Chicago Blackhawks: Ready To Name Playoff Goalie?

March 12th, 2010 by TAB BAMFORD Leave a reply »
On Friday afternoon, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville made a seemingly subtle announcement that could have a significant impact on who will be between the pipes for them in the playoffs.

In light of each goalies recent struggles, culminating with Cristobal Huet's removal against Detroit, the starting job is completely up for grabs. After Antti Niemi's strong performance against the Kings, Quenneville's confidence appeared to be at least teased into favoring the rookie. However, after Thursday's practice, Quenneville indicated that both Niemi and Huet would start one of this weekend's games. On Saturday afternoon, the Blackhawks play in Philadelphia, followed by another late-morning start at home on Sunday against the Washington Capitals.

Friday's announcement may have shown that Quenneville is ready to go all in: Huet will start the Saturday matinee against the Flyers, and Quenneville said there's a "good chance" Niemi will start Sunday against the NHL-best Capitals.

If the Hawks wanted to see whether or not Niemi is ready to be a playoff goalie, Sunday is the best opportunity on the schedule. Washington puts 33.1 shots on net pe ...

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