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After ‘one of the greatest relief performances you’re going to see,’ Quenneville mum on Game 2 starter

Scott Darling, Corey Crawford, Teuvo Teravainen

Scott Darling, Corey Crawford, Teuvo Teravainen


The last thing anybody expected out of Chicago this spring was a goaltending controversy but, after the Blackhawks’ 4-3 double-OT win over the Preds on Wednesday night, there might be one.

After Scott Darling’s 42-save relief of Corey Crawford -- who was hooked after allowing three goals on 12 shots -- Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville played it coy about who would start in Game 2 against Nashville.

Joel Quenneville will not name his goalie for Game 2 until tomorrow. #Blackhawks

— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) April 16, 2015

Q on Darling: “Playing a game of this magnitude, that was one of the greatest relief performances you’re going to see.” #Blackhawks

— Tracey Myers (@TramyersCSN) April 16, 2015

Q on whether Crawford or team prompted pull: “I didn’t like our first period, I didn’t like the goals, so I guess it would be both.”

— Tracey Myers (@TramyersCSN) April 16, 2015

It stands to reason that, after starting 57 games in the regular season, Crawford will be right back in on Friday in Nashville -- but if that’s the case, then why the hesitation from Q? He could’ve snuffed out any potential controversy by right away confirming that Crawford’s the guy, yet chose not to. Curious decision.

Perhaps there’s more to this than just Darling’s stellar effort tonight. He was very good in a small sample size during the regular season, going 9-4-0 with a 1.94 GAA and .936 save percentage -- strong enough to take the backup gig away from Antti Raanta.

“Rock solid every time he’s been in the net for us, from preseason scrimmages to exhibition games to last game (and) he did well in Rockford,” Quenneville said of Darling earlier this year, per the Tribune. “He’s played very well.”

Now, with all that said, let’s remember -- Crawford’s played every playoff game for Chicago since 2011 and backstopped the ‘Hawks to a Cup in ’13, so it’ll take an awful lot to bounce him from the No. 1 gig.

But for tonight, at least, the potential is out there.