Tuesday’s Take: Chicago Blackhawks

Blackhawks StinkThe Chicago Blackhawks had a remarkable season last year winning the Stanley Cup. A team that came out of nowhere to take it all. This year though, despite being early, seems to be a little different.

The Blackhawks at the surface are off to a decent start. They currently sit in 5th place among the Western Conference and 3rd in the Central Division. Dig a little deeper though and you start to see the team for what they are. The Blackhawks have played an average of 4 more games than the competition within the West. There are 4 teams that are within 2 points of catching them, and those teams have 4 games in hand. One of those teams are the Columbus Blue Jackets, 7-3-0 in their last ten and a division opponent.

The point being made is the Blackhawks, despite being in 5th place currently, are a struggling team. They most likely will be leap frogged down to 10th or 11th spot after the other teams catch up. At what cost do the general managers wish to go for the Cup? General manager Stan Bowman was praised last year for taking the team all the way. How will the fans treat him this year if the returning Stanley Cup Champions cannot even make the playoffs?

The season is young, I know this, I just am glad I am not a Blackhawks fan. With the Nashville Predators, San Jose Sharks and the Colorado Avalanche still yet to be in a playoff spot,  I do not think the Blackhawks will make it to the playoffs this season. As a fan, I would be disappointed if my GM went for a one trick pony instead of a constant contender each year.

How would you feel if your team won the Cup then the next year did not make the playoffs?


  1. It’s not Stan Bowman’s fault that he had to trade away Versteeg, Ladd and Byfuglien, or that he couldn’t resign Madden and Niemi. The Hawks were above the salary cap, and tough moves had to be made. The reason the Hawks were going to be above the cap was due to the moves made by the former GM Dale Tallon. He made some costly mistakes and bad signings and when Stan took over his hands were already tied. It didn’t matter if the Hawks lost to the Preds in the first round or won the cup, this years team would be a new one.

    It has been tough to watch some Hawks games this year because you can tell this team isn’t playing well at all. I agree that this year is going to be a struggle for them, but every one of my Hawks fans knew that coming into the season. We all knew that there would be a bit of a Cup hangover, and that it would take a while for the new guys to get going.

    Also, you can’t say that the Hawks GM went for a one trick pony. It’s not like they didn’t make an effort this offseason to keep their core talent together for the long hall. Also, what type of moves did the GM make to have them make last season a do or die season?

    To answer your question on how would you feel if your team won the Cup one year, and didn’t make the playoffs the next. It feels great to win the cup for the first time in my lifetime. I am proud to be a Hawks fan, and if the Hawks don’t make it back to the postseason this year I am fine with that. I am confident in our coaching staff, our GM, and the players that we will be back to the top of the league again. I agree probably not this year, but they will be back.

  2. Jeff, thanks for the comment.

    I will agree that many moves in the GM were a result of Tallon, however as a new Gm taking the reigns, I feel Bowman took credit for Tallons work and then has done nothing to right the ship of parting ways with way too many players.

    We can both agree the Hawks are struggling, and as I do like the Hawks as a team, I just feel despite winning the Cup, it sucks to then see your team struggle as they are. I am a Wing’s fan, so perhaps I am in a different boat than most teams, but I can say from experience, it is much nicer to have the hope that your team can win it every year then have won it then not have a shot. And I think it has worked out for the Wings to be that way as they have had a good amount of Cups as of recent.

    The moves once again that were made were in part by Tallon, but Bowman did not seem to do much of anything during last season to try and keep the guys together. He let the ship sale and then disband, I feel he should have done something last season in an effort to keep more than what they lost. You are telling me they couldn’t have done better in signing their Cup winning goalie instead of the turtle Turco?

    I respect and I am happy that you as a fan have experienced a Cup in your time. It’s fun indeed, I can remember banging pots outside after the Wings won one. Hopefully the Hawks do well and get back to playing good, but I unfortunately do not see it happening this year. If they don’t make the playoffs it would be a shame.

    Thanks again for your response Jeff.

  3. Hawks blow. It started with matching San Jose’s offer on Niklas Hjalmarsson. San Jose knew they forced their hand and if they don’t match that deal they have a shot at keeping some of those other role players. The joke this year is the Defense. It just is non existent. Brian Campbell has been hurt but that is no excuse. Good teams win despite injuries. Winning teams have 4 good D (unless your Pronger I hate to admit how good he is) The Hawks have one good one in Keith. You can argue Campbell and Seabrook but one has lost a step and the other one doesn’t know where the stairs are. The rest of that D is serviceable at best. They will win some games this year but I see no way they do anything of note in the playoffs. Lets be honest its the blackhawks they are happy with just making the playoffs.

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