For the most part, every bit of injury news has been bad news for the Chicago Blackhawks lately. While it seems mostly speculative and completely glass-half-full optimistic, Joel Quenneville provided a rare bit of positivity for Hawks fans concerned about the team’s walking wounded today.
Quenneville told Brian Hedger of NHL.com that all three of the team’s most notable injured forwards – Marian Hossa, Fernando Pisani and possibly even Patrick Kane – could be back to skating on their own as early as next week.
This seems to completely contradict Quenneville’s “up to three weeks” estimation of Kane’s injury, although the Blackhawks coach quickly backpedaled about the chances of the American forward getting back on the ice so soon.
There’s a chance that all three of their injured forwards — Patrick Kane (lower-body), Marian Hossa (lower body) and Fernando Pisani (upper body) — could return to skating on their own next week, when Chicago returns from a two-game road trip to San Jose and Colorado.
“I would say when we return, two or three could all be skating or close to their return (to action),” Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said.
“Could be,” Quenneville said. “That might be optimistic.”
Eh, from the sounds of that, Quenneville is being beyond optimistic. Maybe we should refer to that optimism as “dreaming” instead.
Or maybe we just need to take coach Q’s injury-related words with a grain of salt. Every NHL team seems fixated on providing at least some form of misinformation when it comes to their injured players, so I guess we’ll just need to wait and see when it comes to Hossa, Pisani and Kane.
That being said, we’ll still fill you in on the latest news … even if it feels like a wild goose chase sometimes.
Here’s your Stanley Cup playoffs schedule for tonight
People love star athletes because they can do amazing things. Even so, people also often love to see the occasional moment of weakness.
Aside from the occasional injury hiccup, Sidney Crosby‘s been as advertised after being a super-hyped No. 1 overall pick. He has that “Golden Goal,” two Olympic gold medals, a Stanley Cup ring and plenty of individual accolades.
Not many people expected the Capitals-Penguins series to be over in five games, but there’s a chance that could happen before the end of the week. After their 3-2 overtime loss to the Pittsburgh on Wednesday night, the Capitals are one loss away from being bounced from the 2016 playoffs.
The Capitals failed to take advantage of the fact that Kris Letang was suspended for Game 4 because of his hit on Marcus Johansson in Game 3. Letang is now set to return for Game 5 which makes Washington’s task even more difficult.
“We didn’t take advantage of it,” Capitals coach Barry Trotz said, per NHL.com. “One thing I said to the guys coming into this, and we talked it about it yesterday, was when Kris got his suspension, is that they’re going to rally. Their whole team, their forwards are going to come back. They talked about they didn’t play their best game (in Game 3) and now they have Letang out and everybody had to step up on their side, and I thought they did.”
If you look back at the regular season, the Capitals were head and shoulders above the rest of the Eastern Conference and the league for a good portion of the season. Washington finished 11 points ahead of second place Dallas in the league standings and it looked like they had the team that would finally take them over the hump.
Although things look gloomy, it’s important to realize that the series is far from over. Many NHLers would tell you that the fourth win is always the hardest to come by in a best-of-seven series, and by no means is anyone expecting the Capitals to wave the white flag.
“Whenever you lose a game, it’s obviously an opportunity missed, but it had nothing to do with them missing some of their players,” said Caps forward Jay Beagle, per NHL.com. “We’re looking forward. Our back’s against the wall and the most important game of our lives is coming up.”
Game 5 goes Saturday night in Washington.
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