Montador, Toews score twice to power Hawks

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Montador, Toews score twice to power Hawks

The Blackhawks keep getting offense from their defensemen. Thats good, because they may have to chip in for an injured teammate.

Steve Montador and Jonathan Toews scored two goals apiece, but Brent Seabrook suffered a lower body injury and did not return to the Blackhawks 6-3 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday night.

The Blackhawks have won three in a row but the victory was somewhat tempered by the injury to Seabrook; coach Joel Quenneville said Seabrook is currently listed as day to day, and that theyll know more Monday morning.

Seabrook appeared to have lost an edge as he went into the back boards awkwardly with about 14:30 remaining in the second period. He got off the ice and went to the locker room on his own, but he was putting little weight on his left leg.

The Blackhawks may have to call on that defensemen depth, much of which they picked up this offseason.

We missed (Duncan Keith) there for three games and it was obviously a void with all the quality ice time in all situations, Quenneville said. We did a good job without him this half of the game, but it may present a challenge moving forward.

Meanwhile, one of those summer acquisitions was once again an offensive threat. Montador now has three goals in his past two games, including another one on the power play. His first goal was a beauty, as he bobbed and weaved his way to the front and flicked one past Nikolai Khabibulin.

It also came just 34 seconds after Toews first one, giving the Blackhawks an early 2-0 advantage. Montador laughed at the notion that his first-goal move was Patrick Kane-like.

I dont look like Justin Bieber, Montador joked. But (Kane) is in a league all of his own. I was just trying to hold onto the puck like I did and get it around Khabibulin and did that.

Quenneville said Montadors first goal was pretty remarkable for a defenseman, and a big goal at the time. Hes been a nice addition to our club.

The defensemen continue to pump the Blackhawks offensive numbers, as they added six more points on Sunday. Keith scored his second goal of the season and Nick Leddy added two assists.

Its great for everyones confidence and great for teams confidence to see different guys score, Toews said. It doesnt matter who scores as long as we find a way. If were getting it from different guys, it just goes to show we can play a solid team game and things will go well for us if we keep working.

Daniel Carcillo had an empty-net goal while Marian Hossa, Patrick Sharp and Kane each had two assists.

The Blackhawks are getting contributions across the board, and a lot more now from the blue liners. Its translated into a more consistent game and victories. Whether or not the Blackhawks will have to go without Seabrook for a bit is not known. But they have to be confident with their depth and current run.

Weve had good starts but at the same time were not letting off the gas pedal, so to speak, Toews said. We have to keep going that way whereas, when we have a lead going into the third period, home or road, our style doesnt change.

Briefly

Dave Bolland (right foot) was out again for Sundays game. Quenneville said Bolland will make the road trip, and the coach hopes Bolland plays in one of the first two games.

Leddy now has 10 assists on the season and leads Blackhawks defensemen in points with 12.

Hossa was also credited with four takeaways on Sunday night.

Why placing Marian Hossa on long-term injured reserve wouldn't help Blackhawks' cap issues

Why placing Marian Hossa on long-term injured reserve wouldn't help Blackhawks' cap issues

When the news came down that Marian Hossa would miss the 2017-18 season, most first thoughts were about his health. But it was only natural to look at the business implications, and the possibility of Hossa going on long-term injured reserve (LTIR).

That would solve the Blackhawks’ cap issues, right? That would give them more money to spend, right? Well, not exactly. See, the LTIR can be a bit complicated. It can also be tricky to explain. And right now, even Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman is trying to figure out how this all develops for the team.

“I think there’s a little bit of a misconception on the LTI provision in the salary cap, and understandably so. It’s very complicated. It’s not as simple or as easy as people think it to be,” Bowman said on Thursday, the day before the Blackhawks hosted the 2017 NHL Draft. “I don’t want to get into too many details because it’s hard to explain it all, but there’s a couple different ways it can work.

"You can use offseason LTI and in-season LTI and there’s drawbacks to both, and there’s limitations the way that the league handles those things. It’s not as simple as people might think that we just have this ability to suddenly replace Marian with another player. It’s way more involved than that.”

Here are two basics about the cap: a team can be 10 percent over it during the summer, and a team must be at or below it the day the regular season begins. If the Blackhawks place Hossa on LTIR, it wouldn’t take effect until the second day of the regular season. So on Day 1 of the season, the Blackhawks would still be carrying Hossa’s $5.275 cap hit.

Once the LTIR would take effect, though, the Blackhawks would have wiggle room. If they spent to the $75 million cap, they could utilize Hossa’s entire $5.275 million cap hit on other players.

It’s not about the Blackhawks finding a guy this summer that makes an equal cap it.

“If you did that you would be essentially starting the year with an inability to make any transactions," Bowman said. "And that’s why, it’s a harder discussion to have because you’ve got to give you examples of if this happens. But it just doesn’t work that way. I wish it were that simple, but it’s not. It’s a much more complicated provision than people think. It’s not some easy cap solution where we just go sign a player for the same amount and off we go. It’s much more problematic than that.”

The NHL will be looking at the situation, although there doesn’t seem to be anything that would keep the Blackhawks from putting Hossa on LTIR. Bowman wasn’t concerned about it.

Still, the Blackhawks will still be doing their share of offseason math.

“I know how it works. What’s going to happen is a different question," Bowman said. "You don’t make those decisions overnight, but I think that understandably there’s probably a lot of confusion, because it’s not your job to run the salary cap for a team. So, I can get why you don’t know all the little details, and it is a very intricate provision in the CBA. So, we understand it. We’ve used LTI before, so it’s not like it’s something we’ve never been faced with. It’s just a factor that we’ll get through.”  

Forget the Circus: Blackhawks' regular-season schedule unveiled

Forget the Circus: Blackhawks' regular-season schedule unveiled

The NHL schedules were unveiled on Wednesday afternoon, and for the first time in many a year, the Blackhawks will have no Circus Trip.

We already knew the Blackhawks would host the Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins in their home opener on Oct. 5. The Blackhawks’ longest road continuous road trip will be four games, and they’ll do that twice (Jan. 25-Feb. 3 and Feb. 24-March 4). The Blackhawks have six consecutive road games in December, but it will be split in half by the Christmas break.

Oh, and their first look at the Golden Knights will be when they travel to Las Vegas on Oct. 24.

The Blackhawks will enjoy a six-game homestand, their longest of the season, from Jan. 10-24. 

Check out the schedule in its entirety: