Chicago Sun-Times

Toying with the Blackhawks lines ...

Like everyone else, I'm interested in seeing what line combos Joel Quenneville rolls out for the Hawks come the season opener Oct. 7 in Colorado.

The defense pairings are set: Duncan Keith-Brent Seabrook, Niklas Hjalmarsson-Brian Campbell, Jordan Hendry-Nick Boynton/John Scott. The only thing the Hawks have to find is a replacement for Brent Sopel on the PK.

But there are so many possibilities up front. Here is my first take, with Jack Skille, Jake Dowell, Viktor Stalberg, Bryan Bickell, Fernando Pisani and Ryan Potulny making the team:

Bryan Bickell -- Jonathan Toews -- Patrick Kane

Why? It worked at times last season. Toews could be put with Marian Hossa again like he was later in the Stanley Cup finals. But at some point, Toews and Kane will be together. Bickell looks faster this preseason. Plus, he doesn't mind doing the dirty work for the two stars.

Viktor Stalberg -- Patrick Sharp -- Marian Hossa

Why? Sharp and Hossa had success together last year -- and I think Stalberg is best suited for an offensive line.

Troy Brouwer -- Dave Bolland -- Fernando Pisani

Why? All three are sound defensively. Brouwer has a game that is similar to that of Andrew Ladd. He's physical, plays defense and can score. I think Brouwer could flourish in a checking role.

Tomas Kopecky -- Jake Dowell -- Jack Skille

Why? Dowell is an energy guy and an agitator. Skille's speed and knack for being physical will benefit Dowell's style. Plus, they have experience together. Kopecky is an interesting player, especially after he had success with Sharp and Hossa last season. But he's better suited for mucking it up than Stalberg is at this point.

Potulny is a versatile player. I expect him to be rotated in on the third and fourth lines to start the year.

This is just one guy's take. The preseason isn't over yet, and prospects Jeremy Morin and Igor Makarov continue to stand out. Anything can h

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About the blogger

Adam L. Jahns is a native Chicagoan hailing from the Far Northwest Side. Jahns has been with the Sun-Times since 2005, covering the Hawks since 2009. He's also helped cover the Bears, Cubs, Sox and high schools.

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This page contains a single entry by Adam L. Jahns published on September 24, 2010 10:15 AM.

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