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Morning Skate Update: Murphy to miss two games; Stalock a game-time decision

Some updates before Friday’s game.

Chicago Blackhawks v Florida Panthers Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

A few small updates ahead of the game Friday night between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Florida Panthers.

The biggest news out of Friday morning’s practice was that defensemen Connor Murphy will miss the next two games — Friday night’s match against the Panthers as well as Saturday’s against the Tampa Bay Lightning — for personal reasons.

As a result, Filip Roos is expected to draw into the lineup in place of Murphy. Roos was recalled from the Rockford IceHogs on Thursday.

In net, Petr Mrazek is the starter as Alex Stalock missed practice due to a stomach issue.

More bad shrimp?

Either way, Blackhawks coach Luke Richardson said after practice that they hope Stalock is able to back up to Mrazek but was not sure what would happen if Stalock wasn’t ready to go. The IceHogs have a game in Grand Rapids on Friday night, which would make recalling one of the AHL goalies difficult.

Other than those two changes, the lineup for Friday is expected to be the same as against the Detroit Red Wings:

A couple of other non-practice related notes:

First, the Blackhawks have re-signed forward Luke Philip to a one-year extension with a $775,000 cap hit. He’s only played in two games for the Blackhawks — picking up one assist in the process — but he’s been a strong veteran presence with the IceHogs, playing top-line minutes and producing 38 points (18 G, 20 A) in 45 AHL games. Only Dave Gust, Lukas Reichel, and Brett Seney have been more productive for Rockford.

Second, Murphy spoke to journalists about the Blackhawks’ upcoming Pride Night on March 26 and how the expectation is that all Blackhawks players will participate in all activities:

This topic was broached to Murphy because a few other NHL teams — those notably with Russian players like the Minnesota Wild and New York Rangers — have foregone their full participation of wearing Pride-themed jerseys. Other teams that still have Russian players — like the Pittsburgh Penguins, Los Angeles Kings, and Florida Panthers — have either already donned the jerseys on their respective Pride Nights or plan to do so in the near future.

For more about the intricacies of this topic, the team over at The Athletic has a good summary:

As for the Panthers, forward Anthony Duclair will not be in the lineup versus the Blackhawks due to a non-COVID illness.

Did he eat the shrimp too?

Duclair had previously missed several months due to an Achilles tendon injury suffered in the offseason that required surgery. As a result, he’s only played in five games this season, notching one goal and two assists.

The Panthers had an optional practice on Friday, but their lineup at practice on Thursday had the following changes from their last game: defenseman Casey Fitzgerald filling in during forward rushes, Sam Reinhart jumped from the third line up into Duclair’s spot on the top line, and Colin White moved from the fourth to the third line.

Sergei Bobrovsky is the expected starter in net for the Panthers Friday.