Pre-Gamin’: Blackhawks at Lightning (6:00 CT) – Lineups, Broadcast Info, Odds, Game Thread

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Pre-Gamin’: Blackhawks at Lightning (6:00 CT) – Lineups, Broadcast Info, Odds, Game Thread

Chicago Blackhawks

The meat-grinder month of March for the Chicago Blackhawks continues tonight, as they head up I-75 to Tampa to take on the Lightning for the sixth time this season.

We knew the month would be a difficult one for the Blackhawks, and it has been. March started with the Blackhawks hosting the Lightning and going 1-1-1 in a three-game set. Not bad. But since then, Chicago is just 1-3-0 and 2-4-1 for the month. Speaking of records, the Blackhawks are 1-3-1 against the Lightning this season, being outscored 22-11 in five meetings. Chicago still is in a playoff spot in the Central Division, sitting in fourth based on points (33) and points percentage (.550), while the Lightning are tied for first-place with the Florida Panthers in both points (42) and points percentage (.750).

Broadcast Info

Puck Drop: 6:00 p.m. CT
Radio: WGN 720 AM / TUDN 1200 AM

Expected Lineups

Blackhawks (14-11-5, 33 pts)

DeBrincat – Suter – Kane
Kubalík – Kämpf – Hagel
Janmark – Söderberg – Kurashev
Highmore – Wallmark – Carpenter
(Dylan Strome skates in warmups)

Keith – Boqvist
Zadorov – Murphy
Mitchell – de Haan


Lightning (20-6-2, 42 pts) 

Palat – Point – Cirelli 
Killorn – Gourde – Stamkos
Goodrow – 
Johnson – Coleman
Maroon – Colton –

Hedman – Rutta
McDonagh – Cernak
Sergachev – Foote


Injury Report


Brent Seabrook (LTIR – Retirement)
Zack Smith (LTIR – Back)
Andrew Shaw (LTIR – Concussion)
Kirby Dach (LTIR  – Wrist)
Alex Nylander (LTIR  – Knee)
Jonathan Toews (LTIR – Illness)
Dylan Strome (IR – Concussion)


Nikita Kucherov (LTIR – Hip Surgery)
Anders Nilsson (LTIR – Concussion)
Marián Gáborík (LTIR – Indefinite)
Mitchell Stephens (LTIR – Indefinite)

Betting Odds

The Blackhawks are +1.5 point underdogs against the Lightning tonight, and find themselves at +205 on the moneyline according to the DraftKings Illinois Sportsbook. You can go right here to sign up and make a bet.

DraftKings Sportsbook

States: IL, NY, IN, LA, IA, NJ, PA, CO, WV, MI, VA, TN, CT


What To Watch For

•   Five Blackhawks players come into tonight’s contest on three-game point streaks. Brandon Hagel (two goals, one assist), David Kämpf (three assists), Patrick Kane (one goal, three assists) , Dominik Kubalík (one goal, two assists) and Duncan Keith  (one goal, two assists) all have contributed in the last three games for Chicago. Kane leads the team in scoring with 42 points this season, ranking third in the NHL as he, Connor McDavid (56), and Leon Draisaitl (49) are the only three players to reach the 40-point mark so far this season.

•   Andrei Vasilevskiy is 4-0-0 in four starts against the Blackhawks this season, allowing just eight total goals on 122 combined shots. He has won 15 of his last 17 starts (15-2-0), including winning his last nine starts in-a-row. But it hasn’t been all daisies as Vasilevskiy has allowed three goals in each of his last four starts and has a .885 save percentage over that span.

•   A pair of “Alex’s” have been the nemesis for each team against one another this season. Alex DeBrincat paces the Blackhawks with four goals and an assist against the Lightning this season, sharing the team lead in points vs. Tampa Bay. While Alex Killorn is on a four-game goal streak against the Blackhawks and has recorded a point in all five games (four goals, four assists) this season to lead the Lightning for scoring against Chicago.

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Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.