Corey Crawford hits the ice as Blackhawks fall 6 points off of playoff race

Corey Crawford skated today for the first time since he was placed on IR last Dec. 27th.  He is also expected to take the ice tomorrow, according to head coach Joel Quenneville.  He shared the news to reporters in Calgary, where the Blackhawks are slated to play tonight against the Flames.

Crawford’s injury has been the root of massive speculation among the Hawks faithful, especially when a report broke last January that Crawford might miss the rest of the season due to his injury.  Information about the injury has been almost non-existant, apart from some comments made by Scotty Bowman stating Crow is recuperating from concussion-like symptoms.  Quenneville himself has also been the source of some information, insofar as telling reporters that he expected Crawford to return to the team “sometime” before regular season ended.

Crow’s injury has also caused intense anxiety for fans.  He was arguably the best player on the team before he got sidelined.  50’s absence, coupled with the Jekyll and Hyde nature of the season, raised a lot of questions concerning how the team would cope without his elite play.  The Hawks’ record speaks for itself, going 7-7-2 since he’s been gone.

Crawford taking to the ice today is a big step.  It is still unknown when Crawford will exactly return.  Hopefully the situation will be clearer once the Hawks wrap up their four-game road trip tonight and return to the United Center on Tuesday and Thursday, hosting the Flames and the Dallas Stars.

PLAYOFFS WATCH UPDATE:

With their 5-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights last night, the Minnesota Wild now have 61 points and hold the 2nd wildcard spot in the West.  The Blackhawks currently now sit 6 points out of a playoff spot.

The four teams the Hawks need to leapfrog to get to the playoffs are all playing tonight.  The Hawks are facing off against the Flames.  The Wild are playing the Stars, the Avalanche are playing the Winnipeg Jets, and the Los Angeles Kings are facing the Arizona Coyotes.

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