Chicago will be without the services of Marian Hossa for the next 2-3 weeks due to an injury suffered during Saturday’s 5-1 win over Pittsburgh at Soldier Field, head coach Joel Quenneville announced.
Hossa, 35, left the game with 6:34 remaining in the first period and didn’t return to the ice. The Blackhawks then announced he’d miss the remainder of the game with an upper-body issue — all told, Hossa played just six shifts and had 4:18 of ice time before leaving.
It’s expected that Brandon Saad will elevate to a top-line winger role in Hossa’s absence, lining up alongside Jonathan Toews and Patrick Sharp. Quenneville also said the club might look at calling someone up from AHL Rockford — on that, it’s worth noting the ‘Hawks flipped Brandon Pirri to Florida on Sunday. The former second-round pick had 13 points in 35 games with Chicago over the last four seasons.
Regardless of who fills in, it’ll be difficult replacing Hossa’s production. The Slovakian had 50 points in 57 games this year while averaging over 18 minutes per night.
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Kyle Turris was far from an accomplished NHLer when he requested a trade out of the Coyotes organization. In fact, when he was dealt to the Senators in 2011, the third overall pick in the 2007 draft had just 46 points in 137 NHL games.
Since then, Turris has emerged as Ottawa’s top center, with the promise of a big payday in the summer of 2018 when his current $17.5 million deal expires and he becomes an unrestricted free agent.
It’s for that very reason that he can understand Jonathan Drouin‘s position with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
“It’s tough,” Turris told the Tampa Bay Times. “Everyone has mixed feelings, and especially not being an established player. Then people are doubting that you’re doing the right thing, you really have to have confidence in yourself and your ability to do it.”
Though Turris, now 26, took a “lot of heat from the media…and people within the organization” and recalls the time after his trade request was made public as a “tough, tough go,” he believes the opportunity he received with the Sens “saved” him.
As we’ve written in the past, you don’t have to agree with how Drouin is handling things — maybe it ends up hurting him; he still has a lot to prove — but there have been young players who have chosen similar paths, and it’s worked out well for them.
Drouin, by the way, has 40 points in 89 NHL games.