Blackhawks coach won't rule Patrick Kane out of 1st round of playoffs
Jerry Lai / USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Blackhawks may be set to welcome Patrick Kane back to the lineup sooner than expected.

Originally expected to be out up to 12 weeks with a broken clavicle, thereby missing the opening round of the playoffs, head coach Joel Quenneville did not rule the star winger out of Game 83.

"Tough to say," Quenneville said Sunday of Kane's first round availability. "Medical clearance is the hurdle. … That's where it's at."

Kane is ineligible to return prior to the end of the regular season due to salary cap regulations, but has begun skating in advance of his inevitable return.

In 61 games prior to the injury, Kane scored 27 goals and added 37 assists, and his presence in the lineup is indeed vital in terms of Chicago's Stanley Cup aspiratons.

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Blackhawks coach won't rule Patrick Kane out of 1st round of playoffs
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