Tonight, the Hawks have a rematch against the Oilers who thwarted them 2-1 in an overtime loss just on Sunday, October 28th. Hopefully with their long stretch of 6 games in 9 days behind them (where they went 3-2-1) they can gather their steam to put this one away before overtime. Looking at their season so far, this seems unlikely. With their first five games out of the gate going into overtime, I’m not counting on this one being over by the end of the third. You can check out a recap of their game, courtesy of the NHL, below:
The Hawks should be heading into this game with some hunger. Having lost their last three games, the Hawks will be wanting to capitalize in a game that slipped away from them last week, against a team they know they can play well against. The stars need to show up.. Captain Jonathan Toews scored a point last night against the Canucks, ending his six game drought. Historically, Toews will often enter a rut at some point in the season – the Toews and the Blackhawks cannot afford it to happen this early in the season. Patrick Kane will be playing tonight, free of his illness that kept him out of the lineup on Wednesday, his first miss in 258 games. His last missed game occurred all the way back to when he broke his collar bone in the 2014-2015 season. Hopefully this was just a quick bout of some flu symptoms (we can’t all be Michael Jordan) and not something more serious. The Blackhawks are sure to be happy he’s back in the lineup, and hopefully they can keep putting pucks in his wheelhouse.
Kane and Toews aside, what I’ll really be looking forward to is more production out of Alex DeBrincat. When Connor McDavid was interviewed at their last meet up on the 28th, he said he wasn’t surprised at all the DeBrincat has been excelling in the NHL so far. This isn’t praise you take lightly from one of the best players in the NHL. McDavid and DeBrincat both played together with the Erie Otters before moving to the NHL. After McDavid left his side, naysayers thought DeBrincat’s production potential would go down. He must’ve heard this through the grapevine, because the next season he turned in his best season for the Otters to date, netting 65 goals and 62 assists over 63 games. Two years later with the Hawks, it doesn’t come as a surprise that he’s racked up 14 points over 13 games this season, placing him in second for points. The two other players flanking him? Kane and Toews.
I know I’ve been spoiled by Chicago hockey, but I just want to see this team put away a strong victory tonight. Here’s hoping they do it. After each period, I’ll be posting my elated (or outraged) thoughts. Stop back after the first.