With Patrick Kane Out Marian Hossa Will Step Up

By Michael Anthony Orona

Jan 20, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Marian Hossa (81) shoots the buck against the Arizona Coyotes during the third period at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks defeat Arizona Coyotes 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Well…that’s unfortunate. Blackhawk Nation is reeling from the news that Patrick Kane will miss (at minimum) 12 weeks due to Alex Petrovic’s hit from behind in the first period of last night’s shootout win over the Florida Panthers. We could debate whether or not the hit was a cheap shot but that does ‘Hawks fans no good. Kane is going to miss the rest of the regular season and most of the playoffs and nothing is going to change that.

Kane’s injury is an obvious gigantic blow to the ‘Hawks chances of hoisting another Cup. The ‘Hawks struggles as of late have been well documented and while Kane had gone cold the last 5 games he still is tied for the league lead in points. There’s not much to say except this one hurts.

But like all hard things in life, we have to look for something positive to hold on to. We still have the best 2-way player in the world, one of the best defensemen in the league, and a Hall of Fame player who just started heating up.

Marian Hossa may be 36 years old but he’s still one of the very best players in hockey. And with 10 points in his last 10 games he’s showing he’s far from done.

While most of the attention has shifted to trade options since Kane’s injury, I have calmed my personal fears knowing the Blackhawks are going to lean on Hossa more than ever. ‘Hawks fans should obviously trust Joel Quenville to find the right lineups needed to weather this storm, but you have to believe Hossa wants the chance to show he can put the team on his back for the stretch run. He can’t do it alone. Other ‘Hawks are going to have to step up greatly (I’m looking at you Patty Sharp and Mr. Bickell) if we’re going to make a deep run. But knowing we still have a right winger capable of dominating a game calms some of the uneasiness I had earlier today.

As for ‘Hawks trade options, TSN’s Bob McKenzie thinks Arizona Coyotes center Antoine Vermette may be a target.

I love Vermette as a player and think he would be a great addition. However, if we’re going to weather this on-ice crisis we find ourselves in Marian Hossa will be one of the main reasons why.

We never said it’d be easy, and this ain’t gonna be fun, but it’s going to be a fascinating finish.