On Tuesday, Chicago Blackhawks announced they would be placing forward Corey Perry on unconditional waiver for the purpose of a buyout
Here's what we know about the situation:
Tuesday, November 21
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Perry practiced with the team on Tuesday in his usual spot on the top power-play unit and on the right wing of the third line before traveling with the team to Columbus.
Wednesday, November 22
Perry was listed as a surprise scratch on Wednesday against the Columbus Blue Jackets, which ended in a 7-3 lopsided loss at Nationwide Arena. He participated in the team's morning skate but did not take part in warmups.
After the game, Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson confirmed to reporters that it was an "organizational decision" to sit Perry. He was a healthy scratch.
It doesn't sound like this was for on-ice performance reasons. Perry is tied for third on the team in goals (four) and points (nine).
The Blackhawks played the game with 11 forwards and seven defensemen after Taylor Hall was ruled out, which we later found out was because of a knee injury that will likely end his season.
Thursday, November 23
The Blackhawks returned to practice on Thanksgiving Thursday and there was no sign of Perry.
Blackhawks head coach Luke Richardson opened his media availability by addressing the elephant in the room.
"I just wanted to start by saying I know you have questions about Corey Perry not playing last night and attending practice today but we’re going to keep that internal in the organization right now," Richardson said. "I’m not going to be able to answer any more questions on that."
When pressed about specifics due to the wild speculation going on, Richardson responded: "I’m sure there is but unfortunately, I can’t give you anything but that today."
The players didn't seem to know many details, either.
"We just know he’s not with us," alternate captain Nick Foligno said. "We haven’t really gotten any details. It’s unfortunate; he’s a big part of this, so we’ll miss him. But we haven't really gotten any other information."
Said Connor Bedard: "I'm not going to speak on it too much. Obviously, it sucks he's not here, but we don't really have too much information on it or anything yet, but of course, he's a big part of the team, and it sucks he can't be here today."
Friday, November 24
On Friday morning, Richardson revealed that Perry would not be in the lineup against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
When asked about who made the decision, Richardson responded: "That's just going to be kept internal for now in the organization. Hopefully we'll be able to get an update soon, but we can't give a timeline on that."
Perry is tied for third on the Blackhawks in goals (four) and points (nine) going into Thanksgiving. He's been a key part of the team and is part of the leadership group.
Now, the challenge for the Blackhawks — who have lost five in a row — is to prevent this situation from becoming a distraction until there's more clarity around Perry.
Saturday, November 25
Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson held a media availability on Saturday morning to address Corey Perry's status as questions continue to swirl around his mysterious absence.
"There's no update on that end," Davidson said. "He's away from the team and will remain so for the foreseeable future. I'm unable to provide any further update on that front."
Davidson said he "understands" there's speculation out there as to what's going on, but respectfully didn't want to get into details. He did, however, provide some sort of clarity on one front.
"It's been a team decision so far to hold him out and that's all I'm able to provide," Davidson said. "It is coming from the organization's end, yes."
Davidson did not want to get into specifics as far as whether it could be trade-related or any other reason.
"I think it's, to start ruling anything out is irresponsible," Davidson said. "So I'm just going to not comment on any possible outcome of this."
Later in the day, Perry's agent released a brief statement on Saturday regarding his client's status as questions continue to swirl around the Blackhawks forward's mysterious absence.
"Corey Perry has stepped away from the Chicago Blackhawks to attend to personal matters," Pat Morris of Newport Sports Management told Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet. "Corey and his family appreciate privacy at this time."
Tuesday, November 28
On Tuesday, the Blackhawks announced they would be placing forward Corey Perry on unconditional waiver for the purpose of a buyout.
The Blackhawks released this statement on Tuesday afternoon:
"After an internal investigation, the Chicago Blackhawks have determined that Corey Perry has engaged in conduct that is unacceptable, and in violation of both the terms of his Standard Player’s Contract and the Blackhawks’ internal policies intended to promote professional and safe work environments. As such, Corey Perry has been placed on unconditional waivers. In the event Mr. Perry clears waivers, we intend to terminate his contract effective immediately."