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Five Players to Watch in Blackhawks Home Opener vs Sabres

By Ericka McFee
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Corey Crawford/Antti Raanta

Jan 12, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Antti Raanta (31) is congratulated by goalie Corey Crawford (50) for a victory against the Edmonton Oilers during the third period at the United Center. The Blackhawks beat the Oilers 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Again, not knowing which goalie will start tonight, it’s worth noting that both/either of them will be players to watch tonight. Corey Crawford’s record against the Sabres is 4-0-0 with a 1.75 goals-against average. On the other hand, Antti Raanta needs to get at least some starts in order to stay fresh, regardless of whether Crawford stays healthy all season. Raanta himself has stated that there are “no easy games,” and in a league like the NHL that is true, even for a team with a record as abysmal as the Sabres had last season. But that exacerbates the dilemma: do you play the “hot hand” with Crawford (who basically kept the team in the game against the Stars), or do you give your backup goalie some games (especially early in the season)?

What do you think, Blackhawks fans? Who will be the top player in tonight’s home opener? Let us know in the comments!

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