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Red Wings captain Larkin returns to lineup


DETROIT (AP) — Detroit Red Wings team captain Dylan Larkin returned to the lineup on Monday night, nine days after getting knocked unconscious during a scramble in front of the net.

Larkin had an assist in a 4-3 home loss to Anaheim. He was cleared to play by the team's medical staff on Sunday and was activated from the injured list on Monday.

The Wings nearly erased a 3-0 deficit but wound up with their sixth loss in seven games.

“It’s huge,” forward Alex DeBrincat said of Larkin's return. “He’s obviously our leader and our best player, so it’s nice to get him back. We obviously missed him a lot. Happy he’s back and hopefully we can get this back on track.”

Larkin, 27, played 21 minutes and 13 seconds. His assist gave him 26 points in 25 games.

Larkin suffered an upper body injury when he was struck in the head and neck area by Ottawa’s Mathieu Joseph on Dec. 9. Larkin lay motionless on the ice as a stretcher was quickly wheeled out. He was eventually able to stand up after regaining consciousness, but was hunched over as he was assisted to the locker room.

The Red Wings went 1-3 without their top-line center. They were held to one goal by Carolina on Thursday and were shut out by Philadelphia on Saturday.