Production, scoring and Bickell

How much should a third and fourth line produce?  That was a topic of conversation during last night’s postgame show, following the Blackhawks loss in Pittsburgh. All four lines need to be productive, but in the National Hockey League, only two lines are counted on to score, consistently.  The Blackhawks have gotten that; thus the... Read more »

Talk about concussions should center on player respect

Talk about concussions should center on player respect
Talk about concussions in the National Hockey League has grown louder this past week with Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger announcing he’s done for the year due to the issue. Maybe because it’s a warrior like Pronger or the fact no one is quite sure how he got it (most think it was an after-effect... Read more »

Cubs rise as opponents fall this off-season

The new Cubs regime is off to a spectacular start and they’ve made only two big-league roster moves. Albert Pujols, arguably he best player in the game, has left your biggest rival. The Brewers will lose Prince Fielder, their undisputed leader, to free agency (and potentially wind up on the Northside).  And Ryan Braun, the... Read more »

A closer look at Kane's numbers

Patrick Kane’s smooth move to center-ice was part of the reason the Blackhawks got out of the gate quickly. We can better gauge Kane’s play in the middle, however, after a road-heavy November schedule, when opponents dictate the matchups and the job is more taxing physically. Here are his numbers for the first two months:... Read more »

Something to think about on the Blackhawks circus trip

Every team in the National Hockey League will get pasted once or twice a season. Maybe it’s because of injuries, travel, scheduling, a red-hot opponent, bad bounces, awful calls or combination of all of the above, every club in the league will take it in the teeth during an 82-game season. Watching the Blackhawks get... Read more »

Blackhawks best defenseman may surprise you

The Blackhawks best overall defenseman during the first six weeks of the season is Nick Leddy. Leddy paces team defensemen with two goals and 10 points, while averaging just over 21 minutes of ice-time each night. He’s been steady in his own end (+4 rating) and consistently involved in the attack.  His vision and ability... Read more »

Blackhawks no longer dodging bullets

Scotty Bowman, the Blackhawks senior advisor of hockey operations, said he thought the Blackhawks “dodged a few bullets” during October. They won a few games they shouldn’t have or earned two points thanks to the shootout. That will always catch up with a team (the same can be said when you’re losing.)  And it came... Read more »

The intangible difference with the Blackhawks

Barry Trotz, the head coach of the Predators, made a fascinating observation on Monday. “If you change one player, it changes the whole chemistry on your team,” he said. Jamal Mayers has done that for the Blackhawks this year. He’s anchored a fast and physical fourth line, while adding seasoned leadership in the room. You... Read more »

Kane weighs in on "Luigi"

Ask Patrick Kane a question about Daniel Carcillo and he’ll roll his eyes and grin. Are you sick of talking about him? “He’s pretty painful especially around the locker room.  It’s alright, we’ll deal with him.” Is it more painful in here or out on the ice? “Good question.  I’ve gotta deal with him on... Read more »

What Toews wants to see on the Blackhawks power play

“What’s up with the power play?  I used to be excited when we got a power play in the past.  Now I feel like we’re not gonna score.” That was the first call of the night on the WGN postgame show after Saturday’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Boston Bruins. Other than Patrick Kane’s move... Read more »