Chicago Blackhawks: 66 Days Until Banner Raising

By Keith Schultz

We had so much fun doing our Countdown to Faceoff series last season that we decided to do it again.  In case you’re new to the series, we’ll do a roster preview as we count down the days until the Chicago Blackhawks raise their 6th Stanley Cup Banner on October 7th season opener against the New York Rangers.

So sandwiched between Michael Frolik and Andrew Shaw in our countdown to opening night is the number 66!  There hasn’t been a 66 ever worn in Chicago Blackhawks history, but I’m sure as a hockey fan every time you see 66 there is only one player you think of and that’s Mario Lemieux.

Super Mario is one of my most disliked superstars for only one reason and that’s the 1992 Stanley Cup Final when him and a very young Jaromir Jagr swept Jeremy Roenick, Dirk Graham and cast right out of our first Final in nearly 20 years and the first one of my lifetime that I could remember.

The series in my mind was lost when the Blackhawks had a lead late in the game and Jagr made all these moves and scored this pretty sick goal.

By sick I mean it made me sick to watch it live and to watch the replay of it 20 plus years later.  The one thing you can say about the Hawks is even though they got swept they didn’t give up. Just look at Game #4 when

Dirk Graham

had a hat trick and one of the few appearances of

Dominik Hasek

in a Chicago Blackhawks uniform are included in these highlights.  One funny thing about this video at the beginning is there is a shot of Pierre McGuire on the Penguins bench with a few strands of hair on the old noggin.

So as you can see the number 66 doesn’t bring back a whole lot of great memories for me as we stroll down our countdown timeline to a much happier place of the third Chicago Blackhawks banner raising in the past 6 seasons.

More from All Time Blackhawks

The perfect tie in to the story is last year in our countdown of the greatest Chicago Blackhawks ever we had Brent Sutter at #66 who played in that 1992 Stanley Cup Final. This is what we had to say about Sutter last summer.

"Brent Sutter– 1991-1997Games-417Goals-76Assists-143Points-219+46Penalty Minutes-293Game Winning Goals-11PlayoffsGames-56Goals-6Assists-9Points-15-6Penalty Minutes-44Game Winning Goals-1Brent Sutter is 2nd all-time in Chicago Blackhawks points as a Sutter trailing only big brother Darryl.  Sutter came to Chicago in 1991 for Adam Creighton and proved he was well worth it with his championship pedigree from the New York Islanders during their hey day.  Sutter helped the Hawks get to their first Stanley Cup Final in 21 seasons and they wouldn’t return until 2010 but as we all know it was a very short 4 game sweep compliments of the Pittsburgh Penguins.Sutter was a typical Sutter full of grit, determination, leadership and everything else great about hockey which made him a great player to have on your roster and well he could score as well.Towards the end of his career with the Blackhawks Sutter became the defensive specialist and of course he excelled at it until he finally hung up his skates for the last time in 1998 which as we all know was a great time to distance yourself from the Blackhawks dark ages.Sutter played 1,111 games in the NHL and you know from Game #1 to Game #1,111 when you looked across the ice and saw him on the opposing team that you were in for a dog fight! He’s not on our Top 100 list for great stats even though they are very respectable, Sutter is on the list for always being a tough player that played through pain and always played with all his heart and skill!What is your memory of Brent Sutter?"

66 Days are left and I’m glad we are past this number now!

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