Unknown to Johnny, Shane Doan is about to punch him in the back of the head ( Nuccio DiNuzzo, Chicago Tribune)

After suffering heartbreaking loss on Thursday night, the ‘Hawks still have a chance steal home ice in the series tonight. At the afternoon skate today the Blackhawks were rolling with the same lines they played with onThursday night. One suspects (prays) that Quenneville is just bluffing.

It’s hard to imagine that Q would be crazy enough to throw Sean O’Donnell back into lineup tonight, but this is a man who played John Scott on a regular basis. O’Donnell was consistently out of position and made horrible decisions all night long.

Niklas Hjalmarsson had one of his worst games as a Chicago Blackhawk on Thursday and one can’t help but attribute some of that to his partner. The Coyotes are a team that is ferocious on the forecheck and  getting someone who can move the puck on the other side  would probably go a long way in getting a minimally competent, non-panikly Hjalmarsson back for the ‘Hawks. Sami Lepisto is the guy who fits the bill here. But again, we don’t know what Q plans to do tonight.

The forward combinations will be interesting to watch as well. Will Q stick with the Toews-Kane-Hossa line or will he choose to split up 81 and 88? One thing is for certain, it would be a damn shame if the Bolland-Bickell and Shaw line doesn’t get a chance to build on their solid performance in Game 1. They were the most dangerous line the Blackhawks had all night long.

The 4th line will likely feature Jamal Mayers and Andrew Brunette, but once again, it’s unclear if Brandon Bollig will get another shot. While he was on the ice for one of the Phoenix goals, he didn’t do anything too awful, but didn’t really add anything to the forecheck either. I said on Twitter the other night that I would rather have had Michael Frolik in the lineup, simply for his presence on the forecheck and his defensive hustle. Bollig has a role on the team during the regular season, but I fail to see what he adds during playoff games.

As for the Coyotes, why would they want to change anything? Radim Vrbata will return to the lineup and they will look to play the same game they played Thursday. Mike Smith will obviously get the nod for the Desert Dogs.

I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit uncomfortable coming into this one after watching the Penguins and Canucks each fall behind 2 games in their respective contests. I’m sure both the Penguins and Canucks were confident they would bounce right back after taking a punch in the teeth in Game 1. Nothing is going to come easy tonight for the ‘Hawks and names like Toews, Kane, Hossa and Sharp will be have to be firing on all cylinders if they hope to avoid finding themselves in the same predicament as Pittsburgh and Vancouver.

The ‘Hawks could do themselves a massive favor tonight but stealing a game on the road and heading back to United Center with a chance to grab control of the series.

NOTE: If you aren’t doing anything tonight for the game, come on down to Cans in Wicker Park and have some beers with Bartl and Nakis. Word has it Chris Deme might even make an appearance! Come and down and GO HAWKS!