The Chicago Blackhawks can not afford to lose tonight. After dropping last night’s contest against the Predators by a score of 3-1, this team needs to get back on track.
Yesterday saw the reintroduction of Kirby Dach into the lineup. After missing the majority of the season with a wrist injury, Dach was back and played a great game. The rest of the team was not so great, and the team ended up losing against Nashville, a team that now sits only two points behind Chicago in the race for the playoffs.
After two great games against the Florida Panthers in which the team swept the Panthers for the first time this season, I was hoping to see a better Hawks team than what ended up on the ice on Saturday. This team just tried to get by and turn things on in the last ten minutes trying to get a win. In the future, the Hawks need to be relentless from start to finish.
The Blackhawks, Predators, and Blue Jackets are all within three points of each other for the final spot in the division. Plus, Dallas is not that far behind with four games in hand. Chicago can not afford to give up points now.
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The past week, dropping games against teams like Florida and Tampa was alright because those points were going to a team that was already going to make the playoffs, but giving up points to the Predators is like a crushing four-point turn around in the standings.
Tonight, the Blackhawks need to play like this is a playoff game.
While there are no fans in the stands, tonight’s game could be a playoff atmosphere. Both Nashville and Chicago know how important these two points are, and Nashville is hot, currently on a four-game win streak.
Finding a way to overcome those odds tonight will determine whether or not this team is for real. Chicago was favored in a game last night for the first time in a long time, and they still lost. Let’s see how Jeremy Colliton and company answer tonight.