I feel like I’ve been neglecting my boys, but the Blackhawks are in a nasty slump. After this six-game losing streak, I think it’s safe to say the Hawks defense has hit “rock bottom” and there are five games left of this brutal road-trip. The next battle begins tonight against the Pacific leading San Jose Sharks and our old friend Antti Niemi.
Things continue to look bleak today, two Hawks were placed on injured reserve; Niklas Hjalmarsson has progressed from having the flu to having an upper-body injury and Steve Montador also with an upper-body injury. Both are out for the next two games and are day-to-day.
As strange as it sounds, Patrick Sharp and the Hawks are hopeful their current situation will bring them closer to being the team they want to be. “If I had the right quote or the magic recipe I’d throw it out there,” Sharp said after a lengthy practice on Thursday. “All I can say is we’re working through it. We’re not happy. We believe in each other. I know our fans out there want us to win every game and we know we have the support of them and we’re going to be a better team because of this.”
Sami Lepisto and Dylan Olsen, both recalled this morning, will play tonight against the Sharks. Olsen played two games in early January and this will be Lepisto’s first game since January 2nd against the Edmonton Oilers.
The Hawks need to get back to basics, get more aggressive on defense with bigger hits, and stop letting their offense completely run the show (because their offense can’t keep the puck out of Chicago’s net). Time to step it up Seabrook and Keith!
It’s going to be a tough game on the road tonight, but the Hawks are long overdue for a W.