BOSTON -- Trailing 2-1 in the Stanley Cup Final, the Blackhawks were pretty consistent in their message before Game 4: They have to play their game; they can't be worried about what the Bruins throw at them.
When the series was in Chicago, that wasn't necessarily the case. The Blackhawks were so concerned with Zdeno Chara that coach Joel Quenneville separated Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. And even in Game 3, with the series tied at 1-1, the matchup game was still being played.
Chicago won't completely abandon that matchup game. But in what is essentially a must-in game for the Blackhawks, they know they're at a disadvantage with the Bruins having the last change so why not set their lineup for Game 4 based on what works best for them?
That's exactly what Quenneville will do for Game 4, as he'll reunite Toews and Kane, who last played together -- and produced together -- at the end of the Western Conference Finals against the Los Angeles Kings.
"We know the importance of the game, and we've got to come in here and win a game," said Quenneville after Wednesday's morning skate. "Coming off our last game, there's some positives to take out of it . . . We definitely know how important the game is.
"Every series is different. Every matchup is kind of different. [Toews and Kane] have had some looks together over the course of the games.
"We don't really care who scores goals, but if they can get hot or get on the board offensively, that's what we look for," added Quenneville. "They're certainly capable of it. They exited the last series on a real high note. And getting back together here, hopefully it can continue on."
On the other wing is expected to be 6-foot-4, 220-pounder Bryan Bickell. But regardless of who is on that wing, the story is Toews and Kane getting back on the same line.
Desperate times, call for desperate measures.
"We had some success against LA, so whatever the combinations are we always say that we've got to find a way to score, find a way to play smart defensively," said Toews. "But tonight, I think we have confidence together as a line, that, with [Bickell] and Kane, we can make things happen."
"Sometimes you try and switch things up, and kind of balance out the lines a little bit," said Kane. "It's exciting to play with him. He's a great player. He's good both ways. He's very easy to play with, as far as the wingers. And he's competitive too, so hopefully we're going to have some fun tonight."