Slowly, the Blackhawks are returning to full strength. Tonight, Marian Hossa and Viktor Stalberg will return to the lineup. Patrick Kane, however, remains out.
That means, most likely, that Jordan Hendry and Ryan Johnson will be inactive tonight. Another choice of coach Joel Quenneville: Marty Turco is expected to get the start in goal tonight, despite the fact that Corey Crawford is 10-1-1 in his last 12 starts. The two goalies have just about split the games evenly; Turco is 8-8-2 in his 18 starts, and he made 30 saves in a 5-2 win over the Blue Jackets in Columbus on Oct. 15. A late report from the Daily Herald indicates that Crawford has the flu; if he's not better by the time the Blackhawks travel to St. Louis on Tuesday, hopefully he'll be able to play against the Sharks at home on Thursday.
The Blue Jackets have been decent this year, going 17-14-3, but still rank last in the Central Division with 37 points. They lost their last game at home to Vancouver 7-3 and were ripped by their coach for lack of effort. They're 3-5-2 in their last 10 games, while the Blackhawks are 6-3-1.
Tonight's game begins at 6 p.m. CST and will be televised on WGN (Chicago only).