Shaw's status for Tuesday up in the air

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Shaw's status for Tuesday up in the air

GLENDALE, Ariz. Andrew Shaw stood in the Blackhawks locker room, fielding the obvious questions after his hit on Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith on Saturday night. Whether hell have to answer for it from the NHL remains to be seen.

Shaw was assessed a five-minute charging and a game misconduct for his hit on Smith, who was down for several moments and then popped up and finished the game in the Blackhawks 4-3 overtime victory over Phoenix. Smith was prone for a few moments, as Shaw was sent to the penalty box and, soon after, to the locker room.

Then Smith got up and told trainers that he could finish the game. Afterward, Smith, through the Coyotes media relations department, said, I feel fine. Im 100 percent.

And then, of course, there was the inevitable he saidhe said on what happened.

I went back to play the puck and I didnt see him coming, Smith said via Coyotes PR. I dont have eyes in the back of my head.

Coach Joel Quenneville said, I think (Shaw) was trying to avoid contact. Its a tough call. He was playing well again, too.

Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said the league will look at that. Obviously thats contact at the head and it doesnt matter if its a goaltender or a player. Thats blind-side contact to the head.

Shaw said he didnt mean to do it.

He went to play the puck and his stick came up toward my face so I tried to get out of the way of it. Unfortunately I made contact. I didnt try to hit him but unfortunately I did, Shaw said. Im just glad hes OK and he could finish the game.

When Smith was down, it looked like he wouldnt be able to keep playing. Backup goaltender Jason LaBarbera came out onto the ice and stretched, seemingly in preparation to relieve Smith. Nevertheless, Shaws night was over.

I dont know if it came down to whether the officials thought Smith was going to stay in the game or not. Obviously they thought he was done and thats probably why he got the 5-minute penalty, Jonathan Toews said. From what I saw, Shaw wasnt going in there trying to take his head off. From what I saw, he was trying to avoid contact and that was unfortunate that it happened.

Whether or not Shaw hears from the league on the hit is unknown right now. The Blackhawks dont play again until Tuesday, so if there is anything it doesnt have to be decidedbe announced until Monday.

I dont know. Well see what happens, Shaw said. Its just unfortunate. Im just glad hes OK.

Fast Break Morning Update: Blackhawks win, Jimmy Butler starts All-Star Game

Fast Break Morning Update: Blackhawks win, Jimmy Butler starts All-Star Game

Here are some of Sunday's top stories in Chicago sports:

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

Patrick Kane leads Blackhawks to win in Buffalo homecoming

What Joe Maddon wants to see next from Javier Baez

Jose Abreu ready for 2017 after season full of 'different challenges'

Wojnarowski: Bulls-Celtics Jimmy Butler trade talks 'will loom over the entire week'

After surreal offseason, Ben Zobrist comes to Cubs camp in style as World Series MVP

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson out at least 10 days with foot injury

Fire score five goals for fourth preseason win

Simeon beats rival Morgan Park for city championship

Former Northwestern football player Torri Stuckey now focuses on helping others

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

NEW ORLEANS — Every All-Star isn’t created equal, even by the slimmest of margins as the best 24 NBA players take their turn on the midseason stage.

So Jimmy Butler being announced among the first five as an All-Star starter had to represent some form of validation, now that he’s not a novice at the whole experience and he’s able to go through the motions of the hectic weekend without breaking much of a sweat.

But despite being a three-time All-Star and routinely mentioned as one of the game’s top 15 players or even top 10, he can’t shake the trade rumors that have seemed to follow him since this time last season.

As he finished up his All-Star experience at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, clarity was nowhere to be found—although heading to some tropical island for a couple days to actually unwind with clear water and warm air seemed to be the best therapy if he’s stressed by the uncertainty of the next few days.

“What’s Thursday? Oh, trade deadline,” Butler said. “I don’t know. I don’t know. Am I anxious? Come on, man. I don’t worry about it. It don’t bother or scare me none.”

“Hopefully I’m not going to get traded but I don’t know. I don’t control that. Control what I can control, like going on vacation.”

Surely it has to be frustrating for a guy who’s elevated his game yet again, averaging 24.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.8 steals for the Bulls in 51 games. But he refuses to let it damper his All-Star spirits, playing with some of the best players in the world and a few guys he calls friends, like DeAndre Jordan and Kevin Durant.

“Not for me,” said Butler of the potential stress. “Not saying I’m untradeable but I don’t think about that. If I’m not in a Bulls uniform, I’ll give you a hug and say goodbye to you.”

Moments after Butler made his statement in the media room, the floodgates opened for the trade market as fellow Olympian DeMarcus Cousins was traded from the Sacramento Kings to the New Orleans Pelicans for what seemed to be mere fodder, pennies on the dollar for the most talented center in the NBA.

[SHOP: Get your Bulls gear right here]

While Cousins is far more of a handful than Butler could be, the trade almost signals a consistent truth that always bears repeating—that short of a select few, anybody can be traded.

Even a franchise altering talent like Cousins, who was traded to the city he was physically in for All-Star weekend, and included in the package of players was a guy who hit him in the groin last week (Buddy Hield), resulting in a Cousins outburst and ejection.

Butler has made his name with the Bulls, although not necessarily on the All-Star stage, a player who values defense and doesn’t have as much flash as some of the game’s shinier players.

With a six-point outing in 20 minutes, Butler was an on-court afterthought despite being a starter for the first time.

“Six? Should’ve gone for eight,” he sarcastically deadpanned.

In a relatively jovial mood through the weekend, Butler joked about the talk surrounding him and tried to brush it off as mere chatter as opposed to the franchise not seeing enough in him to make a firm commitment for the long-term, as the Boston Celtics are always hovering.

League sources expect the Celtics to engage the Bulls in conversations for the next few days, but nobody has a great feel for what either side is truly looking for.

But as Butler insisted, he’s only controlling what he can control, which is making himself a fixture for All-Star games to come as opposed to some of the first-timers who don’t know if they’ll get back here again.

“I think I got two underneath my belt,” Butler said. “I know what they’re feeling the first time, It’s so surreal like maybe I do belong here. That’s how I was thinking. Now it’s how do I get here every year? I think that’s the fun part, that’s the challenge. A lot of those guys have done it 10-plus years, hopefully I’m one.”

The only question seems to be, which uniform will it be in because the crazy season has begun.