By Doug Halberstadt
Including tomorrow (Thursday, March 29) night’s home game against their long-time rival the St. Louis Blues, the Chicago Blackhawks only have five regular-season games left before the NHL playoffs begin. This Saturday night, March 31, they close out the month of March when they travel to Nashville, Tenn., to take on the Predators.
Two of their final three games of the regular season are against the Minnesota Wild. They face them at home Sunday night, April 1, and then again Thursday night, April 5, in Minnesota. The Blackhawks will close out the 2011-12 regular season against the Detroit Red Wings Saturday night, April 7.
At press time, Chicago was in sixth place in the Western Conference with 92 points, 2 behind fifth-place Nashville. Detroit is in fourth place with 95 points. St. Louis leads the conference with 101 points.
Stanley Cup playoff tickets are on sale. Fans can get single-game tickets for the first two rounds of the playoffs, available for purchase exclusively at ticketmaster.com, or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000.
Each customer will be limited to four total tickets. Refunds for any unplayed playoff games will be available at the point of purchase. In that event, the credit card used to purchase tickets by fans using the Internet or phone will be automatically credited, less any applicable processing fee.
Tickets for the round one games range in price from $44 each for standing room only all the way up to $485 for 100-level platinum. Round two tickets also start at $44 to stand and watch and go up to $510 to sit next to the glass.
Each round is a best-of-seven series with a maximum of four home games per round. United Center home games in each round are designated as Games A-D. The first home game of Round 1 is designated as Game A of the Conference Quarterfinals.
For the first three rounds, the higher-seeded team has home-ice advantage (regardless of point record). In the Stanley Cup Finals, home-ice advantage goes to the team with the better regular-season record. The team with home-ice advantage hosts games 1, 2, 5 and 7 of the series, while the opponent hosts games 3, 4 and 6 of the series (games 5-7 are played “if necessary”).
The Blackhawks last won the Stanley Cup in 2010.
From the March 28-April 3, 2012, issue