Blackhawks report card following an inevitably bad season

We knew the Chicago Blackhawks 2023-24 season wouldn’t have an ideal finish, but it’s easier to cope with when expected.
Chicago Blackhawks v Los Angeles Kings
Chicago Blackhawks v Los Angeles Kings / Harry How/GettyImages
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Overall, the Blackhawks get a solid C because, despite the poor record and rankings in virtually every statistical category, they surprised no one. Had this team found themselves light years behind the rest of the NHL and Connor Bedard played like he needed another season with the Regina Pats, I would have given them a below-average grade, but that didn’t happen. 

On the other side, if the Blackhawks dramatically outperformed expectations and ended up with, say, 70 points, they would have earned a B or even a B-plus. But considering the circumstances, 52 points is about where they logistically were ending up this season. 

Next year, 65-70 points shouldn’t be an unrealistic goal, and anything below the lower portion of that total should be a disappointment. Sure, a contingent of fans may not like the 65-70 point range, and I understand it. But this is also a slow-building process, so even a low points total like it will scream improvement over what we saw this season. 

Plus, if all the painful rebuilding resulted in landing not just Connor Bedard but another sensational talent this season, then five years from now (if that), these “dark days” will be worth it. So let’s keep grading the Blackhawks on expectations until this team is ready to consistently win hockey games. 


(Statistics provided by Hockey-Reference)