Blackhawks are hitting the road
The circus is in town which means the United Center's residents hit the road.
The Blackhawks kick off their six game road trip Wednesday which won't have them returning back to Chicago Tuesday November 30. The trip will take them to three cities across Canada and another three cities out in California.
First they will travel to Edmonton to take on the Oilers and former Hawk Collin Fraser for the third time this season. The Hawks are 0-2 against the Oilers with both games being at the UC. They lost the first one 7-4 and the second just eight days ago 2-1. Those two wins represent half of their win total so far this year.
Their second game gives them their first look at the Calgary Flames on Friday for the first half of a back to back with the second game being against the rival Cancucks. I don't have much to say on the Flames because they are bad. In 16 games they have 14 points and the only reason they have even been mentioned this year is forward Brent Sutter getting in a fight outside of a bar. With Vancouver, there is nothing new. This will be the second time the teams face off which had the Hawks skate away with the victory in a shootout. Hawks could easily sweep Canada to start the trip but 4 points is a must out of this part of the trip.
The second part of the trip will bring them to the west coast. After playing the first 3 games in 4 days the Hawks will have four days until they play game 4. The Cali part of the trip starts with the rival Sharks and maybe a look at former goaltender Antti Niemi.
Thanksgiving may belong to the NFL but the NHL is trying to claim Black Friday with 13 games on the schedule including a 3 PM start against the Ducks in Anaheim. Just under two weeks after beating the Ducks in overtime hopefully the Hawks will be able to get another win.
The sixth and final game of the road trip brings the Hawks to the city of angels to take on the Kings. LA is on top of the Pacific division with 24 points in 15 games going 12-3 so far on the season. Chicago can take credit for one of those losses when they beat the Kings 3-1 back at the end of October at the UC.
Nice part about this trip will be the rest and practice time they will have. Sure being away from home is hard but they play 6 games and 4 of those games come in a pair of back to backs. Six games in 14 days isn't all that bad. Last year against the same six teams they were able to get 9 out of a possible 12 points going 4-1-1. If they could do it again a lot of nerves would be settled but getting 7 or 8 would be ok too.