Chicago Blackhawks (35 pts 16-0-3) @ St Louis Blues (22 pts 10-6-2) 7 pm Scottrade Center - St Louis MO, TV: CSN Chicago Radio: WGN 720 AM
|Apr 27 '13|
|Apr 14 '13|
|Apr 04 '13|
|Feb 28 '13|
|Jan 22 '13||STL 2 at CHI 3||V. Stalberg|
The Hawks can extend their record setting point streak against a shorthanded St. Louis Blues team tonight. The Blackhawks are becoming the talk of the town and media darlings again but the extra attention does not seem to have any effect on the team's focus. The Blackhawks are taking back to the road after a very successful 6-0-1 home stand where the Hawks found many different ways to win. If you count the shootout win against the Canucks, the Blackhawks have won their last 5 games by one goal each. The Hawks will be missing a key component to their lineup as well. 2nd line center Dave Bolland will not be making the trip south and will miss his third straight game due to an upper body injury. Corey Crawford will return to the net tonight. Crawford made 32 saves in a 3-2 win over the Blues back on January 22nd. Crow is also coming off his second shutout of the year Sunday night versus the Blue Jackets. It will be interesting to see what Q does with Daniel Carcillo and Brandon Saad. I think Saad will start with the 1st line but he will probably swap spots with Carcillo on the 4th line at the some point of the night, unless he score four goals in the 1st period.
The Blues are going to be missing some important pieces to their lineup tonight. Star rookie Vladimir Tarasenko was placed on IR with a concussion. Forwards Andy McDonald and Alexander Steen ran into each other at practice on Tuesday and both are expected to miss tonight's game. These loses are a huge hit to the Blues depth that they so greatly rely on. Last year St. Louis finished two points shy of winning the President's Trophy and their 22 points has them in 5th place in the Western Conference. The Blues are scoring at a higher clip this season than they did last season but the problem has been their goaltending, which was their strength last year. Brian Elliot and Jaroslav Halak combined for a 1.88 goals against per game, which was by far the tops in the NHL. This year Halak has been hurt and Elliot has returned to being the real Brian Elliot. They are giving up nearly one more goal a game this year at 2.83 per outing. Halak will be in net tonight and has been solid in his first two starts coming off his lower body injury. He only gave up 2 goals on a combined 40 shots against the Avalanche and Columbus. We will get to see a "clash of titans" of sorts every time an Indian Head gets sent to the penalty box. The Blues have the top power play unit in the NHL (30.6%) and the Hawks penalty kill is currently 2nd (88.7%) only training the Boston Bruins.
Chicago Blackhawks probable lineup:
Corey Crawford 8-0-3, 1.50 GAA, .941 save %, 2 SO
Dave Bolland (upper body) OUT
St Louis Blues probable lineup:
David Perron - David Backes - T.J. Oshie
Vladimir Sobotka - Patrik Berglund - Matt D'Agostini
Chris Porter - Jaden Schwartzv - Chris Stewart
Andrew Murray - Scott Nichol - Ryan Reaves (wow that is terrible!)
Jaroslav Halak 4-0-1, 1.70 GAA, .911 save %, 2 SO
Alexander Steen (lower body) questionable, Vladimir Tarasenko (concussion) OUT, Andy McDonald (knee) OUT
Only because this will never get old!!