Chicago Blackhawks (8 pts, 4-0-0) @ Columbus Blue Jackets (3 pts, 1-2-1) 6 pm Nationwide Arena - Columbus, OH TV: CSN Chicago Radio: WGN 720 AM
Tonight is the first of four meetings between the Blackhawks and Blue Jackets. Last season the Blackhawks dominated Columbus winning all six meetings and out scoring them 31 to 10. Viktor Stalberg scored 8 of his career high 22 goals last year against the Jackets, so I think its an understatement to say he is excited for tonight's game. Corey Crawford will get the start in net tonight for the Blackhawks. Some were thinking we would see Ray Emery tonight but Q is sticking with his #1. I would not be surprised if Crow starts again tomorrow night against Detroit too since they don't play again until Wednesday night. I guess that will all depend on how well Crawford plays tonight. Jamal Mayers will be in the lineup again, but besides that, don't look for any changes to the Hawks lines tonight, if it ain't broken.....
The Blue Jackets were fodder for most of the NHL last season finishing the year with a league low 65 points. They started this year off rather nicely with an opening night road win over the Predators. They followed that up by getting a point out of a shootout loss to the Red Wings. But it looks like the Jackets have come back to real life losing their last two games to the Coyotes and Avalanche by a combined score of 9-1. The BJ's have a few new faces in the lineup since we've seen them last. Artem Anisimov and Brandon Dubinsky were acquired from the New York Rangers as part of the Rick Nash trade. They also added former Flyers goaltender Sergei Bobrovski to the fold, but the Hawks will see Steve Mason in net tonight. The former Calder Trophy winner got torched for 5 goals in his first start against Phoenix earlier in the week. Defenseman Fedor Tyutin leads the team with 4 points (1 G, 3 A). Cam Atkinson missed Thursday's game against Colorado due to a lower body injury and is listed day to day.