Lafferty Returns, Lineup Adjustments For Winnipeg, Scheifele's Milestone, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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Lafferty Returns, Lineup Adjustments For Winnipeg, Scheifele’s Milestone, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

With the Winnipeg Jets coming into the United Center on a snowy Friday night in early December, it’s good to see the Blackhawks getting healthier. There will be a few tweaks made to the lineup for tonight’s game, one with a player returning from injury and another just to mix things up on the blue line.

  • Sam Lafferty is back in the lineup and will center the fourth line tonight between Reese Johnson and Colin Blackwell. MacKenzie Entwistle will slide into a wing spot on the third line with Jason Dickinson and Jujhar Khaira.
  • Tyler Johnson skated with the team again before the morning skate and is still progressing. Still no timetable on his return to the lineup, however.
  • Boris Katchouk is going to be the odd man out for this one, a role that I suspect he might find himself in more frequently when the Blackhawks have a more complete compliment of forwards.
  • Caleb Jones is drawing back into the blue line group in place of Filip Roos. He’ll skate with Connor Murphy. Ian Mitchell will stay in the lineup and skate with Jake McCabe. Head coach Luke Richardson said after the morning skate that he likes McCabe being a vocal veteran with Mitchell; he lets the younger player know what’s happening and where to be.
  • Alex Stalock was part of the morning skate but is still out of the lineup, so Jaxson Stauber will backup Arvid Söderblom this evening.
  • Stalock spoke with the media after practice on Thursday about being close to a return. He said he hadn’t dealt with a concussion before, and it’s been a tough experience.

“It’s been a few times now where you feel like you’re ready to give it a try and then, next day, you wake up and it’s not even close to what it was,” Stalock said on Thursday. “I was warned earlier that you’re going to have setbacks, but you never feel like it’s going to happen, and sure enough, it happens a few times and it’s not fun to deal with something like that mentally.”

  • Last night, Winnipeg’s Mark Scheifele of the Jets reached 600 career points with the assist in the video below. Scheifele, the seventh overall pick in the 2011 NHL Draft, becomes the fourth player from his draft class to reach 600 career regular-season points, but just the second from that year’s first round. Nikita Kucherov (second round) and Johnny Gaudreau (fourth round) are the points leaders from the Class of 2011 with 654 and 637, respectively. Jonathan Huberdeau (629) was the third overall pick that year and ranks third, just ahead of Sheifele. The good news is the milestone is already out of the way so he doesn’t need to put any points on the board against the Blackhawks tonight.
  • Finally, Blackhawks fans can sit back and watch the two baseball teams in town spend money. Well, at some point. At least the Cubs are in on the biggest fish left in the water, but when will one of them sign? And with which team? And for how many years? And for how much money? So many questions…

Author: Tab Bamford

Tab is the Lead Blackhawks voice for BN. He is the author of two books about the Blackhawks, most recently "Chicago Blackhawks: An Illustrated Timeline" (Reedy Press, 2021). Find him on Twitter at @The1Tab