Preview: Blackhawks Host Henrik and Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks kick off a three-game road trip Sunday, as they take on the Chicago Blackhawks. Henrik Sedin has scored in back to back games, and recently eclipsed the 1,000 point mark, while Ryan Miller enters the United Center with seven wins in his past nine starts.

While the Blackhawks have seen more success thus far this season, and are currently jockeying with the Minnesota Wild for first place in the Western Conference, the Canucks are heating up and making a push for a playoff spot. They sit at 50 points, and with two games in hand, they could overtake the Calgary Flames who hold the last playoff position with 51 points.  As the Canucks approach these three road games before the all-star break, they hope to enjoy their time off while sitting in a playoff spot.

The Blackhawks are coming off a 1-0 shutout win in Boston where Scott Darling and Tuukka Rask dueled in a scoreless tie that wouldn’t be broken until less than 90 seconds remained in the game. After an exemplary performance in net, Darling will cede the net back to starter Corey Crawford, who will aim to remind the coaches and fans why he is the bonafide Blackhawks starter. Crawford has struggled in the month of January, and has posted a .886 save percentage while allowing 23 goals in seven appearances and will look to improve on recent performances as he faces the 26th ranked scoring team in the NHL.

Vancouver Canucks at Chicago Blackhawks

United Center – 6:30 p.m. CT on Sunday, Jan. 22.

Broadcast channels – NHLN, WGN, SN

2016-17 Season Series: 

November 19 – Blackhawks 4 – Canucks 3

Vancouver Canucks – 22-19-6 – 50 Points

Away Record: 5-13-3

Hot Players: Ryan Miller

Key Injuries: Jannik Hansen, Derek Dorsett, Anton Rodin, Erik Gudbranson, Ben Hutton, Philip Larsen

Projected lines:


Daniel Sedin – Henrik Sedin – Loui Eriksson

Markus Granlund – Brandon Sutter – Jack Skille

Sven Baertschi – Bo Horvat – Alex Burrows

Brendan Gaunce – Michael Chaput – Jayson Megna


Alex Edler – Troy Stecher

Luca Sbisa – Chris Tanev

Nikita Tryamkin – Alex Biega

Starting Goaltender:

Ryan Miller


Chicago Blackhawks – 29-14-5 – 63 Points

Home Record: 17-5-4

Hot Players: Tanner Kero, Marian Hossa

Key Injuries: Marcus Kruger

Projected lines:


Ryan Hartman – Jonathan Toews – Richard Panik

Artemi Panarin – Artem Anisimov – Patrick Kane

Vinnie Hinostroza -Tanner Kero – Marian Hossa

Nick Schmaltz – Dennis Rasmussen – Andrew Desjardins


Duncan Keith – Niklas Hjalmarsson

Michal Kempny – Brent Seabrook

Brian Campbell – Trevor van Riemsdyk

Starting Goaltender:

Corey Crawford

Game Notes

[miptheme_dropcap style=”normal” color=”#222222″ background=””]1)[/miptheme_dropcap]The Blackhawks have a strong home record of 17-5-4. They have won four out of the past five home games and enter Sunday with a two-game winning streak. The Canucks enter with their own two-game winning streak and hope to carry this streak into next week’s all-star break.

[miptheme_dropcap style=”normal” color=”#222222″ background=””]2)[/miptheme_dropcap] Vancouver has endured recent struggles when playing at the on the road. They are 1-5-2 in their last eight road games and have lost two straight games at the United Center, the most recent being a 4-0 shutout last season.

[miptheme_dropcap style=”normal” color=”#222222″ background=””]3)[/miptheme_dropcap]Henrik Sedin hopes to continue to shine after recording his 1,000th point against former teammate Robert Luongo. Henrik became the first player in franchise history to reach the 1,000 point mark, and he enters this matchup riding a four-game point streak.

[miptheme_dropcap style=”normal” color=”#222222″ background=””]4)[/miptheme_dropcap]The Blackhawks have been utilizing their depth well in the past few games, capitalizing on a bottom six mismatch against the Colorado Avalanche where the Hawks had long stretches of sustained offensive zone time. They continued this effort against the Boston Bruins with youngsters like Vinnie Hinostroza and Tanner Kero showing that they can take more responsibility.

[miptheme_dropcap style=”normal” color=”#222222″ background=””]5)[/miptheme_dropcap]Blackhawks coach, Joel Quenneville, is putting Corey Crawford back in the crease tonight after Scott Darling’s 30 save shutout on Friday. “We want [Crawford] playing as much as he can to get back to the great pace he had prior to him being away.” Since coming back from an emergency appendectomy, Crawford hasn’t seemed to be his usual self. Crawford was selected as an all-star and Quenneville and the Blackhawks top brass will need to balance getting Crawford back in groove while managing to get him some rest.