The Chicago Blackhawks will be without key defenceman Brent Seabrook as they try to stave off elimination from the playoffs on Tuesday when they face the Vancouver Canucks.
Seabrook, who led all Chicago defenseman in scoring during the regular season, will miss the game with an upper body injury suffered when he was laid out by a shoulder-to-head hit from Vancouver's Raffi Torres during Sunday's game.
Trailing the Western Conference quarter-final 3-0, the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks are in a must-win situation in their best-of-seven series.
"Over the course of the last couple of days we were evaluating him and getting to see this morning how things presented, we were hopeful that he was playing tonight, but we made our decision this morning," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said on the team's website.
The Blackhawks complained that the hit was a deliberate hit to the head and wanted Torres suspended but the NHL reviewed the incident and said it did not merit a suspension.
Chicago did receive some good news on Tuesday, announcing that centre Dave Boland is fit to return to action after being sidelined since early March with concussion symptoms.
"He's ready to play," said Quenneville. "He's a competitor. He likes that kind of game and he finds ways where he can be effective, use his intelligence and his instincts."