On the final day of action for the Blackhawks before getting a whole week off for the NHL All-Star break, they travel East to face the Carolina Hurricanes. This marks the last game before the All-Star break for both teams.
You’ll remember the last time Chicago took on Carolina on December 27 as the last time Chicago lost before going on a historic 12-game winning streak. On that night, Eddie Lack was able to stonewall the Blackhawks for 59:57 of the game before Brent Seabrook scored to rob Lack of a shutout in an impressive 35-save performance. Goals from Victor Rask and Justin Faulk were enough for Carolina to beat Chicago in Kris Versteeg and Joakim Nordstrom‘s first games back in Chicago since Game Six of the 2015 Stanley Cup Final.
What to watch: Hurricanes
The Hurricanes are among the wild-card contenders in a tight Eastern Conference race, thanks in part to earning points in seven of their last nine games since January 8. Former Blackhawk Versteeg has attributed eight points for Carolina over that span and looks to continue that at home against his most recent former team.
Versteeg’s 20 assists are now tied with Captain Eric Staal for the team lead, and his 30 points are three short of Faulk for the team lead. Lack figures to be in net against the Blackhawks again, looking to recreate his December performance and make up more ground in the race for an Eastern Conference playoff spot.
What to watch: Blackhawks
For Chicago, this will be the last time they will see the ice in what has been a historic January. Coming off of a shutout win over rival St. Louis, the Blackhawks look to close out the middling Hurricanes and put a stamp on the run that has helped Chicago propel to the top of the NHL Central Division. Forward Jiri Sekac is sick and didn’t travel with the team to Raleigh. The Blackhawks recalled rookie Mark McNeill from AHL Rockford on Monday, and could make his NHL debut tonight.
Leading NHL points scorer Patrick Kane and Captain Jonathan Toews will be heading to Nashville for the NHL All-Star game following the final horn tonight. But, unjustly staying home will be one of the hottest goaltenders in the league, Corey Crawford. Crawford leads the league with seven shutouts, a 2.08 Goals Against Average, and a .932 save percentage. But, who is sour over an All-Star snub?
How to watch
Puck drops at 7:30pm (EST)/6:30pm Local Chicago time
National TV – NBCSN
Regional TV – CSN-Chicago
Radio – WGN Sports 720AM
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