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updated: 4/16/2014 11:21 PM

Bickell revved up for postseason rush

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  • The Blackhawks' Bryan Bickell engineered an impressive postseason performance last year and is ready to rise to the challenge when the Stanley Cup playoffs begin today in St. Louis.

      The Blackhawks' Bryan Bickell engineered an impressive postseason performance last year and is ready to rise to the challenge when the Stanley Cup playoffs begin today in St. Louis.
    Associated Press

 
 

After a postseason to remember last year, Bryan Bickell knows exactly what Blackhawks fans are expecting from him this time around.

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"I'm sure you guys all know what I'm capable of," he said. "It's going to be tough to get close to (last year's playoff performance) but hopefully I can."

Bickell had a slow start this season but has trended upward toward the end of the year, according to Hawks coach Joel Quenneville, and the 28-year-old is hoping for another magical postseason run alongside linemates Patrick Kane and Andrew Shaw.

"I know this regular season hasn't been the best for me, but I feel with the amped-up nature of the hitting and the physicality of the playoffs, it brings more of me out in every game, every series," Bickell said. "I enjoy playoff time. It's for all the marbles, it's where it counts."

Experience matters:

Patrick Sharp remembers the Hawks' first run to the Stanley Cup, and he's not afraid to say he was a bit of a wreck at times.

But fortunately, things have since calmed down.

"I remember in 2010, there's so many ups and downs throughout a playoff series, a playoff run that I was living and dying with every emotion," he said. "The second time through I was kind of more even-keeled and you understand the work that goes into it."

And the desire to win Cup No. 3 is just high for Sharp this time around.

"I think the incentive to win, the drive to win is always there," he said. "It doesn't matter how many times you've lifted the Cup."

Net presence:

The Blackhawks recalled goaltender Mac Carruth from Rockford on Wednesday.

Carruth, 22, has split the season between the IceHogs, and the ECHL's Toledo Walleye and Florida Everblades. He posted a 2-2-1 record with a 3.36 goals-against average and a .880 save percentage in seven games with Rockford.

He said it:

"We're fortunate to have that type of a group. Great leadership group, great experience in playing big games -- big moments on big stages. I think the bigger the challenge, the bigger the test and these guys are excited about it. Johnny (Toews) leads the way and a lot of guys are very comparable in that same approach."

-- Joel Quenneville on the Blackhawks' core.

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