Blackhawks: Marian Hossa to suit up for 1,200th game tonight


Blackhawks: Marian Hossa to suit up for 1,200th game tonight

Marian Hossa will play in his 1,200th career game and Corey Crawford will start when the Blackhawks host the Vancouver Canucks tonight at the United Center.

Hossa, who did not participate in this morning’s skate, struggled to score points this season but his defensive game has remained steady. And reaching this number of games certainly speaks to his longevity.

“Consistency is probably a good description to his career and in games as well,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “He plays both sides of the puck extremely well, has great purpose to his game and [has been a] great professional over the years. He’s really has done a lot for our team and you just like the way he approaches each and every game.”

Patrick Kane enters tonight’s game on a 25-game point streak. The Blackhawks were noticeably trying to get him to establish the new franchise mark (he broke Bobby Hull’s 21-game mark last Sunday vs. Winnipeg). But they’ve since gotten back to their normal game. Kane doesn’t let the streak dominate his mind too much, either.

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

"I mean, we're not worried about it. I think it was exciting when it was around 19, 21, 22 games, but I think we're not thinking about that anymore. We're focused on winning games,” Kane said. “We've been playing a little better as of late – except for the game in Nashville – and we've got a few home games here to try and pick up some points. That's where our minds are. Nothing else, really."

The Blackhawks have won three out of four games entering tonight. Their last outing against Vancouver was an ugly one, with Daniel and Henrik Sedin combining for four goals and five assists (three of those goals were Daniel’s) in a 6-3 loss on Nov. 21.

“We better be a lot more careful than the last time we saw them. They were unbelievable that night and they can do that any given night,” Quenneville said of the Sedins. “They have great patience, play recognition and they’re dangerous. We don’t want to put them on the power play; we have a lot of respect for what they’re capable of.”

The Blackhawks look to be going with the same lineup as on Friday. Brandon Mashinter and David Rundblad will remain in the lineup. Ryan Garbutt and Michal Rozsival are expected to be the scratches.

Capitals' Devante Smith-Pelly speaks out about 'racially charged chanting' at United Center

Capitals' Devante Smith-Pelly speaks out about 'racially charged chanting' at United Center

After being on the receiving end of some racist taunts while he was in the penalty box during Saturday's game against the Blackhawks, Capitals winger Devante Smith-Pelly spoke publicly about the incident.

Smith-Pelly, a 25-year-old Canadian, reacted to the fans while he was in the box, going up to them from the other side of the glass. He addressed questions from the media about the incident on Sunday.

"I just heard some chanting, some, I guess, racially charged chanting," Smith-Pelly said. "You can tell by my reaction that I got pretty upset.

"What was said this time around crossed the line."

The Capitals released a statement about the incident:

"The Washington Capitals are extremely disappointed by the intolerant behavior extended toward Devante Smith-Pelly by a select group of fans during Saturday night's game against the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center. The Capitals organization strives to be inclusive and has zero tolerance concerning any form of racism. Such behavior is unacceptable and has no place in hockey or society. As such, it is crucial to confront such appalling conduct, and the Capitals extend their appreciation to the Blackhawks organization and United Center security for swiftly removing the fans from the game."

The Blackhawks released a statement after the game with a similar tone.

Smith-Pelly said this has happened previously in his career.

"It's sad that in 2018 we're still talking about the same thing over and over," Smith-Pelly said. "It's sad that athletes like myself 30, 40 years ago were standing in the same spot saying the same thing. You'd think there'd be some sort of change or progression, but we're still working towards it I guess and we're going to keep working towards it."

The Capitals released the full interview.

Blackhawks release statement following incident that happened during game vs. Capitals


Blackhawks release statement following incident that happened during game vs. Capitals

Four fans at the United Center were thrown out of Saturday's Blackhawks game for taunting Washington Capitals forward Devante Smith-Pelly with racist remarks.

Midway through the third period, Smith-Pelly, who is black, was in the penalty box when fans shouted "basketball, basketball, basketball" at him, the Washington Post reported.

Here is a GIF of Smith-Pelly's interaction with the fans:

After the game, the Blackhawks released this statement:

Capitals head coach Barry Trotz also had this to say about the incident: