Stephen Weiss (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Red Wings center Stephen Weiss has struggled with health woes the past couple seasons. But in his return Monday from a 13-game absence, Weiss got on the scoreboard not just once, but twice – and reached a new points plateau in his NHL career.
It wasn't all that long ago Stephen Weiss was considered one of the NHL's brighter young talents, but he'll be 32 in April, has struggled mightily with health issues for the past two seasons and looked to be following that pattern this year when a groin injury forced him out of the Detroit Red Wings' lineup for 13 games. But after a conditioning stint in the AHL, Weiss made his return Monday against Ottawa – and the veteran center made people remember that talent with a two-goal performance – and a milestone in points – in Detroit's 4-3 win over the visiting Senators.
Now in the second year of a five-year, $24.5-million contract with the Wings that carries an average cap hit of $4.9 million, Weiss scored his first of the night and season during a goalmouth scramble midway through the second period:
The goal was Weiss' first since Oct. 14, 2013, but he didn't have to wait nearly so long for his next one: it came about four minutes later on another close-range shot – although this one was one Sens goalie Craig Anderson would usually save:
The second goal gave Weiss his 400th career NHL point in his 682nd game. But right now, he's just pleased to be back and contributing again.