Niemi will start in net against Kings

Updated: March 9, 2010, 2:27 PM ET
By Jesse Rogers | ESPNChicago.com

CHICAGO -- Antti Niemi will start in net Wednesday when the Chicago Blackhawks host the Los Angeles Kings.

"He gets a chance to get back in the net," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said after practice on Tuesday. "Let's see how he responds."

Cristobal Huet started the last three games, but he was pulled Sunday in the second period after yielding four goals to the Detroit Red Wings.

Niemi gave up another as Chicago wasted a 2-0 lead in a 5-4 loss to the Wings.

Niemi started the four games leading up to the Olympic break, and he won all four. But he was pulled in a 5-3 loss to the New York Islanders in the first game after the break.

"It's important that somebody establishes himself and takes charge in the net," Quenneville explained. "I think both guys can play.

"I'm not blaming [Huet for the] last game. I just think Antti gets a chance to grab the net. We have back-to-back games over the weekend. We have a lot of tough opponents as well, and we have a condensed schedule. So they'll both see some time here, and we're looking for both of them to take charge."

Jesse Rogers covers the Blackhawks for ESPNChicago.com

Jesse Rogers | email

Chicago Cubs beat reporter
Jesse joined ESPN Chicago in September 2009 and covers the Chicago Cubs for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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