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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, December 27th (All times Eastern)

Colorado Avalanche (23-10-3) at Chicago Blackhawks (26-7-6), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Chicago Blackhawks and red-hot forward Patrick Kane look to pick up a point for the ninth time in their last 10 games on Friday night when the Central Division leaders play host to the Colorado Avalanche.

The Blackhawks' 5-2 win over the New Jersey Devils on Monday gave them a 6-1-2 mark over their past nine games and 58 points on the season. Chicago is second in the overall Western Conference standings, a point back of the Anaheim Ducks.

Kane comes out of the holiday break having logged a point in 12 straight games. He has seven goals and 14 assists over that run and is second in the NHL with 49 points.

Kane extended his point streak with a goal on Monday, while Patrick Sharp scored twice. Bryan Bickell and Nick Leddy also had goals, with Leddy adding an assist to the win.

"Everybody's happy," 'Hawks forward Marian Hossa said of the team's morale heading into the holiday break. "The coaches will have a beautiful Christmas and the same with the players."

Antti Raanta needed just 10 saves to record the victory, improving to 8-1-2 on the season with a 2.20 goals against average and .916 save percentage. His sold play has helped Chicago overcome current injuries to goaltenders Corey Crawford and Nikolai Khabibulin.

Raanta has faced the Avalanche once before, making his NHL debut against them on Nov. 19 in a 5-1 loss at Colorado. He stopped 14-of-16 shots faced, taking over for Crawford after the latter gave up three goals on seven shots in the first period.

That contest was the first of five meetings this season between the Blackhawks and Avalanche, who got a goal from Paul Stastny and 36 saves by Semyon Varlamov.

Colorado has won five of the past seven encounters overall but has lost seven of its past 11 in Chicago.

The Avs aim to avoid a third straight setback tonight after dropping back-to- back road games in a shootout before the break. That includes a 5-4 loss to San Jose on Monday that saw Colorado score goals 12 seconds apart with under two minutes to go in regulation to go up a goal before the Sharks netted the tying tally with 19.6 seconds left on the clock.

The Sharks then scored twice in the shootout, while both Avalanche skaters were denied.

"We scored two big goals and took the lead 4-3 and they made a pretty play at the end to tie the game," Colorado head coach Patrick Roy said.

Erik Johnson and Jamie McGinn had the late third-period goals, while Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog also scored. Varlamov made 41 saves through overtime.

Ryan O'Reilly had two assists on Monday to give him two goals and six helpers over his last seven games, while Matt Duchene has logged a pair of goals and eight assists over a five-game point streak.

Varlamov is 4-3-0 with a 2.41 GAA in his career versus the Blackhawks.

Colorado begins a seven-game homestand on Sunday.

12/27 10:36:36 ET

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Schedule

Wednesday, April 23Full Scoreboard
Pittsburgh3Final(OT) | Box
Columbus «4Rink Replay
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Series tied, 2-2.
Anaheim2Final | Box
Dallas «4Rink Replay
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Series tied, 2-2.
St. Louis3Final(OT) | Box
Chicago «4Rink Replay
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Series tied, 2-2.
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 NHL Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
p-Boston 54 19 9 117 261 177 31-7-3 23-12-6 18-9-3
x-Tampa Bay 46 27 9 101 240 215 25-10-6 21-17-3 19-8-3
x-Montreal 46 28 8 100 215 204 23-13-5 23-15-3 18-8-4
x-Detroit 39 28 15 93 222 230 18-13-10 21-15-5 17-8-5
Ottawa 37 31 14 88 236 265 18-17-6 19-14-8 14-9-7
Toronto 38 36 8 84 231 256 24-16-1 14-20-7 14-13-3
Florida 29 45 8 66 196 268 16-20-5 13-25-3 13-16-1
Buffalo 21 51 10 52 157 248 13-21-7 8-30-3 7-18-5
 
Metropolitan Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Pittsburgh 51 24 7 109 249 207 28-9-4 23-15-3 20-8-2
x-NY Rangers 45 31 6 96 218 193 20-17-4 25-14-2 16-11-3
x-Philadelphia 42 30 10 94 236 235 24-14-3 18-16-7 15-11-4
x-Columbus 43 32 7 93 231 216 22-15-4 21-17-3 16-13-1
Washington 38 30 14 90 235 240 21-13-7 17-17-7 12-15-3
New Jersey 35 29 18 88 197 208 21-11-9 14-18-9 16-9-5
Carolina 36 35 11 83 207 230 18-17-6 18-18-5 15-13-2
NY Islanders 34 37 11 79 225 267 13-19-9 21-18-2 10-16-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
2013 - 2014 NHL Western Conference Standings
 
Central Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Colorado 52 22 8 112 250 220 26-11-4 26-11-4 19-6-3
x-St. Louis 52 23 7 111 248 191 28-9-4 24-14-3 21-6-2
x-Chicago 46 21 15 107 267 220 27-7-7 19-14-8 13-13-3
x-Minnesota 43 27 12 98 207 206 26-10-5 17-17-7 14-12-3
x-Dallas 40 31 11 91 235 228 23-11-7 17-20-4 13-11-5
Nashville 38 32 12 88 216 242 19-17-5 19-15-7 12-13-4
Winnipeg 37 35 10 84 227 237 18-17-6 19-18-4 9-15-5
 
Pacific Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
z-Anaheim 54 20 8 116 266 209 29-8-4 25-12-4 22-4-3
x-San Jose 51 22 9 111 249 200 29-7-5 22-15-4 18-7-3
x-Los Angeles 46 28 8 100 206 174 23-14-4 23-14-4 16-10-3
Phoenix 37 30 15 89 216 231 22-14-5 15-16-10 14-9-6
Vancouver 36 35 11 83 196 223 20-15-6 16-20-5 12-13-4
Calgary 35 40 7 77 209 241 19-19-3 16-21-4 11-15-3
Edmonton 29 44 9 67 203 270 16-22-3 13-22-6 8-17-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
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    Saturday at 1:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1
 
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
7:05pm Tonight
CHR
DUR
 
Final
ATL 3
MIA 1
Final
CHC 5
ARI 7
Final
COL 10
SFG 12
Final
OAK 0
TEX 3
Final
SEA 5
HOU 3
Final
PIT 2
CIN 5
Final
CLE 5
KAN 3
Final
WAS 5
ANA 4
Final
TOR 8
BAL 10
Final
DET 4
CWS 6
Final
TAM 4
MIN 6
Final
BOS 5
NYY 1
Final
NYM 3
STL 2
Final
MIL 5
SDP 2
Final
LOS 5
PHI 2
12:05pm Today
CLE
KAN
 
12:35pm Today
PIT
CIN
 
1:08pm Today
DET
CWS
 
1:10pm Today
TAM
MIN
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
STL
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
ARI
 
7:05pm Tonight
WAS
SDP
 
7:07pm Tonight
TOR
BAL
 
7:10pm Tonight
BOS
NYY
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
OAK
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
PHI
 
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
Final
SAN 92
DAL 113
Final
HOU 105
POR 112
7:00pm Tonight
ATL
IND
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
OKC
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
LAC
Final
CLB 4
PIT 3
Final
DAL 4
ANA 2
Final
CHI 4
STL 3
8:00pm Tonight
DET
BOS
9:30pm Tonight
MIN
COL
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
SJS
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1
 
7:05pm Tonight
CHR
DUR