<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Top Stories]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.com en-us Mon, 27 Apr 2015 05:52:08 -0500 Mon, 27 Apr 2015 05:52:08 -0500 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Car Crashes Into Suburban House]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 08:47:45 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/lockport+car+into+home.jpg

A house in southwest suburban Lockport was severely damaged after a car crashed into it early Sunday morning.

The vehicle crashed into a home in the 2000 block of East Street shortly after 3 a.m., according to Lockport Battalion Chief Frank Blaskey.

Nobody was inside the home during the crash, but the impact caused substantial damage, Blaskey said.

The driver was removed from the car and transported to Silver Cross Hospital.

Police continue to investigate the circumstancs of the crash.



Photo Credit: Network Video Productions]]>
<![CDATA[Keith Goal Gives Hawks 4-3 Win ]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 09:59:49 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/keith+celebrates.jpg

The Chicago Blackhawks trailed early, but they stormed back and used a late goal from Duncan Keith as they won Game 6 over the Nashville Predators by a score of 4-3 to win their best-of-seven series. 

The Predators got on the board first as James Neal scored on their very first shot of the game. The forward carried over his excellent play from the previous game as he delivered a great check to jar the puck loose, and he maneuvered his way past Johnny Oduya to pick up a quick 1-0 lead over the Blackhawks.

Kimmo Timonen was sent off to the penalty box shortly after the goal, and the Predators took quick advantage as they scored again. Cody Franson hammered a shot in from the point, and Neal skated across the front of the netmouth and deflected a shot inside the far post to give the Predators a 2-0 lead.

With nine minutes to go in the first period, the Blackhawks struck back and got on the board for the first time. Duncan Keith fired in a shot from the point, and after finding some open ice in the near face-off circle, Patrick Sharp grabbed the rebound and drilled home a shot to put the Blackhawks down a goal at 2-1.

Just a short time later, the Predators chased Scott Darling from the game as they scored again. Matt Cullen did the honors on this occasion, weaving through traffic before beating Duncan Keith and flipping a wrist shot into the net to make it a 3-1 lead for Nashville.

The Blackhawks got a power play of their own shortly after the goal, and for the first time since Game 1 they were able to score a goal on the man-advantage. Jonathan Toews did some nice work to win a face-off in the offensive zone, and after Sharp fired a low shot through the zone, it deflected off of the captain’s skate and into the cage to trim the lead down to 3-2 late in the frame.

With less than 10 seconds to go in the period, the Blackhawks capped off a wacky period as they scored to tie the game. Patrick Kane got the puck off the draw, and his low shot through the zone found its way through traffic and past Pekka Rinne to knot things up at 3-3 after a wild 20 minutes of play.

Early in the second period, both teams got odd-man rush opportunities, but neither were able to convert. First it was Brad Richards getting in on a breakaway after weaving his way through the defense, but Rinne made the save. At the other end, Mike Fisher broke out on a 2-on-1 rush, but Corey Crawford was able to knock the puck aside to end the opportunity. 

The Blackhawks kept the momentum on their side as they got more good chances with Keith and Toews, but Richards was whistled for a sketchy penalty to give the Predators a power play. The Hawks did do a nice job killing the call off, but not before Crawford had to make a couple of spectacular plays to keep things tied up. 

The end of the period saw the Hawks get a few more quality chances, but a puck evaded Kane on a pass from Kris Versteeg, and things stayed knotted up after two periods of play. 

The two teams spent most of the third period tied up, but Viktor Stalberg's failed clearing attempt gave the Blackhawks a really long possession in the offensive zone. Finally, Duncan Keith was able to break the deadlock as his shot from the point found its way through traffic and rolled past Rinne to give the Hawks a 4-3 lead. 

Rinne was pulled from the net late in the game, but the Hawks did a really good job of keeping them from crossing the offensive blue line, and the clock ran out on Nashville's chances as the Hawks advanced to the next round. 

The team the Blackhawks will be taking on hasn't been decided just yet, with the Minnesota Wild leading the St. Louis Blues by a 3-2 margin in the series. Game 6 will take place in St. Paul on Sunday. 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Top Positional Needs: Running Back ]]> Mon, 27 Apr 2015 05:48:33 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/183*120/27587301.jpg

The Chicago Bears are in an interesting position going into the NFL Draft this week at Roosevelt University. With new G.M. Ryan Pace at the helm, the team has addressed plenty of needs this offseason, but there is still plenty of work to do as the new leadership of the organization makes decisions about their collective future.

With that in mind, we are taking a look at some of the positions that the team has got to address in the draft, whether it be with the number seven overall pick or later in the selection process. These picks have the potential to either get Pace and company off on the right foot, or to potentially derail this rebuilding process before it begins.

Today, we take a look at a position that the Bears find themselves needing to upgrade for the future as we look at some of the running backs that could be on the team’s radar during the draft.

Players Available:

If the Bears want to go with a running back in the first round (which is a highly unlikely option), then they really only have two choices. The first is Georgia back Todd Gurley, who is coming off a knee injury but was arguably the most explosive running back in the collegiate ranks last season. He has the perfect blend of physicality and speed to deploy in the backfield, and the Bears need both of those things.

The other is Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon, but he doesn’t exactly fit the bill as a change-of-pace back for Matt Forte. He does have incredible acceleration when he sees a hole at the line, and he is able to withstand hits based more on his balance than on his raw power, but it’s still impressive to watch.

It’s far more likely that the Bears would go running back later in the draft, and there could be some real gems available late. TJ Yeldon out of Alabama could potentially be a good one to keep an eye on in the second or third round, and if the Bears are looking for a complementary piece to go with Forte, Matt Jones out of Florida could be another one.

He is a bruising back who runs with a ton of power, but the Bears could be scared off by the fact he isn’t a good pass catcher and has had issues in pass protection.

How Badly Do the Bears Need One?

We’ll give this one about a six out of 10. The Bears are likely going to move on from Forte at the end of the season, barring the back taking a serious pay cut to stick around. Giving fresh money to a running back on the wrong side of 30 is a recipe for failure in the NFL, and Pace doesn’t seem to be the type to let sentiment creep into his thinking over rationality.

