Detroit Red Wings Will Be Without Andrew Copp for Crucial Game Against Pittsburgh Penguins

AP Photo/Paul Sancya

The Detroit Red Wings’ playoff chances took a major hit with their most recent loss to the Washington Capitals. Detroit hung tough with the Capitals until the 18:58 mark of the second period when Dylan Strome gave the Capitals a 1-0 lead. Alex Ovechkin, chasing Wayne Gretzky’s goal scoring record, scored a second goal for Washington that was in-effect the death-nell for the Red Wings. Both teams have four games left in the 2023-24 NHL season.

Adding injury to insult, Andrew Copp reportedly has a broken cheekbone after being hit with a high stick after Capitals’ forward Nicolas Aube-Kubel was doing battle with Red Wings’ defenseman Olli Maatta. After the referees conferred on the play and the game went to a TV timeout, no penalty was called on the play. After the game, head coach of the Red Wings Derek Lalonde said that the officials on the ice did not see the high-stick, which makes the fact that the play was not reviewed curious.

“Doc just told me he broke his cheekbone; he’s going to get an x-ray to get it confirmed,” Lalonde said. “My understanding was if it’s an injury they can take a look at it. Again, it’s hindsight now because he’s got a broken cheekbone, but that stings even more. They said they didn’t see it. What can you do?” This is not the first time that Lalonde has had an issue with on-ice officiating.

The Red Wings will reportedly be without Copp for their upcoming game against the Pittsburgh Penguins. This is the biggest game on the Red Wings season since the last biggest game on the Red Wings season against the Capitals. Despite the result against the Capitals, captain Dylan Larkin felt that the team played well. “We just couldn’t put the puck in the net,” Larkin said. “And that’s the game.”

According to the NHL rule book, “For a double-minor penalty, any player, other than a goalkeeper, shall be ruled off the ice for four (4) minutes during which time no substitute shall be permitted.” Red Wings’ fans on social media were upset by the lack of a call. Prashanth Iyer posted rule number 60 which states “The Linseman must stop play immediately and report to the Referees when: (xii) When it is apparent that an injury has resulted from a high-stick that has gone undedected by the Referees and requires the assessment of a double-minor penalty.”

Copp has taken a step back after having a career year during his first season with Detroit. In 77 games played during the 2023-24 season, Copp has scored 13 goals and added 20 assists. If Copp misses the rest of the season, these 20 assists and 33 points will be tied for the fourth most in his career. Copp, who was a fourth-round draft pick of the Winnipeg Jets in the 2013 NHL entry draft was traded to the New York Rangers at the 2022 NHL trade deadline. After the 2022 season Copp signed a five-year contract with an average annual value of $5.625 million.

Zach Aston-Reese has been called up by the Red Wings to replace Copp in the lineup for tomorrow night against the Penguins under emergency conditions. Aston-Reese has recorded 80 points in 308 games in his NHL career, most recently with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2022-23, where he scored 10 goals and added four assists in 77 regular-season games. During the 2023-24 season with the Grand Rapids Griffins of the AHL Aston-Reese has scored 14 goals and added 15 assists in 59 games played.

The Red Wings have major decisions coming up as both Lucas Raymond and Moritz Seider will be restricted free agents after this season. These two players are the cornerstones of the franchise moving forward and general manager Steve Yzerman needs to sign these players to team-friendly contracts. This is the balance that happens when it comes to contract negotiations. These two players, along with Larkin, are in danger of missing the Stanley Cup playoffs yet again.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
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