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(Reuters) - Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane was placed on long-term injured reserve after the leading scorer crashed into the boards during a recent game, the team said on Wednesday.
Kane was hurt during the first period of Tuesday's contest when he slid hard into the boards after a hit from Florida Panthers defenseman Alex Petrovic.
The 26-year-old American remained down on the ice for a short time and appeared to be favoring his left arm or shoulder before skating to the bench. He eventually went to the Chicago locker room and did not return.
Chicago did not say how much time Kane would miss but an ESPN report said he will be out 6-10 weeks, meaning there is a chance he could miss the start of the NHL playoffs, which open on April 15.
Kane, whose 64 points is tied with Washington Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom for the NHL lead, has not missed any of Chicago's 61 games this season.
Selected first overall by Chicago in the 2007 NHL draft, Kane is a four-time All-Star who won Stanley Cups with the Blackhawks in 2010 and 2013.
He signed an eight-year contract extension with Chicago last July with an annual average value of $10.5 million.
Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto. Editing by Steve Keating.