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At the Rink: Oilers at Blackhawks

by Brian Hedger /

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks have lost four of their past five games, but the defending Stanley Cup champions will get a key piece of the puzzle back against the Edmonton Oilers at United Center on Sunday (8 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, WGN).

Marian Hossa, who has missed the past three games because of an undisclosed lower-body injury, is expected to play right wing on the top line after going through Chicago's morning skate with no problems.

The Blackhawks went 1-1-1 without Hossa, one of the League's top two-way players.

"You don't want to [do more] damage early [in the] season," Hossa said. "So you'd rather take a few days to get better, where you need to be, and let the body settle down [until you] feel like you can go again. I think it was a smart decision."

Hossa played all 82 regular-season and 23 Stanley Cup Playoff games in 2014-15. Sitting out usually does not sit well with him, but Hossa said he tried to find the positives this time.

"Actually that was something [that was] kind of unusual for me to sit out and watch the game," he said. "On the other hand I haven't seen a game from the press box in so long. So you know, you get different angles on the game from upstairs, and it's something better, something good."

Defenseman Duncan Keith practiced Sunday for the first time since having surgery Oct. 20 to repair a tear in the meniscus in his right knee but is not ready to play. Defenseman Michal Rozsival, who has not played since fracturing his left ankle during Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round against the Minnesota Wild, practiced and could return next week.

The Blackhawks switched left wings on the top two lines at practice. Teuvo Teravainen skated line rushes with captain Jonathan Toews and Hossa on the top line, while Panarin was reunited with center Artem Anisimov and right wing Patrick Kane on the second line.

Teravainen had a brief look on the top line to start the season, but Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville went away from it when he noticed Teravainen not being assertive enough. He's since started to get the puck on his stick more, and has two goals and two assists during a three-game point streak.

"I think that he's got a unique game," Quenneville said. "He wants the puck, [and] can have the puck. I think playing with those two guys there's nothing wrong with you keeping it and doing your thing as well. [We] just feel like [with] the puck, you don't have to give it away. Just keep it as long as you can."

Chicago forward Ryan Garbutt did not practice and is questionable to play. Quenneville said the absence is not related to an injury.

Edmonton will have two lineup changes from its 2-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday; defenseman Mark Fayne will replace Brandon Davidson on the second pairing, and goalie Cam Talbot will start.

Fayne, who has one assist and a minus-3 rating in 11 games, has been scratched the past three games.

Talbot, who is 3-6-0 with a 2.88 goals-against average and .897 save percentage, last played Oct. 31, when he allowed all five goals on 32 shots in a 5-4 loss to the Calgary Flames.

"Definitely eager to get back at it," Talbot said. "Obviously my last start wasn't what I wanted it to be and I'll go back out tonight and have a rebound game."

Corey Crawford will start in net for the Blackhawks.

Here are the projected lineups:


Taylor Hall - Leon Draisaitl - Jordan Eberle

Benoit Pouliot - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Nail Yakupov

Matt Hendricks - Mark Letestu - Teddy Purcell

Anton Lander - Andrew Miller - Iiro Pakarinen

Andrej Sekera - Darnell Nurse

Oscar Klefbom - Mark Fayne

Griffin Reinhart - Erik Gryba

Cam Talbot

Anders Nilsson

Injured: Connor McDavid (fractured clavicle), Rob Klinkhammer (foot), Justin Schultz (back), Lauri Korpikoski (undisclosed)

Scratched: Brandon Davidson, Luke Gazdic, Andrew Ference


Teuvo Teravainen - Jonathan Toews - Marian Hossa

Artemi Panarin - Artem Anisimov - Patrick Kane

Marko Dano - Tanner Kero - Andrew Shaw

Andrew Desjardins - Marcus Kruger - Viktor Tikhonov

Viktor Svedberg - Brent Seabrook

Trevor van Riemsdyk - Niklas Hjalmarsson

Trevor Daley - Erik Gustafsson

Corey Crawford

Scott Darling

Injured: Duncan Keith (right knee), Michal Rozsival (left ankle)

Scratched: Ryan Garbutt, David Rundblad

Status report: If Garbutt is out Tikhonov will play his second straight game after missing three in a row. ... Quenneville said he expects Rozsival to make his season debut either Nov. 12 against the New Jersey Devils or Nov. 14 at the St. Louis Blues. ... Quenneville said he hopes Keith can return against the Blues; that would be the first game he'll be eligible to come off long-term injured reserve. Keith is expected to practice and take contact this week.

Who's hot: Kane has a four-game point streak and three-game goal streak. ... Hall has scored a goal in four of the Oilers' past six games.

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