Marian Hossa and Artem Anisimov will both be out but Corey Crawford will start when the Blackhawks host the Colorado Avalanche on Friday night at the United Center.
Anisimov was placed on injured reserve, retroactive to Sunday, with an upper-body injury he sustained against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night. The move enabled the Blackhawks to recall Tanner Kero, who will be in the lineup on Friday night. Kero has seven goals and 13 assists thus far with the Rockford IceHogs. On Thursday, he was centering the fourth line with Andrew Desjardins and Jordin Tootoo.
Coach Joel Quenneville is hopeful both Anisimov and Hossa, who suffered an upper-body injury against the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday, can return for the Blackhawks’ post-Christmas game against the Winnipeg Jets.
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Crawford was on the ice a few minutes prior to Thursday’s practice, taking shots from Blackhawks teammates. Quenneville said the practices should help but Crawford could have to shake off some rust on Friday night; it will be Crawford’s first game since Dec. 1 against the New Jersey Devils.
“I think it’s probably challenging for goalies more so than other positions. You can never really recapture the pace of having a full 60 minutes in front of you when you’re standing up there constantly getting pushed on and fighting through screens and finding the shots. Just getting through a game will probably make a world of difference for him,” Quenneville said. “He wasn’t out too long, so I think recapturing it with a couple of practices going to help him. But the game, there’s nothing like it.”