The Blackhawks are hoping to have Connor Bedard back next week. According to head coach Luke Richardson, there’s still some final checks that have to be done–which is to be expected–before the 2023 first overall pick is cleared to be back on the ice in game action.
“We’re hoping after that six week mark,” Richardson told reporters Monday. “That would be a week from today–I guess.”
Protecting Bedard from any further injury is still the top priority but there’s no doubting that the Blackhawks desperately need him back to generate a little more offense. Though the Hawks had a great comeback Friday night that ended up falling short, it’s been difficult for them to find the back of the net in Bedard’s absence.
With him returning soon, it should allow Chicago to open up more opportunity with the opposition having to once again key in on the 18-year-old phenom.
Without Connor Bedard, Numbers Are Telling
The first game without him, an 8-1 drubbing at the hands of the Dallas Stars on New Years Eve, was almost foreshadowing for what was to come. Chicago has scored just 21 goals since Bedard was ruled out, averaging just 1.62 goals per game. Not surprisingly, the Blackhawks are 3-10, and have scored one goal or less eight times. They’ve also been shut out four times in that stretch.
Bedard still leads the team in points with 33 and trails Jason Dickinson by just one goal and Philipp Kurashev by one assist for the team lead in the respective categories. Knowing that Bedard has missed 13 games–and obviously more even though both Bedard and the team are hoping for a return next week.
Which is right on the timeframe initially given.
The Blackhawks will certainly be better for it when Connor Bedard returns and it will be quite the show if he is able to play when Patrick Kane returns to the United Center February 25th–with the Detroit Red Wings.
A clean bill of health without further aggravation to the injury comes first–which everyone, including the fans–can agree takes precedence.
But everyone can agree the Blackhawks can’t get Bedard back fast enough.