Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Don't Let It End: Chicago Blackhawks Run as Stanley Cup Champs Nears the End of the Line

Chicago area music demi-god Dennis DeYoung

´╗┐Tonight is game four of the Chicago Blackhawks and Vancouver Canucks first round Stanley Cup playoff series. Yes, as we all knew but had to see in post-season play, there was really a reason that the Canucks were seeded first and the Hawks eighth in the Western Conference..

The Blackhawks problems are best summed up by Chicago Sun Times writer Adam Jahns: "Their struggles and inconsistencies from the regular season have surfaced in the playoffs. There have been poor third periods, inconsistent performances by the top players, a power play that struggles to connect at key times, an inept penalty kill and a team that has been thrown around one too many times.' Yes -- brutal, but the truth.

Unfortunately, the Hawks, due to salary cap regulations, had to dump a significant portion of last year's championship team immediately after winning the Stanley Cup. Former second, third, and fourth line players went to other teams, robbing the Hawks of the depth that proved the difference last season. For example, Dustin Byfuglien and Andrew Ladd combined for 49 goals in the 2010-2011 regular season. Wouldn't they be great to have back? How about the defensive depth lost when the Hawks said goodbye to Brent Sopel or the toughness lost in Ben Eager and Adam Burish?

Unfortunately, with the notable exception of Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls, Chicago sports teams, on the rare occasions they win championships, tend not to repeat (see the 1985 Bears and the 2005 White Sox). Although the Hawks could hypothetically come back and win this series vs the Canucks, they have not been playing well enough to do so, and Luongo and the Canucks have been great.

So ... it appears that it will soon be time to look for a new Stanley Cup champion and for the Blackhawks to regroup and make a run for the Cup next year. But ... it sure was one hell of a ride ...

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Blogger Josie said...

GO Bruins!

1:50 PM  
Blogger Lucki Duck said...

The championship season is the reason we suffer thru all the bad ones.

Wait'll next year!

4:40 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Time to start rooting for the Bulls.

8:46 AM  

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