Corey Crawford was the first Chicago Blackhawks player to appear on the ice Friday at MB Ice Arena for the first day of the team’s training camp. But he wasn’t joined by teammates, at least not right away.
The Chicago goaltender, who missed the majority of last season with a head injury after taking a puck to the head in late December, went through a 30-minute individual workout with goaltending coach Jimmy Waite an hour before the rest of the team practiced. Crawford worked on his puck handling, footwork, lateral movement and even took shots from Waite. According to The Athletic, Crawford returned to the ice last week but did not see live shots.
Crawford gets to work with Jimmy Waite pic.twitter.com/GjyS8a0M5i— Scott Powers (@ByScottPowers) September 14, 2018
Crawford taking shots from the other circle pic.twitter.com/ezzZSvbNm2— Scott Powers (@ByScottPowers) September 14, 2018
Crawford was later joined on the ice by fellow netminders Cam Ward, Anton Forsberg and Collin Delia.
Prior to his injury, Crawford posted some of the best numbers of his career with a .929 save percentage and 2.27 goals-against average and a 16-9-2 record. He was placed on injured reserve Dec. 27 with an undisclosed upper-body injury. The Sun-Times later reported he was experiencing vertigo-like symptoms. In February, he participated in a morning skate with the team in Arizona, but was later shut down for the rest of the season.
Throughout the offseason the Hawks’ front-office stated that they expected Crawford to be ready for training camp. At the team’s fan convention in late July, however, Crawford said he was “not at 100 percent, yet.”