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Morning Bag Skate: 12-26-18

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Our daily look at Blackhawks news and the happenings around the hockey world.

NHL: Chicago Blackhawks at Columbus Blue Jackets Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Blackhawks are off until Thursday when they host the Wild at the United Center. The World Junior Championship begins Wednesday in Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia.

The IceHogs visit the Wild on Wednesday in Iowa.

Elsewhere in Chicago sports, the Bulls look to win three straight games for the first time this season when they host the Timberwolves on Wednesday.

BLACKHAWKS

World Juniors: Blackhawks preview (SCH)

World Juniors: Hughes, Kakko are top NHL draft prospects to watch (SCH)

World Juniors: Schedule, how to watch, score, Blackhawks results (SCH)

CENTRAL DIVISION

Finding the right second-line combination could be key to unlocking success for the Avs (The Athletic)

NHL

Lightning are one of deepest teams in NHL’s modern stats era (Raw Charge)

Off the charts: The Radim Simek experience (Fear The Fin)

HOCKEY WORLD

Gray Wolves, a senior hockey club, have found frozen fountain of youth (ESPN)

3 players to watch on each team at World juniors (Sportsnet)

World juniors preview: Team Canada (The Athletic)

World juniors preview: Team USA (The Athletic)

World juniors preview: European prospects to watch (The Athletic)

CHL notebook: Raiders’ dominance among first-half surprises (Sportsnet)

A look at NHL players not participating at World juniors (Sportsnet)