Chicago Blackhawks’ Awards For The 1st Half Of The 2014-15 Season | Bleacher Report

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Chicago Blackhawks Playing Down to Their Competition is Troubling Trend | Bleacher Report

Teams like the Flyers , Kings , Bruins and Wild have all felt his wrath in key playoff situations. Kane has always carried his share of the load during the regular season as well, but there’s something different about his contributions this year. He has displayed increased maturity in recent seasons, and it seems he is able to make game-changing plays on a near nightly basis. Kane is leading the way for the Blackhawks in scoring. He has already scored 20 goals and 27 assists in 43 games, and he has six power-play goals to go along with five game-winners. He has a plus-nine rating this season along with an impressive 14.6 percent success mark on his shots on goal. Quenneville wants him on the ice as much as possible, as Kane is averaging 19:55 of ice time per night, which ranks first among Chicago forwards. Any time Kane is on the ice in a close game late in the third period or overtime, there’s a feeling that he’s going to do something memorable. That feeling has been rewarded quite often. Most Improved Player: Kris Versteeg Jeff Haynes/Associated Press Kris Versteeg is not in the lineup right now because he suffered a left hand injury after a puck struck him during the Winter Classic on New Year’s Day in Washington . However, it is not a long-term injury, and he could be back in the lineup by the end of the month or early February. When he returns, it will be a big boost to the Blackhawks lineup. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2330057-chicago-blackhawks-awards-for-the-1st-half-of-the-2014-15-season

He has been playing his position on the second line since Kris Versteeg injured his left hand in the Winter Classic, and his size and strength should work well with the clever Richards and the explosive Kane. However, Bickell is a notoriously underproductive regular-season performer, and he has played to that reputation for much of the season. However, he has been playing much better in recent weeks, and he has nine goals and nine assists for the year after a brutally slow start. If Bickell can continue to produce the way he has in recent gamesfive goals and seven points in his last seven gamesthe line will be dangerous. Grade: B+ No. 3 Line: Patrick Sharp, Andrew Shaw, Teuvo Teravainen USA TODAY Sports The Blackhawks’ No. 3 line provides an excellent example of why this team is so dangerous and will be such a tough opponent during the postseason. Left wing Patrick Sharp was the team’s leading scorer a year ago with 34 goals and 44 assists, yet he is playing on Quenneville’s third line this season. There’s a reason for that. He has been a top-line or second-line player throughout his career, but he injured his knee in November and missed about a month of action. Since his return last month, Quenneville has played him on several different lines, and there’s no reason to think he won’t continue to be moved around. However, he has the speed, brilliant shot and instincts to score key goals at big moments. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2328156-midseason-grades-for-each-line-on-the-chicago-blackhawks

Midseason Grades for Each Line on the Chicago Blackhawks | Bleacher Report

While the Blackhawks can’t hope to play their best hockey every night during an 82-game regular season, it’s hard for any coach to stomach losses to teams like the Edmonton Oilers and the Colorado Avalanche . Another issue is the team’s margin of defeat over that span. It’s one thing if the four losses in the previous eight games prior to the win over Minnesota were one-goal games, but three of those defeats were by multiple goals. They dropped a 5-1 decision at home to the Jets, were blanked 2-0 at Colorado and were the victims of a 5-2 defeat to the lowly Edmonton Oilers. The only one-goal loss was their hard-luck 3-2 decision to the Capitals in the Winter Classic, when former Blackhawk Troy Brouwer scored the game-winning goal with 13 seconds remaining in the third period. In addition to struggling against teams that they would normally beat with ease, the Blackhawks had problems with their even-strength play and their inability to get off to good starts. They were outscored 19-13 in even-strength situations, and that’s normally an area where the Blackhawks dominate. According to NHL.com, Chicago is scoring 1.27 goals for every goal their opponents score in five-on-five situations, ranking fifth in the league. However, during that cold spell, they were scoring just 0.68 goals to each goal their opponents scored when both teams were at full strength. High-level teams like the Blackhawks can normally overcome the occasional slow start because they have so much firepower with superstars such as Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Duncan Keith in the lineup. However, even the best teams have problems when they get outscored consistently in the first period. source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2330395-chicago-blackhawks-playing-down-to-their-competition-is-troubling-trend

Jets-Blackhawks Preview – Yahoo Sports

“They get you disrupted, and I think that’s what we saw here both times. I think we got outworked both times we played them, and you can’t expect to beat them when you’re just out there playing.” The Blackhawks have had plenty of time to prepare for this meeting after opening a four-game homestand by beating Minnesota 4-1 on Sunday. Marian Hossa and Bryan Bickell had a goal and an assist apiece for Chicago, which has split its last six. “You get two days away to get re-energized, then we had two good practices and I think they’re ready to play,” Quenneville said. “We’re playing a team that’s had some success against us twice already (at United Center). We can’t let them come in here and beat us all three times.” Winnipeg native Jonathan Toews has five assists over his last three, but the Blackhawks are still waiting for top prospect Teuvo Teravainen to record his first NHL point. This will be the 20-year-old’s fifth contest since being recalled from the AHL, and he’ll start on the third line with fellow winger Patrick Sharp and center Andrew Shaw. “I think Teuvo has played his best when (he and Sharp) were together,” Quenneville said. “Hopefully they can generate some offense. Teuvo looked like he got to (another) level and had the puck a lot more.” Corey Crawford will be in net after making 36 saves against the Wild. source: http://sports.yahoo.com/news/jets-blackhawks-preview-061312305–nhl.html

NHL All-Star Game: Columbus Blue Jackets’ Nick Foligno, Chicago Blackhawks’ Jonathan Toews named captains | FOX Sports

23-24 in Columbus, league officials said Wednesday. The NHL said the all-star teams will now be designated as Team Foligno and Team Toews. In addition, Drew Doughty of the Los Angeles Kings and Patrick Kane of the Blackhawks have been named assistant captains of Team Foligno, while Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks and Rick Nash of the New York Rangers will assist Toews. The captains and assistants were selected by NHL Hockey Operations in consultation with players selected for the game. The captains will oversee the selection of their teams on Jan. 23, will set the rosters for the team skills competition the following day, and then will wear the “C” on their jerseys during the game the day after that. Team Foligno, coached by the reigning Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings coach, Darryl Sutter, and his staff, is designated as the home team and will wear the black uniforms previously unveiled by the NHL. Team Toews, coached by Nashville head coach Peter Laviolette and his staff, will wear white uniforms. Representing the hometown Blue Jackets, Foligno is playing in his eighth NHL season and third with Columbus. The 27-year-old Buffalo, New York, native leads the Blue Jackets in goals (18) and points (40) in 2014-15, and is among the NHL leaders in goals (T12th), points (T15th), power play goals (9, T3rd) and power play points (20, 3rd). Toews, also captain of the Blackhawks, will be making his fourth career NHL All-Star appearance. The 26-year-old Winnipeg, Manitoba, native ranks second on the Blackhawks in goals (13), assists (25) and points (38) this season and collected 1,217,210 votes to finish third overall in this year’s fan vote. source: http://www.foxsports.com/nhl/story/chicago-blackhawks-jonathan-toews-columbus-blue-jackets-nick-foligno-named-all-star-game-captains-011415

 

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