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Discover ‘Road to the Cup’: Chicago Blackhawks

May 19, 2014, 3:14 PM EST

Los Angeles Kings v Chicago Blackhawks - Game One Getty Images

The road to the Stanley Cup is a familiar one for the Blackhawks.

The ‘Hawks got to a championship series for the first time in 49 years in 2010 — and snapped the drought, defeating Philly in six games — then did the trick three years later, dispatching of the Boston Bruins in the 2013 Stanley Cup Final, also in six games.

This year, Chicago is looking to travel down that road once more to become the first team since the ’97-98 Detroit Red Wings to hoist Lord Stanley two years in a row.

Let’s take a look at how the ‘Hawks got to where they are…

Round 1: Beat St. Louis 4-2

In one of the most exciting first-round series in recent memory, Chicago rallied from an 0-2 deficit to win four straight and dispatch of their longtime rival. The Blues looked to have things in control after winning consecutive overtime games to open the series, but the ‘Hawks showed their championship form by winning a pair of OT games of their own — including a crucial Game 5 at Scottrade in St. Louis — before closing it out at home at the United Center.

As per usual, it was Chicago’s dynamic duo leading the way. In Game 4, Patrick Kane scored the game-winner in overtime and, the next night out, it was “Captain Serious” Jonathan Toews who provided the dramatics, capturing Game 5 with an OT winner on a breakaway against Ryan Miller.

Round 2: Beat Minnesota 4-2

In 2013, the ‘Hawks easily dispatched of the Wild in the opening playoff round, losing just once on the road to the Stanley Cup.

This year’s rematch would prove a much more difficult task.

Chicago came up against a tough, determined and stingy Minnesota team in Round 2, one that held the ‘Hawks to just six goals over the final four games of the series. But, in a familiar theme, it was the Blackhawks’ stars that made the difference in the end as Toews scored the game-winning goal in Game 5 — with less than 16 minutes remaining — before Kane once again provided the OT heroics in Game 6, flipping a backhand past Ilya Bryzgalov to move the ‘Hawks onto the Western Conference final.

“He’s a special player,” Chicago head coach Joel Quenneville said of Kane, per ESPN. “Guys have that instinct, have that knack of finding pucks, wanting to be out there, wanting to score.”

Luckily for Kane, he’ll have plenty more opportunities to get out there and find the back of the net.

  1. earpaniac - May 19, 2014 at 3:31 PM

    So far so good. I actually didn’t have the Hawks winning the Cup this year, not that they have yet. I don’t think they’re as good as last year after having to salary dump or not resign some guys. I thought they’d be tired after last year with the shortened season, plus all the things that come after winning a Cup. On top of that, most don’t think that teams can repeat, or even have a chance to repeat in the salary cap era. This team seems to have “it”, that special thing teams with sustained success have. After watching the elder Wirtz’ try to destroy this team for so many years, I have to give Rocky huge credit for turning it around. At least now you don’t feel like an idiot for thinking, “I think the Hawks could win the Cup this year”, like I did for most of my life.

    • wjarvis - May 19, 2014 at 3:47 PM

      The only players they lost that contributed were Stalberg (3rd liner that Q seemed to hate), Bolland (defensive center who was constantly injured), Frolik (penalty killer), and Emery (backup goalie who wouldn’t play in playoffs).

      I guess they also lost some of the players that were usually healthy scratches like Mayers, or Carcillo, but they weren’t huge pieces.

      Out of the teams that have won the cup since the wings repeated, I think these Hawks have had the best chance to repeat going into the next season because of their age and being able to bring back all of their core. Obviously, they now have a much better chance of being the first to repeat, since they already have won 2 playoff series and a lead in a third.

      • parasolmonster - May 19, 2014 at 4:53 PM

        I still miss Frolik… the PK unit has to be making him proud so far in the playoffs, though.

  2. ronthecubsfan - May 19, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    “The ‘Hawks got to their first championship series in 49 years in 2010″ – umm, let’s see. 2010-49 = 1961. Ah yes, the ‘Hawks won in 1961. However, they were in the SCF 5 five times prior to 2010 and since 1961, none of which they won: 1962, 1965, 1971, 1973, and 1992.

    Had you said “The ‘Hawks WON their first championship series in 49 years…” then that’s, of course, correct.

  3. earpaniac - May 19, 2014 at 4:18 PM

    The first 3 you mentioned are exactly the type of guys you need in the playoffs, and what made their 3-4 lines so good last year

    • wjarvis - May 19, 2014 at 4:50 PM

      All three were good players, but they weren’t the players that made the Hawks the best in the league.

      In my opinion Frolik was the player that had the most important role, as he and Kruger were awesome together on the PK. The Hawks struggled early this year, but recently Zus and Smith have played much better on PK, once again making it a strength for the team. Zus and Smith combined have a lower cap hit than Frolik alone.

      Stalberg was really fast, but that was about it, he created scoring chances, but not that much scoring (he added 3 assists in the playoffs). While not as fast, I think Versteeg brings pretty much the same thing, some offensive play making ability but not the best defense. Versteeg also has a lower cap hit than Stalberg.

