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Category: Chicago-Blackhawks

Left Wondering About The Chicago Blackhawks

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,

Before the season, NBC rightly claimed Bruins-Blackhawks on March 11. The network deployed its varsity team of Mike Emrick, Ed Olczyk, and Pierre McGuire to call the game because of its projected significance. The Blackhawks are rolling on a nine-year run of postseason appearances, with three of their dashes stretching into Stanley Cup-winning marathons. They are a ratings behemoth, the perpetual well the league and NBC seemingly tap as often for Winter Classics (Bruins-Blackhawks at Notre Dame on Jan. 1, 2019) as regular-season matinees.

The nine-year streak will end soon. Only the Oilers, Canucks, and Coyotes are worse than the Blackhawks in the West. It is unfortunate when Chicago fans scream the loudest for anthem singer Jim Cornelison. They are more used to cheering wins and Cups. Instead, they are left to wonder whether GM Stan Bowman can pull enough bunnies out of his bowler to complement stars who are aging.

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Morning Line- Mark Lazerus On The Chicago Blackhawks

It’s going to be challenging enough for the Hawks to get back into contention next season. They need so many things to go right, from Corey Crawford’s health to Saad’s production to the continued development of their younger players to some free-agent help on the blue line. But even if all that does break in the Hawks’ favor, it’s not as if they’ll be able to waltz back up to the top of the Central Division. Too many teams are too good, too young, and too well-built for long-term, sustained success.

-Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times after Chicago's 6-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets.  Lazerus has more on the game.

Highlights of the game can be watched below.

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Wear And Tear Taking A Toll On The Chicago Blackhawks?

from Barry Rozner of the Chicago Daily-Herald,

Lidstrom, in essence, said that the four rounds of playoffs necessary to make it through the Stanley Cup Final are roughly the equivalent of another full NHL season because of the pressure, intensity, speed and debilitating nature of playing that many games -- every other day -- for two months.

Which brings us to the current Blackhawks roster and the core of players that has led them to three Stanley Cups, five conference finals and 22 rounds of playoffs the last nine years.

If you believe one of the greatest players in history, that's the same as playing five-plus years of extra hockey.

It's no wonder so many of them suddenly look so advanced in age.

Rather than their current ages, think of Patrick Sharp as 41, Duncan Keith as 39, Brent Seabrook 37 and Jonathan Toews 34. Marian Hossa -- 18th all time in postseason games -- would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 years old....

Still, the miles and minutes are substantial, the hits have added up, and the cost of World Championships, World Cups and Olympics have not even entered the equation.

Regardless, this group has had an extraordinary run, the Grant Park rallies and Michigan Avenues parades so easily forgotten when finally arrives a year without a postseason in Chicago.

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Video- Brad Marchand Collision With Anthony Duclair

Anthony Duclair will not return to the game.

 

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  Tags: anthony+duclair, brad+marchand

Hot Seat Coaches

from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,

An oddity of the 2017-18 NHL regular season is that not a single coach has been fired. Five coaches were fired in-season in 2016-17.

It may mean that several coaching changes will occur in the offseason.

Here are six vulnerable coaches:

Jeff Blashill, Detroit Red Wings: The Red Wings have a personnel problem, not a coaching problem. The Red Wings have a new arena and selling tickets isn’t as easy as it once was. Firing a coach is viewed as a team embracing a new direction. No one is sure what is going to happen with general manager Ken Holland, whose contract expires at the end of the season.

If Blashill is fired, it will be under the banner that the team’s younger players need to listen to a different voice.

Joel Quenneville, Chicago Blackhawks: Quenneville has won three Stanley Cups since 2010. How could you consider firing him? You could if you believe the organization has grown stale and a fresh approach is needed. It isn’t fair, but it is the way teams conduct business. Wouldn’t he be a good fit as Connor McDavid’s coach in Edmonton? It would guarantee improved team defense.

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Bad Deals

from ESPN,

What's the NHL's worst contract quagmire?

Emily Kaplan, national NHL reporter: There's always a caveat when it comes to the state of the Chicago Blackhawks. Yes, you must admit as a disclaimer that they won three Stanley Cups in six years with this core. But, as Chicago has come crashing down to pedestrian status this season, its lack of long-term viability has been exposed.

