Blackhawks change lines again ahead of matchup with Coyotes

/ by Tracey Myers
Presented By Myers

GLENDALE, Ariz. – Marian Hossa will play and Corey Crawford will start when the Blackhawks face the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday night.

Hossa took the morning off but is expected to start on the third line with Dennis Rasmussen and Marcus Kruger Thursday night. The Blackhawks changed up lines again on Wednesday as they continue to look for the right combinations.

“When we’ve got more lines that are offensively and defensively responsible and consistent, that makes us a better team,” coach Joel Quenneville said. “That’s what we’re looking at.”

Vinnie Hinostroza, Jordin Tootoo and Michal Kempny appear to be the Blackhawks’ scratches.

The Blackhawks are trying to snuff out a three-game losing streak. The Coyotes, meanwhile, won their last three games entering the All-Star break before losing to Los Angeles on Tuesday night. Coach Dave Tippett told the Arizona media that Max Domi (out since Dec. 9 with a hand injury) will be a game-time decision. Mike Smith is expected to start.

Regardless of the Blackhawks’ recent struggles, Tippett said their core group is still dangerous.

“Their top players are real top players. They carry a big load for them,” he said. “When that whole core of six or eight players is playing well, that makes them a really good team. They have some young players coming too but that core is pretty good.”


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Chicago Blackhawks

Forward lines
Nick Schmaltz -Jonathan Toews-Richard Panik
Artemi Panarin-Artem Anisimov-Patrick Kane
Dennis Rasmussen-Marcus Kruger-Marian Hossa
Andrew Desjardins-Tanner Kero-Ryan Hartman

Defensive pairs
Duncan Keith-Niklas Hjalmarsson
Gustav Forsling-Brent Seabrook
Brian Campbell-Trevor van Riemsdyk

Corey Crawford

INJURIES/ILLNESS: Michal Rozsival (lower body).

Arizona Coyotes

Forward lines
Tobias Rieder-Martin Hanzal-Radim Vrbata
Brendan Perlini-Christian Dvorak-Shane Doan
Jamie McGinn-Alex Burmistrov-Josh Jooris
Lawson Crouse-Jordan Martinook-Ryan White

Defensive Pairs
Oliver Ekman-Larsson-Luke Schenn
Alex Goligoski-Michael Stone
Jakob Chychrun-Connor Murphy

Mike Smith

INJURIES/ILLNESS: Brad Richardson (broken leg).