Stanley Cup

How to watch Blackhawks vs. Oilers Stanley Cup qualifying round games: Time, TV schedule and streaming info

How to watch Blackhawks vs. Oilers Stanley Cup qualifying round games: Time, TV schedule and streaming info

Hockey is officially back. 

The Blackhawks and Oilers meet in the Stanley Cup qualifying round for a five-game series. The winner will advance to the playoffs, while the loser begins their offseason. 

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We have all the details on how to watch and stream the games.

Game 1
When:
Saturday, Aug. 1
Where: Rogers Place
Puck drop: 2 p.m. CT
TV Channel: NBC 
Note: NBC Sports Chicago will have Blackhawks Pregame at 1:30 p.m. CT before puck drop, and Blackhawks Postgame Live immediately following the game. 

Game 2
When:
 Monday, Aug. 3
Where: Rogers Place
Puck drop: 9:30 p.m. CT
TV Channel: NBC Sports Chicago
Live Stream: MyTeams App (stream)

Game 3
When:
 Wednesday, Aug. 5
Where: Rogers Place
Puck drop: 9:30 p.m. CT
TV Channel: NBC Sports Chicago
Live Stream: MyTeams App (stream)

Download the Blackhawks schedule and coverage details to your device.

*If necessary*
Game 4
When:
 Friday, Aug. 7
Where: Rogers Place
Puck drop: TBD
TV Channel: TBD
Live Stream: TBD

*If necessary*
Game 5
When:
 Saturday, Aug. 8
Where: Rogers Place
Puck drop: TBD
TV Channel: TBD
Live Stream: TBD

Throughout the entire series, NBC Sports Chicago will have Blackhawks Pregame and Postgame Live. 

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How Blackhawks' power play can factor into series against Oilers

How Blackhawks' power play can factor into series against Oilers

During the regular season, the Blackhawks' power play was a major cause of concern. There's still so much offensive talent on the Hawks yet they were scoring so few goals on the man advantage.

At the time of the NHL pause on March 12 — due to the COVID-19 pandemic — Chicago's power play was at No. 28 in the league out of 31 teams. The Oilers touted the league's best power play, converting on 29.5% of their man advantages.

The Hawks were converting on a putrid 15.2% of their power plays during the regular season.

To be fair, there was some hope right before the pause. 

The Blackhawks scored on two of their three power plays in their 6-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks on March 11, the night before the pause. Duncan Keith and Patrick Kane each had power play tallies for Chicago in the second period of the contest against the Sharks.

Getting to the postseason now, the team's power play units have a little bit of a different look. Throughout the first week of training camp these are how the Hawks' two units have looked:

*PP1: Kane, Jonathan Toews, Kirby Dach, Dominik Kubalik, Keith
*PP2: Dylan Strome, Alex DeBrincat, Brandon Saad, Alex Nylander, Adam Boqvist

Chicago head coach Jeremy Colliton changed personnel around on the power play a little bit throughout the season. With the units from camp — which we will likely see against the Oilers in the qualifying round — one noticeable decision Colliton made is moving DeBrincat down to the second unit, he was on the first in their last regular season game.

Kubalik, a rookie forward for the Hawks, was thrown on the top unit, and for good measure. He scored 30 goals before the pause and was named a Calder trophy finalist. Chicago can definitely take advantage of his shot.

Dach, another rookie forward with the Blackhawks, was on the top unit against the Sharks on March 11 and was stationed in front of San Jose's net.

The 19-year-old took the four months during the pause before camp to add muscle to his 6'4 frame. His offensive game has been one of the standouts of camp as well. Dach has the same duty on the new-and-improved Hawks' power play, screening the goalie and trying for a deflection, but now he's harder to move and seems to have worked on his hands too.

"I mean I noticed it right away when he came back when he was skating with us right before training camp. … Looks like he’s skating better, looks like his shot's better," Kane said of Dach on Friday. "He looks like he’s a little bit bigger, like he might have put some weight on. He’s looked good."

Dach knows a good power play can make a big difference for a team in the postseason. 

"I think power plays in the playoffs are a huge thing to gain momentum," he said. "As a group of power-play players, we know that the regular season was kind of unacceptable and that we have a lot of growth to do there to help our team win. I think the way we’re moving the puck now and making plays, hopefully it can all come together and be a factor for us against Edmonton."

