Dec 26, 2011, 3:47 PM EDT
There’s a mystery developing on the Nashville blueline as the Preds prepare to face Detroit this evening.
The mystery begins with The Tennessean’s Josh Cooper reporting Shea Weber left today’s morning skate early. “This rarely happens,” Cooper explained. “In fact, I’ve never seen it happen.”
Weber took a knock in Nashville’s final game before Christmas — a 6-3 loss to the Stars — yet still managed to log over 27 minutes of ice time. It remains unclear what’s plaguing Weber as head coach Barry Trotz didn’t provide an update following practice.
The mystery then continues with the health of Kevin Klein. He’s missed the last two games with the flu and is listed as day-to-day. Klein did skate this morning but — like Weber — his status remains unclear.
So, Nashville could be down two defensive regulars. What’s the solution?
Perhaps it’s giving highly-touted prospect Ryan Ellis his NHL debut.
Cooper notes that while Trotz hasn’t officially announced a call-up from AHL Milwaukee, Nashville’s website and the NHL media site already have Ellis on the Predators roster.
Ellis, 20, was taken 11th overall at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft and went on to become one of the most decorated players in CHL history.
I mean, consider his 2011 trophy haul:
CHL Player of the Year
CHL Defenseman of the Year
Red Tilson Trophy (OHL Outstanding Player)
World Junior Championship All-Star Team
World Junior Championship Best Defenseman
Needless to say, Preds fans are quite excited at the potential of his debut…but there is a flip side. If Ellis does indeed dress, Nashville will have three rookie blueliners — Ellis, Roman Josi and Jonathan Blum — in the lineup against a veteran-laden Detroit squad.
- Lindros, LeClair and Desjardins to be inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame 27
- It’s back! PHT’s Team of the Day summer series starts tomorrow 5
- Pens sign Spaling — two years, $4.4 million 13
- Agent: Subban hasn’t told me to make him NHL’s highest-paid D 30
- Devils sign Greene to five-year, $25M extension 18
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million 46
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ 59
- Gettin’ paid: Gardiner inks five-year, $20.25M extension with Leafs 15
- Report: Trottier to join Sabres’ coaching staff 21
- Blues sign former eighth overall pick Mueller 31
- Cashing in: Rangers sign Brassard to five-year, $25 million deal (63)
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ (59)
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million (46)
- Trotz plans to let Johansson, Kuznetsov, and Burakovsky compete for time at center (45)
- Richards: If not for the cap, half the league would want to play for Hawks (36)