Q still looking for right line combinations

DETROIT -- Expect some new line combinations and some old ones for the Chicago Blackhawks against the Detroit Red Wings on Monday night.

Joel Quenneville ran a new group of trios at practice on Sunday but switched back to the way the Hawks finished their last game during their Monday morning drills. Quenneville said he'll run a combination of the two Monday night.

Quenneville said Sunday he was looking for a more "traditional" checking line but indicated Monday he liked the way Michael Frolik, Marian Hossa and Tomas Kopecky performed that role during the last game.

The line centered by Jonathan Toews was unsuccessful holding Ryan Getzlaf, Bobby Ryan, and Corey Perry off the scoreboard.

"Even when [Patrick] Kane and I are in that so-called checking role we still need to go out there and play offense," Toews said Monday morning. "The way we do that is by keeping the puck. Our best defense is having the puck. We didn't do that well enough last game because we tried too many things and gave the puck away."

Toews is turning the page mostly because the Hawks have to. They're eighth in the West with 14 days to play and eight games left on the schedule, including three against the Red Wings.

"It's been a crazy challenge for a while now and we have to find a way in some of these tight games," he said. "We're not panicking, but we definitely feel the urgency and the sense of desperation has to return to our game."

The Wings will start Joey MacDonald in place of the injured Jimmy Howard. MacDonald is 5-4-2 in 13 games this season.

"The one thing you want to do is get a lot of shots and a lot of traffic," Quenneville said. "We want to make sure he has a hard time fighting through the traffic."


  • The Hawks are 2-1 against Detroit this year. They beat the Wings 4-1 in their previous trip to Joe Louis Arena back in January.

  • Even with their 2-1 loss on Saturday, the Hawks are 13-4-4 in their last 21 games.

  • There's no news to report on Dave Bolland or Patirck Sharp. Neither is on the trip. Sharp is progressing on schedule.