The Canes are finally coming to the close of their troublesome four-game road trip tonight in Chicago.
Just to make it clear: no, this will not be the reunion with Cam Ward on the ice. Our longtime goaltender will likely be slated to start net on Monday in Carolina — a more fitting time for tribute.
Instead, Corey Crawford (3-4-0, 2.92 GAA) will get the start after going 36-for-40 in net in a loss to Calgary on Saturday.
However, Scott Darling’s reunion with his former team is still on. Darling has yet to record a win on the year at 0-2-0, posting a 3.13 GAA and .893 save percentage (56-for-62) in his pair of starts.
Two big changes will show on the ice tonight. The first was hinted yesterday, when Phil Di Giuseppe and Clark Bishop were called up from the Checkers and Nicolas Roy was sent down. The duo play on the fourth line with Brock McGinn tonight.
But not only is the offense getting a taste of change. Every defensive pairing has been shaken up, even the usual top pairing of Jaccob Slavin and Dougie Hamilton. With all that madness, here’s how the Canes should take the ice tonight:
Warren Foegele - Jordan Staal - Justin Williams
Micheal Ferland - Sebastian Aho - Teuvo Teravainen
Jordan Martinook - Lucas Wallmark - Andrei Svechnikov
Brock McGinn - Clark Bishop - Phil Di Giuseppe
Trevor van Riemsdyk - Dougie Hamilton
Jaccob Slavin - Brett Pesce
Calvin de Haan - Justin Faulk
Scratches: Haydn Fleury (healthy), Valentin Zykov (healthy), Petr Mrazek (lower body), Victor Rask (hand; injured non-roster)
The Blackhawks didn’t hold a morning skate, but based on Wednesday’s lines at practice, we have an idea of what forward lines we’ll see. That includes former Cane Marcus Kruger, who will center the fourth line much like he did last year in Carolina.
Here’s what to expect from Chicago:
Alex DeBrincat - Jonathan Toews - Dominik Kahun
Jordan Schmaltz - Artem Anisimov - Patrick Kane
Brandon Saad - David Kampf - Alexandre Fortin
Andreas Martinsen - Marcus Kruger - Chris Kunitz
Duncan Keith - Henri Jokiharju
Erik Gustafsson - Brent Seabrook
Brandon Manning - Jan Rutta