As the Chicago Blackhawks prepare for the Detroit Red Wings tonight, both teams will be missing their top players.
Jonathan Toews is day to day with an upper-body injury and the Detroit Free Press reports that Pavel Datsyuk is out at least two weeks after having arthroscopic knee surgery today. Its a big loss for each team, as they square off tonight for the fourth time this season.
Coach Joel Quenneville said Toews current injury is not the wrist injury that sidelined him before and during All-Star weekend. Quenneville didnt have many details about the latest injury -- no defining blow led to it -- but Toews may have been playing through it.
Hes a competitive guy and he wants to play, Quenneville said.
The Blackhawks will go without Toews against a Detroit team thats won 23 at home, but is around .500 (15-15-1) on the road. Brendan Morrison skated in Toews place between Patrick Sharp and Patrick Kane this morning.
Johnnys important in a lot of ways, whether its his leadership or his quality and quantity of ice time, coach Joel Quenneville said. He leads in a lot of ways. Itll be up to other guys to step up and contribute. Dont be Johnny, just be yourself.
The Blackhawks will be without Niklas Hjalmarsson for at least another game. The defenseman skated with teammates this morning and is feeling better, but hes still not 100 percent. There was no progress regarding defenseman Steve Montador.
After staying out of the public eye since his historic emergency relief appearance, Scott Foster emerged in Vegas at the NHL Awards and it was perfect.
The 36-year-old accountant fittingly presented the Vezina Trophy award for the league's top goaltender and joked that he needed to speed it up because he had to get back to work.
Check him out on stage:
What a moment. And well done, NHL.
Foster stopped all seven shots he faced in 14:01 of action in the Blackhawks' 6-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets on March 30.
Nashville Predators netminder Pekke Rinne took home the award, but you can't argue against Foster's 1.000 career save percentage.
From June 17-21, Charlie Roumeliotis will profile two prospects per day — 10 total (five forwards, five defensemen) — leading up to the NHL Draft.
Weight: 180 pounds
"A very effective two-way defenseman with good puck distribution and a strong shot from the points on the power play. He is a point-producer with size, who defends and utilizes strong positioning and a good stick in the defensive zone."
NHL player comparable: Brent Burns
Fit for Blackhawks:
The Blackhawks lacked defensemen that generated offense last year. They also lacked defenders than can ... defend. Dobson is a player who can do both, and if he slips past Vancouver at No. 7, the Blackhawks may have a difficult decision on their hands.
Dobson could solve some of those defensive issues, but it likely wouldn't be in time for the 2018-19 season. He needs time to develop properly.
The Blackhawks like to evaluate prospects based on what their ceiling is and where they're at in their development curve, and if they see major upside here, they'll go for it. It just depends if there's somebody available that they like better.