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Quenneville wants all Hawks to get some ice time in early season

Oct 4, 2013, 3:06 PM EDT

Ben Smith #57 of the Chicago Black Hawks clears the puck away in a game against the Ottawa Senators during the NHL Rookie Tournament on September 12,2010 at the John Labatt Centre in London, Ontario. The Senators defeated the Hawks 7-3.
(September 11, 2010 - Source: Claus Andersen/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

The Chicago Blackhawks earned a 6-4 victory against the Washington Capitals in their season opener, but their lines will still be a little different on Saturday.

Ben Smith, 25, is projected to play on the third line while Jimmy Hayes will probably be a healthy scratch.

“We want to get everybody in here the next few games before we get too far into the season,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenenville told the Chicago Tribune.

Smith is a former sixth round pick that’s been slowly working his way up the depth charts in recent years. He had 47 points in 54 AHL games last season and got his name on the Stanley Cup after replacing an injured Marian Hossa for one Stanley Cup Final game.

The Blackhawks entered the season with predominantly the same cast that captured the Cup mere months ago, but they did part ways with some of their complimentary players. That’s created an opportunity for Smith and Hayes to battle for a regular spot on the defending champions.

  1. pone27 - Oct 4, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Man, after a decade long of being an absolutely terrible team, it has never felt so good to be a Hawks fan.

    Both of these guys will more than likely crack the roster full time in the very near future.

    • slysipops - Oct 4, 2013 at 9:23 PM

      man if you’ve only been a HAWK fan for ten years, you don’t know what suffering is! i complained to JIM BLANEY so much when he was in the front office, that he sent me 2 $125.00 tickets ( to shut me up ?) GO HAWKS GO !

      • pone27 - Oct 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

        Actually, like I said, I was speaking of the decade the Hawks were terrible. Never stated how long of a fan I have been of the team.

        If you must know though, been a fan since 92. Feel blessed you actually had a chance to complain to a guy like JIM BLANEY. Fans of the sport coming in now wouldn’t even have a chance to smell his breath.

  2. esracerx46 - Oct 4, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    I know the coaches like Nordstrom with Krueger. But I didn’t think he had a good game at all. Would much rather see Smith in that 4th line role and Hayes third than Hayes and Smith rotating press box seats.

  3. pone27 - Oct 4, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    Nordstrom is still to light. He has to pack on weight.

    I think the issue is Q and company see Nordstrom as a 4th liner and Hayes and Smith as 3rd liners. We are still so deep that putting Smith or Hayes on the 4th unit is a borderline waste.

  4. earpaniac - Oct 4, 2013 at 6:12 PM

    It makes me shudder and angry with what Dollar Bill did to this team. The recent success is great, but it appears the Hawks are set up for the future as well. I’m just happy we didn’t have another Tallon -induced – trade half the team-fire sale like they did after the ’10 Cup.

  5. slysipops - Oct 4, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    the team looks solid for quite some time,BUT, the game is on the ice, not on paper. so glad they got TOEWS as captain! HIS HELMET IS ON STRAIGHT 90% OF THE TIME , and he will see that the others do likewise ! GO HAKWS GO !

    • slysipops - Oct 4, 2013 at 9:31 PM

      ALRIGHT LAUGH, I MEANT…………….GO HAWKS GO !

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