Jimmy Howard reportedly tweaked his knee at practice on Wednesday morning, and the netminder won’t be available for the Detroit Red Wings when they take on the Tampa Bay Lightning this evening. This comes via a report from Ted Kulfan of The Detroit News.
General manager Ken Holland told Kulfan that Howard would get tests done on his knee on Friday when the Red Wings return to Detroit. Head coach Mike Babcock spoke about that yesterday:
We’ll get some pictures and find out the extent. We don’t know right now. He (Howard) said his knee was bothering him, he tweaked it. Let’s see what the pictures show.
The Detroit News stressed that Babcock didn’t believe the injury to be serious.
Regardless, Jonas Gustavsson will get the nod for Detroit in Tampa this evening.
— Left Wing Lock (@Left_Wing_Lock) December 12, 2013
Petr Mrazek was recalled from the AHL to backup Gustavsson, and the Red Wings needed to place Henrik Zetterberg on the LTIR to make room for the netminder on the roster. Zetterberg hasn’t started skating yet since injuring his back after a December 1 contest against the Ottawa Senators though.
The Red Wings play on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Penguins and Sunday against the Lightning. Howard may or may not be available for that back-to-back. If he isn’t, look for Mrazek to get at least one of those two starts. He shutout the Edmonton Oilers in his only appearance in the NHL this season.