CHICAGO (CBS) — The Blackhawks are officially back, minus one key name.
Training camp opened on Monday, and Corey Crawford was the only player in the 35-man roster who was not on the ice. And it is not just a one-day thing.
The rest of the Blackhawks were back at Fifth-Third Arena Monday. They have less than three weeks to get ready to play.
The Blackhawks said their star goaltender has been deemed unfit to play – the official term for all injuries and illnesses – and there is no timeline for his return.
“For now, he’s unfit to play, and I think the NHL was pretty clear that’s going to be the policy going forward as far as how we announce all injuries. Subban, Delia, and Lankinen will rotate through the first group, and it’s a great opportunity for them, and a great opportunity for us to evaluate them, and we have great confidence in all of those guys,” said Blackhawks Head Coach Jeremy Colliton.
While Crawford was not at practice, Brent Seabrook is back and eligible to play after being shut down in December for multiple surgeries.
The Blackhawks are getting ready to play the Edmonton Oilers in a best-of-five play-in series.
“It’s definitely weird to be here in July getting through the mini-camp, but going to be around the boys for a couple of days. It’s been a strange time for everybody, but at least that felt somewhat normal,” said Blackhawks Team Captain Jonathan Toews.
“You know, the extra testing and the extra precaution doesn’t really affect us too much. More than anything, we need to be careful and we need to be smart away from the rink, especially right now, until we get into the bubble so that we can get our best chance of everybody in there being healthy so we can have our full group,” said Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith.