With Duncan Keith suspended, Blackhawks positive momentum gone?

duncan keith

The Chicago Blackhawks have been the National Hockey League’s (NHL’s) second hottest team, behind only the scintillatingly-hot Pittsburgh Penguins who have sported a 13-0-1 record recently.  The Blackhawks have blistered their way up the NHL’s Western Conference standings at an 8-1-1 clip, including a recent 5-0-0 run, all of this being done without the services of their captain and leader Jonathan Toews, who has missed the past 14 games with a concussion.

In spite of this devastating loss, the Blackhawks are only one point out of the Western Conference’s 4th position.

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Sunday’s Three Stars: Shaw, Stalberg Shine in Win Over Sharks

Patrick Sharp has been out of the Chicago Blackhawks’ lineup for the past four games, but it hasn’t slowed them down one bit. Buoyed by performances from guys up and down the roster, the Hawks have been scoring goals, playing solid defense, and most importantly, picking up points. This weekend was no different, as they got a point yesterday against the Detroit Red Wings, a team with an insane home record this season, and they did it again Sunday night as they took down the San Jose Sharks 4-3 at the United Center.

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Changes Abound for Blackhawks As Patrick Kane Moves to Wing

patrick kane

After what can only be described as a less than stellar homecoming on Tuesday, the Chicago Blackhawks will be sporting a way different look on offense when the New York Islanders come to town Friday night. The Patrick Kane at center experiment, largely heralded as a success in the early portion of the season, will come to an end, as the 23-year old will be moved back to his native position of right wing. Marcus Kruger will also be moved up to second line center as the Hawks try to revive an offense that has struggled with inconsistency in recent weeks.

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With Blackhawks Lineup Shakeup Looming, Is Quenneville Overreacting?

patrick kane

Sunday night was one of the worst nights of the season for the Chicago Blackhawks. They made a slew of defensive mistakes, allowed the Canucks to score five power play goals, and in general looked like a team who was not able to get up for their third game in four nights as they fell to the Vancouver Canucks 6-2 at the United Center. The Sedin twins both torched the Hawks for a combined seven points, and Roberto Luongo actually looked really solid in stopping 38 shots. It was a poor effort by the Hawks on defense, and head coach Joel Quenneville has seemingly responded by making some serious lineup changes.

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Chicago Blackhawks Report Card: First Midterm Edition

Toews needs to keep his scoring touch going.

On Saturday night, the Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2 at the United Center, bringing their record for the first 10 games of the season to 6-2-2. Ray Emery made 27 saves in only his second start of the season, and while the Hawks’ power play struggled to get going in an 0-for-5 performance, their penalty killing unit was perfect yet again, going 5-for-5 in keeping the Jackets off the board. It was a great microcosm of their season to this point, and it was a solid victory for a club that is among the top squads in the Western Conference.

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Blackhawks Notes: Salak Recalled, Saad Sent to Saginaw

Despite his assurances on Monday that he is completely healthy, the Chicago Blackhawks took out an extra insurance policy on goaltender Corey Crawford on Wednesday, bringing up keeper Alexander Salak from Rockford. Ray Emery has also been feeling under the weather, so the goalie lineup for the Hawks going into Thursday’s game against the Winnipeg Jets is anyone’s guess at this point.

In addition to the call-up of Salak, word also came down that Brandon Saad, who had impressed the team’s brass with his excellent preseason performance, had been sent back to Saginaw of the OHL. He will remain there for the rest of the year and work to refine his game, but in his short stint with the team he proved that he likely is going to be one of the biggest steals of the 2011 Draft, having gone with the 43rd overall selection in the second round.

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Blackhawks Notes: Crawford Injured, Stalberg & Smith Progressing?

While the Blackhawks will not take the ice in earnest again until Thursday night against the Winnipeg Jets, there are several news updates that have come out in the past few days.

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Tuesday’s Three Stars: Several Hawks Shine, But Oilers Get Last Laugh in Saskatoon

Tuesday night may not have mattered in the standings to the Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks, but you wouldn’t have been able to tell by the high level of play that was displayed as the two teams met in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in their respective preseason openers. Rostislav Olesz and Jamal Mayers netted goals for the Blackhawks, but it wasn’t enough to overcome two tallies by Josh Green and the game winning goal by Jordan Eberle late in the third period as the Oilers beat Chicago 4-2.

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Blackhawks Notes: Storylines Heading Into First Preseason Game

The Chicago Blackhawks are headed to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for their first preseason game tomorrow night, where they will play the Edmonton Oilers. The game, while not available on TV in Chicago, is going to be streaming on the Hawks’ official team website, and it will provide fans’ first glimpse into some of the changes that the team has made this off-season.

Big name players like Marian Hossa (who is finally reporting to camp tomorrow after attending Pavol Demitra’s funeral last week, as well as attending the birth of his daughter), Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook, and Patrick Kane will not be making the trip up to Canada, but there is still plenty to pay attention to as the team suits up against an actual opponent for the first time since April:

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Training Camp Primer: Recapping & Grading the Blackhawks’ Offseason

In contrast to the 2010 off-season, the summer of 2011 was a relatively quiet one for the Chicago Blackhawks. Sure, there were still trades that took place and signings galore, but the attachment that fans felt to the players who had so recently won the Stanley Cup made it more difficult to see guys like Andrew Ladd and Dustin Byfuglien go to other places.

With more fans tuning in to see what the Blackhawks are up to as they prepare for the regular season, which is only 18 days away, The Sports Bank is here to give you a quick and dirty recap of all the moves that the Blackhawks have made since Alex Burrows swiped the puck from Chris Campoli and scored the series winner that sent Chicago home.

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Blackhawks End Two Streaks In One Night

It’s no new news that the Blackhawks are off to a slow start, but slow is an understatement at this point. Sunday night was the first home win since October 27th—that’s eighteen days between home victories.

stalberg scores

Last year, they lost all of eight home games in the entire season, taking full advantage of home ice.  This year, the Hawks were on a four-game home losing streak and we’re barely at the quarter mark of the season.

After Sunday night’s game, there were huge sighs of relief in the Hawks’ locker room and the stands. The Ducks, on the other hand, were less than thrilled.  The club had their season high six-game winning streak snapped in a 3-2 overtime loss. Although they may have gained the point they needed, the loss was particularly painful in that they were literally one win away from matching the franchise-record seven-game winning streak. The record was so close they could smell it, and at the last second, the Hawks shattered what hope the Ducks had had going in to the game.

By Harrini Krishnan

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