Blackhawks

Blackhawks' Hendry tears ACL, out six months

Blackhawks' Hendry tears ACL, out six months

Monday, Feb. 28, 2011
Posted: 3:52 p.m. Updated: 8:34 p.m.

By Tracey MyersCSNChicago.com

ST. PAUL, Minn. Jordan Hendry was just starting to integrate himself back into the Chicago Blackhawks lineup. Now his season is over.

Hendry suffered a season-ending torn ACL injury to his left knee on Sunday against the Phoenix Coyotes. The 27-year-old defenseman will have surgery soon, team physician Dr. Michael Terry said in a statement on Monday, and full recovery is anticipated to take up to six months.

The defenseman was hurt early in the third period after taking a hit from Phoenix captain Shane Doan along the boards. Hendry was down for a bit, and needed a lot of help getting off the ice and back to the locker room.

It was a tough end for Hendry, who had been a healthy scratch through a lot of early games but was back in the lineup lately.

Things like this happen unfortunately. He has the one injury you dont want to get, coach Joel Quenneville said prior to the Blackhawks game against the Minnesota Wild. Those were probably his two best games of the year (against Nashville and Phoenix), he looked really involved. We appreciate what hes done for us, and even last year he was an important part of our team.

John Scott filled that sixth defensive role against Minnesota on Monday. Depending on how long it takes newly acquired defenseman Chris Campoli to get to them visa issues the Blackhawks could call up someone from Rockford. Jassen Cullimore, who was with the Blackhawks the early part of this season, is currently injured.

Its disappointing for us, general manager Stan Bowman said. He certainly stuck through it early when he was a healthy scratch. He never complained once. Hes a first-class individual. He was starting to play well so its unfortunate for him and for us. Were just going to have to soldier on.

Leddys return

Defenseman Nick Leddy last played at the Xcel Energy Center in a Minnesota state championship hockey game. On Monday native of nearby Eden Prairie came back in a Chicago Blackhawks uniform for the first time since the Wild traded him to them.

Leddy, who was recalled to Chicago for good on Saturday after doing the Rockford shuffle since January, has made good strides in his game. Playing with Duncan Keith, Leddys learned plenty.

Playing with Duncs, Ive felt comfortable the whole time, Leddy said before the game. He makes everyone better. Hes always talking to me, always helping me out.

Coach Joel Quenneville has mentioned the word poise plenty regarding Leddy this season. He said the rookie had a special game against Phoenix on Sunday, playing more than 23 minutes, a career high. Leddys handled the pressure well through this stretch run.

Especially down the stretch, every games critical, Leddy said. It gets pretty nerve-wracking out there but I guess the adrenaline kicks in. I dont really feel it anymore.

Leddy had about 15 friends and family at the game.

No mas

The Blackhawks did get a defenseman on Monday in what ended up being a somewhat quiet trade deadline day. Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said there was a lot of talking, but no additional moves presented themselves. He wasnt disappointed that he couldnt make any more moves.

We said our priority was to get something done and we certainly accomplished that, he said. We were talking to a number of teams about different options but takes two parties to want to make a deal. Only a few willing to trade players away made it difficult. Were very happy with the acquisition we were able to make.

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks face Golden Knights for first time

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Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks face Golden Knights for first time

Here are Three Things to Watch when the Blackhawks take on the Vegas Golden Knights Tuesday on NBC Sports Chicago and streaming live on the NBC Sports app. Coverage begins at 8:45 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live.

1. Corey Crawford vs. ... Oscar Dansk? 

The Golden Knights have seen both Marc-Andre Fleury and Malcolm Subban go down with injuries, so they're scraping for goaltenders at this point.

On one end of the ice, you have one of the best netminders in the league and a two-time Stanley Cup champion in Crawford. On the other, you have a 23-year-old rookie in Dansk making his first official NHL start who will be backed up by a 24-year-old rookie in Maxime Lagace, who has never appeared in an NHL game.

In his first game action, Dansk stopped 10 of 11 shots in relief during Saturday's 3-2 overtime win over St. Louis.

2. Fast start.

The Blackhawks are tied for second in both goals scored (13) and fewest goals allowed (four) in the first period, which has a large reason for their early season success.

The Golden Knights aren't the kind of team that gets out to a blazing start. They've allowed only five goals in the opening frame, but they've scored only five as well, which ranks among the bottom 10 teams in the league. 

3. Beware of James Neal.

The Golden Knights became the first team in NHL history to win six of their first seven games of their inaugural season. And they probably don't have half of those wins if it weren't for Neal, who scored the game-winning goal in each of their first three games.

He leads the club with six goals and eight points, and serves as the motor for a team that doesn't have much offensive talent. He's the go-to guy, and somebody you have to keep an eye on when he's on the ice.

 

Blackhawks mailbag: Defensive challenges and happy campers

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USA TODAY

Blackhawks mailbag: Defensive challenges and happy campers

The Blackhawks entered this season with the same mantra they have countless others: get off to a good start and save yourself a point chase at the end of the season.

