In hockey, coaches and players often talk about playing a 60-minute game.
The Chicago Blackhawks and Vancouver Canucks, who will meet Thursday night in Chicago, aren’t quite there yet. The Blackhawks dropped to 0-3-1 Tuesday with a 4-1 loss in their home opener against the New York Islanders.
The Canucks also have struggled, their lone win in their first four games coming in a 5-4 shootout at Philadelphia on Friday. “I think essentially what led to the goals, us not executing, us not moving our feet,” the Canucks Justin Dowling said. “That’s not our game. Our game is what was going on in the first 10 minutes of the first period. Just a mentality, it’s a mindset. We’ve got to learn how to keep that going for 60 minutes.”
Meanwhile, the winless Calgary Flames will take on the sizzling Red Wings in Detroit on Thursday. Calgary will be seeking its first victory. The Flames lost to Edmonton 5-2 in their opener and 3-2 in overtime to Anaheim on Monday.
The Winnipeg Jets play host to the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday. The Jets will need to clean up their penalty-kill unit, which has allowed seven goals in 15 short-handed situations this season.
Still searching for their first points of the season, the Montreal Canadiens are looking for a complete turn-around when they host the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday. The Canadiens fell to 0-4-0 after Tuesday’s 5-0 home loss to the San Jose Sharks, a game that quickly got out of hand for the struggling Habs.