Blackhawks

Myers: Blackhawks need to play entire 60

445093.jpg

Myers: Blackhawks need to play entire 60

Monday, April 18, 2011Posted: 4:01 p.m.

By Tracey Myers
CSNChicago.com

The first three games of this latest Blackhawks-Canucks playoff series are in the books. Any cobwebs Brent Seabrook may have had in his head after Raffi Torres rammed his shoulder into it sounds like theyre gone.

As mad as the Blackhawks are that Torres escaped suspension, they now have to face another enemy: their own inability to play a complete game, a problem thats plagued them throughout the year. And if they fail to do it again tomorrow they wont get another chance until October.

The Blackhawks are in full backs-against-the-wall, going-for-broke mode entering tomorrow nights potential elimination game against Vancouver. Theres no need to tell them whats at stake especially that half of the group that went all the way last season and would love nothing more than another extended run. Its time for the Blackhawks to empty the tanks and see if they can send the series back to Vancouver.

Theyre a beatable team, Jonathan Toews said. But we havent done that in three games. We havent been able to prove we can be a better team on one single night.

Canucks right wing Jannik Hansen said every team is beatable. And if the Blackhawks are healthy, deep and not suffering from inconsistency all season and within games then this series is closer. But they arent and its not.

The Blackhawks had their best chance to dent Vancouvers armor on Sunday night. The home crowd was with them, the start was strong and the Canucks played what Henrik Sedin called our worst game of the series. But one icky final period later, it was another loss.

I dont know if after the second we think were in a good position and start playing different to force and get another goal or what, Patrick Kane said. If we play like we did in the first period all night we should be successful.

Can the Blackhawks come back from a 3-0 deficit to beat the Canucks? Anything is possible. The Philadelphia Flyers came back from being down 3-0 in the series and even down 3-0 in Game 7 against the Boston Bruins in last springs Eastern Conference Semifinals.

Theres always a chance. But before they get to thinking about a potential seven games, they need a defining and triumphant 60 minutes.

Well see what battle level (we have) and how hard we can compete to keep it going, defenseman Duncan Keith said. We worked hard all season long and were facing an important game and our season could be over. That says it all right there.

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

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Corey Crawford is BACK, are the Bulls legitimate playoff contenders?

corey_crawford_blackhawks.jpg
USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Corey Crawford is BACK, are the Bulls legitimate playoff contenders?

Mark Lazerus and Hub Arkush join David Kaplan on the panel.

The guys discuss Corey Crawford’s return and what it means for the team’s playoff chances.

Khalil Mack misses practice again. The guys debate if it would be better to leave him out vs. the Patriots.

The latest on the MLB playoffs with controversy in Houston and gamesmanship by the Brewers.

Will Perdue and Kendall Gill join the panel to discuss Kris Dunn’s absence from the opener and the team’s playoff chances this season.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below.

Subscribe:

Blackhawks make it official: Corey Crawford is back

Blackhawks make it official: Corey Crawford is back

He’s back.

Corey Crawford was officially activated from injured reserve on Thursday and will start in goal for the first time since Dec. 23, 2017 when the Blackhawks host the Arizona Coyotes.

"It’s exciting," coach Joel Quenneville said. "I’m sure he’s looking forward to it and we’re all excited about it as well. It’ll be a fun situation for the guys, seeing him back in the net as well. So we’re looking for everyone to be excited about tonight’s game."

The two-time Stanley Cup champion was medically cleared to practice from his concussion on Oct. 1, but the Blackhawks wanted to give Crawford as much time as he needed to get his conditioning and puck-tracking skills up to game speed before putting him into game action.

"It feels good to be back to myself," Crawford said on Wednesday. "I'm feeling good, I'm feeling clear. It was a pretty long process. ... Practices have been great, been getting timing a little bit more and getting up to speed and reading shots and all that, so it'll be nice to finally get in one."

To make room for Crawford on the 23-man roster, the Blackhawks have assigned forward Luke Johnson to the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League. Brandon Saad, who wore a white healthy scratch jersey all week at practice, will take his spot in the lineup.

For now, the Blackhawks will hang on to Anton Forsberg and carry three goaltenders as insurance as they get ready to start a seven-games-in-11-days stretch.

Crawford was 16-9-2 with a 2.27 goals against average, .929 save percentage and two shutouts in 28 games last season. The Blackhawks were 17-30-8 without him and finished last in the Central Division.