If Corey Crawford wants to get back on the good graces of the faithful at the Mad House on Madison, then tonight is the night to do it.
Crawford is in search of his first win of the new year, but is entering just the third start in that time frame. His two losses: 4-0 against the Colorado Avalanche (Jan. 6) and 4-3 against the Edmonton Oilers (Jan. 2).
Honestly, it probably shouldn’t be a big deal. But take away Chicago’s Jan. 5, 5-4, loss against the Philadelphia Flyers, Crawford’s backup, Ray Emery, is looking pretty good.
If Crawford has another bad night, a night where goals excede to four, again, and the offence comes out, there’ll be a bit frustration.
Sure, the 4-0 romp Chicago faced had more than a couple bad defencive lapses. But Crawford needs to be that $3.25-million goaltender who can stand on his head and be the last line of defence.
Luckily, for Crawford, the Red Wings are coming off a heated battle with the Maple Leafs in Toronto. A game, in which the Leafs took a 3-0 lead in the first, and Detroit chipped away to tie the game, but to loose grip in the third.
Coach Mike Babcock obviously had more invested in that game with Jimmy Howard between the pipes. With the Wings arriving in Chicago late last night, goaltender duties will be handed over to backup Ty Conklin, who sports a 1-4-0 record, and allows an average of 3.23 goals per game.
Not too bad, for the Blackhawks.
Now, it’s time for Crawford to make good of this situation.