The Chicago Blackhawks have now played in 11 straight games without Jonathan Toews and in a testament to their depth, they have managed to hold their own without their captain. Chicago did lose three of their first four contests without Toews, but they have bounced back with a 5-1-1 run. That includes Tuesday’s contest, when Chicago overcame a 3-1 deficit against the Western Conference leading St. Louis Blues en route to a 4-3 shootout victory.
“It didn’t start off well (without him). But the last few games we realized we wanted to put it together and start winning some games for him,” said Patrick Kane. “The last (three) games we’ve been down in the third period, we’ve come back and we’ve found ways to get points. And we’re only going to get better when he comes back.”
Chicago will have a tough time rising above the sixth seed, but they also aren’t likely to slip below it. That might be to the Blackhawks benefit, as the third seed will almost certainly be coming out of a comparatively weak Pacific Division. Going into Wednesday’s contests, the fourth seed Detroit Red Wings had an eight point lead on the third seed Dallas Stars.
The Calgary Flames have released Ryan Wilson from his professional tryout.
The 28-year-old was trying to make a comeback after missing 79 games with a shoulder injury last season.
Even with T.J. Brodie sidelined because of a broken hand, Wilson still faced long odds to make the final roster.
The veteran will be hard-pressed to find NHL work with another team.
He hasn’t suited up in more than 12 regular season games since 2011-12.
The Stockton Heat, Calgary’s AHL affiliate, also made some news on Sunday.
The club announced that they’ve signed Colton Orr to an AHL contract.
The 33-year-old tough guy suited up in just one game for the Toronto Maple Leafs last season. He has 12 seasons of NHL experience under his belt.
The Arizona Coyotes have returned Dylan Strome to the Erie Otters of the OHL.
Strome, 18, was the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft.
The 6’3, 185 pounder was hoping to stick with the Coyotes this season, but the team decided to take the conservative approach with their top prospect.
Strome will look to build off an incredible junior season that saw him score 45 goals and 129 points in 68 games.
Strome seems to be taking the demotion in stride.
The team also announced that they’ve assigned goaltender Louis Domingue and forward Matthias Plachta to their AHL affiliate in Springfield.
Domingue, 23, had a 1-2-1 record with a 2.73 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage in seven games last season.
Plachta, a free agent signing, will begin his first pro season in North America. The 24-year-old had 14 goals and 35 points in the German League last season.