Pre-Gamin': Blackhawks at Maple Leafs (6:00 CT) — Lineups, Broadcast Info, Game Thread

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Pre-Gamin’: Blackhawks at Maple Leafs (6:00 CT) — Lineups, Broadcast Info, Game Thread

Chicago Blackhawks

After shutting-out the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night, the Chicago Blackhawks play the second of back-to-back Original Six matchups tonight as they are in Toronto to take on the Maple Leafs. It’s Hockey Night in Canada, showcasing Saturday night hockey north of the border, so it’s a big night. It’s also a big game as a litmus test for the Blackhawks to see how they measure-up against one of the best teams in the NHL. Chicago comes into tonight’s game having alternated wins and losses over their last ten games, going 5-5-0 since November 20. The Maple Leafs are 6-2-1 in their last nine games and have scored three or more goals in all nine contests. Chicago has scored three goals just twice in their last ten games.

Broadcast Info

Puck Drop: 6:00 p.m. CT
TV: NBCSCH, ESPN+ (Out-of-market), Sportsnet (Hockey Night in Canada)
Radio: WGN 720 AM, TUDN 1200 AM (Spanish)

Expected Lineups

Blackhawks (10-14-2)

DeBrincat – Dach – Kane
Hagel – Toews – R. Johnson

Kubalík -Strome – Kurashev
Carpenter – Slavin – Hardman 

de Haan- S. Jones
McCabe – Murphy
Stillman – Gustafsson


Maple Leafs (18-8-2)

Bunting – Matthews – Kase
Kerfoot – Tavares – Nylander
Ritchie Kämpf – Simmonds
Mikheyev – Engvall – Clifford

Rielly – Brodie
Muzzin – Liljegren
Rubins – Holl


Injury Report


Jujhar Khaira (IR – Concussion Protocol)
Tyler Johnson (Three Months – Neck Surgery)

Maple Leafs:

Mitch Marner (Week-to-Week – Shoulder)
Rasmus Sandin (Day-to-Day – Knee)
Travis Dermott (Day-to-Day – Shoulder)

What To Watch For

•   Chicago has recorded points in 12-straight games against Toronto with an 8-0-4 record. The last time these two teams faced each other, Jeremy Colliton was still the head coach of the Blackhawks and Toronto came away with a 3-2 overtime win at the United Center. Since then, Colliton has ben replaced by former Maple Leaf Derek King, who is 9-5-0 as interim head coach in Chicago, good for a .643 points-percentage since November 7, which ranks 10th in the NHL. Over that same span, the Maple Leafs are 11-4-1 and have a .719 points-percentage, which is sixth in the league.

•   Jonathan Toews finally broke his 25-game goal-drought in his last outing against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night. After scoring his first regular season goal since March 5, 2020, Toews is tied with Kirby Dach for fifth on the team in points with ten this season. His seven even-strength assists this season are third on the team behind Seth Jones and Patrick Kane, while he is playing less time per game this season (18:04 minutes) than he has in his entire career.

•   Seth Jones enters tonight’s game as the leading point-producer for the Blackhawks with three goals and 23 points in 26 games this season. He has a goal and seven assists over his last seven games for Chicago and is averaging 27:39 minutes per game in that span. Of players to play at least four games since November 26, Jones leads the NHL in time on ice per game.

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Author: Mario Tirabassi

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