      Bolland had the most potential, but was never completely healthy and was primarily the fourth line center last year. Shaw and Kruger have improved enough in my opinion to make Bolland and his $3.375 million cap hit expendable. If Teuvo can actually become the second line center that Hawks fans hope he is next year, then nobody will be missing Bolland. Once again Kruger+Shaw+Teuvo has a lower cap hit than Bolland alone for this year. If Bolland gets anywhere close to what he’s asking for that will be true next year too.

    • gret9 - May 19, 2014 at 5:00 PM

      What exactly did Stalberg do that was indispensable? I know Versteeg has been a fan favorite punching bag during the playoffs, but would much rather have him on the team at 2.2 mil than have Viktor at the 3 mil Nashville is on the hook for the next few years. And I think Versteeg will be better next year another year removed from his knee injury.

      I loved Davey Bolland and I miss him, but the fact of the matter was Stan had to either A) keep Bolland and let Bickle walk or B) move Bolland to free up cap space for Bicks. Imho, Stan made the right call. Plus Andrew Shaw is basically almost a carbon copy of Bolland and is 5 years younger.

      Handzus has been awesome since locking down the other spot in the 1st pairing with Kruger on the PK and imho Ben Smith is an improvement over Frolik 5 on 5.

      Jmho.

  4. purpleguy - May 19, 2014 at 4:22 PM

    After watching the Hawks in the second round against my team, and again in the last Kings game, I’m wondering if perhaps they should ditch Bollig at the next gas station while they drive down the road to the cup.

  5. hockeyornothing - May 19, 2014 at 4:42 PM

    I think the Hawks have sorely missed Frolik and could use Bolland As far as Carcillo he could certainly add some grit and he’s had an uncanny ability to serve his penalty and then remedy immediately by scoring! Guess we miss him a bit too. But since we can’t have ‘em all let’s hope for Shaw to hurry back! Hawks in 6. Then Hawks vs Rangers in 5 or 6

    • hawkscup2013 - May 19, 2014 at 8:01 PM

      Blackhawks are NOT sorely missing anyone! The Champs live here!

  6. hockeyornothing - May 19, 2014 at 4:43 PM

    Btw no reason to ditch Bolig! C’mon he’s our playoff guy!

  7. rflashj - May 19, 2014 at 4:45 PM

    “Chicago is looking to travel down that road once more to become just the second team since the ’08-09 Red Wings to make it to consecutive Cup finals”

    Didn’t the Pens also make it to consecutive Cup finals the same year as the Red Wings last appearance?

    • parasolmonster - May 19, 2014 at 4:59 PM

      Yep.

      Worded a little strangely, though. Does it mean the second team SINCE the Red Wings of ’08-09? If so, then it’s right.

      • parasolmonster - May 19, 2014 at 5:02 PM

        Actually, not even that is right.

        Why argue stats, facts, grammar or spelling on this site. Let’s just go the BLOMFELD route and become ‘ KINGS ‘ of our own rule books ! Now and FOREVER ! ……

        1. Los Angeles KINGS
        2. Lord Quick
        3. Slysipops
        …..
        99. Spelling
        100. Proper punctuation and grammar
        101. Facts

      • blomfeld - May 19, 2014 at 9:39 PM

        That’s the spirit Parasolmonster !!! :) :) :)

        DON’T ‘EVER’ LET THE FORCES OF DARKNESS SEE YOU CAR BREAK DOWN !

  8. blomfeld - May 19, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    WHY DON’T YOU CLOWNS GO AND JOIN OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB ?

    summary: Kings in 5

    • parasolmonster - May 19, 2014 at 5:04 PM

      • alexbaymac - May 19, 2014 at 5:30 PM

        Even Blomfeld doesn’t believe his/her/its own drivel. …but will be the last to admit it!

        This looks to be another great series. I was at Game 5 last year & was surprised that it only took 5 games to beat the Kings…& I’m not fool enough to believe that a Hawk’s win is a done-deal here yet either! But I am looking forward to it again.

      • blomfeld - May 19, 2014 at 9:41 PM

        hey Alexbaymac … get lost you ‘irrelevant’ plankton !

    • hawkscup2013 - May 19, 2014 at 8:02 PM

      More stupidity from an ignorant fan base. Blackhawks in 5

    • chicagobtech - May 20, 2014 at 9:48 AM

      Blomfeld’s summaries as this series progresses:

      “Kings in 4.”
      “Kings in 5.”
      “Kings in 6.”
      “Kings in 7.”
      “Yeah! I told you, Kings in 7!”
      “Is there a Game 8?”

      Blackhawks in 5.

    • slysipops - May 20, 2014 at 12:10 PM

      members of the court………… let me make it a clearly known fact that ,OPRAH , has no affiliation with the BLACKHAWK hockey team and any attempt to keep the aforementioned BLACKHAWK team from crushing the LA KINGS will be dealt with as severely as needed …………. respectfully …SLYSIPOPS !