If the Bears can hit on a back in this draft, it would certainly save them the money of going into free agency next year to try to find a new running back, and that has to be something that Pace is thinking strongly about.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Woman Struck, Killed by Car on South Side]]> Mon, 27 Apr 2015 04:55:34 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/204*120/south+side+accident.png

A fatal accident killed a woman on the city's South Side late Sunday night.

Authorities say the 20-year-old woman was crossing the street at a crosswalk close to 10 p.m. when a dark colored Volkswagon exited from the Dan Ryan Expressway at 87th Street. Police say the car was traveling at a high rate of speed on the ramp when it hit the victim.

The woman died on the scene.

The driver of the vehicle, a 23-year-old man, and his 24- year-old female passenger were both taken to Trinity Hospital.

No citations have been issued, and Chicago Police Major Accident Unit is investigating the fatal accident.

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<![CDATA[Rescued Baby's 25-Year Reunion]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 22:55:36 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/dumpster-robin-barton-dads.jpg

Twenty-five years ago a California policeman saved a baby's life. This week, the same Santa Ana officer gave him his parents back.

Robin Barton's adoptive family only recently told him his infamous origin story: that he was left to die in a Southern California dumpster as an infant until his rescuer discovered him and resuscitated him.

On the news in 1989 he was known as Baby "Adam," and he was barely breathing when officer Michael Buelna discovered him in Santa Ana. Buelna was investigating a stabbing in the area when neighbors waved him down, saying they'd heard a baby crying. He investigated, according to a contemporary LA Times report.

Barton, now 25, and Buelna reunited earlier this week. "When I first met him, it was slightly overwhelming. But it was just a wonderful moment," Barton said.

Barton said he and Santa Ana police officer Michael Buelna caught up on each other's lives when they reunited -- there must have been a lot to go over after 25 years.

In their meeting, Barton mentioned that he was looking for his birth mother, who served time in prison for abandoning her child and was eventually deported.

Barton wanted to get the message out by reuniting with the man who saved his life, hoping his mother might hear the story and find him. Instead, news reports caught the attention of Barton's birth father, Marcos Meza, who'd been looking for him for years.

On Sunday, they finally met, along with two of Barton's five newfound sisters. The reunion was thrilling, he told NBC4.

Barton felt much the same way: "Shock and awe, joy, happiness. I'm just overwhelmed." He was able to speak with his mother as well by phone, he said -- Santa Ana police said she was deported to Mexico after being released from prison.

Sunday morning, Barton was able to pose for pictures with both of his fathers -- all thanks to the police officer who stopped what he was doing when residents told them they'd heard a baby crying.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: Beth Slepp-Paz/Archival photo]]>
<![CDATA[9-Year-Old Attempts Aerial Record]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 20:42:37 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/182*120/042615+Guinness+Aerials+Record.JPG

A 9-year-old girl from Orange County, Califronia, was head over heels Saturday as she attempted to break a world record for most consecutive aerials.

Ollivia Nguyen completed 42 of the handless cartwheels on a mat in an Anaheim gym in front of a cheering crowd and a Guinness World Record camera, according to her mother.

"In the beginning it feels easy because I have a lot of oxygen but at the end my breathing kind of gets heavy," Nguyen said in a practice before the record attempt.

Nguyen practiced for over six months to accomplish the feat, said her current coach, Sarah Eshom.

"We've worked on different techniques," Eshom said, "and once we found the technique that best fit her we started building up the numbers. We went from 10 to 20 to 30 and then now she's doing 40 consecutive with no problem."

The current record for “Most Consecutive Aerials-Breakdance,” is six, Anthony Yodice, a spokesman for Guinness World Records North America Inc., told the OC Register.

The idea of Nguyen breaking the record came from a conversation her mother, Nicholle Aguilar, had with another of Nguyen's coaches.

"(He) said, 'You know I think that she can really do this,'" Aguilar said. "He kind of put this in her heart or the inspiration in her heart."

The attempt was recorded and sent to Guinness World Record officials to verify the two-and-a-half minute video, according to the OC Register. Two certified gymnast instructors and a notary were present at the event.

"I believe in her and I knew she could do it, so we pursued it," Aguilar said at the pre-record attempt practice.



Photo Credit: Kevin Dahlgren]]>
<![CDATA[Raw Video: Truck Goes Up in Flames]]> Mon, 27 Apr 2015 02:17:18 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/bell-gardens-tanker-fire-710.gif

A huge ball of flames engulfed a gasoline tanker truck on a freeway outside of Los Angeles on Sunday, sending black plumes of smoke into the air that could be seen for miles and causing a traffic nightmare.

The double-tanker truck was hauling 8,800 gallons of gas on the southbound 710 Freeway when it jackknifed near the Florence Avenue exit in Bell and exploded in flames, California Highway Patrol officials said.

Dozens of firefighters arrived just after 3:30 p.m. to battle the huge fire, which could be seen as far as downtown Los Angeles.

Crews managed to extinguish the flames about an hour later. No injuries were immediately reported.

The driver escaped the crash with minor bumps and bruises, fire officials said. A passenger in the truck was also OK.

"(The driver) heard a loud pop. He looked in his rearview mirror and he noticed that the rear trailer had overturned," said CHP Officer Juan Galvan.

Northbound lanes of the 710 Freeway reopened about 9:30 p.m. after an hours-long closure that backed up traffic for miles.

Southbound lanes were expected to remain closed through mid-Monday morning, CHP officials said.

Crews were working to clean up what was left of the charred tanker and Caltrans officials were assessing the severity of the damage to the road.

The cause of the crash was unclear. CHP officials said no other vehicles were involved in the wreck.

NBC4's Kate Larsen contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: KNBC]]>
<![CDATA[Man Had 18 lbs of Pot at Airport]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 22:05:27 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/163*120/42615drugs.jpg

A leaky suitcase led to the arrest of a New York man who is accused of attempting to board a flight at New York's Laguardia Airport with several pounds of marijuana and a few ounces of crack cocaine in his baggage.

