Kane shifting to the left


Kane shifting to the left

Patrick Kane was going up and down the ice at his familiar quick pace albeit on a less-than-familiar side of the line. The right wingercenterright wingcenter was on the move again, this time to the left wing.

Although Kane apparently had a different idea on who should play there.

He mentioned, Can you ask Johnny (Toews) to play left wing today? coach Joel Quenneville said with a laugh. That was Kaners line.

Its musical-chair time again for Kane who, when Toews does return, will be playing left wing. This is a very different move for Kane, who has only played that spot sparingly in his career. But as with his move to center, with which he was more familiar, Kane took it in stride.

Its just a position, he said. Its a little different, and maybe a couple of times here and there Ive played it. I just want to play with the puck, work hard. Especially with the skill we have, it seems like it could be a fun line.

Indeed, with Kane, Toews and Marian Hossa together at the top, it could be a very potent line. Kane and Hossa formed great chemistry when Kane centered the top line, and Quenneville wanted to keep the two of them together when Toews returned. That, and hes liking the rest of his lines as they are.

Its something we havent tried but we will try, he said. All the other lines are in order and have done a good job down the stretch, so we dont want to tinker too much with the lines. That (top) line should, or could, work.

Theyll have a few days to practice it, as the Blackhawks and Phoenix Coyotes dont begin their first-round series until Thursday. Kane said hell use the time wisely.

Its good that we have a few practices to get adjusted; its fine, Ill get used to it, he said. You look at the other lines: (Dave) Bollands line been paying good, (Marcus) Krugers line been our best the past couple of weeks. With that (top) line its been in and out with left wingers, so when Johnny comes back Ill fill the slot there.

Patrick Sharp, whos played all three forward spots himself, said Kane will adjust just fine just like he did at center.

Its just getting used to catching passes on forehand instead of the backhand and entering the zone a little different, Sharp said. That was my spot the last few years, playing all the different places. And now hes going through it. Hats off to him. Hes done a great job at it.

NBA removes Omer Asik's contract, giving Bulls additional $3 million in cap space


NBA removes Omer Asik's contract, giving Bulls additional $3 million in cap space

The Bulls will have an additional $3 million to use in free agency this summer after the NBA ruled in favor of clearing Omer Asik's contract from their books, according to Stadium's Shams Charania.

Two months ago the Bulls applied for cap relief to have Asik's $3 million contract removed from their books. Asik, who was ruled out in September 2018 with inflammatory arthritis, never played again and was waived in October. The move saved the Bulls $8 million at the time, and the arthritis that forced him out of basketball will now save the Bulls an additional $3 million.

The Bulls now have upwards of $23 million to use in free agency. Mark Schanowski looked at how they might use that cash this summer.

Asik was originally traded to the Bulls in 2018, along with a first-round draft pick, in exchange for power forward Nikola Mirotic. Asik played in just four games after the trade, averaging 1.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 15.3 minutes. The Bulls used that first round pick on Chandler Hutchison, while Mirotic thrived in the second half and postseason for the New Orleans Pelicans.

Tim Anderson likely heading to injured list as White Sox await MRI result

Tim Anderson likely heading to injured list as White Sox await MRI result

Tim Anderson's status beyond having an ankle sprain is still unknown as the White Sox await the results of an MRI.

The South Side shortstop sparked fears among fans when he was helped off the field with an ankle injury during Tuesday night's game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Anderson landed awkwardly while throwing on the run on the rain-soaked infield in Boston. He fell to the ground in pain and needed assistance getting off the field, to the dugout and into the clubhouse. He was slated for an MRI early Wednesday in Boston as the White Sox for prepping for the series finale against former mate Chris Sale.

Anderson was reported as being in a walking boot Wednesday. The team announced Tuesday night that X-rays were negative and that he had been diagnosed with an ankle sprain. While the injury could still lead to a long layoff, that was a bit of good news, at least, but his long-term status is still unknown.

Manager Rick Renteria had little in the way of new information when he spoke to reporters Tuesday night and against Wednesday morning, but he acknowledged that Anderson is in all likelihood heading to the injured list.

"He's getting checked out still today," Renteria said. "Probably, in all likelihood, he goes on the injured list. In terms of how long it is, we don't know yet. We know that further examination will give us more information."

In another rebuilding season, losing Anderson for an extended period of time wouldn't figure to be the difference between the White Sox being in a playoff race or not come the end of the regular season. But it certainly wouldn't be good for the long-term future of the team, which has looked capable of starting to open its contention window as soon as the 2020 season, as Anderson would figure to have to spend a significant amount of time working his way back from a significant injury.

As for what Renteria and the White Sox will do in the short term, the manager said he can lean on the versatile Leury Garcia, as well as Jose Rondon, to fill the hole at shortstop. Garcia has been the White Sox everyday center fielder all season long but has the versatility to play on the infield. Rondon has disappointed offensively but could be considered the proverbial "next man up" if Anderson misses any time. Renteria could also mix and match, playing Garcia both in the outfield and on the infield and using other reserves elsewhere. The return of Jon Jay helps the White Sox in this case, too.

"Right now, I'm looking to use Leroy there for a little bit," Renteria told reporters Wednesday in Boston. "Obviously he's very capable of playing shortstop. And quite honestly, might give him a little break. His legs have been barking a little bit, it might help him out a little bit to bring him into the infield. We'll be able to use (Ryan) Cordell and (Charlie Tilson) in the outfield, and then we'll see how we mix in the DH spot for all of these guys, try to give them as many at-bats as possible. That's the adjustment we'll make at the moment."

It's still a scary time for the team and the fan base as all parties await the news on Anderson.

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