The Blackhawks will already be without the use of Patrick Kane for most of the preseason and now Patrick Sharp’s status for the season opener is in doubt.
Sharp underwent an emergency appendectomy on Monday and is expected to miss between three to four weeks which makes him questionable for the season opener against the Dallas Stars on October 7. Sharpie is coming off a career high with 71 points last season and is a very valuable member of the team weather he is playing on the wing on manning the center spot on the second line. If not for a knee injury that cost him a few weeks towards the end of the season his numbers could have been even better.
With Sharp and Kane missing time it will allow Coach Joel Quenneville a chance to put some other players around Captain Jonathan Toews during the preseason. I would expect to see a lot of Toews skating alongside Marian Hossa which is a something they have tried numerous times over the past two seasons. It may also allow some younger players, like Jeremey Morin, a chance to make the team at least for the start of the season. If Sharp is slow to recover from surgery it may force the Hawks to go out and sign a center if Marcus Kruger struggles during the preseason or maybe use forward Michael Frolik at center.
Hopefully this is the worst of the injuries the Hawks will suffer all season and once Kaner and Sharpie return they can focus on hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup once again.