Blackhawks End Losing Streak, Extinguish the Flames

Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks
Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks / Jamie Sabau/GettyImages
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While I'm sure more than a few of the home crowd Sunday afternoon were upset their tickets came with a Bedard-less matchup, in the end the Blackhawks ended a 5 game losing streak to get their first win of 2024.

It would be Colin Blackwell, playing on the 1st line, that would be the spark plug (as he has been since his return) to the tune of a 3 point game (2G, 1A). Calgary coming in with their best players on the lineup card likely thought they would be able to come in and take advantage of a decimated Blackhawks team. Looking to even their season with a win (would have been 41 points in 41 games at the midpoint had they won), instead the Flames drop their second straight (Flyers, Hawks).

Charlie Roumeliotis of NBC Sports posted a video of one of Blackwell's two goals on the afternoon:

It was an all-out team effort though today as it seemed the entire team bought into what must have been "it's the little things" speech pre-game by the coaching staff. Not only was the team getting some "puck luck" but the board battles were going the Hawks way as well. A +7 on block shots and a +6 on takeaways shows focus and hustle that typically translates to points in the standings as well.

There were a couple of scary instances for fans though as Philipp Kurashev looked hurt one moment and Alex Vlasic was hit in the neck by a puck another moment. For me at least, I mumbled "oh great now what". The Blackhawks, having made 2 moves to get new players in (Pitlick and Sanford) are in unknown territory in terms of roster construction as it stands.

With a win today it starts to become increasingly obvious that this is a great opportunity for some players not typically depended on to step up and show more to their games than normal. Can Lukas Reichel regain a scoring touch? Will Colin Blackwell prove he should be re-signed in the offseason? Can Jason Dickinson continue to score at a career high pace?

The Blackhawks next take on the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night for the much anticipated Colin Blackwell versus Connor McDavid one on one battle.