Finally, the future is a little clearer for the Chicago Blackhawks... Star goalie Corey Crawford has been on injured reserve since Dec. 27 with what have been reported as concussion-related symptoms.
“None of us can read into the future, predict anything,” general manager Stan Bowman told the Chicago Tribune on Monday. “As far as Corey playing this year, I can’t say. What I can tell you is, Corey is not going to play until he is completely medically cleared and he says, ‘I’m ready and I want to play.’
“When those two things happen then he’s going to be back playing.”
The future now seems brighter as head coach Joel Quenneville revealed on Wednesday that Crawford could return to the ice once the team gets back from their California road trip.
The Hawks have started four goalies this season – Crawford, Anton Forsberg, Jeff Glass and J.F. Berube, who will be in net tomorrow night against the Sharks in San Jose. The Chicago Tribune reported that it is the first season during Quenneville’s tenure that they have used four different starters in goal.
There is almost no surprise there seeing that in the past years, Crawford has started 50 or more games in six of the seven previous seasons. The only exception was 2012-13, when the schedule was shortened to 48 games by the NHL lockout.
"Athletes want to play," Bowman added. "If Corey's 100-percent healthy and our doctors say he's ready to go, and he's saying, 'I want to play,' it would be sort of odd for us to say, 'You're not allowed to play.'
"But we're not at that point."
It sure seems like a step in the right direction though...