Brian Campbell game-time decision for Blackhawks

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Thumbnail image for campbelldazed.jpgWith the Chicago Blackhawks largely snake-bitten in two of their three games against seventh-seed Nashville, word that Brian Campbell’s return being on the horizon must be welcome news for the offensively challenged team. Jesse Rogers of ESPN Chicago has the report.

Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brian Campbell is listed as a game-time decision Thursday for Game 4 against the Nashville Predators.

It is possibly paving the way for Campbell’s first action since March 14, when he was hit by Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin.

The sooner the better for Chicago, because their offense is ailing right now. John Glennon of the Tennessean provided a position-by-position breakdown regarding why the Predators are stifling the Blackhawks’ impressive offensive attack. Here are a few highlighted excerpts.

Goaltending. Outside of a few dangerous turnovers in the first period of Game 3, Pekka Rinne has been, well, impeccable.

One of his greatest strengths is that when he’s on his game, he gives up very little in the way of juicy rebounds. Chicago’s shots have been dying in Rinne’s glove or midsection as the Blackhawks wait in vain for rebounds.

Pekka Rinne is easily one of the most underrated goalies in the NHL, but perhaps the real surprise is that Antti Niemi has been a rock in net so far for Chicago. The Blackhawks cannot blame their goalie for their struggles (so far at least) but they can blame a goalie for their troubles. To some extent.

… Defensemen … But they’re also doing a good job in clearing rebounds and staying positionally strong. When Rinne has given up loose pucks following initial shots, the blueliners have been there to sweep them away. They’ve also done a good job of limiting slot opportunities. Chicago didn’t have many quality chances in the last two periods of Game 3.

Forwards. It’s a 200-foot commitment for Nashville’s forwards.

It might not always be fun to watch, but the Predators’ total commitment to defense keeps them in games and in the playoffs. Maybe someday Barry Trotz will get his due and receive a Jack Adams award.

Burrows on waiving his no-trade clause: ‘I’ve never talked to management or coaches about it’

Vancouver Canucks' Alex Burrows celebrates his goal against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, British Columbia, Thursday, March 28, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Darryl Dyck)
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Alex Burrows doesn’t want a trade out of Vancouver and he wants to make sure everyone knows it.

On Saturday, Sportsnet’s Elliott Friedman reported that Burrows was potentially willing to waive his no-trade clause if a deal came up.

When asked about the report, Burrows went into denial mode.

“There’s no truth to that,” Burrows told beat reporter Ben Kuzma. “I’ve never talked to management or coaches about it.

“Last time I talked to my agent was to wish him Merry Christmas.”

Whether or not Burrows is willing to accept a deal out of Vancouver may be irrelevant.

The 34-year-old has seven goals and 16 points in 53 games this season, and he comes with a cap hit of $4.5 million dollars next season.

That’s pretty steep for a guy who’s on pace to score just 25 points this year.

If the Canucks want to find a taker for his services (assuming he’s willing to go), they’ll likely have to take a good-sized contract back or they’ll have to eat some of his remaining salary.

Marchand scores fastest goal in Bruins’ history; Datsyuk’s 900th point

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It makes sense that a swift bit of history happened in a game in which three goals were scored scored on three shots in about three minutes.

Brad Marchand found the net eight seconds in after an icing call, setting a new record for the Boston Bruins.

(You can see that goal in the video above.)

Watch that three-goal burst in this video:

The two teams weren’t done then. Loui Eriksson made it 3-1 while Pavel Datsyuk scored his 900th point to make it 3-2.

Maybe the best moment wasn’t a goal: Torey Krug was seemingly hurt by a Pavel Datsyuk hit, yet he returned without missing much time.

Kinkaid blanks Kings, Devils move into playoff position

New Jersey Devils goalie Keith Kinkaid (1) watches a shot on goal during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Los Angeles Kings, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016, in Newark N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
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When the New Jersey Devils shut down a team 1-0, it’s usually with Cory Schneider in net.

Their workhorse got the afternoon off against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday, yet Keith Kinkaid did his Schneider impression, grabbing his first NHL shutout in the process.

It was a low-event game with just 46 combined shots on goal, but Kinkaid had to work, stopping all 28 shots. To give you an idea of how tight this game was, the only tally was credited to David Schlemko on the power play.

This gives the Devils three straight wins. They managed to climb into third place in the Metropolitan Division, although New Jersey’s edge is a little misleading; the Islanders trail them by one standings point while holding three games in hand.

That leaves the Islanders in the bottom wild card spot, while the Penguins aren’t so far behind either.

Third in Metro: Devils – 65 points with 57 games played
Second wildcard: Islanders – 64 points, 54 GP
First spot outside the East playoffs: Penguins – 63 points, 54 GP

So, the Devils’ hold of a playoff spot is a bit tenuous, yet the bottom line is that they’re staying in the mix.

The Kings, meanwhile, remain comfortably in first in the Pacific.

WATCH LIVE: Boston Bruins at Detroit Red Wings on NBC

Boston Bruins left wing Brad Marchand (63) and Detroit Red Wings defenseman Mike Green (25) battle for the puck in the first period of an NHL hockey game Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2015, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
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The Boston Bruins (without Patrice Bergeron) take on the Detroit Red Wings (missing Jonathan Ericsson) on Sunday afternoon.

It’s a matchup between the second-ranked and third-ranked teams in the Atlantic Division, with little separating the two in the standings.

You can watch the game on NBC and also stream it online via the link below.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE