No. 3: The Chicago Blackhawks need more production out of their bottom-six.
Currently, Alex DeBrincat and Jonathan Toews are both on six-game point streaks. Their first line has been outstanding to start the season. Additionally, though Kane’s line isn’t as red-hot as they’ve been in the past, they’re still producing.
It’s fantastic to see guys like Kane and Toews back to leading the way like they’ve done in years past. However, it isn’t sustainable to only get production from such a small number of players.
While Brandon Saad could help the bottom-six to produce at a higher level, it remains to be seen if Saad can produce in the first place.
All things considering, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them look to the Rockford IceHogs in the near future for help. Currently, Tyler (3 G, 2 A) and Dylan Sikura (1 G, 3 A) are both lighting down there.
I wouldn’t be shocked to see Dylan’s name called.
It’s a lot easier to shut down two top lines if you only have to worry about two top lines. The Chicago Blackhawks need to find a way to make themselves more versatile, and quickly.
No. 4: Antti Raanta is very, very good.
Last season, Antti Raanta was absolutely outstanding for the Arizona Coyotes. He posted a .930 SV% and a 2.24 GAA in 46 games started. Raanta went 21-17-6 last year, but more impressively he put together a string of 32 quality starts.
It’s safe to say more than a few wins were left on the table. Raanta, who quietly received a handful of Vezina picks before the season, has started off this year lights out with a 1.98 GAA. That said, he only has two wins to show for it because of a lack of scoring.
Raanta is good in the crease, period. Yet somehow, he’s even better once he steps into the blue paint inside the United Center. Here’s his stats inside the UC, curtesy of Mark Lazerus.
"“Antti Raanta is 15-0-3 with a .945 save percentage at the United Center. He has allowed just 29 goals on 526 shots.”"
Those statistics are flat out unreal. If you’re still doubtful, take a look at this save he made off a deflection in front of the net.
After tonight’s game it’s clear, Antti Raanta is the real deal. If Arizona is ever able to figure out how to put the puck in the net they could be yet another tough opponent in the West.