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Blackhawks vs. Predators game preview 2017: Chicago goes for 3rd straight win

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Chicago is 2-1 in the first three meetings against Nashville this season.

NHL: Nashville Predators at Chicago Blackhawks Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Corey Crawford is back in net and the Chicago Blackhawks will look for their third straight win when they host the Nashville Predators on Sunday.

Crawford, 32, has performed well since returning last month from an appendectomy. He’s 14-8-3 with a 2.34 goals-against average and .925 save percentage this season. Against the Predators, he is 13-9-1 with a 2.52 GAA and a .913 save percentage in 23 career appearances.

The Blackhawks won back-to-back games at home against Buffalo and Carolina on Thursday and Friday, respectively. Chicago sits atop the Western Conference with 55 points with Minnesota just two points behind.

Nashville will likely call on Pekka Rinne to man the net. The 34-year-old is 4-10-6 with a 2.45 GAA and .918 save percentage this season. He is 17-15-4 with a 2.50 GAA and .918 save percentage in 37 career appearances against the Blackhawks.

The Predators have struggled lately due to injures. They’re 2-3-2 in their last seven games with defenseman P.K. Subban and forwards James Neal and Viktor Arvidsson out of the lineup for parts of that stretch.

Nashville is 7-10-2 on the road this season, but have turned it on as of late going 4-1-0 in its last five.

It’s the fourth of five meetings between the two Central Division rivals. The Blackhawks are 2-1-0 in the first three contests and have outscored the Predators, 10-8.

Lineups

Blackhawks

Forwards

Hinostroza-Toews-Hossa
Panarin-Anisimov-Kane
Hartman-Kero-Panik
Desjardins-Rasmussen-Tootoo

Defensemen

Keith-van Riemsdyk
Kempny-Seabrook
Campbell-Hjalmarsson

Goalie

Crawford
Darling

Predators

Forwards

Forsberg-Johansen-Jarnkrok
Watson-Fisher-Sissons
Fiala-Ribeiro-Smith
Zolnierczyk-Kamenev-Gaudreau

Defensemen

Josi-Ellis
Ekholm-Irwin
Aberg-Weber

Goalie

Rinne
Saros

How to watch: Predators at Blackhawks

Time: 6 p.m. CT

Where: United Center, Chicago

TV: WGN