Airport screeners contacted Port Authority police at about 11 a.m. Saturday after noticing liquid leaking from a checked bag that emitted an odor of marijuana, investigators said Sunday.

After finding marijuana inside the bag, police traced it to Kelvin E. Smith, 55, of the Bronx, who was waiting for a flight at a US Airways gate, investigators said. Police learned that Smith had checked in an additional bag and found that it contained more marijuana wrapped in plastic and 2.8 ounces of crack cocaine.

Smith's two bags contained 18 pounds of marijuana, investigators said.

Smith was charged with first-degree criminal possession of marijuana and second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, police said. It was unclear whether he had retained an attorney who could comment on the charges.

Court records indicate that Smith has 41 prior convictions for drug offenses, investigators said. 

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<![CDATA[Hawks to Play Wild in Second Round of Playoffs]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 18:02:13 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/hawks_blurb_5-13.jpg

The St. Louis Blues have a Central Division crown in their trophy case, but they won’t get any more hardware this season as they were eliminated from the playoffs in a 4-1 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Sunday afternoon.

With the result, the Wild will play the Chicago Blackhawks in the second round of the postseason, marking the third season in a row that the two teams have tangled in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Blackhawks clinched their spot in the second round on Saturday night as they scored a come-from-behind 4-3 win over the Nashville Predators to win the best-of-seven series four games to two.

In each of the past two seasons, the Blackhawks have eliminated the Wild from the postseason, with the Hawks winning in five games on their way to the Stanley Cup in 2013 and winning in six games in the 2014 edition of the rivalry.

The NHL has yet to set a date for the second round series to begin, but odds are that the game will take place on Thursday or Saturday, as Friday the United Center would host a potential Game 7 between the Chicago Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[College Network End Classes for 16K]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 15:06:40 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP726758529250.jpg

Roughly 16,000 students enrolled in a chain of troubled for-profit colleges are no longer able to take classes after the schools' parent company, Corinthian Colleges, Inc., announced Sunday it is ceasing all of its operations.

The Orange County-based school network has not yet made arrangements with other schools to find "continuing educational opportunities" at its 28 remaining campuses, which are closing effective Monday, the school said.

CCI added that it would rely on the help of regulatory agencies and partner institutions to place students enrolled at Heald College campuses in California, Hawaii and Oregon, as well as Everest and WyoTech schools in California, Arizona and New York.

“Now we're going have to make a mad dash to find another option. For some of us this was our last resort," said Krisa Mata, a student who said she took out loans to attend CCI's Everest College in Reseda.

"It's the first thing I saw on my phone when I woke up. I have no idea what I'm gonna do now," she said.

The announcement occurs less than two weeks after the U.S. Department of Education said it was fining the institution $30 million over misrepresentation. The department contends that Corinthian has not addressed allegations of falsifying job placement data and altering grades and attendance records, The Associated Press reported.

The school was unable to sell off all its schools under a deal with the U.S. Department of Education, it said in a statement, though it has sold 56.

"Largely as a result of recent state and federal regulatory actions, we were unable to complete a sale, and our only option was to close our schools," CEO Jack Massimino wrote in a letter to students posted on the school's website. 

California Attorney General Kamala Harris sued Corinthian in 2013 for allegedly misrepresenting how many of its graduates were placed in jobs in actions she called “unconscionable” and “predatory." She also alleged that the chain advertised that it offered classes it did not.

It agreed the next year to sell 85 campuses and close a dozen more in an agreement with the Department of Education, which was closely monitoring school data, according to information submitted to a federal regulatory agency.

Corinthian was one of the country's largest for-profit educational institutions, according to the AP. It collapsed last summer amid a cash shortage and fraud allegations.
 



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Toews vs. Keith: Blackhawks' First Round MVP? ]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 16:29:10 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP615815855485_2_Hockey.jpg

The Chicago Blackhawks finished off the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in style on Saturday night, storming back from a 3-1 deficit and winning the game 4-3 on Duncan Keith’s late third period goal.

Now that the game action and handshake line are a thing of the past, we have a very simple question that needs to be asked: who was the MVP for the Blackhawks in the first round series?

Duncan Keith

Playing an average of 32:03 of ice time per game in the six game series, Keith was a rock star for the Blackhawks against the Predators. His defense was solid for the most part even with a mistake-prone Michal Rozsival frequently skating alongside him. His offense was spectacular as well, as he scored twice and dished out five assists to tie for second on the team in scoring in the series.

Brent Seabrook

In addition to his triple overtime goal in Game 4 of the series, Seabrook was arguably the Blackhawks’ best defensive blue liner in the series. He had to deal with a lot of Nashville’s physicality and strength in their forward group, and he not only bounced up from every hit but also made some key defensive plays as the Hawks prevailed.

Jonathan Toews

The Blackhawks’ captain had a bit of a dry spell in Games 4 and 5 of the series, but in the other four contests he was positively dominant. He scored two power play goals for the Blackhawks in the series, and he paced the team’s offense as a whole with three goals and five assists to lead the team in both categories. He did struggle in the face-off dot at times, but for the most part Toews led the top line beautifully in the series and provided the punch that his side needed to win.

And the Winner Is…..

There is a strong case to be made for either Toews or Seabrook for MVP honors in the series, but Keith gets the narrow victory in our eyes. Simply put, the Blackhawks placed a ton of responsibility on his shoulders with how often he played in the series, and he passed every test with flying colors. The Hawks can’t continue running him out there for half an hour every single night, but he thrived under the pressure in these six games.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Which Team Poses Tougher Challenge for Hawks?]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 17:38:35 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/469999874.jpg

With their series wrapped up, the Chicago Blackhawks get to sit at home and watch as the Minnesota Wild and St. Louis Blues battle it out to see which team will be taking on the Hawks in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Either matchup would be a rematch of last postseason for the Hawks, as they dispatched the Blues in six games in the first round and eliminated the Wild in six games in the second round to reach the conference finals for the second consecutive season. Both series were tough for Chicago in different ways, but offensive prowess in the first series and some excellent play by Corey Crawford in the second helped carry them through.

