Chicago (24-25-8) has been outscored 29-12 during its slide with six losses in regulation and only one in overtime. The Blackhawks have dropped to 12 points out of the playoff picture in the Western Conference. With 25 games left, Chicago is clingy to any hope they can find to make the postseason.
Starting goaltender Corey Crawford’s absence due to injury hasn’t helped the Hawks at all. Backups Anton Forsberg and Jeff Glass have split time during Crawford’s absence, but haven’t performed well enough to keep the Hawks in games. Chicago even placed Glass on waivers Wednesday, signaling Jean-Francois Berube’s call up from the AHL.
Berube stopped 12 of 14 shots in 44 minutes with the Hawks this season. Forsberg is 5-10-3 with a 3.05 goals-against average and .907 save percentage this season. Neither netminder has faced the Ducks.
Two bright spots during the Hawks’ slide have been its power play and the play from rookie Alex DeBrincat. Chicago has scored a power-play goal in five of their last six games and DeBrincat has four goals during the seven-game losing streak, including one each of the last two games.
DeBrincat led Chicago to a 7-3 victory over the Ducks on Nov. 27 with his first career NHL hat trick and an assist. The 20-year-old’s 21 goals this season rank third among rookies.
Anaheim (27-20-11) have lost their last two games by one goal.
Rickard Rakell, one of the most underrated players in the NHL, leads the Ducks in scoring with 46 points (22 goals) in 53 games and veteran Ryan Getzlaf has 35 points in 34 games.
It’s not known who will man the crease for Anaheim. John Gibson is 19-15-6 with a 2.58 GAA and .922 save percentage in 43 games as the main starter. Miller is 7-4-5 with a 2.69 GAA and .915 save percentage in 19 appearances. Gibson is 2-2-1 in six games against Chicago, while Miller is 5-6-0 in 12 outings.
|F1||Brandon Saad - Jonathan Toews - Tommy Wingles|
|F2||Lance Bouma - Nick Schmaltz - Patrick Kane|
|F3||Patrick Sharp - Ryan Hartman - Alex DeBrincat|
|F4||Vinnie Hinostroza - Artem Anisimov - Anthony Duclair|
|D1||Duncan Keith - Jordan Oesterle|
|D2||Michal Kempny - Brent Seabrook|
|D3||Carl Dahlstrom - Jan Rutta|
|F1||Rickard Rackell - Ryan Getzlaf - Corey Perry|
|F2||Andrew Cogliano - Ryan Kesler - Jakob Silfverberg|
|F3||Nick Ritchie - Adam Henrique - Ondrej Kase|
|F4||Jason Chimera - Antoine Vermette - Chris Kelly|
|D1||Cam Fowler - Brandon Montour|
|D2||Hampus Lindholm - Francois Beauchemin|
|D3||Marcus Pettersson - Josh Manson|
|Goaltender||John Gibson or Ryan Miller|
*Lines are subject to change.
How to watch Ducks at Blackhawks
Start time: 7:30 p.m. CT
Location: United Center, Chicago
TV: NBC Sports Chicago