Blackhawks host Canucks tonight in Chicago

The Chicago Blackhawks (25-7-5; 1st in league) will host the Vancouver Canucks (20-11-6; 7th in West) on Friday night at the United Center in Chicago. These two Western Conference rivals always provide entertaining hockey games.

Vancouver is on the second half of a back-to-back, having lost 4-1 to the Stars in Dallas last night; two of those Dallas goals came 15 seconds apart in the first five minutes.

It will be the Canucks third game in four nights. By contrast, the Blackhawks have had two days off since beating the Predators in Nashville on Tuesday night; Chicago will also have the weekend off before hosting the Devils on Monday.

When these two teams last faced each other, the Blackhawks beat the Canucks 2-1 in Vancouver. This will be the Canucks' only game played in Chicago this season.

Antti Raanta (7-1-1, .920 sv%, 2.26 GAA) is expected to start for Chicago. Goaltender  Jason LaBarbera, recently signed by the Blackhawks, was recalled to Chicago yesterday, while Kent Simpson was sent back to Rockford.

At the time of writing this, it had not been announced whether Roberto Luongo (16-9-6) or Eddie Lack (4-2-0) would start for the Canucks tonight vs. the Blackhawks. Lack spent his past two seasons with the Chicago Wolves, the Canucks' AHL affiliate at the time. Luongo was pulled in last night's game after giving up 4 goals.

IR report: Canucks - Ryan Stanton (ankle), Alex Edler (lower body), Alexandre Burrows (broken jaw); Chicago - Corey Crawford (lower body), Nikolai Khabibulin (lower body)

Game info: 7 p.m. CST/5 p.m. PST, United Center, Chicago

Where to watch: CSN-Chicago; HLN-US; Canada: TSN, RDS2; Radio - WGN 720 AM