After most of the NHL played last night -- 26 of the 30 teams were in action -- Sunday comes as a day of rest for all but four of the League's squads.
The only team to play Saturday that is back on the ice again tonight has gone through quite a bit in the opening weeks of the season. The Chicago Blackhawks
, who play host to the Vancouver Canucks
, fired coach Denis Savard
after a 1-2-1 start and Joel Quenneville
was behind the bench for last night's 4-3 shootout loss in St. Louis.
"It was good," Quenneville said. "My voice kept going on and off all night, but it was great to be back there."
Also, the Anaheim Ducks
try to continue their rebound from an 0-4 start when they welcome in the Carolina Hurricanes
. Behind the goaltending of Jean-Sebastien Giguere
, Anaheim broke through with a 4-0 win over San Jose on Friday.
Vancouver at Chicago (7 p.m. ET) --
In spite of a promising 2007-08 season that saw the Blackhawks rise to within three points of a playoff berth, Savard couldn't save his job after the team struggled in the early-going. It is now Quenneville's task to make sure Chicago takes the next step.
Quenneville had a career 438-283-77-41 record in 11 seasons coaching St. Louis and Colorado, and won the Jack Adams
Trophy as the League's top coach in 1999-2000 when he posted a 51-19-11 mark with the Blues. He led the Avalanche to a 44-31-7 mark last season but left the organization following Colorado's ouster in the second round of the playoffs. He had been serving the Chicago organization in a scouting capacity before being promoted to coach.
scored twice Saturday against the Blues, but the Blackhawks were unable to hold 2-0 and 3-1 leads, giving up the tying goal to Andy McDonald
with 14 seconds left in regulation and T.J. Oshie
's winner in the fourth round of the shootout.
The Canucks have won three of their first five games, but come off a 5-2 loss Friday to the Sabres in Buffalo. Roberto Luongo
, who got a night off in favor of Curtis Sanford
after allowing 13 goals in his previous three starts, is expected to be back in net tonight. Henrik Sedin
(1-5-6) and Alex Burrows (3-3-6) lead Vancouver in scoring.
Carolina at Anaheim (8 p.m. ET) --
The Ducks were outscored 17-8 in their first four games, hardly indicative of a team that lifted the Stanley Cup just 16 months ago and has aspirations of doing it again at the end of this season. Giguere gave them the big-time effort in net they needed against the Sharks, and the rest of the team followed his lead.
"The previous four games we had a plan but didn't stick to it. Tonight we came out and paid attention to detail and got the win," said forward Travis Moen
, one of four Anaheim players to net his first goal of the season in the game.
The Hurricanes started a six-game road trip Friday by picking up a point in Los Angeles, but the result was still disappointing because Carolina held a 3-1 lead late into the second period only to see the Kings rally and eventually win on a Michal Handzus
goal in overtime.
Material from wire services and team broadcast and online media was used in this report.