The Blackhawks departed today on a 12-day, six-city road trip that will see them visit six of the seven Pacific conference teams before the Olympic break.
It's their annual "Disney on Ice" late January/early February western road swing, but this year, it has a little extra importance. The Olympics start less than two weeks from now, and the Blackhawks won't play in their own building again until March.
Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, their play has been like a roller coaster lately - solid wins versus the Bruins and Ducks; and less-than-perfect games against teams like the Jets, Red Wings, and Minnesota.
With the official announcement from Hockey Canada of the 25 players who will represent Canada at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi less than twelve hours away, here is my final edition of who I think will crack the squad.
Included with my final selections, are the players who I thought would be on the team back in July when Hockey Canada announced the 47-man summer orientation camp, that are now no longer a part of my final team.
The last Canadian team the Blackhawks (17-4-4) are facing during their circus trip are the Calgary Flames (8-11-4), who are looking for a solid win in regulation after their last three contests were decided in OT or a shootout. The first and only game these two teams have played against each other ended with the Flames prevailing in overtime.
The Blackhawks will be looking to keep their 3-game win streak alive while the Flames will look to start a streak themselves after winning against the Florida Panthers in the shootout last Friday...
With the preseason now behind us, Isles fans everywhere can collectively breathe a sigh of relief as the moment we have all been waiting for is upon us. The Isles are on the verge of playing the first meaningful games since the heart breaking game 6 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins last May. We have all been eager to pick up right where we left off after exceeding all expectations last season. With all of this in mind, we can only hope for the success to continue so the Islanders can take their place among the elite teams of the NHL. Although the outcome of this coming season is yet to be determined, I think I speak for Islander fans everywhere when I say this is the most confident we have been in the last 20 years.
In just a little less than 24-hours, the Calgary Flames will open up their first season without Jarome Iginla and Miikka Kiprusoff since 2005-06. It’s the start of a new era in Calgary, as the re-build is well under way. There are no superstars or first overall picks (yet) in the line-up; so to say it could be a long year for the Flames is a fairly accurate statement.