Blackhawks

Blackhawks: Paliotta debuts, Darling starting vs. Avs

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Blackhawks: Paliotta debuts, Darling starting vs. Avs

DENVER – Michael Paliotta will make his NHL debut and Scott Darling will get the start in goal when the Blackhawks complete their regular-season schedule against the Colorado Avalanche tonight.

The Blackhawks didn't have to wait for this game to find out their playoff fate: with St. Louis’ victory over Minnesota this afternoon, the Blackhawks will face Nashville in the first round. Dates and times will be announced later.

[MORE: Blackhawks not intimidated by starting playoffs on the road]

Now with all that settled, do the Blackhawks rest a player or two? Coach Joel Quenneville said he “could” do that if little rode on this game, which is the case now. Still, the Blackhawks have just one extra defenseman and forward, so there won’t be many regulars taking the night off.

For Paliotta, it’s a chance to play in a game that could very well have some meaning. Either way, it means plenty to him.

“Obviously, I’ve worked really hard my whole life for an opportunity like this,” he said following morning skate. “At the same time it’s another hockey game. Everyone’s been saying to just play your game. Obviously I’m excited, anxious, but it should be a good night.”

Corey Crawford will get this final regular-season game off, which Quenneville said was the plan all along. That means Crawford’s next start will be about a week after his previous one (this past Thursday vs. the Blues).

“That was our mindset, Darls was going to play,” Quenneville said. “He’s won some big games for us on the road. You look back at that Rangers game, none bigger than that. He gets the start and Crow gets the rest to get ready [for the playoffs].”

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Crawford didn’t object to the decision.

“It’s good: get some rest and make sure that the energy is at 100 percent, not that isn’t anyway. But it’s always nice to get a little rest before it starts,” he said. “I feel really good about my game, pretty strong. There [are] always some things you’ve got to adjust or adjust for against certain teams. Right now I feel probably the best I felt all year."

Briefly

— Patrick Kane continues to skate back in Chicago but has still not been cleared for contact. Asked if Kane could return for the first round of the playoffs, Quenneville said, “tough to say. I love his progress that he’s putting forth, he feels good. It’s up to the clearance and we’ll go from there.”

— Marcus Kruger should be back tonight against the Avalanche. Kruger missed Thursday’s game against the Blues due to illness.

— Brad Richards and Kimmo Timonen, both out with upper-body injuries, are skating back in Chicago.

— David Rundblad looked to be the possible healthy scratch on defense tonight.

Top 6 Blackhawks pop culture salutes ever

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AP

Top 6 Blackhawks pop culture salutes ever

The Original Six team with six Stanley Cups in franchise history known as the Chicago Blackhawks has gotten plenty of salutes from movies, TV shows and other avenues of entertainment over the years. Here are the top six pop culture nods according to us:


6. The Dilemma

The 2011 comedy starring Vince Vaughn and Kevin James features lengthy scenes shot at actual Blackhawks games at the United Center in 2010. Even Blackhawks arena announcer Gene Honda has lines in the picture. 


5. Sudden Death 

Jean-Claude Van Damme. There's nothing else needed to defend this selection. But, the 1995 action flick puts the Blackhawks against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final, of course with the Vice President in attendance.

Actual storyline: The Pittsburgh Civic Arena is wired with explosives that could destroy the whole city. It's up to arson investigator Darren McCord to stop it before the game ends. 

The movie even spawned a delightful song in a Chris Pratt Parks and Rec deleted scene. 


4. NHL '94 Roenick in Swingers

Vaughn and co. play the 1994 installment of the EA Sports NHL video game in the 1996 film with the Blackhawks taking on the LA Kings and hilarity ensues. 


3. Queen's We Will Rock You music video

Off the 1977 album "News of the World", the music video for We Will Rock You features bassist John Deacon sporting a sweet Hawks letterman-type jacket. 


2. Christmas Vacation 

[*Strong language]

"The silent majesty of a winter's morn; the clean, cool chill of the holiday air...." 

This Blackhawks shoutout in the classic Christmas comedy is too great not to make the top 2. You'll still see "Griswold" white Blackhawks jerseys pop up at the United Center during the holiday season to saltue the 1989 film. Rusty also wears a red Hawks sweater when Clark is putting the infamous bright lights on the house. 


1. Wayne's World

It might be a predictable No.1 pick, but come on. Mike Myers and Dana Carvey worked the Hawks into this iconic 1992 comedy in an epic way. The duo also gave the Blackhawks a big shoutout on Feb. 15, 2015 when Mike Myers wore a Hawks sweater as Wayne in a Wayne's World sketch for SNL's 40th anniversary. 

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Patrick Kane’s love-hate relationship with St. Louis fans highlight of 2020 NHL All-Star Game

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USA Today

Patrick Kane’s love-hate relationship with St. Louis fans highlight of 2020 NHL All-Star Game

ST. LOUIS — Patrick Kane has been booed all weekend in St. Louis and the nine-time Blackhawks All-Star poked a little bit of fun at Blues fans for their, shall we say, warm welcoming. But Saturday put the crowd in a weird spot.

On one hand, Kane is an arch rival in St. Louis. On the other, he represented the Central Division and was teammates with the four Blues All-Stars (Jordan Binnington, Ryan O'Reilly, David Perron and Alex Pietrangelo).

After falling into a 3-0 hole to the Pacific Division, the Central Division stormed back for three straight goals. Perron scored the second goal, which drew huge cheers. Fourteen seconds later, Kane scored the equalizer, which also drew loud cheers. 

But then the St. Louis fans realized who had scored and Kane had some fun with them by holding his glove up to his ear. 

"Tried to like put my hand up to my ear to hear the boos," Kane said. "But then I was showing them that hey, I’m playing with the Blues players, I’ve got the same jersey as them. Just had fun with it. "

The Blues found themselves conflicted for a second time when Kane evened the score at 5-5 after converting on a breakaway. The interaction between Kane and the crowd was the most memorable moment of the night.

"It’s all in good fun," Kane said following a 10-5 loss to the Pacific Division. "To be honest with you, sometimes you get booed, you kind of like it a little bit. It’s St. Louis and Chicago, it’s a huge rivalry. Not only in hockey, but pretty much every other sport they play against each other. I guess that’s only baseball, but, you know what? Had a lot of fun this weekend and I thought that was a pretty cool moment."

Even the Blues had fun with it.

"Those were boos," a smiling Pietrangelo said. "Not cheers."

But at least somebody had sympathy for Kane.

"I felt bad for Kaner," Blues coach Craig Berube said. "He comes out in his introductions and is getting booed and stuff and then he scores and they're cheering for him. Tough situation for him. Players all know. They all handle it very well. It's a fun event."

In the end, it provided entertainment and brought some life to the event. What Kane is really trying to figure out is why he's snake bitten at All-Stars Games. He hasn't won since 2012 in Ottawa when Team Zdeno Chara defeated Team Daniel Alfredsson 12-9 under the fantasy draft format.

"I know, right?" Kane said. "Central can’t get over the hump. We won one last year and lost in the final. I think every time you look at the roster, you always think you have a really good roster with some of the players that are on the team, and for whatever reason we can’t do it."

The Central Division slipped to 1-5 under the 3-on-3 format, but Kane may have a solution on how to fix their struggles.

"Maybe it would be better if the Central played an Eastern team next year or something," Kane said half-jokingly. "Maybe you could switch it up that way."

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Blackhawks games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.