Analysis

Chicago Blackhawks Roundtable: Fearful Injuries And Alumni Suggestions

By Colin Likas
Nov 13, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (50) makes a toe save on a shot from Montreal Canadiens center Andrew Shaw (65) during the third period at the United Center. Chicago won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 13, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (50) makes a toe save on a shot from Montreal Canadiens center Andrew Shaw (65) during the third period at the United Center. Chicago won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /
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Dec 19, 2011; San Francisco, CA, USA; NHL former player Wayne Gretzky attends the NFL game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports /

Tim Lively

Question 1: Corey Crawford. With the Blackhawks roster perhaps greener than it ever has been in the past 15 years, it’s important that the ‘Hawks have some pillar of consistency to lean on while the uncertainty throughout both the offensive and defensive lines sorts itself out and finds rhythm.

Thus far this season, Crow’s play between the pipes has been outstanding and has allowed the younger and untested players in front of him to gain vital confidence. While our boys and red, white and black have really hit a stride as of late, if Crawford was sidelined for an extended period of time, it would indirectly rattle the cages of the newer Blackhawks players, resulting in poorer play decisions that would reverberate through the entire lineup.

Question 2: Daniel Carcillo, sporting a Steve Montador jersey. Veterans Day this past Friday got me thinking about some of those whom once skated for the Blackhawks that were taken from us prematurely.

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Car-Bomb sporting a Montador jersey would not only be a great way to honor a fallen teammate, but also bring attention to Carcillo’s noble work through his Chapter 5 Foundation, which is dedicated to helping players who are struggling with post-concussion syndrome, anxiety or depression. It would also be an important reminder that concussion-related health struggles are not exclusive to NFL players.

Mario Tirabassi

Question 1: This Blackhawks have been solid in their latest stretch of games. Much of the success can be traced back to their goaltending. Both Scott Darling and Corey Crawford have been great this year, and if the Blackhawks were to lose Crawford for an extended period of time, the success could take a dip.

No slight to Darling, but Crawford is putting up a Vezina-quality season so far, and if the Blackhawks lost him, it would be tough to recover.

Forwards and defensemen can be replaced; it’s not easy, but they can do it. Goalies are another animal. Look at Montreal losing Carey Price last season, for instance. If the Blackhawks lost Crawford, their spot in the standings would definitely slip.

Question 2: First, Wayne Gretzky playing in the Alumni Game for the Blues is a joke. He played 18 games for St. Louis, and his Blues legacy is best known for the turnover that led to Steve Yzerman‘s ripper of a goal to eliminate them from the playoffs. So that’s cool.

Secondly, how in the blue hell do the Blackhawks and Blues play an Alumni Game and Chicago doesn’t place Jeremy Roenick or Chris Chelios on the roster? Another joke.

And thirdly, Darren Pang is the Blues’ TV analyst and had a forgettable time in Chicago. So yeah, have him play on the Blackhawks’ side. Joke number three.

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Add in the fact that the Blackhawks’ sweaters for this installment of the Winter Classic is what the 2015 sweaters should have been and are almost literally just re-purposed is a fourth joke. Yes, I am salty on Blackhawks’ outdoor games, something I never thought I would be.

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