With the Blackhawks’ second round opponent still undecided, an obvious question arises: which team should Hawks fans want to see in the second round of the postseason?

While some would argue that the Wild would pose an easier matchup (not to mention the fact that the Blackhawks would have home ice advantage in that series), the reality is that it would be a tough draw for the Hawks. The Wild have played some of their best hockey as the season has worn on, with Devan Dubnyk launching the team from a potential lottery selection into the postseason. He has a well-deserved Vezina Trophy nomination as a result of his play, and the Blackhawks would be hard-pressed going up against such a talented goaltender.

The Blues don’t have that level of goaltending in net with Jake Allen and Brian Elliott, but they do have the ability to score at will and a mean streak a mile wide. Having guys like Steve Ott and Ryan Reaves makes life difficult by itself, but then you add in sensational winger Vladimir Tararsenko and gritty forward David Backes, and you can see why the Blues’ depth would scare the Blackhawks senseless.

In the end, the Blackhawks have the capability of winning a series against either team thanks to their myriad scoring options and their heaps of playoff experience, but the Wild pose a slightly more favorable matchup. The Blues have the physicality to really throw the Hawks off their game and the speed necessary to put pressure on Chicago’s shallow defense. The Wild have those things as well, but their strength is more drawn from their goaltending and their offense than from an overly physical or speedy attack at either end of the ice.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Who Were the Americans Killed in the Everest Avalanche?]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 23:39:49 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Americans-Died-Avalanche.jpg

As the first group of survivors from Saturday’s earthquake-triggered avalanche on Mount Everest were flown to Nepal's capital, the U.S. State Department confirmed that three Americans were among the 17 people killed in the disaster.

Filmmaker Tom Taplin, Google executive Dan Fredinburg, and camp doctor Marisa Eve Girawong all died in the avalanche. Here’s more about their lives:

______________________________________________________________

Google issued a statement Saturday confirming the death of executive Dan Fredinburg who was the head of privacy for innovation lab Google[x].

Fredinburg had been scaling the mountain for the past three weeks with three other Google employees through U.K.-based tour company Jagged Globe, according to NBC News. The three were found safe, according to Google.

"Sadly, we lost one of our own in this tragedy," the statement read. "Dan Fredinburg a longtime member of the Privacy organization in Mountain View, was in Nepal with three other Googlers, hiking Mount Everest. He has passed away. The other three Googlers with him are safe and we are working to get them home quickly."

Actress Sophia Bush, who Fredinburg dated from 2013 and 2014, expressed her sadness over his passing on social media.

"Today I find myself attempting to pick up the pieces of my heart that have broken into such tiny shards, I'll likely never find them all," the actress said in a statement on Twitter and Instagram. "He was one of my favorite human beings on Earth.”

______________________________________________________________

Marisa Eve Girawong, from Edison, N.J., was described as an emergency room physician assistant. A Seattle-based mountaineering company said she was serving as a camp doctor for its team on the mountain when she was killed in the avalanche.

She was an avid rock climber and mountaineer who was pursuing an advanced degree in mountain medicine, Madison Mountaineering said in a statement. She attended school in Chicago and had successfully reached the summits of Mt. Washington and Mt. Rainier.

"Our hearts are broken," the company said in a statement.

______________________________________________________________

Tom Taplin, 61, was a Denver-born filmmaker working on a documentary about the Mount Everest base camp at the time of the avalanche, NBC affiliate KUSA reported.

His wife, Cory Freyer, told NBC News he was a photographer, filmmaker and mountaineer, and had written a book about his experiences climbing South America's tallest peak, Aconcagua, in the early 1990s.

She also said that it was on that trip that Taplin broke his arm after falling into a crevasse. However, he was able to pull himself to a place where he was reached by other mountaineers, she added. He was able to successfully climbed the mountain the next year, she said.

"It sounds trite, but he died doing what he loved doing," Cory Freyer told NBC News.




Photo Credit: Madison Mountaineering, Cory Freyer, Getty Images
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<![CDATA[NY Daily News Truck Driver Dies]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 23:09:27 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/daily+news+driver+killed+crash.jpg

A 24-year-old driver for the Daily News was killed Sunday morning when his delivery truck collided with a green outer-borough taxi in Brooklyn, police said. 

The accident happened around 5:45 a.m. at the intersection of Nostrand and Flushing Avenues in Williamsburg.

Dash cam video taken from a car not involved in the accident shows the Daily News truck approach the intersection at a yellow light before it collides with the taxi.

The collision was so violent that it sent the Daily News truck toppling over.

When police arrived they found the driver, identified as Jonathan Long of Brooklyn, unconscious and suffering from traumatic injuries.

Long was taken to Woodhull Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival, police said.

“The Daily News offers Mr. Long's family its deepest sympathies,” a company spokeswoman wrote in an email. 

A 58-year-old passenger in the truck was also taken to Woodhull Hospital. He is listed in stable condition.

Delivery truck drivers often don't wear seat belts and drive with their doors open, as they're continuously hopping in and out of their trucks.

The 26-year-old taxi driver was treated at the scene. His taxi license has been suspended just two weeks after he started driving a taxi, the Taxi and Limousine Commission said. 

Police are still investigating what caused the accident.

No arrests have been made.


This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[New Jersey Woman Among Nepal Earthquake Victims]]> Mon, 27 Apr 2015 03:58:01 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/042615nepal.jpg

Marisa Eve Girawong, a physician's assistant from Edison, New Jersey, was among those killed in an avalanche at a Mount Everest base camp, according to a mountaineering company.

Seattle-based Madison Mountaineering's website described Girawong as an emergency room physician's assistant who was serving as the team's camp doctor. She was an avid rock climber and mountaineer who was pursuing an advanced degree in mountain medicine, the site said.

"She is loved by all of us in base camp and a great addition to our team and helped us tremendously," Garrett Madison said in a satellite phone dispatch from the mountain. "She will be missed greatly. We're very sorry for her loss."

East Orange General Hospital, where Girawong worked previously as a physician's assistant, issued a statement mourning her loss.

