The Blackhawks had a successful circus trip, going 4-2, and seemed to be getting on a groove in goal with Corey Crawford having two excellent games at the end of the trip. All seemed to be falling into place for a nice, long winning streak.
Unfortunately, the Hawks will now be without one of their mainstays. Forward Marian Hossa had a collision with Nick Boynton during practice yesterday and had to be helped off the ice. The team announced today that Hossa will be out two to three weeks with a lower-body injury -- perhaps a recurrence of the injury that already had him miss time earlier this season.
To take Hossa's place, the Blackhawks recalled Jeremy Morin from their AHL affiliate in Rockford. The 19-year-old Morin made his NHL debut earlier this year and has played in two NHL games.
Meanwhile, Crawford's excellent recent play has prompted coach Joel Quenneville to stick with him in goal, at least for the time being. Crawford will start tonight. The Sun-Times reported today that Marty Turco agrees with the decision to start Crawford:
"Corey's going to play, I think, and he should," Turco said. "He's been playing great all year, he won a few in a row and we want to get on a roll."
The Blues, meanwhile, got off to a hot start this year but have lost six of their lst ten. Tonight's game begins at 7 p.m. CST, half an hour earlier than usual for a home game, and will be televised on Versus only -- no local television.