Joel Quenneville: No change in Patrick Kane's status with Blackhawks

Joel Quenneville says developments in Kane investigation don't alter routine: "It's business as usual."

Patrick Kane was not on the Blackhawks roster Wednesday night for their 4-1 exhibition loss to the Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena.

But for those wondering if that means a change in Kane's playing status, it was only a routine night off — even if Wednesday's developments in the sexual-assault investigation of an alleged incident at Kane's home in western New York were anything but routine.

Several of the Hawks' top players who participated in Tuesday's exhibition against the Red Wings at the United Center — including Kane, Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa and Brent Seabrook — did not make the trip to Detroit.

Coach Joel Quenneville said he was not going to use his top players much in the preseason, and Wednesday was a rest day for most of those who played Tuesday.

After Thomas J. Eoannou, the attorney for Kane's accuser, said Wednesday that a police evidence bag in the case had been tampered with and the Hamburg Police Department said no evidence had been tampered with under its control, Quenneville said Kane's playing status with the Hawks has not changed.

Kane, who has not been charged with a crime, has practiced with the Hawks and played Tuesday even as some fans, media and rape victim advocate groups have called for the team or the NHL to suspend Kane pending an outcome to the investigation.

"He's in camp and nothing's changed," Quenneville said.

Nothing else had changed on the surface for the Hawks on Wednesday. A group of players went through their normal circular soccer game before the 4-1 exhibition loss, while Quenneville deflected any notion that the investigation was proving to be a distraction.

"We don't change our routine at all," Quenneville said. "It's business as usual going into the game. We're going to have our meeting. Guys are having fun with the (soccer) ball down there and it's an exhibition game. Let's go."

If Kane is charged, the NHL likely would suspend him indefinitely pending the outcome of the case. For now, the league is backing the Hawks' decision to put Kane on the ice, with Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly saying Wednesday's developments did not affect Kane's status in the eyes of the league.

Winger Bryan Bickell said Wednesday's news didn't register much with the rest of the team.

"We don't really think about any of that," Bickell said. "We just play hockey. (Wednesday's) task is the Detroit Red Wings and taking steps to playing good hockey."

One-timers: Center Marcus Kruger was expected to land in Chicago late Wednesday, Quenneville said. Kruger, who recently re-signed on a one-year deal, had been stuck in Sweden as he attempted to clear up a visa issue. Kruger is expected to play in Friday's exhibition game in Montreal. … Defenseman Michal Rozsival, who is recovering from a broken ankle suffered in last season's playoffs, is likely to skate Friday or Saturday, Quenneville said.

chine@tribpub.com

Twitter @ChristopherHine

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