defensive when he started to talk about Zetterberg, forced by reporters to repeat the fact that “Z” was out for the remainder of the regular season which consists of 2 more games against the Blackhawks and then was “day to day” during the postseason. Babcock would not give details to the injury saying it was “a lower body” issue and that he did expect Zetterberg to play sometime in the playoffs. When asked why he is so confident that number 40 would play he said “I know everything” and then he backed down and repeated the fact that he would be “day to day.”
Finally Zetterberg himself stepped to the podium and talked to the media and let on that he did not need surgery and that the results of the MRI were better then he suspected. Zetterberg claimed that he has had a similar injury before in his career and he was scared because this time it hurt more than the last time. When asked if the term “sprain” could describe what Zetterberg was going through, he once again brought up that “lower body term” but did say he expects to play in the playoffs at some point. I asked him if “day to day” can turn into something much longer and Zetterberg said “depends, it could be day by day by day by day, but it’s still day by day.”
So there it is a detailed description of my attempt to find out how serious the injury to Henrik Zetterberg is. What do you think? Watch the Draper, Babcock and Zetterberg videos below and you tell me if you think he will see time in the playoffs? If I were to speculate, I think that something in Zetterberg’s knee is torn but he will try to play through it and see how successful he can be. Something however that is not speculation is if Zetterberg plays the chances of hoisting the Stanley Cup are about 100 percent more likely than if he doesn’t, but I think you knew that already!