Hawks to visit White House on Monday
The Blackhawks could get used to this.
For the second time in four years, the Hawks will be welcomed to the White House on Monday by President Obama in recognition of their 2013 Stanley Cup championship.
The Hawks plan to fly to Washington following Sunday's game against Calgary and visit Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in the morning.
"It's a cool day," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "We get to go to Walter Reed as well in the morning. That was a fun visit when you look back. We've run into the Wounded Warriors a few times since then."
But the highlight of the trip will be visiting the White House.
"When you get to the White House it's kind of a fun setting," Quenneville said. "I think it will give us some reflection of a pretty special year for us all. I guess at that point it will probably wrap up last year. It will be a good moment for us."
Back to Khabibulin:
Hoping to put the memories of last Thursday's 6-5 overtime loss to Tampa Bay quickly in the rear view mirror, Nikolai Khabibulin was back in goal for the Hawks on Tuesday against Ottawa.
Joel Quenneville admitted the back-to-back games were the biggest factor in his goalie decision.
"It gets him back in the net as well," Quenneville said. "When you look at our schedule, back-to-backs, it will be a good opportunity for him. It's good to get him back in the net. We're comfortable he's going to be a big part of it and help us out as we go along here. Let's play well in front of him."
Work in progress:
Evaluating the second line of Brandon Pirri, Brandon Saad and Patrick Kane goes beyond their offense.
"I think the best measuring stick is how well they play in their own end," Joel Quenneville said. "I think offensively, they've all got good instincts. They've all got good play recognition. We saw (Monday) what they're capable of.
"They'll be a high-productive line if they play well defensively. They'll be in the other team's end. If they check well in all zones they're going to have the puck a lot, and I think that plays into their strength."
Sheldon Brookbank was back on defense Tuesday for the second game in a row. Brookbank scored his first goal of the season in Monday's win at Minnesota.
"He's played well this year," Joel Quenneville said. "Every game he's been rock solid and gives us a little offense off the point as well. His puck possession game has improved and he's getting his shot through. I've thought he has stepped up his game this year."
Joel Quenneville ruled injured center Michal Handzus out of weekend games against Winnipeg (Saturday) and Calgary (Sunday) because of a nagging lower body injury. Handzus hasn't played since last Thursday at Tampa Bay.
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