Thursday, Feb. 17, 2011
Posted 2:56 p.m. Updated 3:59 p.m.
By Chris Boden
The Blackhawks released a follow-up statement Thursday afternoon on the condition of Joel Quenneville following a second day of tests in the hospital.
Joel was originally admitted to the hospital early Wednesday morning due to gastrointestinal bleeding, according to Head Team Physician Dr. Michael Terry. He has been stabilized and today the cause of the bleeding was determined to be a small ulcer caused by aspirin. He is resting comfortably at the hospital and we anticipate him to make a full recovery and to be released in the next few days. At the appropriate time, we will update everyone regarding his release from the hospital and return to the Blackhawks bench.
With that encouraging bit of news, acting head coach Mike Haviland can probably prepare for at least two more games guiding the Blackhawks behind the bench. Wednesday nights 3-1 win over Minnesota likely assisted in Quennevilles recovery.
I talked to Q late last night after the game, said acting head coach Mike Haviland following Thursdays practice. He watched the majority of it. He was pleased, very happy about the game. I know he has some tests today, but he was in really good spirits, joking and laughing on the phone, so it was good to hear.
System-wise, he liked us in the neutral ice, certain areas of our forecheck and our cycles. He was just happy that we won.
Haviland had yet to be told whether hed have the same role behind the bench Friday versus Columbus, but with tests still ongoing, he was certainly preparing for the possibility.
Things are hopefully looking good, added Patrick Sharp. Thats a positive sign. I thought our team played well without him last night. We kind of rallied behind him, had a good game, and we all have our fingers crossed hell be back soon. I just sent him a text and I know a couple of other guys did as well. Ive been in that position before where youre away from the team and got things going on. Just to hear from the guys and others in the organization is a good feeling. Hopefully it lifted his spirits. I know he was happy with how we finished the game the last two periods.
Patrick Kane also exchanged text messages with his coach.
I hear hes doing a lot better, so thats always a good thing to hear. We dont know when hes gonna coach. Obviously we want him back as soon as possible, but I thought Havi did a real good job last night almost like Qs protg. It was pretty much the same thing. He was good in all situations.
Two positives stood out in grabbing the two points in regulation, the first being the play of Marian Hossa, who was denied on a handful of scoring chances, but set up a pair of goals and was a dominating presence. Despite that capability, skill and history of putting up great numbers, Haviland noticed a change in his psyche.
I think its confidence. You see him carry and possess the puck, hes one of the better guys in the league where he can control, protect, and take it to the net. Hes such a strong man and you see what he did last night thats a good sign for this hockey team. We just gotta keep him going that way.
Hossa and Duncan Keith (who played almost 29 minutes) were given the day off from practice, and we might see more of that for Hossa.
Certainly you want him to be ready for the games, said Haviland. The games are more important this time of year. He knows the system, knows what we want so if hes rested, he can play a 60-minute game like we got out of him last night and in Phoenix. Joels been around. He knows when its time to give guys days off and rest them. Certainly we need Hossa to play like he did the last two games down the stretch here.
The other positive: showing third period resiliency a second consecutive game. In 16 of the Hawks 22 regulation losses, theyve led or been tied in the third period. If they took half of those losses to overtime, theyd be sitting atop the logjam in the West instead of towards the bottom. The Hawks rallied to force O.T. with a late goal Saturday in Phoenix, then rebounded from the Wilds tying goal in Wednesdays third.
Its a sign were growing as a team. Maybe its a little later than we thought. When you come from behind and get a point in Phoenix on the road, you get a ton of confidence and thats what we need to see here.
Its nice to see, having a 1-0 lead going in, but even though we gave it up, we came back and won, according to Kane. But the West is so good this year. Columbus is just two points behind us. I think we all know how good we are in here, and if we put it all together, we can still have a special season again.
Kane on Wednesdays return after a two-day bout with the flu: I was a little tired, a little sluggish last night, but I wish we could play tonight, I feel so much better. Its tough being in bed a couple days, but hopefully that means Im that much better tomorrow.
Sharp on catching Chicago Magazine cover-boy grief: A couple of guys are giving me a hard time. I know Jonathan (Toews) is pretty jealous about it. He thinks Michigan Avenue magazine can steal the show, and hes upset hes not one of the 50 Most Beautiful Chicagoans. But are guys are having fun with it.
Reporters didnt get a chance to ask Haviland if Corey Crawford returns to the net Friday against the Blue Jackets, but we can only guess after Thursdays evaluation of his 33-save night against Minnesota:
He was outstanding. He kept us in it early on when we didnt have our legs. He battled when we turned the puck over in our end and they got some point-blank chances and he stood on his head.
Chris Boden is the host of Blackhawks Pre and Postgame Live on Comcast SportsNet.