Defensemen Niklas Hjalmarsson and Michal Rozsival also sat out for what Chicago coach Joel Quenneville called "maintenance days," as the Blackhawks begin to rest some players following Wednesday's night's clinching of the Western Conference crown while they were idle.
The Columbus Blue Jackets defeating the Anaheim Ducks in overtime Wednesday night assured Chicago of the conference's top spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and Quenneville wants a healthy team heading into the postseason. Corey Crawford likely will make the start Friday night at United Center against the Nashville Predators, and goalie Carter Hutton was recalled from Rockford of the American Hockey League on Thursday to replace Emery.
"I think at this time we want to make sure we're smart about rest and whether these are … maybe they're small enough [issues] that they could become bigger, and we have that luxury of making sure they are more preventive than anything," Quenneville said. "Corey's been going as well as Ray has, so it's been a fortunate situation with goaltending decision this year."