In New York City, members of the Nepali community were grieving for the thousands of people killed in their homeland.

Luna Ranjit, a staffer at the Adhikaar Nepali Center in Queens, said she felt somewhat at a loss.

"It's sort of a sense of helplessness to be so far away. I wish I could be there with my friends and family and do something about it," she said.

Ranjit said she hopes that even from so far away she can help connect people to resources and bring attention to the tragedy.

An estimated 40,000 Nepali immigrants live in the New York City area. Many were planning to gather for a prayer vigil Sunday.

If you are looking for a loved one or have information on someone who may have been a victim, click here.

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<![CDATA[White Sox Players Suspended After Brawl]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 03:33:43 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sale+and+samardzija.jpg

In the aftermath of Thursday’s brawl between the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals, Major League Baseball has handed out suspensions to six players involved in the fracas.

The White Sox were hit with two of those suspensions, as starting pitchers Chris Sale and Jeff Samardzija were each suspended for five games. If the suspensions are upheld after appeal, both pitchers would miss one start for the White Sox.

As for the Royals, a total of four players were hit with bans. Starting pitcher Yordano Ventura was slapped with a seven games suspension, and pitcher Edinson Volquez was suspended for five games. Royals outfield Lorenzo Cain and pitcher Kevin Herrera were also suspended for two games apiece.

Five of the six players that were hit with suspensions were ejected from the game as a result of their actions, with Herrera being the only one not ejected from the game on Thursday.

The two teams have had bad blood simmering this season with beanballs flying between the two sides, but Thursday’s game marked a serious escalation. When Ventura fielded a groundball off the bat of Adam Eaton, he reportedly mouthed a profanity as the outfielder jogged to first base, and that’s when the benches cleared.

After the fight and after the game, Sale reportedly tried to get into the Royals’ clubhouse to have words with Ventura, but former White Sox outfielder Alex Rios (now with the Royals) calmed him down according to reports.

All six players have the option of appealing the suspensions, and if they choose to do so, they will not take effect until after the appeal is heard by MLB.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Newborn's Remains Found in Ca. Yard]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 14:41:25 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/150425-infant-remains-westmont.jpg

The remains of a newborn were found in a Westmont backyard Saturday, sheriff's deputies said.

A homeowner in the 1500 block of West 104th Street, an unincorporated area east of Inglewood, reported finding the remains just after 10 a.m., Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said in a statement.

The 1- to 3-days-old baby was apparently dismembered, deputies said. "Significant portions" of the infant's body were missing.

Neighbors were asked to look in their yards and trash cans for "suspicious items that have been discarded," deputies said.

"Detectives would like to speak with any females who were recently pregnant, are no longer pregnant, and the baby is absent," deputies said.

Britany Placencia, 9, said she found a body part while playing with her dog in her backyard, then ran to tell her mother.

"The dog was sniffing the ball... so I was going to get the ball and I got it. I saw the leg," the girl said.

The girl's mother came out, saw the leg near a bicycle and called 911. Then she found a baby's head in her side yard.

"This was kind of shocking to me, when you hear anything about an infant," said neighbor Lawrence Alston.



Photo Credit: KNBC]]>
<![CDATA[NJ Football Star Shot, Killed]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 08:01:21 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Jameer-Bullard.jpg

Jesse Kato wore his son's varsity letter jacket as he asked the public to help find the person responsible for his death. 

"As a son he's a good person," Kato said. "Anybody, any help. If you know who did this to my son bring him to justice."

Kato's son, 18-year-old Ja'Meer Bullard, was a local high school football star who was shot and killed overnight in Camden, only a block away from his home. 

Bullard's family said he was walking to a nearby store with his younger cousin on Green and Mechanic streets shortly after midnight Saturday when a gunman suddenly opened fire. 

"I just opened the door for him," said Bullard's grandmother. "I opened the door for my grandson and I heard the gunshots."

Bullard was struck by the gunfire but managed to get his cousin to safety. He was taken to Cooper University Hospital where he died from his injuries at 1:11 a.m.

"He shouldn't have to die like that," his grandmother said. "He didn't do nothing to nobody. He always was a good kid. He was going places. They just took him out." 

Bullard was a Junior at Woodrow Wilson High School and a star running back and linebacker for the school's football team. He also received a recruitment offer from Temple University and was set to showcase his talent at a Nike invitational next week. 

"From the moment he touched the football, everyone knew he was going to be a special player some day," said Bullard's coach Preston Brown. 

Brown told NBC10 Bullard was excited to play college football and use his skills to get off the streets of Camden and start a new life. 

"Right now my heart is real heavy having lost Ja'Meer to senseless gun violence in the city of Camden," Brown said. 

No arrests have been made. Police continue to investigate.

If you have any information on the shooting, please call Camden County Prosecutor’s Office Detective Anthony Roccia at (856) 365-3122 or Camden County Police Detective Mark Lee at (856) 757-7420.



Photo Credit: Facebook.com]]>
<![CDATA[NY Officer Fatally Shoots Suspect]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 23:11:32 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/42515cops.jpg

A 24-year-old robbery suspect was fatally shot Saturday during a "violent physical struggle" with two detectives in a Manhattan apartment building, police said.

Authorities withheld the name of the suspect pending notification of his family.

As two detectives approached the sixth-floor apartment in the East Village, where the suspect was believed to be, the suspect bolted out a window and down a fire escape, said New York City Police Department Chief Jim O'Neill. The detectives caught up with him in a hallway and a "violent physical struggle" ensued, the chief said during a news conference.

During the struggle, the suspect grabbed a hand-held radio from one detective and struck him in the head with it, O'Neill said. The fight continued for about five minutes before one detective drew his weapon and fired a single shot, hitting the suspect in the torso, he said.

The suspect, who was wanted in connection with the robbery of a woman on Thursday, died at Mount Sinai Beth Israel hospital, O'Neill said.

The incident occurred at 1:45 p.m. at a halfway house at 538 E. Sixth St.

The two detectives, who were not identified, were taken to a hospital, where one was treated for injuries to the head and shoulder.

