Game Preview : Series At A Crossroads

Hannah Foslien

Chicago Blackhawks @ Minnesota Wild (Hawks lead series 2-1) 8:30 pm Xcel Energy Center - St Paul, MN TV: CSN-Chicago (NBCSN) Radio: WIND 560 AM

Series Review

Date Score W. Goal
May 05 '13 CHI 2 at MIN 3 - OT J. Zucker
May 03 '13 MIN 2 at CHI 5 P. Sharp
Apr 30 '13 MIN 1 at CHI 2 - OT B. Bickell

Tonight is a big game, more so for the Wild. There is a huge difference going back to Chicago with the series tied at 2, as opposed to a 3-1 Blackhawks lead. There has been a lot of talk about the lack of production from the Hawks top line. Would it be nice to see Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad find the score sheet? Absolutely! Do they need to be the top producers for the Hawks to close out this series? No. The Wild are doing a good job shutting down the top line, and that's where the depth comes into play. Bryan Bickell and Michael Frolik each of 2 goals. Defensemen like Duncan Keith and Johnny Oduya are scoring goals. The top line is not scoring but others are stepping up and producing when they have to. If the Wild's top line gets shut down, they do not have nearly the amount of options the Hawks do.

I fully expect the Hawks to adjust from the physical Game 3, and bounce back with a big win tonight. The Wild had a great game plan for Game 1, Coach Q adjusted and his team responded with a much better game on Friday night. I think we will see a repeat of this tonight and Minnesota coach Mike Yeo agrees; " part of the challenge for us next game will be to brace against their pushback. We know that they're going to come [out] hard and I'm anxious to see how we respond against that." Both Dave Bolland and Ray Emery practiced with the team yesterday, but they are both still ruled out for tonight's tilt.

Probable Blackhawks Lineup

Forwards

Brandon Saad - Jonathan Toews - Marian Hossa
Patrick Sharp - Michal Handzus - Patrick Kane
Bryan Bickell - Andrew Shaw - Viktor Stalberg
Brandon Bollig - Marcus Kruger - Michael Frolik

Defensive Pairings

Duncan Keith - Niklas Hjalmarsson
Brent Seabrook - Nick Leddy
Johnny Oduya - Michal Rozsival

Goaltender

Corey Crawford 2-1, 1.81 GAA, .935 save %, 0 SO

Injuries

Dave Bolland (lower body) OUT, Ray Emery (lower body) OUT

Leading Scorers

Player GP G A P +/- PIM PP GW
P. Kane 3 0 5 5 4 0 0 0
P. Sharp 3 2 1 3 3 0 0 1
D. Keith 3 1 2 3 2 2 0 0
M. Frolik 3 2 0 2 0 0 0 0
B. Bickell 3 2 0 2 -1 0 0 1

Probable Wild Lineup

Forwards

Zach Parise - Mikko Koivu - Charlie Coyle
Jason Zucker - Matt Cullen - Devin Setoguchi
Cal Clutterbuck - Kyle Brodziak - Pierre-Marc Bouchard
Stephane Veilleux - Jake Dowell - Torrey Mitchell

Defensive Pairings

Ryan Suter - Jonas Brodin
Marco Scandella - Jared Spurgeon
Clayton Stoner - Tom Gilbert

Goaltender

Josh Harding 1-2, 2.41 GAA, .928 save %, 0 SO

Injuries

Jason Pominville (head) doubtful, Niklas Backstrom (lower body) doubtful, Clayton Stoner (unspecified injury) questionable, Zenon Konopka (foot) questionable, Mike Rupp (knee) questionable, Dany Heatley (shoulder) OUT

Leading Scorers

Player GP G A P +/- PIM PP GW
M. Cullen 3 0 3 3 2 0 0 0
P. Bouchard 3 1 1 2 3 0 0 0
J. Zucker 3 1 1 2 2 0 0 1
C. Clutterbuck 3 1 1 2 1 2 0 0
C. Coyle 3 0 2 2 -1 0 0 0

HAWKS CATEGORY WILD
3 GP 3
2 W 1
1 L 2
1 OT 1
0 P 0
0.667 P% 0.333
3 G/G 2
2 GA/G 3
11.1 PP% 0
100 PK% 88.9
37.3 S/G 30.7
30.7 SA/G 37.3
49.3 FO% 50.7

Chicago Blackhawks Tickets


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