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Minus White, Babcock calls Wings defense ‘best group that we had all year’

Mar 1, 2013, 2:13 PM EDT

Ian White Getty Images

It doesn’t sound like defenseman Ian White is on the verge of returning to the Red Wings’ lineup.

White has been a healthy scratch the past two Detroit games — a 2-1 loss Wednesday in Los Angeles, followed by a 2-1 shootout win last night in San Jose.

Meanwhile, Wings coach Mike Babcock is liking what he’s seeing from his blue-liners.

“I liked the fact that the D was big,” Babcock said, per “They could skate and they went back and got pucks and paid the price to move it and get it out. Did we make some mistakes? Absolutely. But I thought it was the best group that we had all year.”

That “best group” was as follows: Niklas Kronwall, Jonathan Ericsson, Kyle Quincey, Brendan Smith, Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff.

Even worse for White’s prospects of getting back into action, Carlo Colaiacovo (shoulder) could reportedly be cleared to play by Sunday.

White, 28, is in the final year of a two-year, $5.75 million contract.

Detroit hosts Chicago Sunday afternoon (on NBC).

  1. gospitfires - Mar 1, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    amazing how good Nic made this guy look and he parlayed it into a nice 2 year deal, but dont let the door hit ya on the way out of town.

    • withseidelinn - Mar 1, 2013 at 2:44 PM

      Detroit is starting to see the Maple Leafs version of Ian White – not very good.

  2. thehighcountrybear - Mar 1, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    White’ll come around one hopes…could be moved all thevsame? I like what I’ve seen from Wings as the season evolves with the usual parade to sick bay…speedy harrying attack in both ends, with the likes of Kindl, Smith, Quincey, Huskins and Lashoff complementing the ever-improving and meaner Ericsson! As Kronwall steps out of Nicky’s shadow, leading a bigger tougher D, the Wings are going to be a major handful as this season progresses. Great things to come…

  3. wingsfan13 - Mar 1, 2013 at 3:09 PM

    I was never a big Ian White fan but I still like him better than Kindle the turn over machine. That being said I’ll take Lashoff or Huskins any day ahead of either one of the other two!! Size and grit will help us on the back end the rest of the season.

    • polegojim - Mar 1, 2013 at 9:10 PM

      Totally agree… I REALLY LIKE the progress the D has made… but watching Kindl last night was painful. The guy is easily pushed off the puck and coughed up MANY turnovers… in their own O zone. Unimpressed.

      TooToo has helped guys like Ericsson ‘man up’ a little more… although he still has further to go.

      Still think we’re 2 away from ‘good’ D.

  4. mizbinboston - Mar 1, 2013 at 5:39 PM

    Kindl > White. If I stare at it long enough it makes sense? Wonder if they might try to package him with Flip, another forward, and a prospect for some immediate help. Big power forward or something. Not sure who’s available though and that final year of on both contracts isn’t appealing.

    Someone give Ericsson a medal–never thought I’d say that–and Lashoff deserves a freakin parade. Kid’s been an absolute rock.

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