The Free Press’s Helene St. James discusses the return of the Dylan Larkin-Tyler Bertuzzi pairing this morning, noting that both players suffered significant injuries which required offseason recovery (and repair in Bertuzzi’s case):
“It felt great to be back out there with the guys,” Larkin said Thursday. “We had been skating for a while at LCA, and just to have an organized practice, to be back up here — see all the familiar faces. We’re excited. Skating with Tyler and playing with Z a little bit today, it felt good.”
Bertuzzi echoed Larkin’s enthusiasm, saying he was “really happy with my progress and my recovery. I stayed in Detroit all summer, worked out and skated. I feel really good.”
Only so much can be read into lines at camp, especially because a visa issue has delayed Jakub Vrana’s arrival. But however the lines shake out, it makes sense to keep Larkin and Bertuzzi together. They’ve been linemates when possible for the last three seasons and read off one another extremely well.
“I like the two together,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “They’re a pair I’d like to keep together all season if I can. They complement each other. They have real good chemistry on and off the ice, so it’s definitely a pair I’d like to stay together. And then we’ll see who earns a spot with them. That will be determined over time.”