The Blackhawks have been off to a rough start this season. The team has a record of 3-5-2 with 8 points in the standings and are sat at 7th in the Western Conference standings with the Minnesota Wild (4-7-0) and LA Kings (4-8-0) behind them. The team picked up their 3rd win in a 5-1 victory against the LA Kings and that game alone showed their level of improvement so far. Although wins are a rare commodity, the team play has seen major improvements recently.
The team is gaining more puck control. In their first five games, the Blackhawks accumulated an average Corsi For of 47.84% but in the last five games, their average has jumped up to 52.12%.
Their goal scoring is what has fallen flat. They have an equal amount of shots in their first 5 games compared to their last 5 (158 shots) but getting the puck past the goalie has been rough. In the first 5, the Hawks had 15 goals for but in the last 5 games, there have only been 10 goals. Yet in the last 5, Hawks have faced some of the best goalies in the league lately: such as Marc-Andre Fleury, Braden Holtby, and Petr Mrazek.
The team played well against the Washington Capitals but Braden Holtby is a force to be reckoned with so they were left with 3 goals after 44 shots on net.
The defense found success against the LA Kings where the Blackhawks won 5-1. The Hawks blocked 20 shots on net and had 45 hits. Dennis Gilbert, who was in for Brent Seabrook, put up 8 hits and 2 blocks.
Dylan Strome and Alex DeBrincat put up amazing numbers in the game against the LA Kings as well. Strome had 2 goals and 1 assist (on DeBrincat’s goal) while DeBrincat had 1 goal and 2 assists (both on Strome’s goal). Strome and DeBrincat are always on fire when on a line together and Colliton has (hopefully) realized that these two are important to keep together.
The Blackhawks game is finally coming together after a mighty slow start. This win against the LA Kings is going to be a season changer heading forward. They have the potential to be a great team but the drive has to be there and they seem to have found some of that recently.
Featured Image: AP Photo/Matt Marton