Blackhawks News

Chicago Blackhawks Win! 5 Things They Did Right This Time

By Gail Kauchak
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Dec 3, 2015; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Ottawa Senators defenseman

Cody Ceci

(5) and Chicago Blackhawks center

Artem Anisimov

(15) battle for the puck in the third period at the Canadian Tire Centre. The Senators defeated the Blackhawks 4-3 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

2.  Winning Faceoffs.  In the last three losing games, the Chicago Blackhawks were 44% (against LA), 45% (against Minnesota), and 43% (against Ottawa) as a team on the faceoff dot.  In the win against Winnipeg, they were able to bring it up the 51%.  Fellow writer Colin Likas recently wrote a very informative article about how winning faceoffs can be a very important factor towards winning games.

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Just looking at the small sample size of the last four games, we don’t have to worry about Jonathan Toews.  He is averaging well above 50%.  And Krugs is holding his own pretty well too.  It’s Anisimov and Kero that have seen some big dips on the dot recently.  But both players were at 50% last night, coinciding with a win.  Hopefully they can continue to work on that aspect of their game (although apparently Kero will be doing that in Rockford for the time being).  

1. More physical?  I say this with a question mark because I know the Chicago Blackhawks are not recognized as being a physical team.  They are known more for their skill and finesse than anything else.  But let me just throw this out as food for thought.

In the last three losing games, the Hawks had 17, 11, and 13 hits, respectively.  In last night’s contest against Winnipeg?  36 hits.  Now granted, it was that kind of a game.  The Jets were credited with 46 hits.  But as long as you can still dictate your style of play, why not finish your checks and throw your weight around a little bit?

This is where Bickell comes in.  In last night’s tilt he registered 7 hits in only 7:03 minutes of ice time. His most notable was a huge hit on Dustin Byfuglien.  Ya think he wants to stick around in the big leagues for awhile?  Hopefully Bicks can find the balance between his physical play and some production on either the third or fourth line.

A win at home and a record broken can hopefully give the Chicago Blackhawks some confidence moving forward.  Let’s see if they can capitalize on the things they did right last night, and carry it over into more wins this coming week.  It’s not going to be easy; they play the division rival Nashville Predators twice in the next four days. The Preds currently sit right below the Hawks in the standings in 5th place.   And then they take on these Winnipeg Jets again the very next night (Friday).  It should be an entertaining week for us Hawks fans!

Next: Rasmussen Recalled, Kero Demoted

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