Detroit Red Wings’ Tyler Bertuzzi, NHL’s only unvaccinated player, in COVID-19 protocol

Detroit Free Press

Detroit Red Wings forward Tyler Bertuzzi, the NHL’s only unvaccinated player, has been placed in COVID-19 protocol. Coach Jeff Blashill said Bertuzzi will be in protocol for 10 days, which translates to five games.

The Wings announced the news Wednesday, about half an hour before their game against the Seattle Kraken at Little Caesars Arena.

General manager Steve Yzerman announced before the season that Bertuzzi had decided not to get vaccinated for COVID-19. The NHL said there were four such players when the season began, and that three had since commenced the vaccination process.

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Bertuzzi is the third Wings player to enter protocol this season. Dylan Larkin was pulled from the Nov. 16 game at Dallas when a test came back positive, but further testing revealed it to be a false positive. Defenseman Danny DeKeyser entered protocol before the Thanksgiving Eve game.

Bertuzzi is a top-line player and has nine goals and nine assists in 20 games. His unvaccinated status means he cannot travel to Canada under current border restrictions, so he missed two games at Montreal and one at Toronto. The Wings lost all three.

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Bertuzzi described it as a “life choice” not to get the vaccine. Bertuzzi announced on Instagram in September that he and his fiancee are expecting a baby in March.

Contact Helene St. James at 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 AmazonBarnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail. 

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