Corey Crawford of Chicago Blackhawks unlikely to be ready for season opener

NHL News

The Chicago Blackhawks could go into their season opener without their longtime goaltender in net, as Corey Crawford continues to recover from a concussion.

Coach Joel Quenneville said Monday that it “might be stretching it” for Crawford to play in the Oct. 4 opener against the Ottawa Senators.

Crawford played in 28 games last season, going 16-9-2 with a 2.27 goals-against average and .929 save percentage. The two-time All-Star was placed on injured reserve with a concussion on Dec. 27 and hasn’t practiced since Feb. 12.

He has played in every Blackhawks season opener since 2011-12.

Without Crawford, Chicago is likely to start Cam Ward in goal. Ward signed a one-year, $3 million contract with the Blackhawks during the offseason. Collin Delia or Anton Forsberg could serve as the backup goaltender.

No matter who is the goaltender, center Jonathan Toews said the rest of the team has to pitch in.

“At the end of the day, we’ve got to do a better job of playing in front of our goaltender, regardless of who is in there,” he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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