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Cautious Quenneville says Sharp, Hossa could play Thursday vs. Blues

blackhawks x, pradators x

Nashville 0 1 0 — 2

xxxxx 0 1 0 — 1

First Period—None. Penalties—Br.Smith, Det (interference), 3:15; Abdelkader, Det (interference), 8:49.

Second Period—None. Penalties—Carcillo, HAWKS (hooking), 14:27.

Third Period—1, Detroit, Tatar 4 (Andersson, Eaves), 2:43. 2, HAWKS, Kane 11 (Stalberg), 17:58 (pp). Penalties—Hjalmarsson, HAWKS (tripping), 4:10; Ericsson, Det (delay of game), 17:35; Kronwall, Det (delay of game), 18:37.

Overtime—None. Penalties—None.

Shootout—HAWKS 1 (Toews NG, Kane G), Detroit 0 (Datsyuk NG, Brunner NG, Zetterberg NG).

Shots on Goal—HAWKS 9-12-9-3—33. Detroit 3-15-13-2—33.

Power-play opportunities—HAWKS 1 of 4; Detroit 0 of 2.

Goalies—HAWKS, Crawford 10-0-3 (33 shots-32 saves). Detroit, Howard 8-7-3 (33-32).

Referees—Wes McCauley, Mike Hasenfratz. Linesmen—Andy McElman, Derek Amell. A—20,066 (20,066). T—2:35.

Updated: May 3, 2013 6:37AM



If it were May 1 or June 1, and not April 1, winger Patrick Sharp wouldn’t have been sitting out Monday night.

“It’s still not where it needs to be to play,” Sharp said of his injured shoulder. “But if it was Game 7 in the Stanley Cup playoffs, I’m sure I’d be out there. When it’s ready to go, I’m going to play.

‘‘I’m not going to miss games just to be cautious. I want to be out there and play whether our team’s winning or losing.”

The Hawks clearly are being cautious with Sharp and Marian Hossa, neither of whom played Monday in the first of three meetings this week against the Predators.

Coach Joel Quenneville said both “could play” Thursday against the Blues, but he’s playing it safe.

“They’re real close,” he said. “We got a couple of extra days here, [so we can be] more than cautious. More than ready, when they come back, is what we’re looking at.”

Said Hossa: “Every day is helpful, and I think it’s smarter.”

Sharp hasn’t played since Ryan O’Byrne crushed him against the boards on March 6, though he says in terms of conditioning, he feels even better than he did then. At the end of Monday’s optional morning skate, Sharp was digging pucks out of the corner and taking contact.

“I think every time you get injured, there’s a mental aspect to it,” Sharp said.

“You want to make sure you feel safe out there and put it behind you. You can’t be thinking about getting hurt or playing safe to stay healthy because that’s when, ultimately, you do get hurt.

‘‘Mentally, I feel I’m past the injury. It’s just a matter of getting put in the lineup.”

Bloodied, unbowed

Winger Viktor Stalberg spent more than an hour Friday night at the United Center getting “50 or 60” stitches in his lower lip and chin after taking a puck to the face. And he felt fortunate.

“I got lucky,” he said. “No broken jaw, no teeth. Just went straight through and cut open all the way to the bone.”

Stalberg returned to the lineup Sunday at Detroit and will be playing with a full face shield as his wound heals.

“It’s nothing too different,” he said. “Just weird sometimes, trying to scratch your nose or something, and you can’t get it in there.”

Morin moves up

Jeremy Morin and Jimmy Hayes did their best work together in Rockford when they were on the same line. But Morin said he wasn’t upset or jealous when Hayes got called up in the wake of Sharp’s injury, and not himself.

“Jim was up here for a good amount last year,” said Morin, who was called up Friday night and scored on his first shift Sunday. “I know there’s an order. . . . He got a call, and he’s doing well up here. So, obviously, I wanted to get my opportunity and just try to make the most of it.”

Familiar foes

After Monday’s game, the Hawks and Predators have a home-and-home series this weekend, Saturday in Nashville, Sunday in Chicago.

It’s one of the many scheduling quirks in the lockout-shortened season.

“It kind of resembles playoff hockey,” Andrew Shaw said. “I think we need that coming to the end of the stretch here. I think it’s going to better our team and make the team that much stronger.”



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