The Chicago Blackhawks do not have good news on this Wednesday morning, with forward Patrick Kane set to be out “quite a while” following a crosscheck by Florida Panthers defenceman Alex Petrovic on Tuesday night.
The incident took place in the first period of the game and Kane didn’t return to the ice. The Blackhawks took the win in the shootout, but Kane took the brunt of the impact with his left shoulder.
“You’ve got the leading scorer in the game on your team, so that’s a very valuable asset. He makes a lot of things work for us,” head coach Joel Quenneville said. “We missed him for the majority of today’s game, and it was one of those where we were good for 40 and hung on there at the end.”
Now, reports are emerging from Chicago that Kane may have suffered a broken collarbone and could be out anywhere from six to 10 weeks. Others have reported at least a month out of action. At least.
It goes without saying that this sucks for the Blackhawks. Kane was on par for a Hart campaign, putting up a league-leading 64 points thus far.
“You’re really ticked off when a player like him gets hurt,” Blackhawks forward Kris Versteeg said. “It’s never good that way. Hopefully he’s OK. If he’s out for a while, we’ll have to have a guy step up and play their best in his absence.”
Of course, in his absence Chicago simply isn’t as good. Kane has scored 51 points in the Blackhawks’ 36 wins. In the team’s 25 losses, he has just 13 points. When he’s not lit up, the Blackhawks aren’t as effective.
Obviously there will be more definitive news for the team at some point and time on Wednesday, but right now this doesn’t look like a good situation. Kane has been a more consistent player over the last while and has really been building a more capable overall game, which has in turn lead to some real success on the team level and the Hart chatter.
But now, it looks like that’s going to slow down for the time being. Kane’s still in the conversation, without a doubt, but this is a major impediment for both team and player to say the least.