Blackhawks News

Chicago Blackhawks: 10 Predictions for 2016

By Andrew Facemyer
Nov 8, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) reacts after scoring a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the third period at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks defat the Edmonton Oilers 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 8, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) reacts after scoring a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the third period at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks defat the Edmonton Oilers 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports /
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The second half of 2015 was a complete roller coaster ride for fans of the Chicago Blackhawks. We said goodbye to beloved Stanley Cup champions in Patrick Sharp and Johnny Oduya. Michal Rozsival came back (enter Ron Burgandy stuck in a glass case of emotion). We also got to welcome exciting, new talent who we only hoped could fill the voids left in the ‘Hawks roster and in our gratitude for what the departed have done for our ‘Hawks. We only hoped that maybe one day, we could also call them Stanley Cup champions.

With 2015 now nothing but a memory, a Stanley Cup may not be far off for the exciting additions of Artemi Panarin and Artem Anisimov along with the rest of the highly decorated ‘Hawks roster. Will it be in 2016? I think we may be surprised.

With that said, here are my 10 predictions for 2016 for the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.

chicago blackhawks
Nov 7, 2015; Saint Paul, MN, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning forward Jonathan Drouin (27) in the third period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. The Minnesota Wild beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports /

10. No Jonathan Drouin

General Manager Stan Bowman may seem crazy sometimes. He’s proven that insanity can get the better of him at times (i.e. Ron Scuderi). But it always works out. Bowman will test your faith as a fan, but we can all still trust him. He has never led us astray (for too long). This is why I think that Jonathan Drouin will not be a Blackhawk in the near future. The Lightning drafted Drouin third overall in 2013 just dripping in potential while passing up players such as Seth Jones, Sean Monahan and Max Domi. Needless to say, Drouin has not performed. Even though he is still young at the ripe age of 20, he has been unable to thrive in the presence of players like Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov and Tyler Johnson (among others). Offensively, he is on one of the most talented teams the NHL in the past few years. Even with this advantage, Drouin cannot thrive.

Plus, why do the ‘Hawks even need him? Teuvo Teravainen has been really growing into his role as a top-six forward over the past month or so while Panarin has absolutely lit the NHL on fire in his first season after hopping the pond to come play for the good guys. Is it really necessary for the Blackhawks to sacrifice their own, incredibly talented prospects for a mold who couldn’t thrive in a moist environment? We should have faith in Bowman to see this. While coach Joel Quennville will shuffle lines until the day he kicks the bucket, these are our top-six left wings. There is too much talent and potential to replace here.

Next: Prediction #9

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