Fire

Seabrook out, Bolland in vs. Canucks

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Seabrook out, Bolland in vs. Canucks

Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Posted: 11:35 a.m. Updated: 12:54 p.m.

By Tracey Myers
CSNChicago.com

A day after Brent Seabrook said he was sore but otherwise fine after taking a shoulder-to-head hit from RaffiTorres, the Chicago Blackhawks defenseman apparently isnt.

Seabrook is out and center Dave Bolland is in as the Blackhawks try to avoid elimination against the Vancouver Canucks tonight at the United Center. Neither Seabrook nor Bolland skated this morning with their teammates; Bollands absence was apparently just a morning off.

Joel Quenneville said John Scott could be the Blackhawks sixth defenseman tonight.

Addressing the media yesterday, Seabrook said the rest of his body was feeling the effects of that hit more than his head. But apparently the defensemans health took a turn overnight. Asked if Seabrook was sorer today, Quenneville said we dont disclose everything but sore could mean a lot of things.

WATCH: Raffi Torres' hard hit on Seabrook

Torres, who did not talk to the media again today, is in the Canucks lineup tonight.

Hes a physical, emotional player, Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said. Hes going to play the same way.

Torres received no supplementary discipline besides the two-minute interference call for the Game 3 hit. Quenneville reiterated today that he felt it shouldve been a major penalty, but he did not question the lack of suspension.

Meanwhile, Bolland has been cleared and is ready to go tonight. Despite the physical nature of this series, Quenneville said Bolland will not be held back.

Watching him skate and practice we think hes been ready to play for a while. It was just a matter of getting him going and getting clearance, he said. He feels good about himself, he feels he can handle the responsibility and hes going to get some as well.

Bolland frustrated the Canucks last postseason, specifically Daniel and Henrik Sedin.

Its been the same way all year. We have a lot of guys (jabbing at) us. Its something to live with, Henrik Sedin said. You havent seen (that frustration) from us this year.

Bryan Bickell and Ryan Johnson are also in for the Blackhawks tonight. TomasKopecky is out.

Thoughts of Flyers

The Blackhawks are facing the daunting 0-3 hole in a playoff series but they look at what Philadelphia did last postseason and realize theres always a chance. The Flyers were down 3-0 to Boston in their conference semifinals last year before winning that series.

Its easy to think that it is possible, seeing it happened last year, Jonathan Toews said. Its not thinking about winning four games in a row, were thinking about winning tonight. Well see after that.

WATCH: Jeremy Roenick and Hockey Central crew preview Game 4, what do Blackhawks need to do?

Quenneville said well look at the smaller picture, play good consecutive shifts. We havent been our best this series. Weve progressed in games but there is still a level we havent gotten to yet.

No Calder for Crawford

Despite winning 33 games in 57 appearances this season, Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford was not a finalist for the Calder Trophy, awarded to the NHLs best rookie.

Crawford, however, wasnt too upset thats the least of my worries right now, he said. Still, teammates were surprised he wasnt among the top three.

He definitely deserves it, Toews said. I guess it shows there are a lot of great young players this year because he had a heck of a year. Without him, who knows if wed be this far. He stepped up, especially when we needed him.

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Bastian Schweinsteiger finally sees the field in Fire preseason

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USA TODAY

Bastian Schweinsteiger finally sees the field in Fire preseason

Coach Veljko Paunovic still went with a second-choice lineup to start the Fire's preseason match against USL expansion team Nashville SC on Wednesday, but the second half featured the first preseason action for Bastian Schweinsteiger.

Schweinsteiger came on for the second half, along with Nemanja Nikolic, Johan Kappelhof and a few other Fire regulars. The German sat out the first four preseason games, but looked sharp in his 45 minutes.

One of the highlights was this smooth move between two defenders:

Schweinsteiger also had an impressive switch pass to set up a shot for second-round pick Diego Campos in the final minutes of the game. Campos drilled the shot on target, but was unable to beat the goalkeeper.

The team did not say Schweinsteiger was injured despite the repeated absences in matches. The Fire have dealt with injuries to Matt Polster, Luis Solignac, Daniel Johnson and rookie Grant Lillard this preseason. None of those four, along with Dax McCarty, played in the 0-0 draw.

The Fire next play Saturday at Orlando in a final match in Florida before returning to Chicago. The Fire also play Tulsa, the team's USL affiliate, at Toyota Park on March 3 before taking on Sporting Kansas City in the season opener on March 10.

There are 600,000 reasons you won't hear Gar, Pax or Hoiberg discuss losing

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AP

There are 600,000 reasons you won't hear Gar, Pax or Hoiberg discuss losing

The Bulls made headlines on Tuesday when VP John Paxson announced that David Nwaba, Cristiano Felicio and Cameron Payne would be entering the rotation, thus continuing the youth movement in Chicago.

On the surface the moves make sense. The 24-year-old Nwaba, the 25-year-old Felicio and the 23-year-old Cameron Payne will be replacing 28-year-old Justin Holiday, 29-year-old Robin Lopez and 25-year-old Jerian Grant. The Bulls want to see what they have in these younger players who haven't played much; they already know what they have in Lopez and Holiday, and Grant (like the other two) is under contract through next year.

OK, got that? Here's why they're making the move: they're sitting 8th in the NBA Lottery standings and really want to move into the top-5 to give themselves a chance at what should be a loaded front-end of the draft class. It's pretty obvious, and anyone who tells you otherwise is either named Gar Forman, John Paxson or Fred Hoiberg.

And here's why: On Wednesday Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was fined a whopping $600,000 by the NBA for comments he made on a podcast regarding tanking. The Mavericks are currently 18-40, the third worst record in the NBA. This comes a season after they finished 33-49, netting them the No. 9 pick that turned into talented point guard Dennis Smith Jr.

So when Cuban was asked about the best interests of his Dallas team, which touts young talent but clearly isn't headed for the postseason in 2018, he said this on the House Call with Dr. J Podcast:

"I'm probably not supposed to say this, but, like, I just had dinner with a bunch of our guys the other night, and here we are, you know, we weren't competing for the playoffs. I was like, 'Look, losing is our best option. [Commissioner] Adam [Silver] would hate hearing that, but I at least sat down and I explained it to them. And I explained what our plans were going to be this summer, that we're not going to tank again. This was, like, a year-and-a-half tanking, and that was too brutal for me. But being transparent, I think that's the key to being kind of a players owner and having stability."

Cuban isn't wrong, and the Mavericks sure as hell aren't the only team tanking. But to come right now and admit that losing is the team's best option wasn't, as Cuban predicted, going to sit well with the league office.

Commissioner Adam Silver sent out a memo with the fine that said Cuban's comments "which concerned his perspective on the team's competitive success this season" were "detrimental to the NBA."

So while the Bulls are going about their business in trying to lose as many games down the stretch as possible, don't expect anyone to admit it's the reason behind their personnel moves. There are 600,000 reasons why.