The Chicago Blackhawks and Vancouver Canucks will face off at the United Center on Sunday in the second of three regular season meetings. The Hawks would like to even the score after being beaten soundly in Vancouver late last month while on the circus trip.
Corey Crawford is expected to be in net for the Hawks after an incredible performance on Friday night to shut out the Winnipeg Jets with 25 saves. Crawford has allowed two goals on 93 shots in his past three starts, going 3-0-0 with a goals-against average of 0.67 and a .978 save percentage.
Patrick Kane will also take the ice in pursuit of yet another milestone as he looks to extend his point streak to 26 games. If Kane gets a point, it will become the longest since 1992-93 when Mats Sundin recorded points in 30 consecutive games for the Quebec Nordiques.
As for other notable numbers, Niklas Hjalmarsson will skate in his 500th career game and Marian Hossa will make his 1,200th NHL appearance tonight. Hjalmarsson, a fourth-round pick in 2005, has spent his entire career in Chicago, compiling 110 points in 499 regular-season games and 27 points in 117 postseason games. He's been a vital, if sometimes overlooked, part of the Hawks' Cup rosters. Hossa has 152 goals and 350 points in 424 regular-season games with the Hawks and 68 points in 96 postseason games. The winger has 1,069 points in 1,199 career NHL games.
If the Hawks can get strong play from all of their lines and the defense can keep Daniel and Henrik Sedin off the score sheet, the home team should be able to add two more points on this homestand.
It's looking like Rundblad will be getting the nod again in favor of Rozsival. Not too surprising after he played a solid game Friday night.
Vancouver Canucks | Record: 11-11-8 | 2nd in Pacific Division | Goal Differential -3
In a lackluster Pacific Division, the Canucks sit in second place with a mediocre ".500" record and the most post-regulation losses in the league. They will be starting a six-game road trip at the United Center on Sunday with a road record of 6-5-5 and a 5-9-4 record in their last 18 games.
The Sedin brothers were a force to be reckoned with when these two teams last met three weeks ago. Daniel Sedin had four points (three goals), Henrik Sedin had five points (four assists) and the Canucks defeated the Blackhawks, 6-3, at Rogers Arena on Nov. 21.
Vancouver will play its first game since losing defenseman Dan Hamhuis for an estimated two months after he was struck in the face by a puck during the Canucks' 2-1 win against the New York Rangers on Wednesday. Goaltender Ryan Miller will get the start in goal.
Once the Hawks fiercest of rivals, the Canucks would most certainly relish putting an end to Kane's point streak at 25 games. "It's amazing," said Henrik Sedin. "It shouldn't be possible in today's NHL, but here he is. It's going to be fun to go up against him and see what we can do."
Anticipated Vancouver Lines:
D. Sedin-H. Sedin-Hansen
Canucks: Dan Hamhuis
How to watch
When: 6 p.m. CT
Where: United Center, Chicago
TV: WGN, NHL Network (U.S.); TVA Sports, Sportsnet (Canada)