First off, my thanks for the invite to contribute to this blog.  I’m about as passionate about sports as anyone and what I say usually comes from the heart.  Well, from the heart or the big sarcastic part of my brain that rules my life.  Sometimes, you can actually tell the difference. (ed. note, sometimes, when the moon is high and Virgo is trending).

As we’ve noticed lately, the Blackhawks have been about as bad as we’ve seen them in years.  You’d have to go back to the dark ages to find as bad a stretch as this one.  6 losses in a row, some of the Rosie O’Donnell-ugly variety, have dropped the team from atop the West to 6th and plummeting.  How have we fallen so far so fast?  More importantly, will they get back on track before pissing away a once-promising season with legit Cup hopes?  I believe so and here’s why….

  1. Jonathan Toews.  The game’s best young (and some say best overall) captain is a stone-cold killer who would cut his balls off with a rusty skate blade to inspire and motivate his team.  There was a reason he was chosen as captain at the age of 20 years and 79 days old….he’s a pure leader.  Anyone can lead when things are going good and a team is rolling….see DFB and the 2003 Cubs….but when things are in the toilet, a true leader rights the ship and does so by example.  Toews is called Captain Serious and it’s apt.  He can and will lead the way.
  2. Patrick Kane.   Yeah, Kane has been not quite as good as he has been in the past, but he’s shown signs of breaking out and being aggressive.  When he shoots more often, the passing lanes open as teams collapse on him.  Then, the shit gets real as 88 is one of the best and most creative passers in the game.  When that part of his game is clicking and he’s feeling the confidence, he is damn near unstoppable and his line mates bury the puck and they all thrive.  Pluswhise, when he’s confident, his all-around game improves.  He’s never going to win the Selke, but his defensive game can be solid when he’s feeling it.  Bottom line, he has too much sheer talent to not play well for long stretches.
  3. Q and his staff aren’t idiots.  They see what we see.  They know what’s broken.  The defensive lapses and awful special teams can be fixed.  This is the same group that was cruising atop the NHL standings after a torrid December where they won 10 of 13 games and looked every bit the dominant team the Cup winners were at times.
  4. Stan has cap space and trade bait.  Rarely do teams keep the same roster intact all season.  Luckily for us, we have two essentials for a deal….cap space and young kids.  With around $5M in space, we can afford to add a tough, physical defenceman (I’m using the Canadian spelling there, eh?) who can contribute to the penalty kill and address the issue stated in my 3rd reason while not depleting the system of it’s incredible young depth.  Adding such a player is not only possible, but a likelihood.  Stan is not stupid either and he knows what’s needed.  He’ll get it.
  5. Teams with championship experience rise to a challenge when up against it.  We’ve had some roster turnover since the summer of 2010, but the core of that title team remains and hungers for more.  Guys like Hossa, Sharp, Keith and Seabrook aren’t satisfied with winning once.  They surely want more and the time has come for them to realize it.   They have no choice but to step it up over the last 2 months.

Every team has it’s own issues, and we’re no exception, but we also have more on the positive side of the ledger than most.  Besides, the worst time to judge a team and how good they are is when they’re at their lowest….this stretch certainly qualifies as that point.  I’m betting the road trip will end on a positive note and the team will right the ship and settle in the for the stretch.  They’d better, as I’m running out of things to kick and creative swear words.

Poor T.

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