Detroit — Fighting is risky.
Tomas Tatar fought splendidly against the Golden Knights last Friday and emerged with hands and arms healthy.
Last year, Anthony Mantha fought, hurt a finger and missed the end of the season.
There is not a lot of time to weigh the risk of injury and the relative merits of the situation as the gloves are falling to the ice. But the Red Wings were challenged to score last season, and there are no purer goal scorers on the roster than Tatar and Mantha.
Those are some mighty important hands banging up against the opponents heads and grabbing jerseys.
“You know, I’m not looking for it obviously,” Tatar said. “I want to play and score goals, and help the team that way.
“But when it comes to that, I’m not afraid of it that’s for sure.”
Tatar sent Erik Haula head over heels as the Golden Knights entered the Wings’ zone. The low body check separated Haula from the puck and the ice.
As play headed the other way, Tatar said a conversation ensued before the two men engaged and the gloves were off.
“Sometimes it happens, and I don’t mind it,” Tatar said. “It’s a sport, fighting’s a part of it. But you don’t want to hurt anybody.”
Haula (lower body) joined two other Knights on the injury reserve list over the weekend. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) and forward Jonathan Marchessault (lower body) are also out after the Wings' 6-3 victory.
Haula reportedly is to miss about a week.
Ken Holland said Sunday he met with Andreas Athanasiou’s agent, Darren Ferris, briefly in Phoenix Thursday and may have more extensive discussions this week.
However, it appears there is no movement in the negotiations yet.
Athanasiou continues to test the market for his services in Europe, and the 23-year-old restricted free agent has no arbitration rights to leverage.
The Red Wings have not moved from their offer of $1.9 million for each of two years, which they say is based on an evaluation of the player and the market.
The issue of Athanasiou's contract is likely to come to a head soon if the speedster, who scored 18 goals in an offensively-challenged lineup last season, is to play anywhere this season.
Trading Athanasiou is made difficult by his considerable promise and the likelihood clubs will offer meager return for an unsigned player who is not in the lineup and who has not dressed all season and missed training camp.
The Red Wings consider Athanasiou, Mantha and Dylan Larkin their best chances to produce stars from within the organization.
Larkin and Mantha will be restricted free agents at the end of this season.
At this stage in his career, Athanasiou likely would be no less a part of the Red Wings’ redevelopment plans once he returned to the lineup in playing shape.
But the negotiations, curious months ago, grow even more so.
Athanasiou’s choice is likely accepting the Wings' offer, or a season in Europe and a season away from his preferred, desired development in the NHL.
The likelihood of that changing this season — with the Red Wings both dug in and still liking the speed, the hands and the player — seems small.
LIGHTNING AT RED WINGS
Faceoff: 7:30 p.m. Monday, Little Caesars Arena, Detroit
Notes: Both teams are 4-1 and tied for first place in the Atlantic Division. The Lightning have won three straight and open a three-game road trip in Detroit. The Wings won three out of four on the road, and will play just the second of only five home games in their first 17 games through Nov. 10. Defenseman Danny DeKeyser (foot) will be unavailable.