for this game

Blackhawks hope to boost playoff chances against Bruins

Mar 29, 2011 - 3:28 PM (Sports Network) - The Chicago Blackhawks earned a dramatic victory in Detroit last night and they'll take aim at another road win against an Original Six opponent this evening, when they visit the Boston Bruins at TD Garden.

The Blackhawks gave their postseason chances a boost with Monday's 3-2 win in the Motor City. Marian Hossa scored 51 seconds into overtime to give Chicago two important points.

Chicago is currently holding onto the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Blackhawks are three points ahead of Calgary and just one point behind Anaheim. Both the Flames and Ducks are idle tonight.

The Bruins, meanwhile, have already secured a trip to the Eastern Conference playoffs and are trying to lock down the Northeast Division title. With 94 points, Boston is seven in front of second-place Montreal and also has a game in hand over the Canadiens, who have six games remaining and are hosting Atlanta tonight.

Boston also stayed alive in the race for the East's top seed by posting a regulation victory Sunday evening in Philadelphia. The Flyers, who are visiting Pittsburgh this evening, are the East's top team and enter tonight with six more points than the third-seeded Bruins.

The Bruins qualified for the postseason for the fourth straight year with the 2-1 victory over the Flyers. Brad Marchand scored the game-winner for Boston when he notched a power-play goal with 3:43 remaining in regulation.

"It is nice to know when you're in the playoffs with more than just one or two games before the end of the season," said Boston head coach Claude Julien. "Right now, the challenge is to not get too comfortable. We have to build momentum heading into the playoffs and show some consistency in our game."

Nathan Horton also tallied on the man advantage for Boston, which has won three of its last four games. Tim Thomas made 11 of his 27 saves in the third period for the Bruins.

Mark Recchi picked up the secondary assist on Marchand's goal. The 43-year-old Recchi tied Paul Coffey for 12th place on the NHL's all-time points list with 1,531.

Boston is playing the first of three straight on home ice tonight and has an 18-13-5 record as the host this season.

The Blackhawks, meanwhile, picked up their third win in four games with a victory Monday in the opener of a three-game road trip at Joe Louis Arena.

Hossa's 23rd goal of the year came on the power-play in the first minute of OT. He took a pass from Patrick Kane and let go a slap shot from the left circle that beat Joey MacDonald.

Detroit's Henrik Zetterberg, who tied the game with the man advantage early in the third period, was called for hooking with 3.7 seconds left in regulation.

Jonathan Toews and Brent Seabrook also tallied for Chicago, which has also won four of its last six. Corey Crawford made 33 saves to notch his 30th win of the season.

"We need any point we can get," Toews said.

The Blackhawks are 18-11-8 as the guest this year and will complete their swing Friday in Columbus.

Tonight marks the only meeting this season between tonight's Original Six combatants. The Blackhawks won both encounters in 2009-10 to give them five wins over the last nine matchups. Chicago has managed just two wins in its last six trips to Boston.