In addition to Kubalik's sniping ability and Dach's physical upgrade, Duncan Keith has been buzzing around the ice since Day 1 of camp last Monday and has lots of experience quarterbacking a power play. Toews looks like himself and should be able to both help keep the puck in the offensive zone and create plays on the man advantage. Kane, to no one's surprise, has been lighting up training camp.

The second power play unit has some promise as well. 

Despite not generating as much offense as he did last year, DeBrincat scored 10 power play goals in the regular season, good for an 18th place tie with four other players, including Steven Stamkos.

Strome also saw a dip in offensive production during the regular season, but a decent amount of that can be chalked up to injury. He and Alex Nylander have been very noticeable playing on a line with Kane in camp. That can lead to confidence for the pair on the power play.

Nylander showed a lot of offensive upside in his first year with the Hawks and it only seems to have improved in watching him at camp. His skill set could definitely help on the Hawks' second unit.

 "Nylie's got great speed and a great shot and he can make plays," Strome said of Nylander's game after Monday's practice. 

"He's got all the talent in the world. He's a great skater, he’s got all the puck skills, he's got a good shot," Kane said of Alex.

Boqvist got plenty of reps as the power play quarterback during the season. The sky's the limit for the rookie defenseman's offensive potential. 

As for Saad, he's still a serviceable, skilled player who's a scoring threat. He probably had the worst puck luck of any of the Hawks this season. He had 33 points before the pause (21 goals, 12 assists) but easily could have had over 50. Look for him to be a motivated point producer on the man advantage.

The bad news for the Hawks is that the Oilers penalty kill was the second best in the league this season behind the San Jose Sharks, killing 84.4% of their penalties. The Blackhawks' units will have to be at their best to convert against them.

Come Aug. 1, when the best-of-five play-in series begins, we'll see if the changes in personnel and the work put in during the pause will be enough to outduel a shorthanded Edmonton. 

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Blackhawks news and analysis.

2020 NHL Season Restart: Blackhawks opponents, schedule, format and odds

2020 NHL Season Restart: Blackhawks opponents, schedule, format and odds

The Chicago Blackhawks are a part of the NHL's Return To Play Program after being in 12th place in the Western Conference at the time of the NHL Pause on March 12 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They will play in an exhibiton game in one of the league's two hub cities and compete in the qualifying round to advance to Round One of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Blackhawks news and analysis.

When does the NHL restart begin?

Beginning July 28, each of the 24 teams competing in the postseason tournament will play one exhibition game.

The official 24-team postseason tournament begins on Aug. 1.

What teams are the Blackhawks playing?

The Blackhawks will take on the defending Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues in an exhibition game before starting the tournament by facing the Edmonton Oilers — No. 5 in the West at the time of the pause — in a best-of-five play-in series with the winner advancing to Round One of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The top 12 teams in each conference will compete in the tournament with the bottom eight in each playing in the qualifying round and the top four playing in a round-robin for seeding.

Where will the games be played?

Two hub cities were chosen for the NHL restart: Edmonton and Toronto. All of the Blackhawks' games will be played in Edmonton. 

Edmonton's Rogers Place arena will host the Conference Finals and Stanley Cup Final in addition to the Stanley Cup Qualifiers, Round Robin, and the first two rounds of the playoffs for the Western Conference.

Scotiabank Arena in Toronto will host the Stanley Cup Qualifiers, Round Robin, and the first two rounds of the playoffs for the Eastern Conference.

2020 Blackhawks Restart schedule

The Blackhawks will play the exhibition game against the Blues on July 29 at 5:30 p.m. CT. The Hawks will later face the Oilers for the play-in series with Game 1 on Aug. 1 at 2 p.m. CT. The rest of Chicago's qualifing round schedule is as follows:

Game 2 — Aug. 3 at 9:30 p.m. CT
Game 3 — Aug. 5 at 9:30 p.m. CT
Game 4 — Aug. 7 (TBD)*
Game 5 — Aug. 8 (TBD)*

Related: Where to watch the Blackhawks' Stanley Cup Qualifier, exhibition game

Updated odds to win the 2020 Stanley Cup

The Tampa Bay Lightning are the favorites to win the trophy at +550, then the Boston Bruins and the Vegas Golden Knights, both at +600.

The Blackhawks' odds are +4000 to win it all and their play-in series opponent, the Oilers', are +3000.

The Montreal Canadiens have the worst odds at +10000.