Blackhawks

Ex-Blackhawks D Brian Campbell: Crawford may benefit from sitting

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Ex-Blackhawks D Brian Campbell: Crawford may benefit from sitting

After playing a large role in the Blackhawks first two series wins, Joel Quenneville is sticking with the hot hand, Scott Darling, between the pipes for Game 4 against Nashville over starter Corey Crawford.

But one former teammate believes that's not necessarily a bad thing for Crawford.

“It’s probably good for him to sit back, get some practices in, work with the goalie coach, and build some confidence back up,” Brian Campbell, who played with Crawford in 2010-11, said on ESPN 1000 with Carmen and Jurko on Monday. “The nice benefit is Darling in net. When he’s been in the net, he’s outplayed the Vezina Trophy candidate on the other side every game. I think you have to ride him now and see what happens. They’re in a great situation.”

[MORE: Blackhawks riding with Scott Darling in Game 4 vs. Predators]

Goalies often talk about having a short memory when it comes to giving up a bad goal or putting a rough outing behind them, but Crawford hasn’t faced this type of adversity in quite a while.

Still, the track record shows he’s capable of bouncing back.

“I think you look at what he’s done in his career, he played four years in the minors, he battled his way [to the NHL], he’s won a Stanley Cup,” The current Florida Panthers defenseman said. “He’s played in pressure situations. He’s probably not been the best at all times, but no goalie is and no player is.”

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But perhaps the real question mark surrounds the group Campbell was once a part of.

The Blackhawks rely heavily on their top-4 defensemen, especially late in games, which could potentially expose their lack of depth on the blue line down the road.

Will it?

“It’s a great question. I think they’re going to have to answer that hopefully,” Campbell said. “Obviously, Duncan [Keith] can take a big workload on and he’s done it his whole career, but these guys have played a lot of hockey over the years. … I think it’s going to be a challenge.”

Recently retired Kris Versteeg to be honored before Blackhawks game

Recently retired Kris Versteeg to be honored before Blackhawks game

Kris Versteeg recently retired and now the Blackhawks are honoring him with the team’s “One More Shift.”

Versteeg began the season with the Blackhawks’ AHL affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs, but retired in November after playing six games for the IceHogs this season.

The 33-year-old wrote an emotional letter to the Blackhawks organization after requesting his contract with Rockford be terminated.

Versteeg will be honored before Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Wild. He will join the team on the ice for the national anthem and highlights of his career will be featured in the United Center.

Versteeg won two Stanley Cups with the Blackhawks, in 2010 and 2015. He is part of the Blackhawks celebrating the 10-year anniversary of that 2010 Cup win. Brian Campbell was given the same treatment on Nov. 21.

The first 10,000 fans into the UC can get replicas of the 2010 ring.

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Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane visit recovering Chicagoland hockey player for the holidays

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USA Today

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane visit recovering Chicagoland hockey player for the holidays

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane recently surprised recovering hockey player Payton Bruns in the hospital, spreading some cheer across Chicagoland this holiday season. The players spent time with Bruns and his family talking hockey and his recovery.

“I had no clue that they were coming,” Bruns told the camera.

Bruns cited Kane as one of his favorite players, making this moment even sweeter.

You can watch the heartwarming video here.

Bruns, a senior at Lincoln-Way East High School in Frankfort, broke two of his vertebrae sliding into the boards while chasing down a loose puck this past September. He was rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery and has since been recovering and doing physical therapy at the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab in Chicago.  

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