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Blackhawks say 'pressure is on' Predators to finish sweep

Chicago's season would end with loss in Game 4

NHL.com @NHL

One loss from being swept out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Chicago Blackhawks said the pressure is on the Nashville Predators to win Game 4 of the Western Conference First Round at Bridgestone Arena on Thursday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN360, TVA Sports 3, FS-TN, CSN-CH).

Nashville, the second wild card in the West, leads the best-of-7 series 3-0 and with a victory would eliminate Chicago, the No. 1 seed in the conference.

"We don't really feel any pressure right now," Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane said Wednesday. "Obviously, being down 3-0, it seems like all the pressure is on them to win that next game. We'll focus on that next game, like I said."

The Blackhawks finished 15 points ahead of the Predators and were a popular choice to win the Stanley Cup for the fourth time since 2010. But Chicago was shut out in Games 1 and 2 at home, and then lost Game 3 3-2 in overtime at Nashville on Monday after leading by two goals in the third period.

"I think it's up to [the Predators]," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "They've got to win. We're in an awful spot. We've got to go in there. We basically have nothing to lose."

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Chicago, which lost a seven-game series to the St. Louis Blues in the first round last season, hasn't been down 3-0 in a series since 2011, when it lost to the Vancouver Canucks in the Western Conference Quarterfinals in seven games.

Kane, who scored 89 points (34 goals, 55 assists) in the regular season, has one goal in this series.

"It seemed like the guys are ready to try and do this," Kane said. "Obviously waiting two days in between a game like that, when you have a lead and you give it up, probably isn't the best thing, but I think we used it to our advantage to kind of get away from the game [Tuesday]. Hang out with each other, be with each other, and have some laughs and have fun."

Quenneville said this is likely the most difficult position the Blackhawks have been in since he started coaching Chicago in 2008-09.

"We're looking to go in there [Thursday] and get a decent start and go from there," he said. "But definitely the pressure's on them."

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