The suspect was accused of confronting a 21-year-old woman on Thursday as she was giving a presentation at City College, according to the NYPD. The two then argued in a hallway and the suspect repeatedly punched the woman and stole her purse, which contained her keys, cash, credit cards and identification, investigators said. He fled the scene and eluded a police search.

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<![CDATA[Google Exec Dies in Nepal]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 21:54:53 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP03050618355.jpg

Google executive Dan Fredinburg was confirmed dead in an avalanche on Mount Everest which was triggered by a massive 7.8 earthquake in Nepal Saturday that claimed over 3,200 lives.

Fredinburg, 33, was a privacy director on the Google X team, and was involved in projects such as the driverless car. He was climbing Mt. Everest with three other Googlers during the avalanche when he received a major head injury and passed away, his sister Megan wrote in an Instagram post.

"We appreciate all of the love that has been sent our way thus far and know his soul and his spirit will live on in so many of us," his sister wrote. "All our love and thanks to those who shared this life with our favorite hilarious strong willed man. He was and is everything to us."

Fredinburg's boss, Google privacy director Lawrence You, wrote that the Google Crisis Response team has launched a "Person Finder" for Nepal, and is working to update satellite images to help with the recovery effort.

Google is also committing $1 million to the response effort and plans to have gift-matching efforts available for their employees soon. "Our thoughts are with the people of Nepal, and with Dan’s family and friends during this terrible time," You said. You added that the three other Googlers who were hiking Mt. Everest with Fredinburg are safe and Google is initiating efforts to bring them back to the U.S. safely.

Fredinburg's Instagram and Twitter page is filled with pictures and posts about his Everest trek. "I want everyone to think like Google [x] and have the heart of an adventurer," his Instagram page says. His last Twitter post is on April 24. "Day 22: Ice training with @michelebattelli means frequent stops for morning cappuccino," it says.

Actress Sophia Bush, who dated Fredinburg from 2013 to 2014, posted on instagram that the loss has left her with "no adequate words." "Today I find myself attempting to pick up the pieces of my heart that have broken into such tiny shards, I'll likely never find them all," Bush wrote. "Today I, and so many of my loved ones, lost an incredible friend. Dan Fredinburg was one-of-a-kind. Fearless. Funny."

Bush described Fredinburg as a "a dancing robot who liked to ride dinosaurs and chase the sun and envision a better future for the world." "His brain knew how to build it. His heart was constantly evolving to push himself to make it so," she wrote.

Mike North, one of Friedenberg's closest friends, said that Friedenberg's passion was climate change. “He is the most incredible person I have ever met in my life,” North said. "His will to do anything is beyond anyone else’s I have ever seen."

North found out early Sunday that Fredinburg was killed in the avalanche triggered by the 7.8 earthquake. Fredinburg’s girlfriend broke the news. “It was pretty garbled but basically what I heard was that the avalanche had come to the camp," North said. "He seemed all right at first but then wasn’t and he ultimately passed away."

North said Fredinburg had "two Everests he had to climb on this trip." "The first Everest, which was the hardest, was getting Google to allow him to go climb Everest — the second, climbing Everest," he said.

Video footage shows Fredinburg zipping himself up in yellow North Face gear, as he gets ready for last year’s Mt. Everest trip. He can be heard saying: “This is how you get ready for Everest.” That trip was also a tragic one, because several of his sherpas died in the avalanche. “After that he went to an orphanage there — so this year he was planning to dedicate the climb to all the orphans," North said.

He also planned to plant a flag on top of Mount Everest with the word “NEAT” on it promoting his organization SaveTheIce.org, a goal he was not able to accomplish. "He was in his early 30s, so if you want to talk about lives affected, if he had been able to live a complete life, we could be talking about a billion lives that could be benefacted by this man,” North said.

Jagged Globe, the company that organized the Everest trek for Fredinburg and his team, issued a statement on the death of Fredinburg on their site.

The first of many private memorials for Fredinburg will be taking place Sunday.

 

Day 20: Saving ice on top of Kala Patthar. Everest Basecamp in the background is a climate change hotspot. #Savetheice

A photo posted by Dan Fredinburg (@danfredinburg) on



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Predators vs. Blackhawks: Game 6 Preview ]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 18:23:21 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/blackhawks+game+6+preview.jpg

The Chicago Blackhawks have been a very successful team in Game 6’s under head coach Joel Quenneville, and they’ll look to continue their winning ways as they try to close out their series with the Nashville Predators on Saturday night.

In Quenneville’s career in Chicago, the Blackhawks have lost just one in 12 Game 6’s, dropping only the sixth game of their series with the Phoenix Coyotes in the 2012 postseason. Whether with stellar defense and goaltending or offensive prowess, the Hawks seem to play their best hockey as a series goes on, and they’re hoping that trend continues against Nashville in this one.

Even with that past success, the Blackhawks are still facing some serious questions going into this game. Much like they did in Game 2, their third period effort on Thursday night was poor by all accounts as they gave up four goals and coughed up a golden opportunity to finish off the series and get some rest before the second round. Whether on the penalty kill or at even strength, the team’s defense had several notable lapses in the game, and they looked more like the team that struggled at the end of the season than the team that has serious Stanley Cup aspirations.

It’s fair to say that the Blackhawks don’t want this series getting to a seventh game. Their last two performances in Nashville have been rough to say the least, and without the benefits of a supportive crowd and final line change their play in Games 2 and 5 of this series has suffered. 

In order to get this series over and done with, the Blackhawks will have to make sure that they are not only ready to go out of the gate, but also keep enough in the tank to play good hockey in the third period. Having to rely on only four defensemen (Kimmo Timonen hasn’t played much outside of the first two periods of games, and Michal Rozsival is a turnover machine as he gets tired) makes that a difficult proposition, but utilizing last line change should limit that duo’s exposure and should give extra rest to the top four defensemen on Saturday night.

In addition to using their defense properly, the Hawks have got to get some production out of their special teams units. Their power play group hasn’t scored since Game 1 of the series, missing on their last 13 attempts. The penalty killing unit hasn’t fared much better, giving up at least one goal in four of the five games so far in this series.

