The Blackhawks announced Tuesday morning that defensemen Seth Jones has been officially removed from COVID-19 protocol:
MEDICAL UPDATE: Seth Jones has been removed from COVID-19 protocol.— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) January 18, 2022
Head athletic trainer Mike Gapski and head equipment manager Troy Parchman were also removed from COVID-19 protocol. pic.twitter.com/Xp6pgJxbYz
This isn’t surprising: it had been reported prior to Monday night’s game against the Seattle Kraken that Jones had been cleared, but that the Blackhawks weren’t going to fly him out to join the team. Instead, Jones will rejoin his teammates Tuesday in Chicago.
Seth Jones tested out of COVID protocol this morning, King said. He’ll rejoin the team when they return to Chicago tomorrow.— Ben Pope (@BenPopeCST) January 17, 2022
The Blackhawks also re-assigned forwards Mike Hardman and Josiah Slavin, defenseman Jakub Galvas and goaltender Cale Morris back to the Rockford IceHogs:
Hogs on the Move: Hardman, Slavin, Galvas and Morris return to the @goicehogs from the @NHLBlackhawks https://t.co/9of1rq6lVE pic.twitter.com/dOnxSBV5Ia— Rockford IceHogs (@goicehogs) January 18, 2022
Speaking of the IceHogs, interim head coach Anders Sorensen, along with several prominent prospects — including Lukas Reichel — will be interviewed on WGN Radio on Tuesday night at 6 p.m.:
@NHLBlackhawks are off after M-AF helped them squeeze out a point in SEA. #Blackhawks Live isn't off. Join @Joe_Brand1 & me 6p @WGNRadio as we talk what's going on down on The Farm with @goicehogs Coach Anders Sorensen: Kalynuk, Regula, Mitchell, Beaudin, Barratt, Reichel, etc.— Chris Boden (@BodenTweets) January 18, 2022
Also, from a league-wide perspective, Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli reported that the NHL will be changing it’s COVID-19 testing policy after the All-Star Break: specifically that the NHL will no longer test asymptomatic players except for cross-border travel, per Canadian regulations. The NHL will continue to test players if they have symptoms.
NEWS: Sources tell @DailyFaceoff that #NHL will no longer test asymptomatic players and staff following the All-Star break, provided Covid-19 rates continue to decline around the league.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) January 18, 2022
Testing will only then be for cross-border travel (as required) and if symptoms arise.
Additionally, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported that the NHL will be announcing the schedule of games that were postponed due to COVID-19 as soon as Wednesday:
Also expecting updated NHL schedule as soon as tomorrow...lots going on— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) January 18, 2022
Because the Tuesday game against the Edmonton Oilers was postponed, the Blackhawks have three days off before facing the Minnesota Wild Friday night at the United Center at 7:30 p.m.