Corey Crawford sits out Blackhawks practice, still dealing with concussion symptoms

CHICAGO - Corey Crawford is back on the ice. Just not with the rest of the Blackhawks.

Crawford ran through individual drills before the Hawks first day of training camp - skating side to side, blocking shots, clearing the puck - but did not participate in practice.

His upper body injury used to be a mystery. Friday Crawford admitted he has been battling concussion issues for the past eight to nine months.

"I'm still getting over symptoms. Most of them are gone, but I'm not clear yet. Until that happens I won't be back in."

"People are going to speculate about what was going on. It was tough. It was tough not playing. Right now, I'm feeling good. Mike Gapski, our head trainer, has done a ton to help me out. I'm getting all the treatment that I need. Trying to get back as quick as possible. I'm close. I'm really close."

Crawford dispelled rumors of Vertigo, but couldn't quite pinpoint an exact instance when the concussion may have occurred prior to his last game on December 23rd.

"It was something before that. Things just kept getting progressively worse. It got to a point where it was time to sit out. Things never really got better. We thought maybe to try it when we went to Arizona. We were at point where we were close in the standings. Then, it just got to where it just didn't seem like it was worth it when we started to slide. It was better off thinking about long-term than trying to rush back."

In the short-term, Crawford's conditioning is the focus with the Blackhawks regular season opener less than three weeks away.