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Blackhawks lose Stalberg for 3 weeks; Smith 'OK'

Tribune reporter

The Chicago Blackhawks will be without Viktor Stalberg for about three weeks after the winger suffered a leg injury during Wednesday night's exhibiton game against the Detroit Red Wings.

"We'll see how he does," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said after Thursday's practice at the United Center. "He seemed OK (Thursday morning) but that's probably what we're looking at.

"He's had a great camp. He was skating well and had a little something going there on Jonathan (Toews') line. He's got some speed and he's one of the top fit guys so we don't  expect him to be too far away as far as conditioning to get him back up to speed."

Stalberg was injured late in the first period after appearing to collide with a Wings player. Quenneville intimated the hit might not have been entirely accidental.

"It looked like it might have been a collision," Quenneville said. "But it looked like it could have been more of a collision. We'll leave it at that."

Meanwhile, rookie Ben Smith missed practice after leaving Wednesday's game after being hit in the head by the shoulder of the Wings' Brendan Smith. The Hawks believed the hit was illegal and Brendan Smith reportedly will have a disciplinary hearing with the league soon.

"Ben (Smith) is okay--I guess okay," Quenneville said. "I don't want to put a timeline (for his recovery) on him."

In other injury news, the Hawks were also without Dave Bolland at practice. Quenneville said the center is day-to-day with an upper-body injury. He added that it is not related to the concussion Bolland suffered last season.

Winger Daniel Carcillo returned to practice after missing three days with the flu and Patrick Sharp, who is recovering from an appendectomy, likely will practice with teammates Friday. Rookie forward Jeremy Morin is progressing from a concussion but is still not practicing.

Twitter @ChrisKuc

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