Analysis

Chicago Blackhawks’ 5 Takeaways From A Four-Win Week

By Gail Kauchak
Dec 18, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Ryan Hartman (38) celebrates his goal against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at the United Center. The Hawks won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 18, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Ryan Hartman (38) celebrates his goal against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at the United Center. The Hawks won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /
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Dec 18, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Ryan Hartman (38) celebrates his goal against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at the United Center. The Hawks won 4-1. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /

It’s been a wonderful week to be a Chicago Blackhawks fan, as the ’Hawks gained eight out of a possible eight points to take the lead atop the NHL

What a better way to start the week than to beat the New York Rangers and move ahead of them in the standings?  That’s right, the Chicago Blackhawks and Rangers played a very entertaining game last Tuesday night, and the best part is that the ’Hawks came out on top, 2-1.

But it only gets better.  They went on to beat the New York Islanders on Thursday night (5-4), which put them in first place in the league with 44 points.

The weekend brought back-to-back games for the ’Hawks.  The ’Hawks visited St. Louis on Saturday, and came away victorious 6-4 over their longtime rival.  On Sunday, they returned home to the United Center after a three-game road trip.   I was lucky enough to be in attendance for this one.

Yes, I stood out in the cold to get a little statue of an affable Russian man holding a loaf of bread.  Call me crazy, but it sure was fun to see yet another win.  The Chicago Blackhawks lit the lamp four times to the San Jose Sharks’ one. And with that, the Blackhawks had a perfect week and jumped to the top of the NHL with 48 points.

Here are five things to take away from this 10th week of the Chicago Blackhawks’ season.

5.  All hail the kids!

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I’m talking about Ryan Hartman and Vinnie Hinostroza here.  These two have stepped it up big time as they make huge contributions for the team.

Two goals were indirectly related to Hartman during the Islanders game on Thursday.  When the ’Hawks were down 2-0, he resisted a fight after making a clean, hard hit.  The ’Hawks scored on the ensuing powerplay.

Later in the game, he drew another penalty that resulted in a ’Hawks’ powerplay goal.  He also picked up the apple on Marian Hossa’s goal.

But things didn’t stop there.  Hartman had another excellent game against San Jose on Sunday.  This time, he partnered up with his good buddy Hinostroza.  With Artem Anisimov out due to an upper body injury, Hinostroza had an opportunity to center the second line next to Hartman and Hossa.

He took full advantage, winning a timely faceoff in the third period that Hartman was able to neatly deposit into the back of the net.  Hinostroza also grabbed a goal of his own later in the period, making it his third goal of the season.

Although I’d have to say that Hinnie’s second goal of the season was his best.  This was tallied on Saturday against the Blues.  The young center got to the net and corralled a rebound off a Brent Seabrook shot.  Just look at that elation!

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