The Blackhawks’ Marian Hossa, who has missed the past two games due to a family emergency, has rejoined his “other family” on the road in Calgary Wednesday.
As with most hockey absences, details were sparse until his return.
Now that Hossa is back for the Flames matchup, the team has revealed he went to be by Jana’s side while she was hospitalized with an illness.
He revealed that his wife had a difficult labor with their new daughter, Zoja, earlier this month and then went to the emergency room Saturday morning.
“You love hockey so much but family is the most important thing for me and, I’m sure, everyone here,” he said. “As soon as something like this happens, you want to be there for them.”
Jana was discharged from the hospital Monday. Hossa said she has improved.
Continued well wishes to the Hossa gang.
As for the Blackhawks on-ice family, Michal Handzus played in Edmonton and Michael Kostka returned to practice in Calgary. Kostka isn’t expected to play against the Flames, but should be back soon.
Johnny Oduya may be a scratch against Calgary, too, after stopping a puck with his left knee against the Oilers.
Nicolai Khabibulin is still out after the injury that pulled him (and possibly his groin?) mid-game in Nashville the 16th.
Goaltender Anti Raanta is expected to make his NHL debut, giving Corey Crawford some much-needed rest during the Blackhawks’ grueling road tour.
“We’re excited about him getting into the net,” Coach Joel Quenneville said. “It’ll be a good challenge for him, a good test.”
Raanta had a 7-5-0 record with a 2.83 goals-against average and a .914 save percentage in 14 Rockford IceHogs appearances this season before being called up to the Blackhawks.