The Chicago Blackhawks did something they have rarely done this season. They won a game, and they did it being competitive the entire night. This game was also a rare night because it was the first night with new interim head coach Derek King.
The Chicago Blackhawks relieved Jeremy Colliton of coaching duties on Saturday and went to battle on Sunday with Derek King for the first time.
King might be getting his first coaching job in the NHL, he might have little NHL experience, and he might be following a similar path as Colliton, but for where the team is at, you cannot help but root for the guy.
The Blackhawks went into a game against the Nashville Predators down 1-9-2 on the season and were facing off against a team that has totally controlled the series over the past few seasons. Yet rather than focus on reworking the system the past few days the team just focused on playing for each other and having some fun.
King is a breath of fresh air considering where the team was at a few days ago. Check out this quote from him after the game:
The Hawks are not in a good position right now, but luckily they have some time to regroup and get back on track. They play the Penguins on Tuesday, but after that, they are off until Friday before hosting the Coyotes at home, oh and after that, they do not play again until Wednesday, November 17th in Seattle.
That time off will be critical for King to have himself a mini-training camp in itself to get to know the players and establish a system different from what the team has been doing so far. Coaching changes are hit or miss during the season. Realistically it is hard to expect much change mid-year, but luckily for the Hawks schedule-wise, they only play three times in the next ten days so they have some time to take a pause and figure things out.
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Sure the season might already be lost, but at the same time there is still a lot of hockey to be played, and the year is not over until 82 games have been completed.