Blackhawks vs. Stars preview: Crawford to start in net
The Hawks visit the Stars for the first game of a home-and-home back-to-back.
Corey Crawford will start in net for the Chicago Blackhawks, who will go for its fifth straight win when they visit the Dallas Stars on Saturday night at American Airlines Center.
Crawford picked up his second shutout of the season and 21st of his career in a 4-0 Blackhawks’ (7-3-1) victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday. Marian Hossa scored twice, Duncan Keith had two assists and Artem Anisimov recorded an assist to increase his career-high point streak to nine games.
Dallas also enters the first half a home-and-home back-to-back after a big win. The Stars defeated the St. Louis Blues 6-2 in a rematch of last spring’s second round playoff series. John Klinberg tallied two goals, Tyler Seguin matched a career-high four assists and captain Jamie Benn had three helpers.
Former Hawk Antti Niemi made 28 saves against the Blues, and it appears he will get the start against Chicago. Another ex-Hawk in Patrick Sharp is sidelined with a concussion and will not play.
Andrew Desjardins remains out with a upper-body injury, and coach Joel Quenneville says he’s hopeful Desjardins will return for Sunday’s game. All forward lines are the same for Thursday’s game.
Chicago was 1-3-0 against Dallas last season and was outscored 7-16 in those four meetings. The Hawks currently lead the Western Conference with 40 goals and are third in the NHL.
For more on the Stars, check out Defending Big D.
Richard Panik – Jonathan Toews – Patrick Kane
Artemi Panarin – Artem Anisimov – Marian Hossa
Ryan Hartman – Marcus Kruger – Tyler Motte
Dennis Rasmussen – Nick Schmaltz – Jordin Tootoo
Duncan Keith – Brian Campbell
Michal Kempny – Brent Seabrook
Gustav Forsling – Niklas Hjalmarsson
Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Patrick Eaves
Anotonie Roussel - Radek Faksa - Jason Spezza
Lauri Korpikoski - Devin Shore - Brett Ritchie
Curtis McKenzie - Gamel Smith - Adam Cracknell
Esa Lindell - John Klingberg
Johnny Oduya - Stephen Johns
Dan Hamhuis - Jordie Benn
*Lineups will be updated if necessary