Very rarely do you hear players complain about an injury in the NHL. They usually keep playing and doing their best to make sure the team wins, as hockey is a team game. For Corey Crawford with the Chicago Blackhawks, that is precisely what we saw this past month.
Could you imagine if the Chicago Blackhawks did not get to have Corey Crawford on the ice with the during this past postseason? There would have been no way the ‘Hawks would have gotten past Edmonton without him, and they definitely would not have won a game against the Vegas Golden Knights.
Crawford was the team’s MVP throughout all of the playoff run. He might have given up a few soft goals here and there, but he did his best to make sure this team could win night in and night out. That was heroic enough just based on how poor the Blackhawks played defensively, but when you throw in the fact that he did not get to have much of a training camp because of Covid-19, things get even more outstanding.
St. Louis Blues general manager Doug Armstrong has been speaking out recently about some of the issues his players have had due to Covid-19 and the illnesses that came with it. In early July, four players tested positive from the Blues, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. I am sure the Blues maybe could have won their series in the first round against Dallas if it was not for these health issues, but it also shows just how good Corey Crawford was.
Corey Crawford also battled Covid-19. He revealed that he had the virus earlier this summer to reporters during a conference call at the end of training camp. Not only did he have Covid-19, but he also missed most of the training camp presumably because of it.
Crawford walked right into the Stanley Cup qualifiers with very little time to warm up to get back to playing hockey again, and yet he showcased just how good he is. We do not know if Corey Crawford was suffering any of the symptoms that people have reported having after the virus. Crawford shined for the Blackhawks, and he made them a better team on the ice.
I hope that we get to see Corey Crawford back next season. While we do not know who will be in net next season, even Crawford has eluded to the fact that he wants to remain a Blackhawk, if he gets to play the right amount of games.
Corey Crawford is still a starting goalie in the NHL. He has the opportunity to be a difference-maker night in and night out. That is not something the Blackhawks can afford to miss out on. Here is to hoping we get to see Corey Crawford back in the United Center next season!