If the Blackhawks can take advantage of opportunities on the power play and can prevent the Predators from capitalizing on their own chances, they have a really good chance at winning this game. If those trends persist, then the road becomes a heck of a lot tougher.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[How to Help Victims of the Nepal Earthquake]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 18:58:16 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Nepal-Earthquake-25-April-2015-2.jpg

Survivors of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that hit Nepal and neighboring countries were still picking up the pieces Sunday after the disaster that left more than 3,600 people dead. Those living in the Kathmandu area were also hit with major aftershock that registered an initial 6.7 magnitude.

World leaders and global charities offered emergency aid as hospitals in the poverty-stricken Himalayan nation were overflowing with injured people, NBC News reported. The United States is sending a disaster response team and $1 million to help the people of Nepal, The Associated Press reported.

The U.S. Geological Survey said that the estimated damage from the quake could cost between $100 million and $10 billion.

As the world continues to learn the scope of the disaster, here are ways you can donate:

WORLD VISION

The humanitarian aid group had staff on the ground when the earthquake hit. Members of the organization said survivors need food, water and shelter, spokeswoman Laura Blank told NBC News.

“Infrastructure is down all over the city,” World Vision’s operations director in Kathmandu Philip Ewert also said. “Power is out with limited internet access. Walls and water tanks are damaged. We are also getting reports that people are trapped in temples and other public buildings as there was a large festival here Saturday.”

To make a donation to the organization to address these needs, you can visit their Nepal page or text NEPAL to 777444 to donate $10.

RED CROSS

Volunteers and staff at the Nepal Red Cross Society are providing aid, but they have limited stocks of emergency relief items available in the country, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said in a statement.

"We are extremely concerned about the fate of communities in towns and villages in rural areas closer to the epicenter," said Jagan Chapagain, the IFRC's Director for Asia Pacific. “We anticipate that there will be considerable destruction and loss of life.”

For information on how to donate, visit the IFRC website.

GLOBALGIVING

The organization hopes to raise 1 million dollars and has created a Nepal-specific page outlining specific issues they hope to address with the funds.

“Initially, the fund will help first responders meet survivors' immediate needs for food, fuel, clean water, hygiene products, and shelter,” the organization said on its page. “Once initial relief work is complete, this fund will transition to support longer-term recovery efforts run by local, vetted local organizations.”

GlobalGiving says it will provide updates about how the funds are being used. You can donate here.

AMERICARES

An emergency team from the AmeriCares India office is preparing shipments of medical aid and relief supplies for survivors. The organization stocks emergency medicine and relieft supplies in its warehouses in the U.S., Europe and India that can be delivered quickly in time of crisis, and launches comprehensive recovery programs.

"Our emergency response team is en route to Nepal and we are prepared to help any way that we can," AmeriCares President and CEO Michael J. Nyenhuis said in a statement. "This is a terrible tragedy and our hearts go out to the families suffereing."

To donate to AmeriCares International Disaster Relief Fund, you can click here.

UNICEF

UNICEF is currently on the ground in Nepal providing critical emergency aid to children and families.

"UNICEF expects children, an estimated 40 percent of Nepal's poplulation, to be among the worst affected by the earthquake. The first priorities are lifesaving interventions—getting essential medicines, nutrition, and safe water to children and families in immediate need," the organization's website said.

To support the UNICEF relief efforts in Nepal, you can donate here.

MERCY CORPS

Mercy Corps' team is on the ground in Nepal working to get a better understanding of the conditions. The team is focused on delivering lifesaving aid to hard-hit communities. Mercy Corps will be helping communities immediately start to rebuild homes, schools, help people return to work and process the trauma.

To support Mercy Corps' earthquake response team, you can donate here.



Photo Credit: AP
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[One Killed, Two Injured in House Party Shooting]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 10:47:56 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/roseland+house+party+shooting.jpg

A woman was killed and two men injured in a shooting at a house party Friday night in the South Side Roseland neighborhood.

The three victims were leaving the house party at about 11 p.m. in the 9300 block of South La Salle Street when an unknown gunman opened fire on them, police said.

The 19-year-old woman was shot in the side and pronounced dead on the scene.

A man whose age was unknown was also shot in the side and taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center. The third victim, a 27-year-old man, took himself to Little Company of Mary Hospital.

It is unknown if the victims were the intended target or if the shooting was random, police said.

No one is in custody.



Photo Credit: NBC Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[Darling Dilemma: Is Game 6 His Last Chance? ]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 16:08:02 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/darling+getty.jpg

Going into Saturday’s game against the Nashville Predators, Chicago Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville had a decision to make: should he stick with rookie goaltender Scott Darling, who had won three games for the team so far in the best-of-seven series, or should he go with veteran Corey Crawford, who was pulled in Game 1 and hadn’t started a game since a 6-2 loss in Game 2 of the series?

Ultimately, Quenneville went with Darling for Game 6 of the series, and in doing so he opted to go with the hot hand over the veteran. Earlier in the series he had hinted at Crawford’s eventual return to the net, but the decision to go with Darling in this game would seem to indicate that a return for Crawford wouldn’t be in the cards.

Or is it?

If the Blackhawks were to lose Game 6 on Saturday night, who would end up playing in goal for Chicago in a winner-take-all Game 7 in Nashville on Monday? Would it be Darling, who would have lost two consecutive games and has never played in a Game 7 before? Or would it be Crawford, who struggled earlier in this series but has historically played well in clinching games for the Blackhawks?

The answer isn’t as simple as just questioning which goaltender is better suited for the job either. If Quenneville goes back to Crawford, he will have to expect at least a little bit of rust to be a factor, as Crawford will have gone about a week and a half without seeing any playing time. On the other hand, if he goes with Darling, he could have to contend with some confidence issues, considering that the netminder would have lost consecutive games and doesn’t exactly have an NHL track record with which to help judge how he will respond to challenges on the ice.

