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Blackhawks at Wild preview

Fortin to make NHL debut with Chicago; Minnesota seeking first win

by Jessi Pierce / Correspondent

BLACKHAWKS (2-0-1) at WILD (0-1-1)

8 p.m. ET; FS-N, FS-WI, WGN, NHL.TV


The Game

Alexandre Fortin will make his NHL debut when the Chicago Blackhawks play the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center on Thursday.

The 21-year old forward was recalled from Rockford of the American Hockey League on Tuesday. He had 21 points (four goals, 17 assists) in 53 AHL games.

Chicago, which has played in three consecutive overtime games to start the season, has outscored its opponents 15-14. 

Goalie Devan Dubnyk is expected to start for the Wild, who have been outscored 6-2 in their first two games and are seeking their first win. 

Players to watch

Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews has six points (five goals, one assist) and is three goals away from 300 in the NHL. 

In two games for the Wild, Dubnyk has stopped 77 of 80 shots and has a 1.45 goals-against average and a .963 save percentage.


They said it

"The guys returning from last year have a chip on their shoulder and are ready to prove that we're much better than we showed throughout the season last year. We want to get off to a good start. It's pretty important to do that in the League nowadays, especially in our division, we're not going to get too many easy games." -- Blackhawks forward Jonathan Toews

"They have guys that have won three Cups on that team, then they miss the playoffs. There's a lot of pride in that group. … They have come into this season with a little bit of a chip on their shoulders and they're out to prove everybody wrong." -- Wild coach Bruce Boudreau


Blackhawks projected lineup

Alex DeBrincat -- Jonathan Toews -- Dominik Kahun

Brandon Saad -- Nick Schmaltz -- Patrick Kane

Chris Kunitz -- Artem Anisimov -- Alexandre Fortin

John Hayden -- Luke Johnson - Marcus Kruger

Duncan Keith -- Henri Jokiharju

Brandon Manning -- Brent Seabrook

Erik Gustafsson -- Jan Rutta

Cam Ward

Anton Forsberg

Scratched: Andreas Martinsen, Brandon Davidson, David Kampf

Injured: Corey Crawford (concussion symptoms), Gustav Forsling (wrist), Connor Murphy (back)


Wild projected lineup

Jason Zucker -- Eric Staal -- Joel Eriksson Ek

Zach Parise -- Mikko Koivu -- Mikael Granlund

Nino Niederreiter -- Jordan Greenway -- Charlie Coyle

Marcus Foligno -- Eric Fehr -- J.T. Brown

Ryan Suter -- Matt Dumba

Jonas Brodin -- Jared Spurgeon

Nick Seeler -- Greg Pateryn

Devan Dubnyk

Alex Stalock

Scratched: Matt Hendricks, Nate Prosser

Injured: None


Status report

Forsling practiced for the first time Wednesday but remains 2-3 weeks away from a return. Crawford and Martinsen were not on the trip but skated in Chicago. … Brown will make his debut with Minnesota. Wild forward Luke Kunin was assigned to Iowa of the American Hockey League on Sunday.

Stat pack

Kane has six points (four goals, two assists) in three games. ... DeBrincat has four points (two goals, two assists) in three games. ... Jokiharju has five assists in his past two games. … Dumba and Parise are the only Wild players with goals this season. 

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