Western Conference

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Blackhawks’ fast start leads to BIG 4-1 win over Dallas

They say everything in Texas is bigger and nothing could have been truer in last night’s Chicago Blackhawks/Dallas Stars game. There was big goals, big saves and big hits which, saw the Hawks standing their ground and coming out of big D with a big two points. More importantly the Hawks are showing they may not out muscle you but they don’t need to in order to skate away with wins.

The Hawks have played the Blues, Rangers, Kings & now the Stars who are all solid defensive teams with excellent netminders and top drawer defenses. The Hawks managed to get points in each of these games which are huge coming down the stretch to the playoffs. In what could be a glimpse of ...

Hawks tuning up against the Blues

 

With the NHL playoffs only three weeks away every team still in contention are looking to secure points but more importantly, they are also looking to see how they measure up against good teams. The Blackhawks don’t need to look any further than their own Central Division for these measuring sticks. The St. Louis Blues are currently not only in first in the division but they are also conference leaders and league leaders.

If the Blackhawks want a test they will get a good one Tuesday night at the United Center when they square off against the NHL leading Blues. This game is what hockey is all about. The Blackhawks and the St. Louis Blues have been battling since 1...

Blackhawks bow to Kings 3-2

 

As things begin to tighten up in the Western Conference we had an inter-conference game that mattered much for both of these two teams. At the start of the game the LA Kings were in eleventh place in the conference right outside the playoff spots but by the end of the game they jumped to the ninth spot. The Blackhawks hanging onto sixth place needed to continue to win to stay in the six spot with Colorado, Phoenix and San Jose right behind them. Even though the Hawks only picked up one point they stayed in the sixth slot. 

In goal for the night was Jonathan Quick for LA and Ray Emery for the Blackhawks. The Hawks needed to figure out the mystery called Quick. In th...

Hawks look to rally against Ducks

 

 

With only 19 games left for the Blackhawks every game heading down the stretch becomes huge. The Hawks must find a way to rebound from the last two games against Dallas and LA. Heading down the home stretch to make a playoff run somehow the Hawks need to get points in all of these remaining games.

Anaheim is currently in 13th place in the Western Conference but has been making a significant push as of late and is only 6 points out of a playoff spot. On the other side the Hawks have been finding new ways to lose to teams who they should be beating and must stop this trend.

This will be the final meeting of the year between these two teams. In their pre...

Blackhawks handed a Razzie by LA Kings in 4-0 shutout

 

The LA Kings I knew would be a tough opponent tonight for a couple of reasons. Like the Hawks, the Kings are desperately in need of points to make the playoffs in the Western Conference. They are currently outside in tenth place with a record of 27-22-12 and 66 points which is only seven points behind the Hawks’ 73 points so I knew they would come out inspired.

With the reunion of Mike Richards and Jeff Carter the old Philly brethren would make for inspired play on the ice and excitement in the crowd. The question was would their chemistry still be there and carry over from Philadelphia given the limited practice time they had together. Unfortunately for the Hawks...

Blackhawks look to continue winning streak against Red Wings

 

The Blackhawks need to somehow dust off their A game as they look to continue their three game winning streak when they face the best of the best in the league, the Detroit Red Wings. They currently sit atop the entire NHL with 84 points and a record of 41-17-2.

This game is paramount for the Hawks which goes without saying. This is a potential four point swing game. If the Hawks can somehow pull this out in regulation it would do wonders not only for their confidence but to continue racking up points against divisional foes.

Detroit has few weaknesses to exploit. They are ranked only behind Boston in GF/GA differential. In other words they have a potent offense a...

Hawks stars shine in NYC – beating Rangers 4-2

 

Ah New York, New York “I'm gonna make a brand new start of it In old New York.  If I can make it there, I'd make it anywhere Come on, come through, New York, New York.” – Kander/Ebb lyrics

And make it there the Hawks certainly did.  This game had everything, Two Original Six teams meeting who don’t normally see each other, historic Madison Square Garden and ey New Yawkers in the stands. If that was not enough to stir the blood, you had the classic offence versus defense and two teams on different trajectories.

I was not sure what to expect in this one except the Hawks had nothing to lose. What I was pleasantly surpris...

Elliot Returning to Ottawa With Vezina Talk in Tow

 

Looking back to the start of the season, if you were to ask any hockey expert who the starting goalie of the St. Louis Blues would be, they would not have said Brian Elliot. If you asked any of those same experts whose numbers which goaltender would be represented by a 1.69 G.A.A, a .938 save percentage and five shutouts at the All-Star break, they would not have guessed Brian Elliot. Or even better, if you asked those same questions to the Sens Army they would not have responded with Brian Elliot.

 

However, if you were to ask Brian Elliot himself wha...

Blackhawks burned by Flames in 3-1 loss

Going into tonight’s game I was hoping to see an improved defensive performance from the horrid game against Edmonton the night before. I think every Blackhawks fan was looking for answers after the Oilers game.  How would the Blackhawks respond? With the quick turnaround I wasn’t quite sure if we would see a tired drained Hawks team or an invigorated team looking for a little payback.

In the first week of the nine game three week road stretch to say this Canadian trip has not started the way the Blackhawks would have liked is an understatement.  Coming into this game out of a possible four points against Western Conference opponents the Hawks only garnered one...

Blues Looking to Improve on Road Record for Second Half

 

More important than the return of Alex Steen and Andy MacDonald, more important than the impressive play of their two goalies, more important than the extra long break they got after the All Star Break, nothing is more key to the Blues keeping pace atop the Western Conference standings than improving their road record. The Checking Line's Taylor Giffin takes a look at the road woes that St. Louis has had and if the second half presents an opportunity for change.

 

Coming out of the All Star Break holding down one of their best positions in the Wes...