Chicago Sun-Times

Johnsson checks in; Sopel out

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Kim Johnsson, the Blackhawks' newly-acquired defenseman, went through Saturday's morning skate and will be paired with Jordan Hendry against the Atlanta Thrashers in the last home game before the NHL breaks for the Winter Olympics.
Johnsson, picked up from the Minnesota Wild in a deal that sent defenseman Cam Barker to the Wild just before Friday's roster freeze, said he was surprised by the deal.
``But I'm pretty excited about it. This is a great young team,'' he said. ``It could be a great fit.''
Johnsson will replace Brent Sopel in the lineup. Sopel will miss both the Atlanta game as well as Sunday's game in Columbus. Coach Joel Quenneville said the veteran blueliner was banged up and hoped he'd make a full recovery when the Hawks regroup after the Olympics.
While Quenneville planned to start Johnsson with Hendry, that won't necessarily be his full role with the team.
``He'll play with everybody,'' said Quenneville. ``He'll play the penalty kill right off the bat and the power play maybe. He gives us more flexibility.''
The Hawks also recalled Bryan Bickell from Rockford. He'll take a spot on the fourth line with Ben Eager and John Madden both sidelined with lower body injuries.

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Adam L. Jahns is a native Chicagoan hailing from the Far Northwest Side. Jahns has been with the Sun-Times for more than four years, covering the Hawks, Bears, Cubs, Sox and high schools.

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This page contains a single entry by Len Ziehm published on February 13, 2010 11:38 AM.

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