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Quenneville shakes up Blackhawks lines again for Game 5

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At Saturday's morning skate, Patrick Kane skated with Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews. There's no guarantee that those three will be together for tonight's Game 5 against the Red Wings -- Hawks coach Joel Quenneville changed his lines between the skate and Game 4 on Thursday -- but Kane, for one, hopes to get the old band back together.

"Hopefully, for sure," he said. "Because we'd like to have that opportunity to step up and do something here."

Somebody has to for the Blackhawks, who've scored just two goals in the last three games. And in times of desperation, Quenneville has often resorted to putting those big three together.

"For us three, we played a lot together my first couple of years in the league, and just kind of developed some chemistry where it was pretty instant and had a lot of offensive chances," Kane said. "So I think we've just got to remember how to play with each other; we haven't done it in a while. Hopefully we can get a good first couple shifts and get some chemistry back right away."

Of course, there's a downside to putting the three together.

"We like more of the balance and probably more lines that are a threat to score," said Quenneville, who wouldn't say for sure if the morning lines would hold.

Aside from that line, Michal Handzus centered Bryan Bickell and Marian Hossa, Andrew Shaw centered Brandon Saad and Viktor Stalberg, and Dave Bolland centered Marcus Kruger and Michael Frolik.

Quenneville has the home-ice advantage of making the last change, which means he can keep Toews away from Henrik Zetterberg, who has hounded him all series. But Quenneville said the top two lines for each team have neutralized each other defensively. Regardless of what Quenneville does, Detroit coach Mike Babcock didn't seem terribly concerned.

"We've got [Pavel] Datsyuk on one unit, Zetterberg on another unit," Babcock said. "I assume Toews has to play against one of them, and I assume Handzus has to play against the other."

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Mark Lazerus was honored nationally by the Associated Press Sports Editors for three straight years at the Post-Tribune, was named one of the top three columnists in Indiana for three straight years and has won more than 20 statewide writing awards. He has covered Notre Dame for Sun-Times Media, and now covers the Blackhawks.



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This page contains a single entry by Mark Lazerus published on May 25, 2013 12:29 PM.

First goal key for both Blackhawks, Red Wings in Game 5 was the previous entry in this blog.

Red Wings ready for Sharp-Toews-Kane is the next entry in this blog.

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