Goalie Cam Ward’s injury gives Collin Delia another shot with the Blackhawks this season

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Collin Delia (60) makes a save in the second period against the Vancouver Canucks at the United Center in Chicago on Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019. (Chris Sweda/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)

CHICAGO – It hasn’t been the best two weeks for the Blackhawks, who saw what looked like solid prospects for a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs start to fade with four losses in five games.

Even on Tuesday, the second in a stretch of three days off, the team got some bad news. Veteran goalie Cam Ward miss all hockey activity for seven to 10 days due to a right knee injury. The goalie was in the net on Sunday when the Blackhawks lost to the Sharks 5-2 in San Jose.

With Ward out, an opportunity has come up for Collin Delia, who looked to be in Rockford for the rest of the season after Corey Crawford returned to the lineup. After appearing in just two games before getting injured last year, Delia has appeared in 15 this season, starting 14 of them. He’s 6-4-3 in those games, with a 3.48 goals against average, and has played a part in the team’s return to the playoff conversation.

As part of a strong run for the Blackhawks in late January and Febraury, Delia had four wins in his last six games. Though he did have help from his offense, the performances were enough for the Blackhawks to give Delia a new three-year, $3 million contract extension with the team.

Now Delia will have a chance to help keep their fading playoff chances alive. With 16 games to go, the Blackhawks sit nine points out of the last Wild Card spot that is currently held by the Minnesota Wild. Crawford remains the number one goalie, but as he returns after missing over two months with a concussion, it’s expected that Delia will get his shot to add to his resume this season.

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