Coach Joel Quenneville isn’t one for shaking up his lineup when they’re winning, but Richard Panik won’t be in the lineup for the Blackhawks when they go for their 13th straight victory Thursday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
It’s not an injury Panik out, though. Instead, he’ll be out of the contest because he overslept and missed practice. Quenneville said because Panik was late to the team skate, he won’t be suiting up for the Stanley Cup final rematch. According to the Chicago Tribune’s Chris Hine, Panik arrived at the arena late for the 11:30 a.m. practice and skated by himself as his teammates were coming off the ice.
"It’s too fresh right now to really assess it," Quenneville said of Panik’s lateness.
Panik has played in five games with the Blackhawks since being acquired from the Toronto Maple Leafs Jan. 4 in exchange for Jeremy Morin.
Panik has been able to contribute in a fourth-line role for Chicago. He’s even riding a bit of a hot streak, as he has tallied in each of his past two games and has three points in his past four games. Panik has been contributing with limited ice time, too, as he’s averaged 8:28 per game with the Blackhawks. The 24-year-old played the full season with the Maple Leafs in 2014-15 and notched 11 goals and 17 points.
Panik’s linemates in his limited ice time have been Dennis Rasmussen and Ryan Garbutt, who was traded earlier Thursday to Anaheim. With Panik out of the lineup, Chicago will go with seven defensemen and 11 forwards.