Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 21 Days

There is a rumour floating around that the Maple Leafs are talking to Nikolai Khabibulin about being the backup to starter Jonathan Bernier.

If you are a Toronto fan you are praying this isn't true. Khabibulin hasn't been any good for a number of seasons now and he is 40-years-old and coming off shoulder surgery. The Buds are also considering Martin Brodeur for a backup position. Do you have to be over 40 to get on Dave Nonis' radar?

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 7 Months

The Chicago Blackhawks have specified that Nikolai Khabibulin (shoulder surgery) should be back in four-to-five months.

In other words, Khabibulin is done for the 2013-14 campaign. He could hypothetically return for the playoffs, but he barely played this season and at the age of 40, we can't envision a scenario where Chicago would use a rusty Khabibulin in a postseason contest. Even if Corey Crawford gets hurt, they would probably start Antti Raanta over Khabibulin at that point. Unfortunately, Khabibulin might have played in his last NHL game.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 7 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin has undergone surgery for a torn rotator cuff.

Khabibulin isn't expected to return before the end of the regular season. Given that he's 40 years old and inked to a one-year contract, this could unfortunately be how his career ends. He has a 5.00 GAA and .811 save percentage in four games with Chicago this season.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 7 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin (lower body) has been "working hard to get back but he's not quite there yet," according to Chicago GM Stan Bowman.

The veteran netminder hasn't played since Nov. 16 because of a lower-body injury. With Khabibulin and Corey Crawford sidelined, the Blackhawks have been leaning on 24-year-old puck stopper Antti Raanta.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin is still working his way back from a lower-body injury.

"He's working out like crazy," coach Joel Quenneville said. "He wants to get healthy. I'm sure he's progressing but I don't think there's a clear sign of exactly when he'll be on the ice." Khabibulin was injured back on Nov. 16 against Nashville.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

The Chicago Blackhawks placed Nikolai Khabibulin on the injured reserve on Sunday.

As mentioned earlier today, Joel Quenneville said he'll be out for "a bit." Khabibulin hasn't really been very effective this season, so if nothing else, it gives Antti Raanta a chance to impress as a temporary backup.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin might be out for "a bit" with a lower-body injury, according to Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville.

Khabibulin sustained the injury in the first period of Saturday's game. The Blackhawks are expected to know more about his condition on Sunday.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin (undisclosed) left Saturday's game hunched over in the first period.

Khabibulin played just 15:23 before departing for Corey Crawford. He allowed two goals on eight shots against the Predators.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

Look for Nikolai Khabibulin to get the start against Nashville Saturday night.

He has not really been very good in a Hawks' uniform this season with a 4.74 GAA and a .818 save percentage. We're obviously not recommending him at this time.

Nikolai Khabibulin G CHI 8 Months

Nikolai Khabibulin will play between the pipes on Saturday against Nashville.

Khabibulin has a 4.74 GAA and .818 save percentage in three games this season. We wouldn't dismiss the possibility of him bouncing back, but either way his fantasy value will be limited behind Corey Crawford.