Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville didn’t provide much help Friday when it came to clearing up Corey Crawford’s upper body injury that forced him to leave Thursday’s game at St. Louis after the first period.
Crawford was well enough to skate Friday morning and backed up Ray Emery against Columbus on Friday night.
“He got through it,” Quenneville said. “He didn’t seem too bad after the game and was fine this morning. He’s good to go.”
What exactly Crawford got through will remain a mystery.
Quenneville commended Emery for jumping into the game in the second period and protecting the lead. It was 1-0 at the time he entered the game that was eventually won by the Hawks 3-0.
“I think the goaltending situation, we have some good options,” Quenneville said. “They’re both playing well. We don’t have to keep going with the same guy. It was nice to see Ray, not getting the start, jump in there and add to the team game. It was a real solid goaltending contribution from both guys.”
Emery on Friday was named the third star of the month for February after going 7-0 with a 1.66 goals-against average.
“Congratulations to him,” Quenneville said. “He had some consecutive starts and he’s doing the job. Guys have confidence with him.”
Bolland getting better:
Center Dave Bolland missed his fourth straight game with an upper body injury. Bolland could be shooting for a return on Sunday at Detroit.
“He skated really well today and did a real nice job,” Joel Quenneville said. “We like the progress. So he’s real close.”
The Hawks are in a hectic stretch of the schedule where they are playing three games in basically three-and-a-half days because of Sunday’s afternoon game in Detroit.
“That’s the schedule,” Joel Quenneville said. “Everyone’s busy. We have seven games in 11 days here.
“Having a nice, deep bench is helpful. And recognizing how guys are in games, be it fatigue or guys need a rest, is something you gauge.”
The Hawks were looking to extend their streak of not losing in regulation to start the season to 21 games on Friday.
“I’m excited,” Joel Quenneville said. “Certainly we feel good about our team. They have to be commended with how they’ve approached it and done it.
“We give them some criteria and guidelines, but they have to implement it. We’ve progressed in our team game as far as how we play in all zones. Special teams have added to the team game as well.
“But the consistency is what we’re most pleased with. Guys have been competitive in all ways. Whether it’s the leaders or young guys, everybody’s contributions have been meaningful.”
Blue Jackets short-handed:
Columbus on Friday played without injured regulars James Wisniewski, Jack Johnson, Derrick Brassard, John Moore and Brandon Dubinsky.
The Blue Jackets started the game with only five defensemen because Moore was hurt in the morning skate. Dalton Prout was recalled from the minors and didn’t get to the UC until the game had started.
Columbus has now used 11 defensemen this season.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.