Dan Carcillo makes feisty return, fights Todd Bertuzzi
By Adam L. Jahns email@example.com December 30, 2011 10:06PM
Hawks winger Daniel Carcillo and Todd Bertuzzi of the Red Wings mix it up in the first period. | John J. Kim~Sun-Times
Updated: February 1, 2012 8:11AM
Blackhawks winger Daniel Carcillo said he was “all go” for the highly anticipated matchup Friday against the Detroit Red Wings. It didn’t take him too long to show it.
Carcillo, who missed six consecutive games with a suspected concussion, knocked Red Wings winger Todd Bertuzzi’s helmet off with a hard hit in the first period, then fought him seconds later.
The Hawks were cautious with Carcillo, who was hurt Dec. 14 after some scuffles against the Minnesota Wild. Carcillo took part in two long practices and three morning skates before rejoining the lineup. Coach Joel Quenneville said they wanted to make sure “all systems are go” with him because he’s counted on to be physical.
“I wouldn’t come back if I didn’t feel like I can play that way,” Carcillo said. “That’s the way I need to play to be effective . . . all go.”
Carcillo played with Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa on the first line. His fight with Bertuzzi was his fifth this season. He fought the Wild’s Brad Staubitz in his last game.
“It’s exciting to get back into the lineup, especially against Detroit,” Carcillo said. “It’s always nice to play in these types of games. Everybody plays with a lot of passion.”
Although he was able to infuriate Bertuzzi with his hard, clean check, Carcillo said before the game that the Red Wings are a tough team to land good hits on. Despite missing time, Carcillo is still second among the Hawks in hits.
“They’re really hard,” Carcillo said. “Their ‘D’ handles the puck so well, and they’re so spread out. The way they possess the puck, it’s tough.
‘‘You’ve got to kind of play a simple game against them.”
Defenseman Steve Montador has missed practices this week and the Hawks’ morning skate Wednesday for what Quenneville calls “maintenance.”
After Friday’s morning skate, Montador, who turned 32 on Dec. 21, said everything is fine.
“It’s just taking a couple of days to prepare for games,” he said.
In and out
Rookie center Marcus Kruger (concussion) still hasn’t resumed skating since his symptoms returned after getting roughed up Monday against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
“But he’s doing better,” Quenne-ville said.
The Red Wings were without forwards Tomas Holmstrom and Darren Helm, who have groin injuries. Defensemen Sami Lepisto and John Scott were healthy scratches for the Hawks.