Feb 27, 2014; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Detroit Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk (13) in the first period against the Ottawa Senators at the Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Pavel Datsyuk's Return Is "Up To Him"

There was some interesting news from the Red Wings on Tuesday as Pavel Datsyuk indicated he may return to the line-up as soon as Wednesday.  Datsyuk, who has been nursing a knee injury since January, gave a cryptic response when asked about a specific timeline by saying, “Tomorrow is tomorrow. See how I feel.”

Apparently Datsyuk is only playing when he feels like it. Out of the blue, Datsyuk skated on his own last Friday and returned to practice with the team on Tuesday.  But when will he return to the line-up?

Seems only the Russian star knows.

Mike Babcock didn’t seem have any answers telling Helen St. James of the Free Press that only Datsyuk knows when he will return.

Well don’t rush on our account Pav, its not like your team is fighting to make the playoffs or anything.

Calling Datsyuk selfish might be a little dramatic but his apparent reluctance to return to the line-up could lead some to jump to conclusions.

Babcock is focused on getting into the playoffs but isn’t odd that he has no idea when one of his best players will return to the line-up.  Especially one of Pavel Datsyuk’s ability.

someone told me he’s playing Friday. It’s up to him. I haven’t been involved in those things all year. I spend my time worrying about the players that are playing.

The whole thing to understand is it’s not about Pavel one bit. It’s about the Red Wings and the guys that have been playing, and we’ve just got to keep grinding. I don’t want to get caught up in that whatsoever. I want to just have us keep on working.”

Mike Babcock rarely ever fails to express himself and this is no exception. Babcock’s response was designed to keep the focus on the team instead of one individual but clearly he is not happy with Datsyuk’s self directed timeline for return.

This is not something that will affect team chemistry this season but should be something to keep an eye on next year as the Wings continue to transition to a younger core of players.

 

 

Tags: Detroit Red Wings Pavel Datsyuk

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