Chicago Blackhawks

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Uphill Climb

For those of you who haven't looked at the Dallas Stars' schedule, the beginning of the season is approaching soon.  Thing is, it's going to be a tough start for the new-look team.

The 2011-12 season begins within the confines of the American Airlines Center, but against the team that The Hockey News picked as the Western Conference finalist--the Chicago Blackhawks.  Not only one game against the Hawks.  Two.  October 7 and 8, prepare yourself for a home-and-home with one of the strongest teams in the entire National Hockey League. 

Not all is lost.  Last season, the Stars romped over not just the Chicago Blackhawks, but the Central Di...

Greatest Comeback of All-Time!

Greatest Comeback of All-Time!

Guest Writer: Daniel Mercer

One of the most enjoyable facts surrounding sports is that there will always be a new debate.  The fun part about these debates is that they have no parameters and at the end of the day, maybe there isn’t a right answer.  Who is the better boxer, Ali or Pacquiao?  If LeBron James and Michael Jordan were in the dunk contest, who would win?  If the great Wayne Gretzky played for the Edmonton Oilers, would they be any better?

Wouldn’t it be amazing if we actually knew all of the answers?  I would pay big money to watch Ali step into the ring versus Pacquiao.  I would definitely buy...

Breaking Down the San Jose Sharks' Offseason-Part Two

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I thought I would start this blog off with the first picture of newly acquired Sharks' defenseman Brent Burns in San Jose gear, via Brodie Brazil:



While the Sharks didn't go after any of this year's big-name free agents, it is probably for the best, as many of those players were grossly overpaid and will almost certainly be disappointments to their respective clubs. The Shark...

Blackhawks Goalie Situation a Win-Win-Win

Often times in sports, the rich get richer.

Teams categorized as “contenders” often have the luxury of taking chances on certain guys, or even just getting a quality player at a discounted rate (see: Vokoun, Tomas).

Oddly enough, the Blackhawks' circle of goalies starts with Vokoun. At the deadline in 2010, he was rumored to be Stan Bowman’s primary trade target as many believed the tandem of Antti Niemi and Cristobal Huet would not be enough to make the Hawks a serious Stanley Cup contender.The Hawks and Panthers could never find a deal and Niemi’s wonderful run proved the doubters wrong anyhow.


Top 10 must-see games on the 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks schedule

As the days march on towards Opening Night, and the bulk of trades and free agency acquisitions have been completed; the Draft and prospect camps are over; and the opening of Training Camps are still a few weeks away; as the weeks left until the new season drop into the single digits, there's one date circled on every fan's calendar to make it through the August doldrums: the date that their team's tickets go on sale. The Chicago Blackhawks have plenty of exciting matchups to choose from this year.

Five years ago, getting 14,000 fans in the seats at the United Center would've been considered a special night. Now, after three h...

How the Chicago Blackhawks are shaping up as training camp approaches

Chicago fans were disappointed in April when the Blackhawks couldn't make it past their hated rival, the Vancouver Canucks. But even in the face of the loss, there was a lot of positive things to take away from the postseason for the Hawks.

The most important thing was the Blackhawks' performance in games 4-7 of the first series. Despite Vancouver looking like the stronger, healthier team going to the series - and they were, having cruised through the final weeks of their schedule as Chicago battled down to the very last wire in the effort to hold on to their playoff berth - and even despite the Canucks practically skating circles around t...

Evaluating the Blackhawks at Draft, and previewing Prospect Camp

The 2011 Draft was not considered particularly deep, but the Chicago Blackhawks collected a total of 11 picks by the time the weekend was through, including Phillip Danault (pictured above). Danault was the Blackhawks' second pick (26th overall). Along with a solid set of selections throughout the Draft, Chicago's depth grew even more.

Let's take a quick look at the players Chicago drafted this year, as they will be part of the Chicago prospects camp that begins on Thursday, July 7th:

Mark McNeill, C (1st round/18th overall) - big, strong, smart center with good two-way game. Most recently of Prince Albert Raiders. Strong work ethic; scored 81 points in 70 g...

Blackhawks report card, part 3: Rockford IceHogs RFAs/UFAs - who might make the NHL?

Having discussed the active Blackhawks roster over the past two days, now we look to the Rockford IceHogs - Chicago's AHL affiliate and the top of the Blackhawks depth chart, including a few collegiate, ECHL or other junior league players who might be ready to make the transition to the AHL, since that factors into NHL interests in the case of call-ups. Currently, of the 26 or so players who had time in Rockford this season, 8 are RFAs and 4 are UFAs. For part 3 of the seasonal report card, we'll look at the UFAs and RFAs, and then finish up part 4 by discussing those who will still be under contract through at least the 2011-12 season. UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS Hannu Toivonen, ...

Blackhawks report card, part 2: RFAs and UFAs

Yesterday, we looked at those players whose contracts extend through the 2011-12 season or beyond. Today, we're going to look at the RFAs and UFAs currently on the Blackhawks roster, and rate their chances for returning next season. Notes in parenthesis are the player's 2010-11 salary cap hit, and RFA or UFA status. EXPECT TO RETURN - THE RFAs Corey Crawford, goalie ($800K/RFA) - Corey Crawford has quietly bided his time in the Blackhawks system. Drafted 52nd overall and the Blackhawks second pick of the 2003 Draft (the same draft where Ryan Kesler was picked 23rd and Corey Perry 28th), he played two seasons for the Norfolk Admirals when the Admirals were still the Blackhawks' AHL...

Blackhawks report card, part 1: contracted players for 2011-12

The Chicago Blackhawks might have gotten into the playoffs on the grace of another team's loss, despite finishing the season with 97 points, but they finished out the season on their own terms. They went out fighting like the defending champions they were, and nearly pulled out a historical upset after coming back from an 0-3 deficit. They didn't, of course - in what was a pair of instant-classic games, the Blackhawks and the Canucks battled it out in epic games 6 and 7. Rookie goalie Corey Crawford showed off the form that showed just how badly he was overlooked for the Calder Trophy nomination this year. Crawford even out-played his counterpart on the other end of the ice, Roberto ...