My first season on the beat was probably the Blackhawks’ best lesson lately on what happens when you’re scrambling late; they just about missed the playoffs, losing to Detroit in the regular-season finale and needing Minnesota to beat Dallas to get into the postseason. And while the overall results have been a mixed bag, their opening record (5-2-2) isn’t shabby.

Still, there are questions regarding where the Blackhawks are and where they’re heading. To that end (yeah, we’re finally getting to the point of this whole spiel), we bring you this week’s mailbag:

The Blackhawks’ happiness with Tanner Kero was partly because of Kero’s work last season. But in terms of comparing to other centers, Kero’s emergence had more to do with replacing Dennis Rasmussen than it did Marcus Kruger – Kero re-signed with the Blackhawks around the same time talks reportedly went awry between the team and Rasmussen. Anyway, back to Kero. I don’t think it’s so much what he’s not doing as what Tommy Wingels is doing in that fourth-line spot. The Blackhawks originally envisioned Wingels at wing but he has previous experience at center and his work there has been pretty good. Saturday night’s game certainly helps, be it for Wingels alone or keeping that fourth line together (he, John Hayden and Lance Bouma, who scored the game-winner). Don’t be surprised if there’s some rotation there, though.

Maybe, although either of those guys will likely still be rotating in/out with another player. Just depends on how much the Blackhawks want those guys playing constantly (I would guess that would be the case with rookie Matthew Highmore more than Hinostroza).

We all know this contract, all know how it hamstrings the Blackhawks for a while. But in the immediate future, what can you do? Fellow scribe Mark Lazerus has asked a few times about Seabrook’s place in the lineup and coach Joel Quenneville has demurred. Granted, we’re guessing general manager Stan Bowman doesn’t want Seabrook out of the lineup, either. Seabrook’s leadership skills are tremendous; to a man, the Blackhawks will say how vocal he is. His past work, especially in the playoffs, speaks for itself. It depends on how things progress as the season goes but I don’t foresee Seabrook coming out of the lineup right now. Speaking of Seabrook…

Highly doubt it. The asking price won’t be just one guy for another. And with any trade talk I remind everyone to see a player’s NMC status. Seabrook has a full no movement clause.

Nope, he’s not going anywhere, as the traveling media confirmed with Quenneville on Monday afternoon in Las Vegas. I had to be reminded that DeBrincat was nearing that deadline on Sunday, his status not coming up in conversations with Quenneville and Stan Bowman like it did when Brandon Saad made the team at 19. DeBrincat has made such an impression that it was going to take something extraordinary for the Blackhawks to reassign him. DeBrincat has found his place in the lineup and whether or not he’s been scoring he’s been good. So here, he remains.

You don’t trade him. The Blackhawks are where they are right now due in large part to their goaltending, especially Crawford. There have been, what, two games in which the Blackhawks dominated? So no, you don’t trade Crawford.

We’re quite a while from the trade deadline, so let’s tap the breaks on any talk about what the Blackhawks may do several months from now. As far as Murphy’s current status, no, I don’t believe his job is in jeopardy. Again, part of this is the eight-defensemen situation. But it’s also getting Murphy more ingrained in the system. I talked to Dave Tippett, Murphy’s former coach, a few weeks ago. He said, “we put him into situations he may not have been ready for [with Arizona], but he always continued to improve in those situations. He still has a lot of growing to do but he’s a very dedicated athlete and I think there’s a lot of upside there.” It’s easy to look at who the Blackhawks traded away for Murphy and Murphy’s contract and say, “yeah, he should be an everyday guy.” He should be at some point but considering what I mentioned above, I’m not surprised he isn’t right now. Speaking of defensemen rotating in and out of the lineup…

Yeah, I’m still not a big fan of the eight-defensemen set, for the reason you just mentioned. I wrote about the Blackhawks’ defensive juggling act on Sunday and, while I still think it’s tough to do I believe the Blackhawks will stay with it for a while. I list some reasons in Sunday’s story, which is linked above. So far (judging from outward appearances) the defensemen seem to be on board with the changes. I’m just curious to see how long they can keep the balance to where no one is sitting too long. That’s always the challenge.

Signing Cody Franson was part of the short-term plan regarding the long-term injured reserve funds. I think the Blackhawks just let things play out now for a while. You’re not going to make a move based on the first month of the season.

Yeah, someday I will stop writing about the power play’s woes but it won’t be today. I personally don’t think it’s the personnel. Whenever we talk about this it’s usually the same culprits: lack of movement, not enough shots and net-front traffic. I still say a strong penalty kill is more important and if the Blackhawks’ 5-on-5 scoring increases the power-play concerns fade. But it has cost them, so it’s certainly a concern.

I wouldn’t take the stern expressions as a sign of unhappiness. I’ve seen them plenty of times arriving at an arena looking like that; just focused before a game.

Going to go with a B-plus mainly because they came out of those first eight games with a pretty solid record. Granted, goaltending deserves a massive pat on the back for that. But it’s still early and I still figure the lines will get rolling at some point. Penalty kill has been very good and power play absolutely has to get better.