  9. slysipops - May 19, 2014 at 7:48 PM

    seems as though the persons ( or person ) who try to make everyone think that SLYSIPOPS & BLOMFELD & JOEY4 and maybe a couple of others are all the same person are : MACHSAQUATCHO…BRUCEBOUDREAUCHOKEJOB…PARASOLMONSTER…R8RBHAWK … and maybe a forgotten few others. could this be a scheme of coverup them self or himself or herself ? BLOMFELD is referred to as a schizo when he talks to me . i am a well admitted BLACKHAWKS fan …BLOMS on the other hand is a die-hard KINGS fan! would a schizo change teams on a sport site? what possible reason would there be to do that? BLOMS and i (SLYSIPOPS ) have had well documented differences about our favorite teams….. so would it make sense to be a multiple personality but stick for different teams ? …GET REAL GUYS !!

    • slysipops - May 19, 2014 at 7:51 PM

      PLUS , we use either all or part of our own names rather than hide behind a moniker of another person ( or personality ), or some fictitious letter & number combo ! so who is hiding what ?

      • slysipops - May 19, 2014 at 8:00 PM

        one more thing i am a HAWKS FAN the team is located in CHICAGO …..i am from CHICAGO ( ORIGINALLY ) …..listen to the first line of this tune…..this why i like the BLACKHAWKS !! …………..

      • blomfeld - May 19, 2014 at 10:05 PM

        *** at the People’s Court only yesterday ***

        Judge: counsel for the truth, do you wish to call upon any more witnesses ?

        Blomfeld: yes your honor … we call upon Slysipops to take the stand …

        Judge: Mister Slysipops, what are views regarding this plankton Machosquatcho ?

        Slysipops: oh, he’s quite ‘horrible’ your honor ! … I think he should be eliminated !

        Judge: thank you friend, you may stand down …

        Machosquatcho: errrr ! … what the hell’s going on here ?

        Guards: shut up you stupid plankton ! … KAPOW !! .. KABOOM !! .. KAZAAM !!

        Judge: very well then … the court finds the plankton Machsquatcho ‘guilty’ as charged !

        Gallery: hurray !! .. hurray !! .. hurray !! :) :) :)

        Judge: guards, remove this ‘low level’ life form from the courtroom !

        Guards: alright fish breath, it’s time to go ! … KAPOW !! .. KABOOM !! .. KAZAAM !!

        ______________________________________________________

        summary: let it be that ‘decency & values” forever carry the day … Corinthians 38:6

      • blackhawksdynasty - May 19, 2014 at 11:27 PM

        Bailiff!!! Whack his pee pee!!!

        -Firesign Theatre, “Waiting for the Electrician or Someone Like Him”

  10. r8rbhawk - May 19, 2014 at 9:45 PM

    Slysipops, I’m not even sure why I am responding to your post (except to clear my name from being a blomfeld account) your punctuation is exactly the same as Blomfeld; incessant use of exclamation points is an example. My writing is nothing like his. The only reason I ever use the ‘single’ quote or the … is to troll our beloved Blomfeld. For your style of writing alone is why I pegged you as another Blomfeld/Joey account.

    • blomfeld - May 19, 2014 at 10:11 PM

      Blomfeld: Tiger one to Tiger two, over ?

      Tiger 2: yes comrade ?

      Blomfeld: Tiger two, blow that piece of junk off the bridge !

      Tiger 2: consider it done !!! :) :) :)

      • blackhawksdynasty - May 19, 2014 at 11:45 PM

        Queen of Trolls: I now dub thee ‘Sir Blomfeld, Duke of Trollywood’

        Sir Blomfeld: Oh, thank you your majesty!!!!

        Queen of Trolls: Do you have anything else to add?

        Sir Blomfeld: Oh, yes your majesty!!!!
        I’d like to thank Elvis for blessing me with so many wonderful songs to worship!!!!
        I’d like to thank the inventor of YouTube for providing a place where I could go for hours at a time to help me forget about my pointless life!!!!
        Thank you to PHT for offering the teachings of Yo-Da, Master Troll!!!! (Love ya YoYo!!!! xo xo)
        Lastly I’d like to thank the LA Queens for having a great year in 2012, and showing me the way of ‘The Bandwagon’ You guys will always be the best, I don’t care what anybody says!!!!
        GKG!!!!!!!!! Blah blah blah!!!!!!!! Smiley smiley blah blah…..

      • slysipops - May 20, 2014 at 12:02 PM

        we shall overcome !

    • slysipops - May 20, 2014 at 11:42 AM

      @ r8rbhawk, well, i am not a fictitious figure of anyone else ( for once and for all ) , and your name wasn’t added to the ( now ) famous BLOMFELD list…. it was added to the accusers list . now that being said , i think BLOMS is a little younger than me but, close enough to my age ,that our style of schooling was the same , therefore the punctuation and other traits being similar. i do enjoy his amusing videos and stories but don’t personally do as good of a job at it as he does…he is #1 ! the world is much too serious ( justifiably so ) and a little humor is so needed at times , and this is why i like BLOMFELD stuff . you and i are BLACKHAWKS fans and really need to band together …eh ? enjoy the fun and don’t take it serious !

  11. slysipops - May 20, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    after the singing of the NAT’L ANTHEM tomorrow night …there just might be a special song from the HAWKS to the KINGS ………………

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