A big reason the Chicago Blackhawks are facing elimination tonight in St. Louis is that their forwards have only scored four goals in four games.
Patrick Kane has no goals.
Jonathan Toews has no goals.
Marian Hossa has no goals.
And so head coach Joel Quenneville decided to make a few changes. Here are the expected lines for Game 5:
“At this point of the playoffs, sometimes things call for change,” Kane told CSN Chicago after being reunited with Toews. “We haven’t played with each other much, so hopefully it’s kind of that instant chemistry and we can get a win tonight. That’s the most important thing, so hopefully it helps us.”
Kane, of course, spent most of the season with Artemi Panarin and Artem Anisimov — a combination that helped Kane become the first American to lead the NHL in scoring, and Panarin a favorite for rookie of the year.
If the ‘Hawks lose tonight, it’ll mark the fewest games they’ve lasted in the playoffs since their postseason-appearance streak began in 2009. They’ve been eliminated twice in the first round, lasting seven games in 2011 and six in 2012.