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POSTED ON Tuesday, 01.17.2012 / 1:24 PM
By Elise Butler - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
Crawford

Corey Crawford will be back in net when the Blackhawks host the Buffalo Sabres Wednesday, Head Coach Joel Quenneville announced after practice Tuesday.

Through 33 games this season, Crawford is 17-10-4 with a .904 save percentage and 2.84 goals-against average. He has earned points his last four starts with a record of 2-0-2, dating back to a Jan. 8 overtime loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

Crawford has only faced the Sabres once in his career, a 4-3 win in Buffalo on October 11, 2010.

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POSTED ON Monday, 01.16.2012 / 3:36 PM
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

The strong play of Marian Hossa and Viktor Stalberg has helped the Blackhawks climb back to the top of the Western Conference. (Photo by Getty Images)

The Blackhawks regained some of their swagger last week, recording their first three victories of 2012. After taking three out of four possible points against Western Conference powerhouses Detroit and San Jose over the weekend, the team was rewarded with individual accolades for two forwards and a collective kudos for the defense.

The newest issue of The Hockey News includes their annual NHL defense rankings, measuring the bluelines of all 30 teams through on-ice performance, depth and financial manageability. After ranking sixth in 2010-11, the Blackhawks are the cream of the crop this season, thanks to the youth, skill and cap-friendly salaries of the top four defensemen.

Click here to read the full post >>

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 01.11.2012 / 2:36 PM
By Elise Butler - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Emery
Ray Emery will start in net for the Blackhawks Thursday as they take on the visiting Minnesota Wild, Head Coach Joel Quenneville said after practice Wednesday.

Signed as a free agent in October, Emery has appeared in 15 games for the Blackhawks this season, compiling a 9-3-2 record with a .906 save percentage and 2.72 goals-against average. His last start came on Jan. 5, a 5-4 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers.

Emery is 2-0 against the Wild in his career. He started in net for Chicago’s last game against Minnesota, a 4-3 shootout win on Dec. 14 in St. Paul. Prior to that he had only faced the Wild once, as an Ottawa Senator in 2006, and posted a 5-3 win.
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POSTED ON Wednesday, 01.11.2012 / 2:19 PM
By Brad Boron - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog


In a league where developing and keeping young talent is a priority, the Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane are among the best of the best, according to ESPN.com's rankings of the best NHL players under 25. Toews earned the top spot on the list, besting the Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby, while Kane placed fourth overall, just behind Washington's Nicklas Backstrom. Boston's Tuukka Rask rounds out the top 5.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 01.10.2012 / 1:16 PM

Do you want to grow a mustache like Head Coach Joel Quenneville? Blackhawks Magazine shows you how in just three easy steps! Plus, extra tips on growing, grooming, side effects and tips for advanced mustachionados!

Click the graphic on the right to download the full .pdf file!

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POSTED ON Sunday, 01.08.2012 / 3:26 PM
By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent / The Blackhawks Blog


Kruger
CHICAGO -- He won't play on Sunday night against the Detroit Red Wings, but Chicago Blackhawks rookie center Marcus Kruger went through the team's morning skate on Sunday at the United Center.

It was the first team-oriented session he's been able to participate in since the morning skate on Dec. 26 prior to playing the Columbus Blue Jackets.

That game was Kruger's first back after a suspected concussion resulting from an illegal hit by Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Deryk Engelland forced him to miss a Dec. 21 game against the Montreal Candiens. The Blue Jackets hit Kruger hard twice in the first period of that game and he hasn't played since -- a span of five straight games -- despite finishing the Columbus game and totaling 14:23 of ice time.

"I feel good," said Kruger, who still isn't cleared for contact yet. "It's good to be back with the guys on the ice. It's been awhile, but it feels good."

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POSTED ON Sunday, 01.08.2012 / 3:08 PM
By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent / The Blackhawks Blog

Montador
How long does it take to have your season flipped on its collective ear in the NHL these days?

Apparently, less than a week.

The Chicago Blackhawks have found that lesson out first hand this past week. After a three game losing streak that started Jan. 2 against the Edmonton Oilers, they've gone from topping the League, Western Conference and Central Division standings with 52 points before this past Wednesday's action to sixth overall in the NHL, fourth in the West and second in their division.