Ultimately, Quenneville would probably decide to go with Crawford in that hypothetical situation, but there’s an argument to be made that he has already made his bed with the Darling decision. Going with Darling in Game 6 indicates that the coach is hesitant in Crawford’s ability to get himself right for a critical game, and that is surely not lost on the goaltender. Could he possibly overcome that kind of statement and win a Game 7?

That’s a big-time question, and one that the Blackhawks are hoping that they can avoid answering by winning Game 6 on Saturday.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Chef Armando Gonzalez Makes Scallops]]> Sun, 26 Apr 2015 11:04:39 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/armando+gonzalez+scallops.jpg

In a new weekly segment, NBC Chicago teams up with Chicago chefs for a lesson in cooking. This week, chef Armando Gonzalez, of Libertad in Skokie, shows us the best way to prepare veneras, or scallops.

Ingredients:
Serves four people

  • 1 pound black rice
  • 1/2 habanero pepper
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 pound butter
  • 2 tbsp. yuzu juice
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1.5 pounds fresh dry packed scallops
  • 1/2 pound long beans

Instructions:

For Rice: Place 4 cups of water in a pot with the black rice. Bring to a boil and leave for a total of 30 minutes, or until soft. Drain water, put back in pot and add 1/2 tbsp. of butter and salt and pepper to taste.

For Sauce: Add yuzu juice, sugar, heavy cream and deveined habanero pepper to pot. Boil for about 2 minutes, until thick. Add 1/4 pound of butter, little by little, while whisking it in. Strain.

For Green Beans: Cut tips of green beans off. Bring 1/2 gallon of water to boil. Drop green beans in and leave for 5 minutes. Remove them from water, and let cool. Tie them in a knot.

For Scallops: Heat pan until hot, and add 2 tbsp. of oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of scallops. Place scallops on pan for about 1 minute, until brown. Flip over and do the same. Remove from pan. Add green beans and saute lightly while adding a pinch of salt and pepper.

For Plating: In a bowl or plate, place rice in the middle. Spoon the sauce around the rice, place the scallops over the rice and the green beans in between the scallops.



Photo Credit: NBC Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Forte, Bennett Could Skip Mini-Camp]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 15:09:34 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/forte+and+bennett+getty.jpg

The Chicago Bears are busy preparing for next week’s NFL Draft, but the team members already on the roster will be meeting at Halas Hall for a three-day minicamp ahead of the selection show next week.

There is a possibility that two key cogs of the offense will not be heading to Lake Forest next week, according to ESPN Chicago's Jeff Dickerson. Running back Matt Forte, who is entering the final year of his contract with the Bears, did not participate in offseason activities recently and could potentially miss mini-camp as well.

Tight end Martellus Bennett, who was selected to the Pro Bowl last season, could also be absent from the event, as some reports have circulated that he wants a renegotiated contract based on his strong performance with the Bears’ offense since he came aboard before the 2013 season.

Neither player has publicly confirmed whether or not they will attend the camp, but the potential contract issues of both players could be bad news for the already cash-strapped Bears. It appears unlikely at this point that the team is going to want to retain Forte badly enough to sign him to a new deal before this season begins, but Bennett is a different story. The athletic tight end has become even more important to the team with the departure of Brandon Marshall, and with limited cap space available for any extra moves, the Bears could be put in a hard place if he drives a hard bargain in any negotiations.

We’ll know more when the team actually reports next week, as head coach John Fox will speak to the media on Tuesday and G.M. Ryan Pace will take his turn at the podium on Wednesday.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Three Key Players for a Blackhawks' Game 6 Win]]> Sat, 25 Apr 2015 18:23:56 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/all+hawks.jpg

The Chicago Blackhawks hope to close out their series against the Nashville Predators on Saturday night as the two teams battle in Game 6 at the United Center.

With the Blackhawks eager to get the series over with to avoid a Game 7 confrontation in Nashville, there are a slew of players that need to step up in order to make that happen. For the sake of brevity, we’re going to focus on the most important three of the bunch.

Marcus Kruger

The Blackhawks’ penalty killing unit has been a strength of theirs in the years that they’ve won Stanley Cups under Joel Quenneville, but this season the group is proving to be more of a liability than an asset as the playoffs have gotten underway.

In five games so far this postseason, the Blackhawks have allowed five power play goals, and only in Game 3 were they able to keep Nashville’s power play unit from scoring. A big part of the reason for that has been the ineffective play of the Hawks’ forwards in that department, and Marcus Kruger is the leading forward among those players.

If the Blackhawks are going to get back on the right track when they’re short a man, Kruger will have to provide the blueprint for the rest of the guys. Aggressive forechecking, quick stick work and, above all else, the intelligence to know when to attack and when to fall back into position are all going to be key components, and Kruger is adept at all of those things.

Patrick Sharp

After starting off the series with goals in each of the first two games, Sharp’s offensive production has slid significantly. In the three games since, the forward has one assist and just eight shots on goal, and he once again will find himself on the third line when the Blackhawks take the ice on Saturday night.

A big part of the reason for Sharp’s lack of scoring (other than not getting to play top-six minutes) has been the fact that the power play unit has been so bad in this series. After scoring twice in their Game 1 comeback, the Blackhawks’ power play unit has failed on its last 13 man-advantage attempts, and their lack of puck movement has allowed the Predators to become a really aggressive group when they’re killing penalties.

That’s where Sharp is going to come into play. The forward has to be able to not only play the point position (which he does from time to time on the power play, but he also has to be able and willing to drive down into the zone and get chances near the net. That’s where he is at his best, and it will force Nashville’s defense out of their comfort zone to have to try to defend those types of plays.

Jonathan Toews

The Blackhawks’ captain got off to a rollicking start in the first three games of the series, scoring twice and dishing out three assists, but since then he’s been largely held in check by the Predators. Over the past two games, Toews only managed five shots on goal and didn’t register a point for the team.

If the Blackhawks are going to come out on UC ice and beat the Predators Saturday, Toews and the top line have to take advantage of their matchups that they’ll be able to dictate. Going up against lesser competition is always a plus for the home side as they deploy their top lines, and Toews will have to get Marian Hossa and Brandon Saad to pitch in offensively in order to get the Hawks a win.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>