Artem Anisimov is back and Ryan Hartman will start on the top line when the Blackhawks host the Montreal Canadiens tonight at the United Center.
Anisimov missed one game due to the upper-body injury he sustained against St. Louis earlier this week.
The Blackhawks will welcome back former teammates Andrew Shaw and Phillip Danault. Both had good nights in the Canadiens’ victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night; Shaw had a goal and two assists and Danault had a goal and an assist. The Blackhawks are looking forward to the reunion, especially with Shaw.
“It’ll be fun to see him out there,” Jonathan Toews said. “I’ve said this before, knock on wood, some of the former players that come through here seem to have their way with us. So we’ll try to do our best to keep him off his game tonight.”
Coach Joel Quenneville called Shaw, “a special guy, special player.”
“He brings a lot of intangibles you can appreciate and I’m sure he’s done a nice job over there. You miss a guy like that over the time we had here with him,” he said. “It’ll be fun to get to finally coach against him but you like all the intangibles and how he prepares and how he plays the game because he does so many things that are helpful to your team.”
Hartman will have the same feeling seeing Danault; the two have been good friends since their days with the Rockford IceHogs.
“We still keep in touch; we talk pretty often. It’s going to be weird playing against him but we were both competitors,” Hartman said. “When the puck drops we’ll be going at it like we’re not friends. After, we’ll talk and it’ll be all good.”
Hartman, who finished Friday’s game playing on the top line with Toews and Patrick Kane, will start there tonight. Toews said Hartman brings plenty of energy.
“He works hard. He’s not afraid to use his body. He has a great shot, too, and we want him to use that and put the puck on net, and try to shoot through traffic,” Toews said of Hartman, who has been good since returning off a few healthy scratches.
“I think it’s hard for guys to go out of the lineup but you love to see that response that they come back into the lineup a little pissed off, [with] a little bit of an edge and they’re ready to contribute any way they can,” Toews continued. “When you do that, you get more opportunity, more ice time.”
Corey Crawford will start for the Blackhawks. Al Montoya is expected to start for the Canadiens.
Montreal Canadiens at Blackhawks
When: 6 p.m.
Radio: WGN 720 AM
Chicago Blackhawks lines
Ryan Hartman-Jonathan Toews-Patrick Kane
Artemi Panarin-Artem Anisimov-Marian Hossa
Vinnie Hinostroza-Dennis Rasmussen-Nick Schmaltz
Andrew Desjardins-Marcus Kruger-Richard Panik
Duncan Keith-Brian Campbell
Michal Kempny-Brent Seabrook
Gustav Forsling-Niklas Hjalmarsson
Goaltender: Corey Crawford
Injuries: Tyler Motte (lower body), Trevor van Riemsdyk (upper body).
Montreal Canadiens (via NHL.com)
Paul Byron-Alex Galchenyuk-Alexander Radulov
Sven Andrighetto-Tomas Plekanec-Brendan Gallagher
Max Pacioretty-Phillip Danault-Andrew Shaw
Daniel Carr-Torrey Mitchell-David Desharnais
Alexei Emelin-Shea Weber
Andrei Markov-Jeff Petry
Nathan Beaulieu-Joel Hanley
Goaltender: Al Montoya