Game Three: Nashville Predators vs. Chicago Blackhawks (Series Tied 1-1)
2 P.M. | United Center
TV: NBC | Radio: 102.5 The Game
The Nashville Predators come into Chicago this afternoon, and they'll be doing so without their captain. After the Preds and Chicago Blackhawks split Games One and Two in Nashville, including a 6-2 Predators victory in Game Two on Friday, the series shifts to the United Center for Games Three and Four.
Predators Captain Shea Weber did not make the trip to Chicago and is expected to miss at least Games Three and Four with a lower-body injury. An update on Weber's status is expected Wednesday when the team returns to Nashville. Head Coach Peter Laviolette would not reveal on Saturday if either Anton Volchenkov or Victor Bartley would take Weber's place in the lineup.
Preds forward Mike Fisher, who is day-to-day with a lower-body injury, did make the trip and could play at some point in Chicago.
After being pulled in Game One and then allowing six goals in Game Two, Corey Crawford won't get the nod this afternoon against the Preds. Blackhawks Head Coach Joel Quenneville announced on Saturday that Scott Darling will start in goal this afternoon for the Hawks; Darling stopped all 42 shots the Predators threw at him in a relief appearance in Game One, which the Hawks eventually won in double overtime.
The Predators recorded six goals in Game Two with 10 different skaters tallying points in the contest, a 6-2 Nashville win. Six goals are the most goals the Preds have tallied in a playoff game in franchise history, surpassing five-goal performances in 2007 (April 13 vs. San Jose) and 2008 (April 14 vs. Detroit). The four-goal margin of victory is the largest in team postseason history.
Filip Forsberg, Craig Smith and Mike Santorelli anchored Nashville’s six-goal game with a three-goal third period output in the span of 2:19, the fastest three goals in team postseason history. In addition, the three tallies in the third period tied the record for most goals in a single playoff period at home.
Colin Wilson opened the scoring for the second game in a row when he tallied a power-play goal 2:47 into Friday’s game, the fastest goal to start a playoff game at home in franchise history (surpassing Dan Hamhuis’ goal 5:18 into 3-2 win versus Detroit on April 16, 2008). After scoring one goal in 13 career playoff outings prior to this season, Wilson now has three goals in two games played.
For the Blackhawks, Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane each have a goal and two assists through the first two games to lead the club in points with three apiece. Patrick Sharp has potted two goals while Marian Hossa has added two assists.
The Preds will not hold a morning skate prior to this afternoon's 2 p.m. CT puck drop from Chicago. Television coverage of the contest will be broadcast nationally and locally on NBC.