Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Chicago Blackhawks [Print without images]

Monday, March 28, 2011
Johnson OK after taking elbow to head

By Jesse Rogers

DETROIT -- The NHL will undoubtedly review the hit Todd Bertuzzi put on Ryan Johnson in the first period of the Chicago Blackhawks' 3-2 overtime victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Monday at Joe Louis Arena.

Johnson was near a corner with the puck when Bertuzzi hit him with an elbow/forearm to the head. Bertuzzi was given a five-minute major penalty and a game misconduct, which ended his night. Johnson laid on the ice for a moment, then went back to the dressing room.

“I knew I was going to take a hit to make the play there,” Johnson said. “I don’t think it was anything malicious, he was very apologetic. He came walking in here and said, ‘Sorry,’ as soon as it happened.”

Johnson went to the dressing room, adhering to new NHL protocol for possible concussions. He was OK to return to the game -- at least his head was OK.

“With the new standard you have to go back and go through the tests with the [doctor] quickly,” Johnson said. “He ripped the skin off my ear, so they had to sew my ear back on. It will look pretty in a few days I’m sure.”

Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said he needed to see the replay of the hit before commenting.

“We had a five-minute power play,” he said. “I think that was probably the call. Five-minute major [was] probably the right call.”

For the record, Quenneville believes the hit Tampa Bay’s Pavel Kubina put on Dave Bolland earlier this month was worse than Bertuzzi’s. Kubina was suspended for three games.

Kane’s play: Hossa never scores a power-play goal to win the game if Patrick Kane isn’t hooked by Henrik Zetterberg with less than four seconds remaining in regulation. Hard work led to the call.

“I thought we had a 2-on-1 going, I didn’t see Zetterberg there,” Kane said. “I just pulled it to the middle and got hooked. It’s a big play, especially with that time left.”

After the game, Zetterberg said the hooking call was justified, even with just seconds remaining.

Kane said his teammates think he’s ready to “explode.” He had two assists on Monday, including on the game winner by Hossa.

Slappers

  • Hossa, Kane and Michael Frolik tied for the team lead with seven shots on net apiece. The Hawks had 41 for the game. It’s the second most the Wings have given up in a loss this season.

  • The Hawks won the game despite winning only 39 percent of their faceoffs. Jonathan Toews was just 10 of 29 in the circle.

  • With the win, the Hawks opened up a three-point lead on ninth-place Calgary and a four-point lead on tenth-place Dallas.

  • Niklas Hjalmarsson admitted he "got away with one" when he tripped Tomas Holmstrom during a second-period breakaway. Holmstrom was in alone on Hawks goaltender Corey Crawford when Hjalmarsson dove at him from behind, taking out his legs.

    "I was waiting for the penalty shot," Hjalmarsson said. "It never came."

  • Quotable: “If we put our minds to anything, we have the players in here to do some pretty special things.” -- Kane, after the Hawks’ overtime win.