Chicago Blackhawks: Big road stretch coming after All-Star break
By Ryan Fedrau
The Chicago Blackhawks will start the second half of the season on the road. For the next 14 games, 12 of them will be on the road.
The Chicago Blackhawks are going on a big road trip coming after the All-Star break. Technically, it’s not the start of the second half of the season, but that’s what it’s called. So, to start the second half of the season, 12 of their next 14 games will be on the road.
Before the Blackhawks get a real home stretch, they’ll play 13 of their next 17 games on the road. Nine of those 13 road games are against Western Conference teams. This will be a big test for the Blackhawks.
The Blackhawks’ next game is on February 1st, 2020. That game takes place on the road against the Coyotes. Besides two games, the whole month of February will be spent on the road. The Blackhawks in the past have done well during big road streaks. In 2013, they started the ‘shortened’ season on a big road stretch. They would start 21-0-3 before losing their first game in regulation.
Now, I’m not saying they’ll not lose a single one of these games in regulation. The Blackhawks will need to take both homes games during this stretch. They’ll need to win anywhere from seven to all nine games against Western Conference teams.
This will be a big test. The Blackhawks will be playing against teams who are ahead of them in the standings. If they want to make a bid for the playoffs, this is where they’ll do it.
After the big stretch of 13 of the next 17 games on the road, the Blackhawks will have just 14 games left. Nine of those 14 games will be played on home ice. Hopefully, by that time, they’ll at least have a playoff spot
So, finishing the season mostly on the road will be a tough challenge for the team. What helps is how successful the Blackhawks were on their last road trip. Even though it was short, the Blackhawks went 3-0-0 on the road. That’ll have their confidence up to at least start the stretch.
When teams are on long streaks, all you think about is hockey. If that’s what the team can do, they’ll be fine. This will also give the team time to bond and get to know each other even more. If they make the playoffs, they’ll look back to the next 17 games when they face adversity.