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Posted On Wednesday, 05.07.2014 / 3:23 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks non-committal on Shaw's Game 4 return

CHICAGO -- The availability of Chicago Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw remains uncertain for Game 4 of their Western Conference Second Round series Friday at Xcel Energy Center (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

Chicago leads the Minnesota Wild 2-1 in the best-of-7 series. Minnesota won 4-0 in Game 3 on Tuesday in St. Paul, the second straight game Chicago played without Shaw.

A hit from Wild defenseman Clayton Stoner knocked Shaw out of Game 1 in the first period with a lower-body injury and his prognosis is unknown. Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville first told reporters prior to Game 2 at United Center that he was hopeful Shaw would play in Game 3.

Quenneville then said Shaw might make the return trip to the Twin Cities for Game 4, but now that possibility seems up in the air.

"We'll see," Quenneville said Wednesday. "That's to be determined."

Posted On Monday, 05.05.2014 / 6:35 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks not concerned with shots disadvantage

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks are being outshot by nearly five shots a game, but they are outscoring teams by more than a goal per game and have won six straight in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Opponents have outshot the defending Stanley Cup champions by a 266-230 margin in Chicago's eight postseason games, but the Blackhawks hold a 29-17 edge in goals.

They're scoring 3.6 goals per game and allowing only 2.1 to get past goalie Corey Crawford. Asked Monday if trailing in shots by such a wide margin was a concern, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville shook his head.

Posted On Monday, 05.05.2014 / 4:05 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks' Shaw ruled out for Game 3 vs. Wild

CHICAGO -- Forward Andrew Shaw will not play for the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 3 of a Western Conference Second Round series Tuesday against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center (9 p.m. ET; CNBC, TSN, RDS2).

Shaw, who missed Game 2 of the best-of-7 series Sunday with a lower-body injury that occurred in Game 1, did not make the trip. The Blackhawks will fly home following Game 3 and there is a chance that Shaw will make the return trip to play in Game 4 on Friday in St. Paul, Minnesota.

"We still think he's going on the next part of this trip and could play Friday," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said Monday during a press conference at O'Hare Airport.

Posted On Sunday, 05.04.2014 / 8:48 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks' Leddy benched after Game 2 struggles

CHICAGO -- Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Nick Leddy appears to be in coach Joel Quenneville's doghouse again.

After he played the most of any player on either team in the first period of Chicago's 4-1 victory Sunday against the Minnesota Wild, Leddy ended up with a total of 13:48 ice time in 15 shifts; he played 46 seconds in the third period.

After Minnesota forward Cody McCormick scored at 2:00 of the third to cut the Blackhawks' lead to 2-1, Leddy didn't play another shift. The 23-year-old defenseman couldn't stop a cross-ice pass that led to the goal, but that play might've been a "last straw" situation after he struggled with turnovers for much of the game.


Posted On Sunday, 05.04.2014 / 3:19 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks insert Morin for Game 2, Bollig out

CHICAGO -- Jeremy Morin will make his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut for the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday against the Minnesota Wild in Game 2 of a Western Conference Second Round series.

Forward Brandon Bollig, who played all seven prior games of this postseason, was a late scratch after pregame warm-up. Veteran forward Kris Versteeg, who missed Game 1 while sick, will play along with rookie forward Joakim Nordstrom.

Posted On Sunday, 05.04.2014 / 2:09 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Shaw out for Blackhawks in Game 2

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks will be without forward Andrew Shaw on Sunday against the Minnesota Wild at United Center in Game 2 of a Western Conference Second Round series (3 p.m. ET; NBC, TSN, RDS).

Shaw has a lower-body injury that knocked him out of Game 1 midway through the first period after he absorbed a big hit by Wild defenseman Clayton Stoner along the boards in the offensive zone.

"He's a competitive guy," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "We love his style and we like what he brings to our team. He's a hard-working type of guy and [gives a] relentless type of an effort game in and game out. So we'll fill his shoes today and expect him back."

Chicago leads the best-of-7 series 1-0.

Posted On Saturday, 05.03.2014 / 4:43 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks have rare series lead, want more

CHICAGO -- By this point, the Chicago Blackhawks are old pros at overcoming the odds to win series in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Entering the Western Conference Second Round against the Minnesota Wild, which started Friday at United Center with a 5-2 Chicago win, the Blackhawks overcame deficits in three of their previous four series to win, dating to the 2013 playoffs.

They came back from a 3-1 deficit to beat the Detroit Red Wings in the Western Conference Semifinals. They came back from a 2-1 deficit to beat the Boston Bruins in the 2013 Stanley Cup Final. This year, they climbed out of a 2-0 hole to beat the St. Louis Blues in the Western Conference First Round.

Posted On Saturday, 05.03.2014 / 3:52 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Injured Shaw questionable for Blackhawks in Game 2

CHICAGO -- Chicago Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw is questionable to play against the Minnesota Wild on Sunday because of a lower-body injury he sustained Friday in the opener of their Western Conference Second Round series.

Shaw, who's been playing right wing on the third line, was hit hard in Game 1 by Wild defenseman Clayton Stoner along the boards in the offensive zone at 10:34 of the first period. He finished the shift before hobbling to the bench and heading to the training room.

He did not return to that game, a 5-2 Chicago win, and Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said Saturday that Shaw is questionable for Game 2 on Sunday at United Center (3 p.m. ET; NBC, TSN, RDS), but he labeled it a short-term issue.

Posted On Friday, 05.02.2014 / 9:53 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Versteeg scratched for Blackhawks for Game 1

CHICAGO -- Chicago Blackhawks forward Kris Versteeg is a healthy scratch for Game 1 of the Western Conference Second Round series against the Minnesota Wild.

For the second Stanley Cup Playoff game in a row, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville scratched Versteeg following the pregame warmups, opting to play rookie forward Joakim Nordstrom instead.

Versteeg, not Nordstrom, took line rushes at right wing on the fourth line in warmups. Nordstrom was kept off the score sheet in Game 6 of the Western Conference First Round series against the St. Louis Blues when Quenneville did the same thing.

"You just have to get ready for the next one," Versteeg said Wednesday following a practice. "Obviously, you always want to play, but you have to understand what the coach feels and what's best for the team. It's something you want to fight through and come back and be a factor in helping the team."


Posted On Friday, 05.02.2014 / 4:37 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Wild prep Heatley for Game 1 power play

CHICAGO -- The Minnesota Wild know their power play must be more of a threat against the Chicago Blackhawks than it was a year ago in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and they are hopeful Dany Heatley can help.

Chicago didn't allow a power-play goal against Minnesota in 12 man-advantages during a five-game Western Conference Quarterfinal series.

Wild players who experienced that drought haven't forgotten heading into their Western Conference Second Round series against the Blackhawks that starts with Game 1 Friday at United Center (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

"I thought we got a couple [power-play goals] in the regular season [against Chicago this year] but that's the regular season, it doesn't really matter," Minnesota left wing Zach Parise said. "It did frustrate us last year. I don't think we got one on them the whole series. To me, that's an area that we have to be a lot better at this year."

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Quote of the Day

I think when you build a team, you look at pairs, and I think the pair of [Voracek and Giroux] is very good, certainly one of the top pairs in the League.

— Flyers GM Ron Hextall on Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek after giving Voracek a multiyear extension Thursday