The Chicago Blackhawks are presented with another huge opportunity to gain ground, or at the very least create space, in the Central Division playoff race tonight with their second game of a two-game set against the Dallas Stars. After Tuesday’s 4-2 win, along with wins from the Nashville Predators and Columbus Blue Jackets that night, The Blackhawks are still in the hunt for fourth-place in the Division, two points behind Nashville and three ahead of the Blue Jackets. With all four teams in action again tonight, the stage is set for another night of tense hockey and scoreboard watching and, unfortunately, rooting for a Detroit Red Wings win. Hey, I don’t make the rules.
Puck Drop: 7:00 p.m. CT
TV: NBCSCH+2, BSSW
Radio: WGN 720 AM / TUDN 1200 AM
Blackhawks (18-17-5, 41 pts)
DeBrincat – Dach – Kane
Kubalík – Kurashev – Hinostroza
Janmark – Suter – Strome
Hagel – Kämpf – Carpenter
Keith – Boqvist
de Haan – Kalynuk
Zadorov – Murphy
Stars (13-14-10, 36 pts)
Robertson – Hintz – Pavelski
Benn – Faksa – Gurianov
Cogliano – Gardner – Comeau
Kero – Dowling – Dellandrea
Lindell – Klingberg
Oleksiak – Heiskanen
Sekera – Pysyk
Brent Seabrook (LTIR – Retirement)
Zack Smith (LTIR – Back)
Andrew Shaw (LTIR – Concussion)
Alex Nylander (LTIR – Knee)
Jonathan Toews (LTIR – Illness)
Jason Dickinson (Day-to-day – Lower Body)
Thomas Harley (Day-to-day – Lower Body)
Joel Hanley (Day-to-day – Lower Body)
Joel Kiviranta (Day-to-day – Lower Body)
Alexander Radulov (IR – Lower body)
Ben Bishop (LTIR – Knee Surgery)
Stephen Johns (LTIR – Head Injury)
Tyler Seguin (Indefinite – Hip Surgery)
What To Watch For
• Kevin Lankinen gets the start for the Blackhawks again tonight after getting the win on Tuesday over Dallas. Lankinen is 3-0-0 with a .946 save percentage, 1.65 GAA and has an assist against Dallas this year. The 25-year old rookie goaltender has started the last four starts in a row and 11 of the last 13 for Chicago.
• The Blackhawks have been on opposite ends of the special teams spectrum as of late. Chicago has killed 11 of their last 12 penalties since March 25th. But on the man-advantage, Chicago has only converted once in their last 17 powerplay chances.
• This season, when Chicago score the opening goal of the game, they hold a 14-4-2 record. They hold a 9-1-1 record when they lead after the first 20 minutes after the game. Getting off to fast starts needs to become commonplace for this Blackhawks team down the stretch if they are going to maintain and gain ground in the Central Division race.
Get Caught Up …
Kevin Lankinen starts tonight. Same lineup as Tuesday.
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) April 8, 2021
Brett Connolly, Riley Stillman and Henrik Borgstrom plus a 7th Rd pick in exchange for Lucas Carlsson and Lucas Wallmark.
Connolly has 2 more yrs at $3.5M AAV. Florida freeing up cap space as part of this. Hawks using their cap space to net 2 young players
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) April 8, 2021
Tried to get Jeremy Colliton's thoughts on the reported trade of Wallmark + Carlsson to Florida: "I don’t have anything to announce right now. I'll let TSN figure all that out."
— Phillip Thompson (@_phil_thompson) April 8, 2021