When you watch the replay of Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane’s scary-looking leg injury from Sunday’s game against the Calgary Flames, it makes it hard to believe coach Joe Quenneville’s post-game talk that it wasn’t anything significant.
It’s not a report that has been confirmed by the team yet, but well-respected Chicago Tribune writer Chris Kuc reports that Kane’s injury will keep him out for quite some time. Kuc writes that “it’s more likely a matter of weeks, not days.”
Obviously, this news comes at a tough time for the already banged-up Blackhawks. They’re still waiting on the return of their other stud right wing Marian Hossa (as well as another forward, Fernando Pisani), so the team’s lack of depth will become just that much more glaring.
The team has had to roll with some tough punches already this season, but Chicago is unfamiliar with playing without their talented young star. Kane has only missed three regular season games in his NHL career: one this season (flu) and two with a high-ankle sprain during the 2008-09 campaign.
As you might expect, the Hawks’ other big name players are putting on a brave front.
“We’ve found a way to play without some of our top players,” team captain Jonathan Toews said. “Guys like Campbell and Hossa and I guess now we don’t have a choice, we’ll have to do it without Kane. It’s about everyone else stepping up.
“You’re going to have some ups and downs as the season goes along. Injuries are part of the game. It’s something you have to deal with so we’ll just try our best … and that’s pretty much all we can do.”
The Blackhawks are leaning on their best players more than ever this season after benefiting from an embarrassment of riches last season. Now they’re going to need even more from Toews and Duncan Keith, so we’ll see if they can back up all the hardware they earned last season.
Naturally, we’ll also keep you updated as more surfaces about Kane’s condition. Again, keep in mind the team hasn’t confirmed this report, even though it sounds reliable.