The Blackhawks (33-18-3) are fourth in the Western Conference and lead the NHL in penalty killing with 87.5 percent. That’s a major advantage against a Canucks team that ranks 16th in the NHL on the power play with 18.2 percent.
After a lacklustre effort against the Wild the Canucks find themselves barely holding onto the eighth and final spot. With 61 points they sit just three points ahead of the 11th seed. If the goal is to make the playoffs then every point is crucial with only 29 games remaining in the regular season.
If recent history repeats itself then fans can be somewhat confident against the likes of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. The Canucks are 8-3-2 in their last 13 meetings with the Hawks and have outscored them 34-29. Do these numbers really make a difference? I tend to lean on the no side but whatever helps you sleep at night.
Tonight marks game two of an eight game home stand for the Blackhawks. The last time these two teams met the Canucks won 4-1 in Rogers Arena.
Ronald Kenins will step into the lineup and Adam Clendening will face his former team for the first time. Nick Bonino is sidelined with a lower body injury.
Eddie Lack will make his 50th career start in the NHL.
Puck drop is set for 5pm in the Windy City.