NHL players, including Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall, now wonder what the league will try to push through for a schedule should an agreement materialize this month.
There's fear that a schedule would be packed regularly with four games weekly could send a wave of players to sick bay -- especially those who haven't been playing overseas during the lockout. "Any way you look at it, you'd have to play a lot of games," Kronwall said. "There'd obviously be a lot more games played each week. You'd also have an injury factor. You don't want to have guys going down, and then all of a sudden you're hurting the product you put on the ice. So I think you also have to be a little bit cautious." The shorter the season ends up being, the more likely it'll be limited to conference play -- but for a team like the Wings, with home games in the Eastern time zone but road games, outside of Columbus, all between one to three time zones away, that's not an advantage. "Of course, everyone wants to play as many games as possible, there's no doubt about that," Kronwall said. "But at the same time, you have to be. . .cautious."