Blackhawks

Game 82: Status quo for Blackhawks-'Wings rivalry

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Game 82: Status quo for Blackhawks-'Wings rivalry

Friday, April 8, 2011
Posted: 1:42 p.m.

By Tracey MyersCSNChicago.com
DETROIT Its rare when the Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings need more incentive when they face each other. The matchup already demands a fairly bright spotlight, given their history, the divisional rivalry and the quality hockey that usually comes with the games.

But just for grins sake, lets throw in all the playoff implications, shall we?

The Blackhawks will be feeling the enormity of those when the puck drops at the United Center on Sunday morning. They need one point to guarantee a playoff spot and eliminate any chance the Dallas Stars had to catch them. Two points would be even better, and with help from others, the Blackhawks could finish higher in the standings.

Weve played a lot of big games this year, especially the last little stretch. So theres nothing new for us (Sunday), said Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford, who will be vying for his 34th victory this season. Its a lot better to be deciding your own fate than worrying about someone else. The Wings are not going to give us anything. We expect a hard game.

WATCH: Milbury previews NBC's Game of the Week - Blackhawks vs. Red Wings

It doesnt hurt that the Blackhawks have played the Red Wings very well this season. Their 4-1-0 against Detroit, and their 4-2 victory there on Friday was one of their best outings. But considering how angry the Red Wings were with Fridays loss, theyll probably come in determined.

We expect a dangerous team, with a lot of incentive on their side and ours. There is a lot of meaning in that game, coach Joel Quenneville said. We havent had an easy (game) all year and I dont expect it for one more.

Well, that and Detroit has its own reasons for finishing strong. Despite losing on Friday, the Red Wings are one point behind the second-place Sharks, who also lost on Friday. The Wings will be without Niklas Kronwall and Henrik Zetterberg but both are said to be a go for the postseason. Zetterberg was seen sporting a large brace on his left knee in Detroit on Friday.

Its just about having one more game and weve got to get ourselves ready, get the brain in gear and get playing, Mike Babcock told reporters on Friday. The good thing about the playoffs is its only long for two teams. For us, we can be done in a heck of a hurry. And the sense of urgency that weve got to have and the change in our mindset that weve got to have obviously is very apparent in just watching this game (Friday) night.

Its Game 82, and its status quo for the Blackhawks-Red Wings rivalry. Its going to be fierce. Its going to be competitive. And its going to be for marbles bigger than just one game.

We have to get points, Quenneville said. We have to control our destiny.

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Robin Lehner got best of 'reverse psychology' with Blackhawks familiarity in Game 1

Robin Lehner got best of 'reverse psychology' with Blackhawks familiarity in Game 1

On Tuesday, former Blackhawks goalie Robin Lehner and the Vegas Golden Knights got the better of the Hawks in Game 1 of their Round One Stanley Cup Playoff series, winning 4-1.

Lehner saved 19 of 20 shots from Chicago, but his own equipment made him more uncomfortable in net than his former team.

The 29-year-old goalie had to have a skate blade repaired twice in the second period.

"I was pretty frustrated. It's the first time that's ever happened to me," Lehner said following the game. ... "You kind of get into it and I didn't really know what happened there at first, but you have to battle through it. The rule is when we have possession they can blow it. Kind of tough for a goalie with one skate."

The Blackhawks hit a post the first time Lehner had blade trouble, but otherwise didn't capitalize on his skate malfunction.

Chicago got away from what worked in the Oilers series against goalies Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen in creating traffic in front of the net to take away the goalie's eyes and trying for deflections. Vegas' D did a good job of pushing the Hawks to the outside and away from the crease.

According to Lehner, when the Blackahwks did have chances, knowing their tendencies from playing with them earlier in the year — before he was traded to Vegas ahead of the Feb. 24 trade deadline — played to his advantage in Game 1.

"I think I'm foremost a reading goalie. I know a lot of their tendencies, I know what they're trying to do on the power play and etc.," The 2019 Vezina Trophy finalist said. "But it becomes a little bit of reverse psychology. I knew that they know (that) and they were going to mix it up a little bit on me. On all the really in-tight chances today they tried to go five-hole, so I kind of anticipated that before the game and next game they're probably going to try something else."

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Podcast: Blackhawks drop Game 1 to the Vegas Golden Knights 4-1

Podcast: Blackhawks drop Game 1 to the Vegas Golden Knights 4-1

The Blackhawks lose Game 1 to the favorite Vegas Golden Knights and former Hawk Robin Lehner gets credited with the win. Host Pat Boyle is joined by NBCS Blackhawks analyst and 2013 Stanley Cup champ with the Hawks Jamal Mayers to break down Game 1 and talk how the Hawks can come back for Game 2 to tie the series.

(1:00) - Corey Crawford let in a few soft goals

(6:20) - What went wrong and what went right for the Hawks?

(10:32) - How do the Hawks get more offense?

(14:30) - How should the Hawks prepare for Game 2?

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