Viktor Stalberg was benched for some reason in the Blackhawks' Game 1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night, but coach Joel Quenneville said reports that it was over a disagreement in power play time were "100 percent inaccurate."
Sources said that Stalberg, who played in 47 games this regular season and all five games of the first round against Minnesota, took issue with his very reduced power-play role vs. the Wild. Quenneville said that was not true at all.
"Viktor didn't play and he knows the reasons why. It had nothing to do with that at all," Quenneville said during availability on Thursday. "That situation wasn't even addressed."
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Quenneville said there are tough decisions to make when players come back from injury, and the Blackhawks had one to make when Dave Bolland returned for Game 1. Quenneville pointed to how he had to decide between Sheldon Brookbank and Michal Rozsival throughout the season, and "having to sit one of those guys half the season was definitely unfair."
"We had progressed the last couple of games in the Minnesota series. Somebody had to come out," Quenneville continued. "When you look at every situation, there was a good argument for a number of guys. I don’t want to get into the arguments, but there were strong considerations."
As to whether or not Stalberg plays in Game 2, Quenneville said, "we'll see."