The Chicago Blackhawks are officially through half of the 2013 season without a scratch… well almost. Twenty-four games without a regulation loss holding a 21-0-3 record after playing every team in the Western Conference is enough to make even the most sparsely hockey educated acknowledge the accomplishment (even ESPN).
But this incredible accomplishment has not come without its price, particularly with Wednesday’s first matchup between the Colorado Avalanche and the the Blackhawks when Andrew Shaw and Patrick Sharp left the Chicago bench with injuries.
Already out Marian Hossa (upper body) and Michael Frolik (sick), the Hawks were down to just nine forwards by the end of the 3rd period. Luckily for Chicago, who was tied 2-2 with the Avalanche late in regulation, Daniel Carcillo came up big with a goal in the last minute of play.
While Hossa is a strong possibility for tonight’s rematch, Sharp is expected to miss 3-4 weeks with a sprained shoulder, and Shaw is questionable to return with a head injury.
Colorado (8-10-4), made the Blackhawks work for those 2 points on Wednesday, but fell short of ending their three game skid. The Avalanche have only 1 win in their last 7 games, but that victory was delivered on home ice, a place where the Avs have a much better record at 6-2-1 this season.
Out a couple of key players, Chicago is going to depend on their much praised depth tonight to find another win against the Avalanche.
Update: (1:22pm CT)
- Marian Hossa, Micheal Frolik and Andrew Shaw will all play at Colorado tonight.
- Bryan Bickell to get first crack at the 2nd line spot in place of Sharp.
- Brandon Bollig called up from Rockford.
Can’t wait for this one! Hawks have been incredible. Will be more of a challenge without Sharp. I am from Winnipeg, Canada just like Toews so I have followed the team closely for many years. Go Hawks!