Sharp, Smith score as Blackhawks win preseason-opener

Sharp, Smith score as Blackhawks win preseason-opener
September 17, 2013, 9:30 pm
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Patrick Sharp scored late in the second period, and Ben Smith added one just over a minute later as the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Detroit Red Wings, 2-0, in their preseason-opener on Tuesday.

Corey Crawford stopped 18 shots for the Blackhawks. Jeremy Morin and Jimmy Hayes, whose shot Smith deflected, earned assists.

The Blackhawks showcased some of their younger players on Tuesday night. Teuvo Teravainen centered Patrick Kane and Bryan Bickell, while Brandon Saad played his first preseason game at No. 2 center.

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Defenseman Michael Kostka left the game in the first period after being boarded by Teemu Pulkkinen. The Red Wings forward was given a five-minute boarding major and a game misconduct.

“He’s not bad, but he couldn’t play. We’ll have a better assessment tomorrow,” said head coach Joel Quenneville. “He’s had a real good camp. We like what he brings to our team. He defends real well, he’s real active on the attack, he wants the puck, sees plays and makes plays. We think he’s going to be useful.”

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As far as that hit on Kostka, Quenneville said, “I thought it was very dangerous.”

Jonathan Toews (lower body) did not play on Tuesday night. Coach Joel Quenneville expects Toews to play in his first preseason game this weekend. Marian Hossa also did not play vs. the Wings; he’s fine and is expected to play Thursday against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Quenneville said Brandon Pirri, who hasn’t skated since Saturday at Notre Dame, is expected to return to the ice in a few days.