Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Yzerman to play in Detroit's Alumni Showdown

Lightning GM Steve Yzerman will return to the ice with other former Red Wings stars on Dec. 31 in Detroit.

Lightning GM Steve Yzerman will return to the ice with other former Red Wings stars on Dec. 31 in Detroit.

WASHINGTON — It has been more than two years since Lightning GM Steve Yzerman all but ruled himself out of the Dec. 31 Alumni Showdown between the Red Wings and Maple Leafs.

But some friendly persuasion the past couple of weeks from Red Wings GM Kenny Holland apparently got Yzerman to reconsider.

"We just spent some time together with Olympic matters," Yzerman told "He asked if I'd consider playing and I thought about it."

And since the outdoor game at Comerica Park fit his schedule, "I decided it's right to be part of it."

The game is part of the Hockeytown Winter Festival that features a Jan. 1 game between the Red Wings and Maple Leafs at the University of Michigan football stadium.

Lightning assistant GM Pat Verbeek also will play for the Red Wings. Assistant coach Steve Thomas and former Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk will play for the Maple Leafs.

But the focus Tuesday was on Yzerman, 48, who played for Detroit from 1983-2006 and is considered one of the game's greatest players.

Yzerman had radical realignment surgery on his right knee in August 2002 and admits he has skated only two or three times since retiring. He has said he doesn't even own skates.

"Without a doubt, it makes all the difference," Thomas said of Yzerman's participation. "He's everything in Detroit. There's Gordie Howe and Steve Yzerman. Those two guys are the mainstays in the organization. To have him in the game makes it that much more special."

Tough hit: Capitals D Karl Alzner sustained no ill effects from being boarded by Tampa Bay's Richard Panik. And Panik reiterated he was not trying to hurt Alzner, who already was falling when Panik hit him on the back of the left shoulder.

"I hope the guy is okay," Panik said.

Said Lightning coach Jon Cooper: "I want to sit there and pull for him. Is (Alzner) going down? I don't know. (Panik) gives him a little bit of a nudge. That's tough, but you can't put yourself in those spots."

"On the other side of that," Cooper said of Panik's five-minute major penalty that resulted in two Capitals goals, "let's try and kill it off for him. … We didn't do it."

SORRY: Adam Erne told the French language newspaper La Presse that he sent an apologetic text to fellow Lightning prospect Jonathan Drouin for Friday's from-behind hit that forced Drouin head-first into the side glass and caused a concussion.

It is unclear if Drouin can play for Canada at the world junior championship that begins Dec. 26 in Sweden, or attend the selection camp that begins Thursday.

ODDS AND ENDS: Capitals W Alex Ovechkin's two power-play goals gave him a franchise-best 138. … RW Marty St. Louis' goal 2:26 into the first period ended Tampa Bay's road scoreless streak at 139:39. … Washington D Mike Green had 18 minutes of penalties in the first period, three for high sticking, tripping and a 10-minute misconduct. … LW Pierre-Cedric Labrie didn't skate Tuesday morning because of illness, the team said. … RW Dana Tyrell was scratched.

Yzerman to play in Detroit's Alumni Showdown 12/10/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 11, 2013 12:25am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Charlie Strong, Gulf High and the best (old) Jon Gruden-Tennessee rumor


    As Butch Jones keeps losing, Tennessee Vols fans are turning to one of the media's favorite pastimes.

    Jon Gruden coaching rumors.

  2. Lightning edges Red Wings on road

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — The digs were different, the Lightning seeing the masterfully-done new Little Caesar's Arena for the first time.

    Lightning center/Red Wings’ killer Tyler Johnson gets past defenseman Trevor Daley on his way to the first goal of the game.
  3. Armwood pulls away to defeat Plant 27-7, remain undefeated


    SEFFNER — First-year Armwood coach Evan Davis pulled out all the stops to get his team psyched for Monday's annual grudge match against Plant.

    Armwood defensive end Malcolm Lamar (97) gets fired up before the start of the game between Plant High School Panthers and the Armwood High School Hawks in Suffer, Fla. on Monday, Oct. 16, 2017.
  4. Bucs journal: Dirk Koetter says Vernon Hargreaves needs to improve


    TAMPA — The Bucs now rank 31st in the NFL in pass defense, allowing 301 yards per game in their 2-3 start, and coach Dirk Koetter was asked Monday how concerned he is with the play of second-year CB Vernon Hargreaves.

    Ryan Fitzpatrick, throwing an incompletion under pressure after replacing injured Jameis Winston against the Cardinals,  would start this Sunday in Buffalo if Winston’s shoulder is still bothering him.
  5. Backhand shot makes Nikita Kucherov's offense even more dangerous

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — Nikita Kucherov is on a historic streak, just the fourth player in the past 30 years to score a goal in each of his first six games.

    Nikita Kucherov’s backhand shot adds to his strong scoring.