While the Chicago Blackhawks moved back into first place after a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens, it came at quite a cost. Artem Anisimov suffered a lower body injury when he injured his left leg in the first period.  The Blackhawks center was injured when Alexander Radulov crashed on the back of his legs in an effort to play the puck.  Anisimov got his career high 45th point in the game with an assist to Patrick Kane on a goal.

Coach Joel Quenneville has said that Anisimov will miss 3-4 weeks. Quenneville is hopeful that Anisimov will be back in time for the playoffs.  While Anisimov is injured, the man to replace him is Nick Schmaltz.  Schmaltz has 6 goals and 13 assists in 45 games.  While Schmaltz has only played 589 minutes, his time on the ice has been helped greatly by playing alongside guys such as Artemi Panarin, and Jonathan Toews.

A New Beginning

With time getting shorter before the playoffs, the Hawks are starting to work on what their playoff roster will look like.  One person that is trying to make a big entrance is Yale Graduate John Hayden.  The young forward will get some time to play, especially with Anisimov missing some time.  Hayden signed a 2-year contract this week.  The 22-year-old was drafted in the 3rd round and is 6’3″, 210 pounds.  His senior year with Yale, he scored 21 goals and 13 assists in 33 games.  Hayden will most likely debut on Thursday against the Senators.

“He’s a hard-working type of guy, one of those guys along the wall, in front of the net who has some physicality to his game (and) greasiness at the net. We’re looking forward to seeing how he handles it up here and how he fits in. He gives us some size and aggressiveness.” –Joel Quenneville, Head Coach–Chicago Blackhawks

Feature Image Credit: Minas Panagiotakis / Getty Images

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