Good News On Phaneuf
Friday, 01.6.2012 / 3:53 PM ET
Rest easy Leafs Nation.
Dion Phaneuf didn’t suffer a serious injury after taking a puck off the face late in the game against the Winnipeg Jets. The Leafs practiced Friday without their captain but the news was optimistic.
“Dion is resting at home; there are no breaks or anything like that so we list him as day-to-day but I actually expect him to play tomorrow (Saturday against Detroit),” head coach Ron Wilson said.
After a 22-game absence Mike Brown will be back in the lineup against the Red Wings. The gritty forward will be on a line with Darryl Boyce and David Steckel.
“I’ve been cleared and feel good so I’m ready for tomorrow,” Brown said to a throng of media after practice.
Brown underwent surgery to repair a herniated disk and he admits that he did play with a bit of pain in his hip but once the injury affected his foot he had to get it looked at.
“As soon as it went down to my foot, I couldn’t skate and that was from the nerve damage - that was the red flag,” Brown said.
The injury left him wondering how exactly it occurred.
“I don’t know if it was from skating, pushing it or a little bit of everything combined and it just got it worse,” he said.
The speedy winger is eager to get back into the lineup and despite his rash of bad luck on the injury front he won’t be changing how he plays.
“I don’t think I should be worried about compensating anymore, it’s all been done,” he said.
He hopes that with a proper warm up and preparation he will avoid a reoccurrence of the injury.
Another player who will be back against Detroit is Mike Komisarek who participated in full practice and is expected to be activated off IR to play tomorrow.
“I’ve got the go-ahead from the doctors so I’m just waiting for the final word from the coach,” Komisarek said after practice Friday.
When Wilson met with the media he announced that Komisarek will indeed play tomorrow.
While he has missed the last 21 games with a broken arm, Komisarek has been working hard to be ready for when he does make a return.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to skate this week and practice with the team and get into game- type situations,” Komisarek said. “I’m eager to get out there and battle with my teammates.”
With Komisarek and Phaneuf both looking like they will play against the Red Wings, it will leave Wilson some difficult decisions to make on the blueline.
“I haven’t really even thought about that,” Wilson acknowledged. “I will worry about that tonight or tomorrow morning.”
The injury update wasn’t as good for Colby Armstrong who didn’t take part in practice on Friday.
“Colby suffered a little bit of setback and he needs a couple of days of rest before he can get back on the ice,” Wilson said.
Jonas Gustavsson is expected to get the start in net.