Crawford was the only Blackhawks player on the postseason roster that did not attend Monday’s practice at Fifth Third Arena.
Chicago Blackhawks veteran goaltender Corey Crawford is currently “unfit to participate” in the NHL’s Phase 3 of the Return-To-Play Plan, according to head coach Jeremy Colliton. As part of the NHL’s new policy, Colliton was not able to further comment on the situation regarding Crawford’s reason for the absence, or how long he will be away from the team for.
At the moment, there are plenty of theories going around on why Crawford did not report to Blackhawks training camp this morning. One possible explanation is that he and his wife had their second child back in April, so Crawford may not be wanting to take the risk with a new-born baby in his household. Whether or not that would keep Crawford out for the entire postseason is obviously still unknown.
There are also talks of Crawford possibly being one of the 30 or so NHL players that recently tested positive for COVID-19, which would certainly explain his absence. If Crawford is currently positive, that means he will be held from the Blackhawks training camp for at least a handful of days while in quarantine.
The scariest part of this scenario is that Colliton did not sound too confident that Crawford will return to the team for the potential postseason. That would leave the Hawks with either Malcolm Subban, Collin Delia, Kevin Lankinen, or Matt Tomkins in goal against the Edmonton Oilers in the best-of-five play-in series. Yikes.
If Crawford is not able to suit up in net for the Blackhawks, then, quite frankly, they do not stand much of a chance against a potent Oilers’ offense lead by Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. Whatever his situation may be, let’s hope that Crawford makes an appearance at Fifth Third Arena in Chicago sometime soon for any shot at advancing through the Western Conference in the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
For more Blackhawks news and updates, follow the author (@TalkinHawkey) on Twitter. Make sure to check out the author’s podcast, Locked On Blackhawks, which can be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Twitter (@LO_Blackhawks).