Blackhawks Bits: Early Season Edition

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By Paul M. Banks

It’s been an exciting first couple of weeks for Patrick Kane and his Chicago Blackhawks’ teammates. Chicago has a Western Conference leading 11 points and a 5-1-1 record. Kane has been a huge factor in that success, as he leads the team in shots on goal with 26, is tied with Patrick Sharp for the team lead in assists (4), and is second to Sharp in points with 7. There’s been quite a few Kane/Hawks stories flying around the world wide web during the first half of October, here’s some of the best.


-Bear Market Business

The Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Bears announced Wednesday a historic partnership between the two franchises, marking the first of its kind between an Original Six National Hockey League team and a founding franchise of the National Football League.

The cross-branding promotional initiative includes commercials, representation inside the United Center and Soldier Field during home games for each team and a wealth of other activities. The five sets of commercials that will be released this fall feature one Blackhawks player and one Bears player, emphasizing the mutual support between each organization and the city of Chicago. Patrick Kane will join his Blackhawks teammates Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp, Brent Seabrook and Brian Campbell. Who will team up  with Bears Jay Cutler, Devin Hester, Robbie Gould, Lance Briggs and Greg Olsen in these spots. In his promo, Kane crouched over a football with his hockey stick and wristed the ball 20 yards downfield into the arms of receiver Devin Hester.

“Partnering with the Blackhawks is a unique relationship that showcases two storied Chicago franchises,” said Senior Director of Sales and Marketing Chris Hibbs.  “The collaboration of the two teams and our star athletes is something we hope the passionate Chicago sports community can rally around.”dsc02123

-Patrick Kane Quote of the Week

The business deal was probably foreshadowed by this quote published a few days before on ESPNChicago.com

“Obviously the Bears are the Bears. They’re always going to be adored in this city, and we have to deal with that.”

It was featured in a piece about the Hawks starting their home slate October 10th in ton that year-in, year-out has a dysfunctional obsession with the Bears, and this year also has a collective and increasingly pathological man-crush on QB Jay Cutler.

-The Comeback Kid

On Monday night, the Hawks matched the biggest comeback in NHL history, rallying from a five-goal deficit to beat the Calgary Flames 6-5. Chicago fell behind 5-0 in the first period before overtaking the Flames, the team they eliminated in the Western Conference Quarterfinals last April. The rally was the biggest in franchise history and Kane was the best player on the ice that night, taking over the game in the second period and finishing with a goal and two assists.
More detail on Kane’s role courtesy of Annenberg’s Digital News Sports Blog

After Kane’s beautiful wrist shot for goal and an intelligent across ice pass to set up left wing Dustin Byfuglien’s third tally of the season, the Hawks found themselves down by only two goals. And Kane’s heroics weren’t done yet. Late in the second period, as the Flames continued to play conservatively, Kane took advantage of Calgary’s poor defensive alignment and found winger Dave Bolland, who beat Flames goalie Miikka Kiprusoff to cut the lead to one. As home team dressed in red left the ice in the second period they were greeted with a very different sound from the Chicago faithful, loud cheers.

-Kilpatrick

An extremely rare on-ice occurrence, Patrick Kane saw a minute of time on the penalty kill in the Hawks win over the Florida Panthers earlier this month. He even contributed a blocked shot during his time with the special teams unit. But he’s not there for defense, his role, according to coaches is to give the team a short-handed offensive push.