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updated: 3/20/2014 9:11 PM

Hawks circle wagons after 'huge loss' of Kane

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  • The Blackhawks will be without Patrick Kane for about three weeks after he suffered a leg injury Wednesday against the Blues at the United Center.

      The Blackhawks will be without Patrick Kane for about three weeks after he suffered a leg injury Wednesday against the Blues at the United Center.
    Associated Press

 
 

Fresh off hearing the news that his top scorer was expected to miss about three weeks after suffering an apparent knee injury, it was no surprise that Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville wasn't exactly in a celebratory mood despite a big 4-0 victory over the Blues on Wednesday.

"He's a special player," Quenneville said. "It's definitely a huge loss. We're going to have to work our way through it -- all the things he brings to our team."

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Kane, who has 69 points in 69 games, was injured during the second period in a pileup along the boards with the Blues' Brenden Morrow.

"It's tough to lose a guy, regardless of who it is, with it being Kaner, a player of that stature on our team, it hurts," Hawks defenseman Duncan Keith said. "But at the same time it's going to give opportunities to other guys to get some confidence,"

"We don't know what his status is but he'll work hard, he'll battle and he'll be back," Ben Smith said. "Hopefully it's not the case that he's out for a bit, but if it is we'll have guys who have to step up.

"It's going to be hard to fill his shoes, obviously, but we'll find a way as a team."

That process began Thursday when the Hawks signed free-agent forward Matt Carey to a two-year contract and assigned him sweater No. 25.

Carey, 22, recorded 37 points in 38 games this season as a freshman at St. Lawrence University. He shared the team lead in goals, while ranking second in points and power-play goals (11).

There was a school of thought that Teuvo Teravainen, whose postseason just ended in Finland, might be the guy to replace Kane on the roster, but apparently that's not the case ... yet.

ESPN Chicago reported that the 19-year-old center flew into town Thursday, but he may initially report to the Rockford IceHogs.

More of the details are sure to emerge Friday when the Hawks take on Carolina. That's also when Quenneville has "fingers crossed" that Brandon Saad (upper-body injury) could return to lineup.

Over his Blackhawks career, Kane has been a bit of an iron man, playing in 515 of 528 regular-season games. By comparison, Jonathan Toews has played in 478 games.

"To see him go down and have to shorten up the lines, we had to have other guys step up, which is huge," Bryan Bickell said after the win over the Blues. "It shows the depth that we have on our four lines.

"It's unfortunate that things like that happen, but there are going to be times in the year when there are injuries, and hopefully he's coming back sooner rather than later."

Thinking postseason:

Blackhawks single-game tickets for the first home contests of two rounds of the 2014 Stanley Cup playoffs will go on sale to the general public on Monday, March 24, at noon. The tickets will be available exclusively at ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Each customer will be limited to four tickets.

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