Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011
By Tracey Myers
The Chicago Blackhawks havent done so well against the Colorado Avalanche this season. Tonight is their last chance to get something out of the matchup.
The Blackhawks, who have won three of four entering tonights game, have lost all three games to Colorado. And their last two games against them werent their prettiest; the Blackhawks were upended 7-5 in a mistake-riddled contest in Colorado on Dec. 13 and fell 4-3 two days later in Chicago.
Coach Joel Quenneville said the Blackhawks need to have a better response than they had in previous tilts.
Most frustrating was the last game in that building. And coming home the next game and didnt do anything about it, Quenneville said. This is our last chance. We value these two points so we know we have to be at our best.
The Blackhawks will also have to shut down some of the Avs best, including Matt Duchene and Tomas Fleischmann. Those two have a combined seven goals and six assists against the Blackhawks.
Theyre a tough team to play. At the same time want to make sure our game, Fernando Pisani said. We need to take away their time and space so they dont have the opportunities to make plays.
Corey Crawford will start in net for the Blackhawks. The Avalanche will go with Peter Budaj.
Nick Boynton (flu) did not skate this morning.
Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.
We asked you to ask us anything about the White Sox and you delivered in a big way. We got so many questions, we had to do two different podcasts! Among the questions here in Part 1: should the White Sox send Yoan Moncada to Triple-A? What players will be traded before the deadline? Who are some sleeper prospects in the minors? Will Jordan Stephens be called up before Michael Kopech? Should Juan Uribe be a team ambassador? What's our all-time White Sox team from 2000 to the present and many more.
Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below:
Michael Porter Jr. grabbed some attention when he remarked that he was "perfect fit for today's NBA game" during an appearance on The Will Cain Show.
The interview went a long way towards showing off the uber-confident nature of Porter, who has consistently talked about being the best player in his class throughout the draft process. Porter also remarked that he was "an immediate impact guy," and that he "doesn't want it to take long to be one of the best players in the NBA."
His hubris has been intruiging considering the mystery surrounding the prospect.
During the interview Porter added that he would be open to doing more workouts for NBA front offices ahead of Thursday's NBA Draft. The only workout he has completed so far was his pro day workout in Chicago, and multiple reports have cited that Porter did look good shooting, though he was in an isolated setting with no defenders.
The one thing Porter has not done much throughout the process is talk about his weaknesses, which is somewhat concerning seeing as he has much to improve on. The general consensus is that a healthy Porter can get buckets at will. But if he can improve his ball-handling, rebounding and passing skills, he will be much more than a go-to scorer. Tightening his ball-handling skills is likely the key, as the ability to grab the rebound and push in transition would be a huge boon for Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg's offense.
The biggest question when it comes to Porter on the Bulls is can he fit with Lauri Markkanen? Despite receiving many favorable Kevin Durant and Paul George comparisons leading up to the draft, there is a rising sentiment that his best position in the NBA may be the power forward spot. It is not yet known if he has the foot speed to stay in front of quicker wings in today's NBA. But at six-feet-ten-inches, it is easy to imagine him having a huge advantage against slower power forwards rather than wings. While Markkanen is not currently built to be a full-time center, playing him at the five with Porter at the four would present Hoiberg with a potentially devastating closing lineup.
Versatility is the name of the game in today's league, and Michael Porter Jr. may be the key to unlocking the full potential of Hoiberg's pace-and-space attack.