The Blackhawks got the desired split on the road. Now they’ll try and take advantage of home ice, beginning today when they host the St. Louis Blues in Game 3 of their first-round series.
Whether there are any lineup changes remains to be seen in warm-ups. Asked if Dale Weise could be in the lineup today coach Joel Quenneville said, “we’ll see.”
Regardless, the Blackhawks have liked what they’ve done in their first two games and want to try and take two at the United Center.
“I know it’s pretty comparable,” Quenneville said. “Everybody’s probably had a chance to see each other in the first couple of games, long games, tight games. Their guys play and our guys play comparable minutes. I don’t think it’ll be too much different.”
Blues coach Ken Hitchcock, however, said it could be critical for his team.
“It’s going to be big. I got what I wanted there and Joel’s going to get what he wants, and what he wants I don’t want,” Hitchcock said. “He has a defined matchup. Unless he changes form what he did in the regular season he has a defined matchup that he likes and they’ve obviously had success playing us a few times like this. So we’re going to have to fight through it.”
As for the Blues, who are now looking to turn the tables and steal a game at the United Center, Hitchcock said his team has to “level the playing field,” but that’s up to the Blues.
“We can’t allow them to have more power plays. It’s not a good formula for success for us. We have to have everything as equal as we can to have success against this team,” Hitchcock said. “They’re a great hockey club. They have a lot of elements that are championship elements. For us, the playing field has to be as equal as we can make it. So it’s scoring chances, it’s shots on goal, it’s penalties, it’s everything. We need that to be as equal as we can, so that’s on us."