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Category: Chicago-Blackhawks

Marc Crawford Under Review By The Chicago Blackhawks

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Morning Line- Robin Lehner

"It was a tough one, but way to battle together and get the two points."

-Robin Lehner, goaltender for the Chicago Blackhawks after making 53 saves in a 5-4 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs.  Scott King at NHL.com has more on the game.

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Evening Line- Jonathan Toews

“We’ve changed a lot over the years and that’s a good thing. I think (Patrick) Kane and I will always admit there’s a ton we can learn from these young guys. You kind of mix your experience in with the way the game’s been changing.

“Obviously we’re not where we want to be, but we’re headed in the right direction as far as the old and new mixing together and finding a happy balance.”

-Jonathan Toews, captain of the Chicago Blackhawks.  Ed Willes has more fon the Blackhawks.

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Look At Them Now

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

Dean Lombardi is no longer general manager. Darryl Sutter is no longer the coach, nor is John Stevens, who replaced Sutter after his amazing run of Stanley Cups. Both were let go for not keeping up with the times, for not finding a way to keep the Kings fresh and relevant when they managed what almost no one in hockey has managed in recent times....

The championship window opened quickly and closed just as fast for the Kings, one of the worst teams now in all of hockey. In a three-year period, winning two titles, they played in 63 playoff games. That kicks the whatever out of you. That turns great to good over time. The body isn’t built for that kind of punishment  year after year.

It happened in Los Angeles. The same happened in Chicago, where the amazing Blackhawks won three Stanley Cups in a short time. They were Western Conference-tough, built to last the way teams have been built to last, distinct of style and rather impossible to beat over seven games.

It’s the toll that winning takes on champions.

Joel Quenneville did such a great job winning three Cups in Chicago that he’s now coaching in Florida. The Blackhawks won with Jonathan Toews as the perfect leader, Patrick Kane as the breakaway scoring threat, Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook on defence, Corey Crawford sharp in goal.

Keith is now old, Seabrook slow and old, Crawford no longer sharp, Toews and Kane signed long-term for $21 million and not living up to their current contracts. Since winning the third Cup, the Blackhawks haven’t won a playoff round.

more

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Brent Seabrook On Being Scratched Again Tonight

from Sportsnet,

Blackhawks coach Jeremy Colliton has scratched the 34-year-old defenceman for the team’s game against the Predators in Nashville on Tuesday. This comes two days after Colliton left Seabrook out of the lineup for the Blackhawks’ 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings at home on Sunday.

The three-time Stanley Cup winner was “visibly upset” when asked about being scratched after the Blackhawks’ morning skate on Tuesday, according to NBC Sports Chicago’s Charlie Roumeliotis.

“What do you think? It’s not fun sitting out. Nice to see a big win the other night and hopefully we can get another one tonight but yeah,” Seabrook said per Roumeliotis.

“I don’t think I need rest. I think I feel great, I’m 34, you guys seem to want to write articles about my age and my speed. I feel like I still got a lot to offer in this league and still be a good player for somebody,” he continued.

read on

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The Chicago Blackhawks Continue To Look For Their First Win

from Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times,

The Blackhawks changed everything they could Saturday: forward lines, defensive pairings, the goalie.

But they still squandered an energetic start, still spent too long on the ice each shift, still had a brutal defensive breakdown at a crucial time and still finished winless on the season after a 3-2 overtime loss to the Jets.

“As a group, we have to have that character to close out games and step on their throat when they’re down,” winger Brandon Saad said.

Clearly, through three games — each a painful defeat in its own way — the Hawks don’t have that down yet.

continued (Chicago is 0-2-1)

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Catching Up With Marian Hossa

from Tracey Myers of NHL.com,

Marian Hossa said he believes he could stay play at an NHL level, but the forward who had to stop playing hockey after the 2017 season because of a progressive skin disorder and side effects from medications used to treat it, is at peace with his decision.

"It was tough because I knew I still had a lot in my tank," Hossa said Thursday. "I felt like I still got two or three years in me, I could easily play at my level. But I said, I cannot work this way because in the future, it can stop me in different ways. So that was a tough decision, but I think it was the right decision."

Hossa will be in the stands to watch his former team, the Chicago Blackhawks, open the season against the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2019 NHL Global Series at O2 Arena on Friday (2 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN360, NBCSP, NBCSCH, NHL.TV).

continued

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A Contract Extension For Alex DeBrincat In Chicago

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Alex DeBrincat Is A Star In The Making

from Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times,

DeBrincat is just the 10th player in the last three decades to score more than 68 goals in his first two seasons. His company includes Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos, but not Kane or Toews.

At this rate, he’s due for a new contract next summer with a cap hit pushing $10 million, which would cement his position as a cornerstone for the Hawks’ post-dynasty era.

And yet, he doesn’t carry himself as a cornerstone at all.

“I feel like I’m more quiet in the locker room. I try to stay out of the chirping and stuff,” DeBrincat said. “Those core guys have been there for a long time and are obviously very respected around the league. So especially my first year, I kind of stayed away and kept my mouth shut so I didn’t get in any trouble. I know them pretty well now, and it’s easy to joke around with them, but I had to keep my mouth shut until someone talked to me.”

Despite the lighthearted intentions of the media tour, DeBrincat didn’t stray far from that mouth-shut identity. He seemed amused but rarely delivered the comedy that segment hosts were looking for.

more

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Window Is Closing On A Few Teams

from Michael Traikos of tghe National Post,

The last time anyone checked, Sid the (32-year-old) Kid was still looking mighty youthful, having scored 100 points and finishing a personal-best fourth in the Selke Trophy voting this past season.

If that’s a sign of ageing or a window closing, then Crosby should start marketing whatever bottled water he drinks.

But the window is still closing. Maybe not on Crosby, who would surprise no one if he were to win a third Hart Trophy this season. But it certainly is for the Pittsburgh Penguins, who are nobody’s pick to win the Stanley Cup — much less make the playoffs after getting swept in the first round last year...

The tide is changing in the NHL. Dynastic teams, such as the Penguins, Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angles Kings, who account for eight of the past 11 Stanley Cups, are no longer skating around with a bullseye on their backs.

They’re not the teams to beat. Rather, they seem beat-up and old, with bloated salaries and cap issues that are acting as anchors. Crosby and others are optimistic that there is plenty of gas in the tank and they can rebound and win again. But it could be that a re-tool or rebuild is more realistic for long-term success.

“Obviously, not making the playoffs is never fun,” said Chicago’s Patrick Kane. “But we’re pushing ourselves to be better. I think our team’s going to be better. On paper, it’s going to be better. We feel good about the team. Now it’s just about putting it together.”

more

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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