Corey Crawford among Blackhawks’ World Cup of Hockey selections


Corey Crawford among Blackhawks’ World Cup of Hockey selections

DETROIT — Corey Crawford has won two Stanley Cups and is having one of the best regular seasons of his career. On Wednesday his work earned him a spot on Team Canada.

Crawford was chosen for Team Canada and several of his Blackhawks teammates were named to their respective countries’ squads when World Cup of Hockey selections were announced Wednesday.

The first 16 players were named to each team on Wednesday. Team rosters will be completed no later than June 1 for the tournament, which is slated to take place from Sept. 17 to Oct. 1 in Toronto.

Crawford, Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith were named to Team Canada, while Patrick Kane was named to Team USA.. Other Blackhawks heading to the World Cup of Hockey are Artemi Panarin and Artem Anisimov (Team Russia), Niklas Hjalmarsson (Team Sweden), Marian Hossa (Team Europe) and Teuvo Teravainen (Team Finland).

“We have a really young, talented team, and I feel like I'm almost the oldest guy there,” the 21-year-old Teravainen said with a laugh. “It’s fun. We have a fun group of guys there, and I’m pretty excited.”

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A good portion of the Blackhawks will be in Toronto for this tournament, while the remaining Blackhawks will participate in training camp, per usual. The World Cup of Hockey will keep the Blackhawks busy, but that’s fine with them and coach Joel Quenneville, who is assistant coach of Team Canada.

“I think it’s exciting,” Quenneville said. “It’s a privilege for the guys who get a chance to play in a great environment on a very competitive stage, and it’s a short tournament so it has to be exciting for these guys to get the privilege to represent their countries. Best players in the world, get to play among them, I don’t see it being an issue. I think guys will be excited about it.”

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks collide with Senators

NBC Sports Chicago

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks collide with Senators

Here are Three Things to Watch when the Blackhawks take on the Ottawa Senators tonight on NBC Sports Chicago and streaming live on the NBC Sports app. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live.

1. Trade chips.

The Blackhawks have reached the point in their season where they have no choice but to become sellers before the Feb. 26 deadline, and we saw that when they traded Michal Kempny to the Washington Capitals on Monday for a conditional third-round pick in 2018. Tommy Wingels could also be an attractive piece for a team looking to fill out their depth.

The Senators will definitely be sellers, and wow do they have some names potentially on the market that can fetch large returns: Derrick Brassard and Mike Hoffman are two players who log top-six minutes on a nightly basis and also have term left on their contract, which is great for teams looking to load up for this year and beyond.

The biggest name to watch, probably in the league altogether, is Erik Karlsson, who could be on the move if a team offers a big enough package for the Senators to pull the trigger now as opposed to in the offseason if they feel him re-signing is a long shot. He was the best defenseman last season, and if a team steps up to get him, they're getting two possible postseason runs out of him.

2. Artem Anisimov's experiment at left wing not working.

Joel Quenneville has tried rekindling the magic between Anisimov, Nick Schmaltz and Patrick Kane as of late, only this time Anisimov is playing the wing and it just hasn't been very effective. The trio was on the ice for each of the two 5-on-5 goals the Kings scored on Monday, and Anisimov completely lost his man on the first one.

It's important to establish a consistent left winger for Schmaltz and Kane, and maybe putting Alex DeBrincat up there is something you consider going forward as part of a long-term solution. Move Anisimov back down as the third-line center to play in more of a defensive role and continue using his big body on power plays for his offensive abilities might be the best bet.

3. Win the special teams battle.

In their last meeting against Ottawa on Jan. 9, the Blackhawks went 4-for-6 on the power play and 4-on-4 on the penalty kill in an 8-2 win. And those are two areas to look out for again.

The Senators own the 28th-ranked power play with a 16.1 percent success rate and 29th-ranked penalty kill with a 74.5 percent success rate. Get ready for another offensive outburst?

Podcast: Which Blackhawks could be on the move before trade deadline?


Podcast: Which Blackhawks could be on the move before trade deadline?

On the latest Blackhawks Talk Podcast, Adam Burish and Pat Boyle discuss which Blackhawks could be on the trading block and what players are building blocks for the Hawks future.

Burish also shares a couple memorable trade deadline days and his “near” return to the Blackhawks in 2012. Plus, he makes his bold trade deadline prediction for the Hawks.

Listen to the full Blackhawks Talk Podcast right here: