Detroit Red Wings center Mike Modano is out indefinitely after suffering a serious injury to his right wrist. Modano’s wrist was injured with about 6 minutes remaining in the second period of the Red Wings’ Friday night game with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Modano’s injury occurred as he battled with Columbus forward RJ Umberger for control of the puck behind the Red Wings Goal. As Umberger moved away from Modano he lost his balance and his skate blade got inside the wrist cuff of Modano’s right glove, cutting his wrist and severing a tendon in the process. According to Detroit general manager Ken Holland there was also some slight nerve damage. Holland referred to the injury as a “significant injury”.
Holland said it was a “freak injury”, and Red Wings coach Mike Babcock concurred added, “It’s amazing this does not happen more often.”
Following Surgery Modano’s Return This Season Is Uncertain
Modano underwent surgery Saturday morning at the Detroit Medical Center to repair the damaged tendon. The surgery was successful, but there is no definite timetable for his return to the Red Wings active roster. GM Holland said the Red Wings would not speculate how long Modano will be sidelined, but hoped he will “be back this season.”
Mike Modano Came Home To Detroit To Finish a Stellar Career
Mike Modano grew up and learned to play hockey in the Detroit area, but left home at age 16 to play junior hockey for The Prince Albert Raiders of the Western Hockey League in Canada. The Minnesota North Stars made Modano the number one overall draft pick of the 1988 draft, and he made his NHL debut with the North Stars in the 1989 season.
In all, Mike Modano played twenty seasons for the Stars organization (4 years in Minnesota and 16 years in Dallas after the team relocated). The Stars did not offer the forty-year-old Modano, their all-time leading scorer (557 goals, 802 assists), a contract following the 2009-2010 campaign.
Modano, who has scored more goals than any American born player in NHL history, signed with the Detroit Red Wings for the 2010-2011 season, hoping to finish his career with a run at the Stanley Cup. the Red Wings have gotten off to a fast start and lead the NHL Western Conference with 30 points after 20 games (14-4-2). Modano was anchoring Detroit’s third line and had 2 goals and 8 assists, playing in all twenty contests to date.
Is Modano’s Injury The End of a Brilliant Career?
Though the surgery on Modano’s injured wrist was deemed a success by doctors, their reluctance to say anything regarding his return is worrisome. Nerve damage to the hands/wrists of a professional hockey player can be career ending.
Mike Modano came home to Detroit to cap off a brilliant career with a Stanley Cup Championship. Let’s hope that career did not end with a freak injury Friday night at the Joe Louis Arena.