Preview: Blackhawks at Bruins
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[January 20, 2017]
The Chicago Blackhawks averted
matching their longest losing streak of the season with a stirring
comeback last time out and will wrap up a brief two-game road trip
with a visit to the Boston Bruins on Friday night. Chicago scored
three unanswered goals in the third period Tuesday to rally for a
6-4 victory over league-worst Colorado.
“Good response,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said after his
team avoided a third consecutive setback by receiving five of its
six goals from rookies. “We were looking for some scoring from other
guys." Chicago, which halted a three-game road losing streak, has
split the past six meetings with Boston over the previous three
seasons. The Bruins are in a rut with three wins in nine games
(3-4-2) in 2017 and blew a pair of three-goal leads in Wednesday's
6-5 shootout loss at Detroit. Returning home is hardly a guarantee
of success for Boston, which remains under .500 (10-11-0) at TD
Garden this season.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, NHL Network, TVAS, Sportsnet1, CSN Chicago, NESN
ABOUT THE BLACKHAWKS (28-14-5): Quenneville shuffled his lines
Tuesday, moving the slumping Marian Hossa away from captain Jonathan
Toews and on a line with rookies Vinnie Hinostroza and Tanner Kero,
who scored two goals apiece. Hossa is mired in a 10-game goalless
drought but collected three assists as the newly formed unit
combined for eight points. “You can’t rely on the top six to score
every night," said rookie Nick Schmaltz, who also tallied against
Colorado. "That’s when other guys have to step up.”
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ABOUT THE BRUINS (23-19-6): Speculation continues to grow in Boston
that coach Claude Julien's tenure could be coming to an end after
the team "collapsed" in Detroit following a listless 4-0 home loss
to the lowly New York Islanders. "Honestly, right now, it's about
making sure we go back and we have to find a way," Bruins center
Patrice Bergeron said. "It's unacceptable what just happened the
last two games." Bergeron, coming off a three-point game at Detroit,
has seven goals and 19 points in 14 games versus Chicago.
1. Blackhawks G Scott Darling takes a 2-1-0 record with a 3.40
goals-against average into Thursday's start.
2. Boston is 7-for-17 on the power play over the past five games.
3. Hossa became the 32nd player in NHL history to notch 500 goals
and 600 assists.
PREDICTION: Blackhawks 4, Bruins 3
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