Blackhawks News

Chicago Blackhawks Call Up Phillip Danault

By Keith Schultz

The Chicago Blackhawks called up Phillip Danault today which probably says a lot about Marcus Kruger‘s injury. Kruger left the game last night when Kruger lost an edge going around the Hawks net and slammed into the boards.  The only update we received about Kruger last night from Joel Quenneville was that he would be reevaluated today with an upper body injury.  Kruger was on the bench squeezing his hand in a lot of pain before he left the bench last night.

Danault probably would have been in Chicago earlier this season if he hadn’t missed four months after having hip surgery in the offseason.  The Chicago Blackhawks have tried out what seems like half of the roster in Rockford with them all getting short stints before returning back to Rockford so now that Danault is back and healthy it seems fitting that Danault gets a crack at it with Kruger apparently out for some time.

Danault has been back in Rockford for 6 games so far this season, and he’s picked up 1 goal and 1 assist with -2 rating. Danault has been in the penalty box for 4 minutes and has put 17 shots on net in his 6 games this season.

Danault is a former #1 draft pick in the 2011 draft, and his stats have improved each season while playing for the IceHogs in Rockford.  In his first full season in Rockford he scored 6 goals while picking up 20 assists, and last season he scored 13 times while picking up 25 assists.   He also had a cup of coffee with the Chicago Blackhawks last season when he played in two games and getting pretty good reviews by Joel Quenneville and Stan Bowman.

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The interesting thing about Danault is that he’s been compared to Marcus Kruger since he made it to Rockford, and that he’s been told to model his game like Kruger’s which is pretty straightforward, forechecking, and good on the penalty kill game.

So the fact that Danault will be more than likely be replacing Kruger in the lineup ends up being ironic in the end.  The bottom 6 has been a struggle for most of the season, and last night the bottom line with Kruger, Ryan Garbutt, and Andrew Desjardins was very effective so it will be pretty big skates for Danault to fill.

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My only question is that Tanner Kero played well when he was up, and was pretty solid on the penalty kill so is this just another audition or do the Hawks in the end like Danault more than Kero at this time?

Danault is back in Chicago, what are your expectations?