Chicago Blackhawks forwards Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa will not travel with the team for Sunday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings, but they are questionable for Monday’s game against the Nashville Predators, coach Joel Quenneville said.
“I don’t want to say no, but we’ll see [Monday],” Quenneville said of the two players after Saturday’s practice at Johnny’s IceHouse West.
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Forward Viktor Stalberg missed practice Saturday, but he is likely to play on Sunday, according to Quenneville. Stalberg was struck in the face by a puck in the third period of Friday’s game against the Anaheim Ducks and did not return.
Hossa has missed four games since suffering an unspecified upper-body injury against the Colorado Avalanche on March 18. He has 13 goals and 10 assists in 28 games this season.
Sharp has missed nine games since suffering an unspecified upper-body injury, also against the Avalanche, on March 6. He has five goals and 13 assists in 24 games this season.
Hossa and Sharp participated in their first full practice on Saturday. They weren’t allowed contact previously.
“It’s another step in returning,” Sharp said. “I felt fine doing the contact stuff. I’m sure there will be more of that in the next few days and hopefully come back soon.”
Sharp said he was close to returning, but it was important to be completely healthy when he plays again.
“It’s still not 100 percent,” Sharp said. “I think the idea is to come back and have the injury completely behind you not only mentally, but physically more than anything. Just to know I can take hits to the upper body and be fine, so you don’t have to keep tweaking it and addressing it all through playoffs and end of the season.”
Hossa also said he had to be patient in his return despite his desire to be out on the ice helping the team.
“Obviously when the team loses, you feel like you [could] try to help,” Hossa said. “But like I said, you don’t want to rush things with this type of injury because you can get hurt again, and you’ll be more out than you wanted to be.”
The Blackhawks have gone 4-5 without Sharp and 2-3 without Hossa this season. The Blackhawks are 20-0-3 with both players in the lineup this season.