Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks continue Circus Trip in Calgary tonight on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks continue Circus Trip in Calgary tonight on CSN

Watch as the Blackhawks take on the Calgary Flames tonight on CSN and streaming live on Coverage begins at 7:30 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live. Then stick around after the final buzzer to watch Blackhawks Postgame Live for highlights and analysis.

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Five Things to Watch:

1. More line shuffling?

Vinnie Hinostroza has been cleared to play after suffering an upper-body injury in Tuesday's contest against Winnipeg, but he will be out of the lineup tonight as he gets his legs back from under him. Richard Panik will take Hinostroza's spot on the top line with Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, and will look to provide a spark up front after the Blackhawks were shut out for the first time all season. Ryan Hartman, who was a healthy scratch Tuesday, will skate on the third line with Dennis Rasmussen and Marcus Kruger while Andrew Desjardins, Nick Schmaltz and Jordin Tootoo will make up the fourth line.

2. Take advantage on special teams.

As Insider Tracey Myers noted Thursday, the Blackhawks have scored only two power-play goals on 24 opportunities over their last seven games. The Flames may be able to help them bump up that percentage with their penalty kill ranking second-to-last in the league at 75 percent. The Flames also own the second-worst power play percentage at 9.7, and have scored just two goals on the man advantage in their last 10 games (29 opportunities). Now's a good chance to get back to the basics.

3. Corey Crawford aims to bounce back.

After allowing only 10 even-strength goals through his first 13 games, Crawford gave up four in two-plus periods against Winnipeg on Thursday. (Note: He's actually human). It was bound to happen, but it's all about how you respond. Crawford has consistently shown in the past he's great at bouncing back from a tough outing.

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4. No Johnny Gaudreau.

Gaudreau underwent successful surgery to repair a fractured finger and will miss approximately six weeks because of it. He has had a tough start to the season, putting up 11 points in 17 games, but it's still a significant blow to a Flames team looking to pick themselves up off the floor. Matthew Tkachuk will be relied upon to take on a larger role, and he scored a goal in a 2-1 overtime win over Arizona on Wednesday.

5. Rebounding from a loss.

The Blackhawks are 4-1-0 following a loss this season, with that lone loss coming in the second game of the year. They rarely come out flat two games in a row and don't lose consecutive times often, so expect a better all-around effort tonight.

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Start of the Blackhawks Dynasty, Part 4: Roster overview

Start of the Blackhawks Dynasty, Part 4: Roster overview

In a 10-part series, we look back at the 10-year anniversary of the 2008-09 season, the start of the Blackhawks dynasty.

Starting a dynasty means you have to identify a group of core players to build your team around. Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook, Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews were those guys, along with Marian Hossa, who joined that mix later on.

You also need a mixture of young talent and strong veterans to fill out the depth to become successful. That's exactly what the Blackhawks had at the beginning of their dynasty and throughout.

On the first day of NHL free agency in 2008, the Blackhawks inked All-Star defenseman Brian Campbell to an eight-year deal, which solidified Chicago as a destination players wanted to commit to long term. That same year, Kris Versteeg emerged as the Blackhawks' third Calder Trophy candidate in two years, Martin Havlat and Andrew Ladd set a career high in points with 77 and 49, respectively, while youngsters Dave Bolland, Troy Brouwer and Dustin Byfuglien began to make a name for themselves as valuable pieces to the puzzle.

"Real good group of guys," Joel Quenneville said on Oct. 18, 2008. "I can say that it's the first time I walked in the room where, wow, I was impressed."

Six of the Blackhawks' Top 10 scorers in 2008-09 were aged 23 or younger. The average age for the other four? 27. The youth movement was real and they all contributed in a big way.

Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane, Connor Murphy to participate in USA's Stars and Stripes Showdown

Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane, Connor Murphy to participate in USA's Stars and Stripes Showdown

In honor of the late executive Jim Johannson, who died unexpectedly in his sleep in January at the age of 53, USA Hockey is hosting a Stars and Stripes Showdown at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Michigan on Sunday, Aug. 26 and three Blackhawks will be participating in it: Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane and Connor Murphy.

Kane served as USA's captain at the 2018 IIHF World Championship in Denmark this past May and set a new American record with 20 points (eight goals, 12 assists) in 10 tournament contests, which earned him MVP honors. DeBrincat had one goal and eight assists while Murphy led USA with a plus-7 rating.

Other star-studded headliners participating: Connor Hellebuyck, Seth Jones, Dylan Larkin, Auston Matthews, Charlie McAvoy, Zach Parise, Ryan Suter, James van Riemsdyk and Zach Werenski. It's a great group getting together to celebrate the life of Johannson, who was an instrumental part of USA Hockey's program for the last 18 years.

Tickets are being sold for $10 and $15, which you can purchase here. Doors open at 1 p.m. ET with the game starting at 2 p.m.

A few events that will occur throughout the game: a ceremonial puck drop, a live game-worn jersey auction, an online auction featuring game-worn jerseys and autographed NHL memorabilia, special raffles and an opportunity postgame to meet and greet select players and coaches. All proceeds will benefit both the Jim Johannson Legacy Fund of The USA Hockey Foundation and the Ellie Johannson College Fund.