Dec 27, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks centerMarcus Kruger
(16) with the puck in the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
With Blackhawks offense struggling as of late and in need of jolt, Coach Quenneville made a move. Coach Quenneville named Marcus Kruger the second line center. Kruger has earned this spot in the eyes the Blackhawks Coaching staff. Kruger went from 71st in the NHL in Face-offs to top 10 in the NHL per Luke Stuckmeyer from Comcast sports Net. Hopefully this move can jump start the offense and get Patrick Kane and Kris Versteeg going on offense. This will be the second time in the last two years that Kruger gets his shot at the second line center position. Hopefully the Kruger and Kane pairing produces more points than last season. According to Jay Zawaski of CBS.com, last season Kane has ONE assist and Kruger had ZERO points in 168 minutes and 24 second of ice time.
This move should make ALL Blackhawks fans happy because Michal Handzus is no longer on the second line and will take over as the fourth line center. This move might be viewed by some as a desperate move by the Blackhawks. Quenneville has been hesitant to move Kruger off the fourth line because of their impressive play.
NEWS and NOTES:
Blackhawks prospect (former second line center) Brandon Pirri was named to the AHL All Star Roster today. Pirri currently plays with the Rockford Ice Hogs. Pirri has three goals and seven assists in 13 games with the Ice Hogs this season. In 24 games with the Blackhawks, Pirri recorded six goals and 5 assists for a + six rating.
Another Blackhawks prospect Brandon Whitney suffered four fractures near his Larynx. Whitney is a goalie for the Victoria Tigres in the QMJHL and a seventh round pick of the Blackhawks. The injury occurred when Whitney a took the puck full throat after a wrist shot at a regular team practice. Whitney underwent successful surgery on Wednesday. Whitney has been one of last week’s three star of QMJHL’s. He went 1-1 in two starts with a 1.51 goals against and a .58 save percentage. On the season Whitney has a .907 save percentage and a 3.23 goals against average.
We wish Brandon Whitney a speed recovery.
The Blackhawks will face the Montreal Candiens on Friday January 11th at 6:00pm.
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LETS GO HAWKS!