If Jeremy Colliton is to be fired, Stan Bowman will need to be fired beforehand by the Blackhawks.
Here is the challenge with firing Jeremy Colliton… Stan Bowman is so stubborn that he won’t admit that he was wrong in 2017, and that he made the wrong call in 2018. Unless Bowman is fired first, Colliton probably isn’t going anywhere. But, honestly, I would like to see how this works out and how good the Blackhawks can be when chances start going in.
Despite the worst start since ’97-98, an 0-4-1 record, over 300 minutes without a lead, and 3 even-strength goals, a change should be made. With that said, the Blackhawks were not far from winning the game against the Islanders and the Canucks in a game where they were booed off the ice. They had great chances to score, but would bomb each one. Jeremy Colliton creates a system and Stan Bowman is required to get the guys who make it work. By this point, it is up to the players to execute.
The system isn’t that bad as the Blackhawks are finally keeping opponents under 35 SOG and are smarter with the puck. The problem is that the defense are still making blemishes in coverage to allow a scoring chance. IF the Blackhawks can capitalize on their chances and establish consistent offensive zone possession time, this team will be flying up the win column. Alex Debrincat is snake-bitten right now and Patrick Kane, despite having a snake-bitten line mate, is still a point-per-game player. Once this team gets comfortable, they will be a problem for the rest of the league.
They do have to play with more speed and urgency, though. When you say that you need “more urgency” and “find a way to get this right”, then I would hope that your next game would be all about speed and controlled urgency to get the puck into the net. What they cannot do is grip their stick so tight that they miss chances or send a puck too fast for a one-time opportunity (Debrincat yesterday).
Someone that does need to leave is Sheldon Brookbank. His defense has been atrocious since the time he was hired and has not improved. They constantly make wrong moves and wrong calls when it comes to coverage or pinching. He should be fired immediately, and he’s the only coach who I think should be fired right now.
I know this is controversial right now with the Blackhawks’ 0-4-1 start, but I do think that this team can be the offensive dynamo many expect them to be pretty soon. When the chances come their way against a worse goaltender than those they have faced thus far, they should find confidence and light the lamp. The issue with this team is not that they are badly coached, it is that they mess up their chances and cannot seem to buy an even-strength goal.
So no, I do not think that the next game will be Colliton’s last nor do I think Bowman would allow it. If the Blackhawks fire Bowman, then Colliton would probably be fired immediately. They are connected until around game 20 and, if things don’t get better, you can probably bet on that they won’t be there much longer.