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Carcillo relieved to avoid another injury

3/31/2013
The Blackhawks' Daniel Carcillo battles for position with the Red Wings' Niklas Kronwall. Dave Reginek/NHLI/Getty Images

DETROIT -- It’s easy to understand why Chicago Blackhawks forward Daniel Carcillo feared the worst after taking a shot off the inside of his right ankle Sunday afternoon at Joe Louis Arena.

Carcillo had just been through two knee injuries, one major, over the last year and it seemed like another stint on injured reserve was just around the corner after a blast off the stick of Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson sent him down to the ice early in the first period.

Carcillo was fearful he broke a bone.

“It hurt,” Carcillo said after the Blackhawks’ 7-1 win. “I just saw that he was going to beat me with the shot inside, so I just tried to get in front of it.”

Despite having to be helped off the ice and then to the Blackhawks’ dressing room, Carcillo returned to finish out the first period.

“You always feel fortunate after something like that,” Carcillo said. “It’s the unknown (at first) and the last thing I need right now is another injury.”

Carcillo’s season ended last year after tearing the ACL in his left knee against the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 2, 2012.

Then, after a collision with Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty in the third period of the Blackhawks’ season opener this year, he suffered a sprained right knee that sidelined him 15 games.

“Well, you don’t know where the shot was,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. “I knew it was a foot, but anyways, nice to see him back out there.”

Carcillo saw the third highest amount of ice time he’s seen all year, skating 11:31 on 16 shifts. He finished with one hit and the one blocked shot.

“I thought after missing some games, I thought he’s come back the last couple of games the way we saw him the first game of the year,” Quenneville said. “He’s got some more pace to his game. He’s got more purpose to his game, as well. I thought that line was useful.”