Detroit Red Wings won't say if Tyler Bertuzzi actually suspended for games in Canada

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While the Detroit Red Wings traveled to Canada, Tyler Bertuzzi stayed in Detroit and skated on his own.

The Wings did not practice on Friday before traveling to Montreal, where they began their first road trip of the season on Saturday. Bertuzzi could not be with the team because he has refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine, and under current border regulations cannot travel to Canada.

The NHL and Players Association agreed not to have a vaccine mandate, but teams can suspend without pay players who are cannot participate in club activities because they are not vaccinated. Coach Jeff Blashill said the Wings "would keep it internally" whether Bertuzzi has been suspended.

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Detroit Red Wings left wing Tyler Bertuzzi (59) celebrates after his fourth goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during third-period action of the season opener at Little Caesars Arena Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021.
Detroit Red Wings left wing Tyler Bertuzzi (59) celebrates after his fourth goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during third-period action of the season opener at Little Caesars Arena Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021.

Blashill did answer what Bertuzzi is doing while he cannot practice with his teammates. They had a morning skate Saturday at Bell Centre.

"He skated (Friday) and he chose to skate today on his own," Blashill said. "That’s up to him."

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Commissioner Gary Bettman said before the season began there are only four players who have chosen not to get the vaccine.

Bertuzzi is a top-line player, power play guy, and has a team-leading four goals after four games.

"Certainly Tyler is a big part of our team, he’s a big part of who we are," Blashill said. "He’s a real good player. The extent to which we miss Tyler depends on the guys who fill the responsibilities play. We’ll be excited to get Tyler back."

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The plan is for Bertuzzi to take a car service and meet the Wings in Chicago for Sunday's 7 p.m. game. The Wings leave for Canada again at the end of the week, for an Oct. 30 game at Toronto and Nov. 2 in Montreal.

Contact Helene St. James at hstjames@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Tyler Bertuzzi skates while Detroit Red Wings play in Canada

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