Bertuzzi happy Red Wings drafted his nephew

NEWARK, N.J. — Todd Bertuzzi was enjoying a barbecue with family and friends. He’d just stepped outside to enjoy a beer when his son, Tag, came racing.

One Tyler Bertuzzi had just been snapped up by the Red Wings in the second round of the 2013 NHL draft at Prudential Center. Tyler is the son of Todd Bertuzzi’s sister, Angela, a left wing who plays for Guelph in the Ontario Hockey League. Tyler was projected to go somewhere in round three at the earliest, so when he went as early as he did, and to Todd Bertuzzi’s team, one or two beers were raised in celebration during Bertuzzi’s party in Kitchener, Ontario.

“None of us expected it,” Bertuzzi said. “We’re so excited. Detroit is getting a good kid. He’s a fearless little bugger.”

Joe McDonnell, Detroit’s director of amateur scouting, compared Tyler to Chicago’s Andrew Shaw, saying of Tyler that, “he’s a bit of a rat. He’s real hard to play against. He had some injuries sort of early and midseason, and I think that a lot of teams, I don’t know if they really paid any attention to him later. He really took off near the end of the year. He’s just a real hard guy to play against, and that’s something we really wanted in the organization.”

Tyler and Todd Bertuzzi could be skating together come September’s training camp, as young draft picks usually overlap a few days into the main team’s scrimmages. “I’m hoping so,” Bertuzzi said. “That’d be pretty cool — a big, old one and little, young one.”

Bertuzzi is cognizant, though, that his name has come up in compliance buyout chatter. If that happens, it’d be this coming week. He’s 38, and coming off a season that saw him sidelined from early February on by back and leg pain. He came back to play briefly in the playoffs, and said he’s now training and skating.

He hasn’t heard from general manager Ken Holland, but, “I’m not young, I understand everything, I understand it’s a business,” Bertuzzi said.

“But if it does happen, it would break my heart.”

 

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Posted by Jim Crees

Jim is the editor in chief of the Pioneer, Herald Review and Lake County Star. He can be reached by phone at (231) 592-8360 or by e-mail at jcrees@pioneergroup.com.

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