Chicago has also lost four of its last five games during what appears to be a mid-season funk and now find themselves just five points ahead of the ninth-place Los Angeles Kings as the Detroit Red Wings come to the Windy City on Sunday night (7:30 p.m., NBCSN, TSN2).

Click here to read the full post >>

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POSTED ON Thursday, 01.05.2012 / 10:34 PM
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Joakim Nordstrom celebrates Sweden's gold medal after defeating Russia 1-0 in overtime. (Photo by Getty Images)

The curtain closed on the 2012 World Junior Championships last night in dramatic fashion, with two Blackhawks prospects playing for Team Sweden in the gold medal game.

Team USA concluded their stay at the tournament Wednesday evening with a tight 2-1 victory over Switzerland, finishing seventh overall in the competition. All three goals were scored in the first period and the game-winner came from defenseman Kevin Gravel, with Blackhawks prospect Adam Clendening getting an assist on the goal.

In a thrilling gold medal game, Team Sweden dominated the first two periods of play, outshooting Russia 39-4 and not allowing a single shot against for the first 12 minutes of the game. Blackhawks draft picks Joakim Nordstrom and Ludvig Rensfeldt did not play on a line together for the first time in six games, as Rensfeldt was given a more offensive role. Nordstrom spent most of his ice time matched up against Russia’s top line, which featured team captain Yevgeni Kuznetsov and Nail Yakupov.

Although Sweden outshot Russia 50-16 through the end of regulation, the game remained scoreless in a classic goaltender’s duel. At 10:09 of sudden-death overtime, Ottawa prospect Mika Zibanejad pounced on a Russian turnover and flipped a backhand shot over Russian goalie Andrei Makarov to win the game 1-0, ending Sweden’s 31-year gold medal drought at World Juniors.

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 01.04.2012 / 9:30 AM
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Ludvig Rensfeldt (left) and Rasmus Ristolainen Finlandexchange words during the semifinal game (Photo by Getty Images).

The ninth day of World Juniors held different stakes for the six Blackhawks prospects on Team USA and Team Sweden.

In the relegation round, Team USA played against one of the competition’s weaker sides, trouncing Latvia 12-2. Nashville draft pick Austin Watson and Florida Panthers prospect Nick Bjugstad both registered hat tricks, while Brandon Saad, Adam Clendening and Stephen Johns put in solid performances, each registering at least a point in the rout.

Later, in a battle of Nordic powerhouses, Team Sweden faced Finland in the tournament semifinals, where Chicago draft picks Joakim Nordstrom and Ludvig Rensfeldt looked to continue their high level of play. Though both were held without a point – Nordstrom for the first time in five games – the Swedes once again staged a dramatic comeback, recovering from a two-goal deficit entering the final frame and winning 3-2 in a shootout.

Click here to read the full post >>

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POSTED ON Monday, 01.02.2012 / 2:51 PM
By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent / The Blackhawks Blog

Montador
Blackhawks forward Marcus Kruger will miss a third straight game with an upper-body injury when Chicago hosts the Edmonton Oilers tonight at the United Center, which means rookie Jimmy Hayes will get his second start.

Defenseman Steve Montador (upper body) also will miss the game, as Sami Lepisto and John Scott will start as Chicago's third defense pair.

Edmonton is pulling a bit of a surprise by starting Devan Dubnyk in goal after he took a 4-1 loss Saturday against the New York Islanders -- which was the Oilers' third straight defeat on this four-game road trip.

Ben Eager also likely will start for Edmonton, despite two roughing calls plus a 10-minute unsportsmanlike-conduct call in the Islanders game -- which led to a pair of New York power-play goals. Meanwhile, Oilers coach Tom Renney hinted after this morning's skate that he might switch his top two lines to mirror what they were when Edmonton beat the Hawks 9-2 on Nov. 19 at Rexall Place.

If so, that means veteran Ryan Smyth might get put with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Taylor Hall on the top line, with Jordan Eberle moving to the second line with Shawn Horcoff and Sam Gagner.
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