Thursday's shutout loss to Edmonton allowed the Chicago Blackhawks to set a new franchise record. They have now lost 19 consecutive road games in either regulation or overtime.
This stretch has been rough to say the least. It is the 4th longest road losing streak in NHL history, passing the Pittsburgh Penguins streak of 18 games. The three streaks ahead of them are 24, 37, and 38 games held by the California Golden Seals, Washington Capitals, and Ottawa Senators respectively.
This unfortunate run has stemmed from a 4-3 loss to the Florida Panthers back on November 11th. That's 78 days without a road victory.
We can't even blame it on the Bedard injury either. He got hurt only 21 days ago. The Hawks are 0-5-0 on the road and 2-7-1 overall since he went down.
Over these last 19 road games, the offense has been just straight-up awful. They've only put together 29 total goals (1.53 goals per game for those who don't want to pull out a calculator) and have allowed 85 total goals (4.47 goals per game).
That would account for the fewest goals for per game in the league by roughly half a goal and the most goals against per game by roughly half a goal as well.
A team doesn't play all 82 games on the road and home ice/crowds play a solid role in these games, but these numbers have to raise some concern. This team is missing star power on all its lines and is very inexperienced defensively. The experience will come with time, but Kyle Davidson has a couple of busy off-seasons ahead of him to make this team competitive sooner rather than later.
Players like Alex Vlasic and Jason Dickinson are bright spots who are likely to earn a long-term role with the team. Dickinson just got an extension, while Vlasic and Davidson have a mutual interest in getting an extension done.
It is doubtful we see a road losing streak like this in the coming years with the draft capital and young talent the Hawks have lined up.
Bedard has been great in his rookie season. Oddly enough, he may still have a shot at the Calder if he returns with a month or so left to rack up some points.
I had previously mentioned that a key thing to track this year is player development. That is still the case despite the road game woes and terrible injury luck we have faced this season.
Rome was not built in a day and the next Chicago Blackhawks dynasty won't be either. Better days are ahead, that much I am sure of.