The biggest quagmire for Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman? The contract of Brent Seabrook. The defenseman carries a hefty cap hit of $6.875 million and is locked in for seven more seasons. ...

Greg Wyshynski, senior writer: The hallmark of any bloated, regrettable contract is how hard a team is going to work to make it disappear. So, with that established: Bobby Ryan has a quagmire of a deal with the Ottawa Senators.

Ryan signed his seven-year, $50.75 million contract extension in October 2014. It was a time when the franchise was defined by high-profile player departures and the stingy ownership of Eugene Melynk, who the Ottawa Sun wrote "has taken countless hits from fans worried about the club's ability to compete with a limited budget." Good to see not much has changed in three-and-a-half years....

Chris Peters: The two contracts listed above by Greg and Emily are definitely tougher to deal with than this one, but the unrestricted free agent deal Milan Lucic signed before last season with the Edmonton Oilers is going to only get more burdensome once Connor McDavid's new contract kicks in next season. Lucic will be tied for the third-largest cap hit on the team next year, assuming the Oilers don't make other deals to help improve a forward group that lacks depth. There are also five more years remaining on Lucic's deal.

more on each of the above...

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In What Direction Are The Chicago Blackhawks Headed?

from David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune,

Not that long ago, Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman railed about things he considered unacceptable for a championship organization.

This was last April after a 109-point season that preceded a playoff sweep. Less than a year later, Bowman sounded a different tone after dealing former first-round draft pick Ryan Hartman to the Predators for a nice return as the hapless Hawks became sellers at the trade deadline. Yes, sellers, like the rest of the NHL teams with their noses pressed against the playoff glass.

A not-so-funny thing happened to the Hawks on their way back to the postseason: They got lost. This wasn’t part of Bowman’s plan no matter how many times we heard about rebuilding on the fly or all the players they have younger than 25. This wasn’t a team that expected to be golfing in April.

We are conditioned to let the Hawks have it both ways. We point to their three Stanley Cups since 2010, thank the hockey gods for allowing us to experience those glorious title runs and grant the first-class folks at 1901 W. Madison St. the benefit of every doubt.

continued

The Blackhawks lost 7-2 to San Jose last night.

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It’s Not So Bad For The Chicago Blackhawks

from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,

So how does Bowman feel now, 63 games into a lost season — the playoffs out of reach, his most expensive players underperforming, his star goaltender’s future cloudy at best, his promised offseason makeover a failure, the team a seller at the trade deadline for the first time in a decade?

Oddly enough, quite optimistic.

“Where we are today is equally frustrating, but it’s sort of in a different way,” he said. “We haven’t had the season that we wanted. [But] I think the one bright spot has been the progression and emergence of some of our younger players.”

It’s spin, of course. Bowman can’t do the same fire-and-brimstone routine a year later. With his job on the line, he has no choice but to put on some rose-colored glasses.

But he’s not wrong, either. Five years from now, when the Hawks look back on the 2017-18 season, they’ll see it as the year Nick Schmaltz grew into a future No. 1 center. The year Alex DeBrincat became an instant star. The year Vinnie Hinostroza proved himself an NHL player.

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Chicago Trades Tommy Wingels To Boston

BOSTON - Boston Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney announced today, February 26, that the team has acquired forward Tommy Wingels from the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for a conditional fifth-round pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. The pick becomes a fourth-round selection if the Bruins advance past the first round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs or if the Bruins re-sign Wingels.

Wingels has seven goals and five assists for 12 points with 43 penalty minutes in 57 games with Chicago this season. The 6-foot, 200-pound forward had five goals and three assists for eight points in 37 games with San Jose in 2016-1,7 before being traded to Ottawa and producing two goals and two assists in 36 games with the Senators. Wingels spent his first six NHL seasons with San Jose, enjoying his best season in 2013-14, when he established career highs in all offensive categories with 16 goals and 22 assists for 38 points in 77 games.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tommy+wingels

Chicago Trades Ryan Hartman To Nashville

added 12:08pm,

 

 

added 12:22pm, Nashville release is below..

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+harman

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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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