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NHL-worst Blackhawks look to get right vs. Coyotes

Jan 3, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) looks on against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the first period at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago forward Patrick Kane skated for the first two periods of the Blackhawks’ Tuesday game against the Tampa Bay Lightning before being held out for the third with an aggravated lower-body injury.

Coach Luke Richardson said Kane would be a “maybe” for Friday as the Blackhawks host the Arizona Coyotes in the third game of a seven-game homestand.

Chicago could use his presence. Before being held off the scoresheet in the 4-1 loss to the Lightning, Kane had netted three goals in five games.

“He seemed in a good mood (Thursday), but it was just a gym day for him just to give him more rest and time to settle down,” Richardson said. “Hopefully he’ll be trying it (Friday) morning, so that’s good. It’s possible (he will play Friday), for sure.

“There was no sense to flare it up (Thursday). It’s just settling down, so if he can get through (Thursday) well and let the inflammation get out of there and he feels good (Friday), he’ll definitely try to push through, so that’s good.”

The Blackhawks have managed just five goals in their five-game losing streak and are 2-20-1 in their past 23 games, dating back to Nov. 14.

Chicago, which has the fewest points and lowest points percentage in the NHL, hopes for a jolt from minor league call-ups Lukas Reichel and Brett Seney, who are set to join the team after fellow forwards MacKenzie Entwistle (right wrist) and Jujhar Khaira (lower back) recently were placed on injured reserve.

Both of the newcomers surpassed the 30-point plateau in the first 32 games for AHL Rockford. Reichel had 14 goals and 22 assists, and Seney put up 14 goals and 24 assists. Rockford sits in second place in the AHL’s Central Division.

“You look at kind of what we’re doing in Rockford and when you’re winning, it’s easy to kind of play more free and not worry too much about what the other teams doing,” Seney said. “(You can) just focus on your own game. When your team’s doing well and you’re doing well, individually, I think it kind of helps when you come up and you can kind of play confident.”

Arizona enters the finale of a four-game road trip with three straight losses, falling by a combined score of 16-8.

The Coyotes are coming off a 6-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday. Arizona opened the scoring with a Michael Carcone goal at 13:29 of the first period and held a 2-1 lead early in the second, but the Flyers’ five-goal barrage in the middle period ultimately proved too much.

Barrett Hayton notched two assists for the Coyotes, while Karel Vejmelka stopped 28 shots.

Arizona surrendered three goals in a five-minute span during one stretch of the second period.

“That was tough to explain,” Coyotes coach Andre Tourigny said. “We need to find a solution.”

Friday marks the first of four scheduled meetings between the Blackhawks and Coyotes, now both in the Central Division following realignment before last season.

–Field Level Media

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