Coach Joel Quenneville, still resting in a hospital after being treated for bleeding ulcers, won't be behind the bench tonight; assistant coach Mike Haviland will again guide the team this evening and maybe even for a few games. It's still uncertain when the coach will be back.
It doesn't matter. The Blackhawks know what they have to do and that is to just go out and win their game every night and not worry about the huge scrum of teams in the Western Conference. If the Hawks keep winning, eventually they'll pass up other teams and make the playoffs.
Currently, that includes holding off the Blue Jackets, who are now only two points behind the Blackhawks and in 12th place in the conference. From 14th to 4th place is just 13 points -- essentially, six and a half games in baseball terms -- so every game becomes hugely important. The Blackhawks do have games in hand on every team in front of them and will be facing an injury-depleted Penguins squad on Sunday, so here's a chance to put together a nice little winning streak.
Possibly trying to take advantage of their good road record, the Hawks will wear white at home tonight. Maybe it'll be their good luck charm. The game begins at 7:30 p.m. CST and will be televised on CSN Chicago.