The Red Wings won’t be heading into the new year with good news. They will be without star power forward Anthony Mantha for a minimum of four weeks with a rib injury. Mantha missed the last game against the Coyotes on Sunday.
Mantha out “minimum 4 weeks” with “rib-type issues.” It’s not the head, Jeff Blashill said.
— Max Bultman (@m_bultman) December 27, 2019
The positive news is that it’s not head injury, per head coach Jeff Blashill. Mantha sustained the injury towards the end of the Toronto game last week. Engaging with Toronto defenseman Jake Muzzin along the boards, Muzzin took down Mantha with what looks to be a slew-foot. Mantha’s head collided with the ice with force, creating a scary scene. Muzzin did not receive supplementary discipline from the Department of Player Safety afterwards.
Mantha and Muzzin scrumming. Muzzin grabbed Mantha's face, swept his leg, and threw him backwards onto the ice. Mantha hit his head hard. Down for a long time.
— Ryan Hana (@RyanHanaWWP) December 22, 2019
Through 29 games this season, Mantha has scored 12 goals and 24 points. On pace to shatter his previous career high in goals (25), it looks like Mantha will come up short of 30 goals once again. This is also the third time the Frenchman has been sidelined for an extended period of time due to fighting in his career.
There is no real way to get around it: This is a huge blow to an already lowly Red Wings squad.