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It’s Chicago Blackhawks day on PHT

Aug 16, 2013, 8:59 AM EST

Patrick Kane AP

Throughout the month of August, PHT will be dedicating a day to all 30 NHL clubs. Today’s team? The defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.

Ho-hum, it was just another Stanley Cup-winning season for the still young and still very talented Blackhawks. Any and all questions they had going into last season were answered quickly. Could Corey Crawford lead the way in net? He sure did. Can Patrick Kane focus himself and play the way he’s capable? You bet he did. Will their defense rebound and play the way the way they’re supposed do? Definitely.

So what do they do for an encore? Probably get a lot of the same questions asked of them to be stretched over an 82-game season and playoffs. Anyone coming with doubts better be prepared to get served with a heap of answers.

Offseason recap

Just like in 2010 when they won the Cup, the Blackhawks did some housecleaning with the roster. Forward Viktor Stalberg (Nashville) and backup goalie Ray Emery (Philadelphia) departed via free agency. Forwards Dave Bolland, Michael Frolik, and Daniel Carcillo were all sent out via trade for draft picks.

Filling their spots will mostly be guys from within the organization. Sure they brought back an old face in Nikolai Khabibulin to backup Crawford and added defensemen Mike Kostka and Theo Peckham for depth, but you might be better served studying the AHL Rockford roster from last season to see who might be on the way this year.

If nothing else, GM Stan Bowman has the way to do things down to a science and even that amount of roster turnover won’t be too stunning. Besides, coach Joel Quenneville is there to keep things in order when it all comes down to it. Life is good in the Windy City these days.

Related:

Introducing: PHT’s ‘Team of the Day’ summer series

  1. alexbaymac - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:12 AM

    StanBo geting some praise…it’s nice to see! There were many fans that thought he was wrong to not break the bank to bring in outside help but when he looked at the roster, it was there. They just needed to play up to their potential; work instead of slide on their ‘skill’ alone. And give Q credit for getting them to do just that.
    Some of the vets that were in the clubhouse didn’t hurt either; Mayers, Zues et al were able to bring along some of the younger guys to play their best. It truly was a team that won, not any single super-star or line. Honestly, that’s the way it should be in today’s game. Go Hawks!

  2. godelleb - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Chicago wins due to the overall depth of their roster. Their GM is responsible for that assemblage. Their coach is responsible for the blending of the lines and their players are accustomed to winning. They should do well for many years to come.

  3. jcmeyer10 - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:41 AM

    Bruins won because of depth and Hawks win because of depth. It was tough to lose to you guys but that was one hell of a team.

    Congrats Hawks, hopefully they meet the Bruins again in the finals.

  4. sjsharks66 - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:44 AM

    Antmel- best comment I have seen on PHT. This has nothing to do with Clowe. He is ONE of the best power forwards in the league ( bad 2 years though ).

    Phillyphanatic- oh man, if it came down to that I would cheer like a flyers fan against the pens. Just because I get into conversations about pens and flyers and cheer for the pens in the east does not mean they are my favorite team. Die hard sharks fans more than anything, no doubt about it! :)

  5. sjsharks66 - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    HAHA damn, its early. That comment was obviously for a past article.
    Sorry about that.

    As for the Blackhawks, great coaching and great players. If Crawford can keep it up in the net this team will have no problem making the playoffs and making a deep run for years to come.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:53 AM

      Don’t youi wish PHT had a way to cancel a post after you realize “oopsies”. I had one this week.

  6. endusersolutions2013 - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    Hawks have an outstanding chance of repeating. They only lost one they wanted to keep (Ray Emery). They have some very promising guys they will be bringing up who will most likely have materially more productivity that the guys they traded and let got go.

    Nobody but their new backup goalie getting “long in the tooth”, and they signed an extremely promissing Finnish goalie, Antii Ranta that will spend at most a year in the AHL.

  7. endusersolutions2013 - Aug 16, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    There were very objective reasons they succeeded. The organization is focused on “2 way” players and it showed. They were #2 in offence, and unlike the “defence optional” Pens, Were #1 Defensively. Their captain, Johnathan Toews won the Silke, who led by example.

    And the reasons for their success went beyond that. Hawks were the deepest team in the league in terms of productivity, with more scoring from their 3rd and 4th lines than anyone else. They were so solid that coach Q did not have to be concerned with matching lines, he pretty much roled them.

    If you looked at teams points by player, you see that they had the most guys scoring 15 or more, 10 or more points than any other team in the league. Same thing in the playoffs. If you look at their roster in terms of +/-, they had the fewest guys with a –

    Only one player, handzues, may noit be ready for the start of camp (torn MCL and broken wrist he played thru during their cup run). The only downside I see is that they are likely to have the least rest during the olympic break, as 13 or the players remaining from last year have been invited to their countries olympic teams – most of any team in the NHL.

    No rest for the weary kinda thing.

  8. imnotyourbuddyguy - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    Booooo!

  9. ashtongronholz8 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    The beautiful thing about hockey is repeats much more difficult than all other sports because there are so many factors that come into play. That being said I think they definately have a shot but everything must go right

  10. blackhawks2010 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    The Cup is ours for the taking in 2014! Dynasty

    • zfeint - Aug 16, 2013 at 1:53 PM

      82 game season this year, bud. Temper that confidence.

  11. kingcobraman - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:53 PM

    I hate Chicago as they are rivals but they get my respect for winning 2 cups after years of living in the basement, coach Q deserves credit for making them hum and pushing the right buttons …

  12. amwood98 - Aug 16, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Not really a problem. Hawks fans can spend our money somewhere else. The real people who get screwed are the bar owners, hotels, restaurants and all those people in the service industry who won’t have my wallet to help empty.
    Genius move….

  13. ironmd778 - Aug 16, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    Never should have won that Cup. The Bruins gave it away.

    • alexbaymac - Aug 16, 2013 at 3:44 PM

      Bruins never ‘had’ it to give away. That said, they DID play an amazing series that no one really knew how it was going to turn out until it was done.
      Hats off to the B’s & let’s do it again next year! They are the only ones that I’d (grudgingly) want to see it go to if the Hawks don’t pull off the unheard of repeat.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 16, 2013 at 3:45 PM

      They let down after the typing goal in game 6. So, it the games goes to OT, Hawks would still have likely won. Even if not it goes back to the madhouse gort game 7. Hawks made key adjustments after game 3.

  14. blackhawks2010 - Aug 16, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    Bruins gave the Cup away? Watch hockey much?

  15. toews19cup - Aug 18, 2013 at 11:41 AM

    Boston put up an epic fight. The Bruins were in position to win game 6 and force a game 7 until that fateful 17 seconds…Blackhawk fans have nothing but respect for Boston. You guys have depth and that will help you since you’ve had some roster moves because of the cap. I wouldn’t count the Bruins out, hope y’all beat up on the Wings…

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