Friday, April 25, 2014
W2W4: Blackhawks vs. Blues (Game 5)
By Scott Powers
ST. LOUIS -- The Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues face off for Game 5 of their Western Conference first-round series at the Scottrade Center on Friday. The series is tied at 2-2. Here's what to watch for:
" Blues forward David Backes is unlikely to play again due to an upper-body injury. Blues coach Ken Hitchcock didn’t rule him out, but Backes didn’t participate in the morning skate again. Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook will be serving the final game of his three-game suspension for his hit on Backes.
" Game 5 has a good shot of going into overtime. Three of the first four games have gone past regulation and were decided by a 4-3 score.
" The Blues have defeated the Blackhawks in all four games at the Scottrade Center this season. The Blues won 4-3 in three overtimes in Game 1 and 4-3 in one overtime in Game 2 in St. Louis. Neither team has lost at home in the series.
" Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane is coming off his best game of the series. He had two goals, including the game-winner, and an assist in the Blackhawks’ win in Game 4. He appears to have his timing back after missing the final 12 regular-season games due to a lower-body injury.
" Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko leads the NHL with four playoff goals. He had two of them in Game 4. He missed the final 15 games of the regular season.
" Both teams have been consistently effective on the penalty kill and ineffective on the power play. The Blackhawks are 2-for-16 on the power play, and the Blues are 2-for-21.
" Blackhawks forwards Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa haven’t scored in the series. They combined for 64 goals in the regular season. They have had 39 shots on net in the series.