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LEINO, DOWNEY BOUND FOR DETROIT

Ville Leino (left) and Aaron Downey

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Detroit Red Wings on Thursday recalled right wing Aaron Downey and left wing Ville Leino from the Grand Rapids Griffins of the American Hockey League.

Both will be available to play tonight when the Red Wings host the Dallas Stars at 7:30 p.m., with the first to take a shift becoming the 100th Griffins alumnus to play in the NHL.

A 2008 Stanley Cup champion with the Red Wings, Downey has spent the entire 2008-09 campaign with the Griffins, totaling six points (2-4—6) and a team-high 71 penalty minutes in 44 games. He logged his 2,600th career penalty minute during the Griffins’ 1-0 shootout win over Quad City last Saturday.

Leino, the 2007-08 player of the year in the Finnish Elite League, paces Grand Rapids with 26 assists and ranks among the team leaders with 37 points (2nd), 11 goals (5th), five power play goals (T4th) and three game-winning goals (T2nd) in 44 contests. He has yet to make his regular season debut with Detroit after tallying six points (3-3—6) in eight games during the preseason.

The Griffins (28-9-6-3) will conclude their five-game homestand and continue their chase for first place in the North Division this weekend, when they host a Friday-Saturday set against the Rochester Americans. Faceoff each night is 7 p.m.

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