Watching the Chicago Blackhawks from home is something I am used to as a fan of this team, but seeing the arena empty is rather weird.
The Chicago Blackhawks have been playing without fans through their first four home games of the season. While some teams are choosing to let in some fans, Chicago is not one of those teams.
Home ice advantage has to do with the environment around the game. While it is nice to be at home with less traveling for the players, there is no real advantage in the ice itself and trying to do everything a team can to win. The power in the home ice comes from the fans who energize a home team.
That is what helped make the Blackhawks so electric all the years they were competing for the Stanley Cup. There is nothing like a Blackhawks home game during the playoffs. The crowd is already out of control before puck drop during the national anthem, and that atmosphere is not something that can be recreated by sound systems.
The Chicago Blackhawks do not have much of a home-field advantage without their fans in the stands.
There does not seem to be much of an advantage at home for the Blackhawks. While they have won three games at home, they have played rather similar both at home and on the road. John Tortorella, head coach of the Blue Jackets, summed it up perfectly on Friday via Brian Hedger.
As a fan of the Blackhawks, I am going to miss watching the team live. Obviously, it is nice to have hockey back, and I am fine waiting for it to be safe to return to the arena. But seeing the Anthem be without fans is something I will not be getting used to anytime soon.
I have to laugh writing this, as Chicago is 3-1 at home and 0-3-3 on the road this season. While it might look like they have some advantage at home, I think that is just how things are playing out as it is just an empty rink for now. Let us know in the comments what you miss about game day at the United Center.