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Game Preview: Avalanche Vs Blackhawks

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Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado's power play has been terribly inconsistent all season. On Monday, the pendulum swung in favor of the Avs, scoring four goals in six chances against the San Jose Sharks. They'll try their luck tonight against the league's 4th-best man-advantage team, the Chicago Blackhawks. Colorado has won five straight games against the defending Stanley Cup champions, and are 7-2-1 in their last ten games.

Chicago is led by the no-longer-streaking Patrick Kane, who still leads all NHL scores with 53 points and is second behind only Jamie Benn with 22 goals. In net should be birthday boy Corey Crawford who has had a devil of a time against the Avalanche over the years, going 4-9-2 with an .883 Save% and 3.02 Goals Allowed. The Avs hope to be delivering 6 oz. vulcanized rubber gifts to his net on behalf of the special occasion.

As for the good guys, coach Patrick Roy continues to juggle lines to find the right balance of scoring among his forwards. We should expect something similar to Monday's lineup, but anything could change leading up to game time. Semyon Varlamov is expected to be in net after getting the night off on Monday. He plays for the first time since Sunday, where he stopped 26-of-28 shots but lost in overtime to the Arizona Coyotes. He is 11-3-0 lifetime against the Blackhawks with a .949 Save %. That ain't shabby.

Notable in the lineup is Gabriel Landeskog who will miss exactly zero time after doing battle with his face against a flying puck. It's becoming more and more clear the captain is the future king of Asgard. Just pick up the Hammer already!

Da Offense:

Martinsen - Mitchell - Duchene

Landeskog - Soderberg - Comeau

Tanguay - MacKinnon - Iginla

McLeod - Grigorenko - Skille

Da Defense:

Beauchemin - Johnson

Holden - Barrie

Gormley - Redmond

Da Goalies:

Varlamov

Pickard