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Sentence Served

Monday, 11.14.2011 / 7:34 PM ET
By Bill Roose - DetroitRedWings.com / The Wheel Deal
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Brendan Smith is happy to finally serve the last of his eight-games suspension, which he will do Tuesday in St. Louis. (Photo by Bill Roose)
Once completed, Brendan Smith’s eight-game suspension levied by the NHL for his illegal hit to the head of Chicago forward Ben Smith in an exhibition game in late September will have taken a lengthy 48 days to serve.

“It feels like I’m getting out of prison, finally,” Smith told reporters following Monday’s practice at Joe Louis Arena.

The Red Wings’ defensive prospect hasn’t played a single second of regular-season hockey in the NHL, but he was recalled from Grand Rapids Monday after Ian White suffered a fractured cheekbone last Saturday evening.

Smith traveled with the Wings to St. Louis where they will face the Blues at Scottrade Center Tuesday night. However, Smith will sit out the game – the last of his league sentence.

“I’m glad to get this last one out of the way, it’s seems forever,” said Smith, who leads the Griffins’ defensemen with five assists in 11 games. “It’s good to get this last one done. I thought it might be until after Christmas, so this is good to get it out of the way.”

Besides White, the Wings also practiced without defenseman Niklas Kronwall, who is expected to play against the Blues.

Without White, who is expected to miss between 3-7 games, Jonathan Ericsson has been moved up to the top defensive pairing where he will play on the right side of Nicklas Lidstrom. The two have played sparingly together on special teams, but not a lot at even-strength.

“I feel a little bit more comfortable on the left side because I have more forehand inside, but I've been playing right side with Nick on the penalty kill the first 15 games,” said Ericsson, who has an assist and a plus-3 rating. “I'm a little used to it in the defensive zone. I'm sure I'm going to get used to it.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 82 13 37 -15 50
P. Datsyuk 66 16 33 7 49
D. Larkin 80 23 22 11 45
T. Tatar 81 21 24 4 45
G. Nyquist 82 17 26 -2 43
J. Abdelkader 82 19 23 -16 42
M. Green 74 7 28 -6 35
B. Richards 68 10 18 4 28
D. Helm 77 13 13 -2 26
N. Kronwall 64 3 23 -21 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 27 16 6 .921 2.33
J. Howard 14 14 5 .906 2.80