Brandon Bollig

Quenneville goes with Bollig, but preaches discipline


The insertion of big Brandon Bollig into Chicago’s lineup in place of speedy forward Viktor Stalberg had at least one reporter wondering if the Blackhawks may be falling into Boston’s trap before the 2013 Stanley Cup Final had even begun.

However, Chicago head coach Joel Quenneville doesn’t believe the winger switch for tonight’s Game 1 at the United Center means the ‘Hawks are somehow trying to prove they can stand up to the big, bad Bruins.

“All year long, that line, when they did play, had a purpose,” said Quenneville of the line of Bollig, Marcus Kruger and Michael Frolik. “We felt several shifts they always seemed to be on the offensive end at the end of the a shift.

“They seemed to control the play. You’re comfortable with him in your own end. Faceoffs as well. You have an overall game that we like. I think he can bring an element to our team.”

Bollig has registered 11 hits in three playoff games while averaging 7:03 of ice time. His last appearance was on May 5 in a first-round contest versus Minnesota.

In a possibly related story, how much the two teams engage in after-the-whistle scrums will be something to watch tonight. Both sides come into the series with struggling power plays, but one bad, retaliatory penalty could still be the difference between a win and a loss.

“Discipline is something we talk about all the time,” said Quenneville. “I think we’ve been pretty responsible all year staying out of the box. I think that’s something we’ll reinforce, like we said earlier, playing hard between whistles, knowing a small quantity of penalties, one or two, will be preferable.

“You never know how the games are going to be. You can’t control that. You want to make sure you’re playing hard and stay responsible. But let’s stay out of the box.”

Blackhawks lines, per

Patrick SharpJonathan ToewsMarian Hossa

Bryan BickellMichal HandzusPatrick Kane

Brandon SaadDave BollandAndrew Shaw

Brandon BolligMarcus KrugerMichael Frolik

Duncan KeithBrent Seabrook

Johnny OduyaNiklas Hjalmarsson

Nick LeddyMichal Rozsival

Corey Crawford

Ray Emery

WATCH LIVE: Lightning at Red Wings

Henrik Zetterberg, Steven Stamkos
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Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.

Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.

While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.


After healthy scratch, Severson vows to play ‘next 80 games’

Jimmy Hayes, Damon Severson
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Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.

It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.

“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”

Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.

Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.

Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.

“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”