CHICAGO - Rookie centre Jonathan Toews, Chicago's first-round pick in last year's draft, broke his right index finger Wednesday night during the Blackhawks' 4-3 pre-season loss to Columbus and is expected to be sidelined two-to-three weeks.
It was a rough night for the Blackhawks, who also lost defenceman Ryan Stokes to injury. Stokes was cut on the face in the closing minutes after he tried to check Columbus forward Jared Boll. He fell in a pile along the boards and was taken by ambulance to the University of Chicago Hospital after the game.
The 19-year-old Toews, chosen third overall in the 2006 draft, was injured when a puck struck his hand late in the second period, Blackhawks coach Denis Savard said.
Toews helped lead Canada to the gold medal in this year's world junior tournament and is expected to play for the Blackhawks this season.
Savard said he hopes Toews will return in time for Chicago's regular-season opener on Oct. 4 at Minnesota.