Niyo’s practice notebook: Bert’s back, but Larkin isn’t

The Red Wings practiced in Boston on Wednesday ahead of a stretch of 3 games to be played over the course of 4 nights, starting with Thursday’s game vs. the Bruins, and the Detroit News’s John Niyo filed a notebook article based upon coach Blashill’s remarks:

Tyler Bertuzzi, the Red Wings’ leading scorer, rejoined his teammates at practice Wednesday in Boston after missing the team’s last two games in Canada due to his vaccination status.  But still missing from the ice was top-line center Dylan Larkin, the team captain who was out of the lineup for Tuesday night’s 3-0 loss at Montreal while dealing with what the team is calling “personal reasons.” Head coach Jeff Blashill said Wednesday afternoon he had no update to provide on Larkin’s status. 

Asked if Larkin will miss Thursday night’s game against the Bruins, Blashill said, “I don’t have that answer. I don’t know.” 

Bertuzzi, who leads the team with nine points (six goals) in seven games, stayed home in Detroit skating on his own the last four days because he has opted not to get vaccinated for COVID-19 and isn’t allowed to travel to Canada. Per NHL rules, Bertuzzi wasn’t paid while away from the team and he was responsible for arranging his own travel to Boston ahead of Thursday night’s contest.  

But Bertuzzi was back in his usual spot at practice Wednesday, skating on a line with rookie Lucas Raymond and Robby Fabbri, who was filling in for Larkin as the No. 1 center. 

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

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.