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Preview: Blackhawks at Wild

Goalie Corey Crawford starts for Chicago, which has lost eight in a row to Minnesota

by Jessi Pierce / NHL.com Correspondent

BLACKHAWKS (32-17-5) at WILD (35-12-5)

8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports, NHL.TV

 

Blackhawks team scope

Goaltender Corey Crawford will start for the Chicago Blackhawks, who are playing their first game since a 5-3 win against the Dallas Stars on Saturday that marked the midpoint of a six-game road trip. They have lost all three times this season when they've had three or more days off. Forward Vinnie Hinostroza will return to the lineup after being scratched for wins against the Arizona Coyotes and Stars. "I was kind of getting away from my game," Hinostroza said. "I kind of just want to get back to that, controlling the puck and making plays. I've been doing some video and looked at what was working well for me in the beginning of the year and just need to get back there." Hinostroza has 13 points (six goals, seven assists) in 43 games. "We just want a little consistency, offensively and defensively," coach Joel Quenneville said. "Offensively he gives us some spark with his quickness and his speed and he just needs to find that balance."

 

Wild team scope

Backup goaltender Darcy Kuemper will start for the Minnesota Wild, who have won eight consecutive regular-season games against the Blackhawks. It's Kuemper's first start since he made 41 saves in a 5-2 win at the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 31. Devan Dubnyk made 38 saves in a 4-2 win at the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday in the finale of a four-game road trip, where it went 3-1-0. The Wild open an eight-game homestand 17-6-0 at Xcel Energy Center, including 12-3-0 in their past 15 games, and six points ahead of the Blackhawks for first place in the Central Division with two games in hand. "Nothing in this team surprises me right now," coach Bruce Boudreau said Tuesday. "I mean, it seems like there's a different hero every night." The Wild did not hold morning skate Wednesday. Forward Charlie Coyle will play in his 284th consecutive regular-season game, passing Antti Laaksonen for the longest streak in Wild history.

 

Blackhawks projected lineup

Nick Schmaltz -- Jonathan Toews -- Richard Panik

Artemi Panarin -- Artem Anisimov -- Patrick Kane

Dennis Rasmussen -- Marcus Kruger -- Marian Hossa

Ryan Hartman -- Tanner Kero -- Vinnie Hinostroza

Duncan Keith -- Niklas Hjalmarsson

Michal Kempny -- Brent Seabrook

Brian Campbell -- Trevor van Riemsdyk

Corey Crawford

Scott Darling

Scratched: Gustav Forsling, Andrew Desjardins, Jordin Tootoo

Injured: Michal Rozsival (lower body)

 

Wild projected lineup

Zach Parise -- Eric Staal -- Alex Tuch

Jason Zucker -- Mikko Koivu -- Mikael Granlund

Nino Niederreiter -- Charlie Coyle -- Jason Pominville

Chris Stewart -- Erik Haula -- Tyler Graovac

Ryan Suter -- Jared Spurgeon

Marco Scandella -- Matt Dumba

Gustav Olofsson -- Christian Folin

Darcy Kuemper

Devan Dubnyk

Scratched: Jordan Schroeder, Nate Prosser

Injured: Jonas Brodin (finger), Victor Bartley (arm)

 

Status report

Brodin has been skating daily but is at least 10 days away from a return, according to Boudreau.

 

Who's hot

Seabrook has four assists during a four-game point streak. … Panarin has three points (one goal, two assists) in his past two games. … Kane has 15 points (six goals, nine assists) in his past 14 games. … Hossa has three points (one goal, two assists) in his past two games. … Granlund has 17 points (five goals, 12 assists) in his past 13 games. … Zucker has six points (two goals, four assists) in his past five games. … Niederreiter has 14 points (eight goals, six assists) in his past 13 games. … Pominville has 13 points (four goals, nine assists) in his past nine games, including two goals and two assists in the win at Winnipeg.

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