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Mike Eaves hints at Nic Kerdiles' return to the lineup Saturday vs. Michigan

The question has to be asked, however, if Nic Kerdiles is ready to play Saturday, why wasn't he in the lineup on Friday?

Larry Radloff Photography

Nic Kerdiles missed his fifth consecutive game for Wisconsin Friday night with a separated shoulder as the Badgers suffered a 3-1 loss at the hands of Michigan.

The sophomore center made the trip to Ann Arbor, Mich., for the game, but was not given the green light in the series opener.

"Not quite ready," Eaves said following the loss. "In this building, you want to make sure he's going to have a legitimate chance of playing and not re-injuring himself, that's the biggest concern."

It does, however, sound like Kerdiles will play in Saturday's finale, a game that will be broadcast on national television on the NBC Sports Network.

"You know what, he is (playing) in my mind," Eaves said. "He's going to skate tomorrow (morning), and we'll talk with (trainer) Andy (Hrodey), we'll talk to Nic -- look in his eyes, and make a decision."

That has to beg the question, if he is ready to play on Saturday, how was he not ready to play on Friday? I don't claim to be any type of medical genius by any means, but could he take that much of a step forward in his rehabilitation progress in 24 hours to be able to play?

That tells me one of two things. Either one, he could have played Friday, or two, Eaves is rushing  him into the lineup when he's not ready because the Badgers lost.

Maybe there's a special 24-hour recovery pill I haven't heard about. Either way, it has to raise an eyebrow.

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