Hawks play host to red-hot Coyotes

 

The Hawks will look to extend a 3-game winning streak as they take on the Phoenix Coyotes at the United Center on Thursday night.

The Hawks are starting to look like one of the more dominant forces in the NHL again, posting two solid wins against Winnipeg and Dallas last week and narrowly beating an Edmonton team 5-4 that has been notorious for giving the Hawks a tough time.  

The Coyotes are coming off a thrilling OT victory against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday, where goaltender Mike Smith stood tall with 37 saves to help his team win their seventh game out of their last eight.  The Coyotes have been playing well as of late, dominating a tough and deep western conference with victories against the Blues, Canucks, Sharks, and Kings, amongst others.

The Hawks are looking to prove that their new-found chemistry is here to stay against a strong team with a hot goaltender.  These two points are also critical for the Hawks to earn at home, as they’ll play eight of their next nine games on the road as they head out west on the ‘Circus Trip’ after hosting the Sharks on Sunday.

Looking to help the Hawks will be the top line of Marian Hossa, Patrick Sharp, and Jonathan Toews, who have combined for 15 points in their last five games.  Sharp was also recently named the NHL’s third star of the week, coming off a 3-game campaign that saw him collect a goal and six assists.

Injury report: The Hawks will be without Michael Handzus (upper-body/IR) and Michael Kostka (lower body).  Brad Mills (lower body) is questionable...Phoenix forwards Radim Vrbata (lower body) and Martin Hanzal (illness) are questionable for the game, while defenseman Derek Morris (lower body) is currently on IR, but could be activated off in time to play.

Where to watch: FS-A, CSN-Chi 

Location: United Center, 1901 W. Madison, Chicago 

Time: 7 pm CT

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