Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Corey Crawford didn't travel with Chicago Blackhawks to Dallas

And just like that, the Chicago Blackhawks are counting on their minor-league starter to win them games at the NHL level. Corey Crawford left Saturday night’s contest against the Florida Panthers in the first period, forcing the team to roll out Antti Raanta for the remainder of the contest.

He’ll get the start this evening when the ‘Hawks take on the Dallas Stars, and Crawford didn’t travel to Texas with the team.

If Raanta can play as well in Dallas as he did against the Panthers, perhaps Chicago will be able to keep on rolling despite losing their No. 1 goalie. He made 29 stops and saw 31 shots, getting his feet wet prior to perhaps taking over as the team’s top netminder for a few contests.

Crawford’s injury reportedly isn’t particularly serious, but it could keep him on the shelf for a game or two. Raanta spoke to Tracey Myers of CSNChicago and had this to say about his mindset:

I just try to get my mind into the game and focus on the right things like that. I got a couple saves late in the first, got my mind in the game. But of course, it’s not the nicest thing to go (in for an injured teammate) like that.

The start will be the fourth overall nod for the 24-year-old goalie since he was recalled from the AHL to take the place of Nikolai Khabibulin.

Tags: Antti Raanta Chicago Blackhawks Corey Crawford NHL

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