The Chicago Blackhawks have been hit with some bad injuries as the regular season has wound down, but they are finally starting to get some good news on the health front with the postseason just a week away.
Patrick Kane, who suffered a lower body injury in a March victory over the St. Louis Blues, skated with the team Wednesday at their morning skate. He was wearing a knee brace on his left knee, which buckled when Brendan Morrow fell on it after an awkward collision along the boards. Despite having to get used to the brace, Kane seemed confident after practice that he'd be able to adjust to wearing it:
— Peggy Kusinski (@peggykusinski) April 9, 2014
Kane said he should't be bothered by brace. "I have to get adjusted to it but a few little tweaks and should be fine." #Blackhawks
— Tracey Myers (@TramyersCSN) April 9, 2014
The news surrounding Kane wasn't the only positive news the Hawks received on Wednesday. Head coach Joel Quenneville revealed after the skate that Jonathan Toews, sidelined since March 30th when he was hit by Brooks Orpik in a loss against the Pittsburgh Penguins, could begin skating again on Thursday:
Jonathan Toews could start skating tomorrow. Joel Quenneville expects both Kane and Toews to be "100 percent" for Game 1. #Blackhawks
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) April 9, 2014
While it's never ideal to have a player miss a bunch of games before the playoffs begin, in the case of Kane and Toews it could be to their benefit. Both players know exactly what to expect in the postseason, where teams do everything in their power to stop them while they are on the ice, so adjusting to the intensity shouldn't be difficult. The potential benefit to both players is that they could be well-rested and ready to go after a long season that included a lengthy stay in Sochi for the Winter Olympics.