It’s a Gas, Gas, Gas

I’ll make you this promise – you will not see me mention the D word around here. I’m not sure why people need to slap a title on this to make them feel better. How about this – the Hawks are a really good team season upon season.

The Hawks 2015 title isn’t 48 hours old and I’m already fatigued by this debate. Anyways, that’s enough talk about that.

–Let’s start here, shall we. While he has been criticized around these parts for his in-game strategy or lineups (and rightfully so), one area where Joel Quenneville cannot be questioned is his locker room management. The job he did this year was nothing short of miraculous and there’s no need to repeat what Dan Bernstein already has said.

I will only add two items to this:

The first one being a reminder of just how grim things were around February and March. For the first time of this regime’s era, there was an extended closed door meeting in the locker room after a horrific Sunday matinee loss against Boston in which Stan Bowman was the guest of honor. While the Hawks downplayed it at the time and would probably downplay it again should it come up, something like this has never happened before, not even during that 10 game slide of 2012. So clearly something was very troubling within the room.

There was a reason why Sam wrote this team off in March as one who would fold at the first sight of adversity. They looked like it, smelled like it and acted like it.

The other thing is how Brent Seabrook probably deserves nearly as much credit as Toews for keeping it all together. At the time, it seemed bizarre and troubling for Seabrook to openly lash out through the media about the rumors circling around the team.

In hindsight, it makes a lot more sense in light of this article.

Whatever rumor you’ve heard, we can agree whatever was ailing them was childish, petulant and really, really stupid. Especially when you consider it very easily could’ve turned a Stanley Cup contender into the Philadelphia Flyers.

Taking what Seabrook said at the time through the lens of the Mark Lazarus article, it’s easy to see how it very likely had an enormous impact on the Hawks locker room to get their shit together.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

–This tweet, though.

All the feelings.

When Sharp was acquired, I still remember reading about it in the Daily Herald print edition (which shows how long ago it was). His first few games with the Hawks, it was easy to tell that he definitely had more skill than anyone else on the roster. The concern was that the suck would rub off on him quickly and whatever bad habits he’d pick up would eventually turn him into a fringe NHL player.

It’s still really weird to think about how much he had to prove when he came over. He was a guy that wasn’t a super high draft pick and didn’t have elite pedigree so he needed to prove himself nightly. Which led to him occasionally having to fight guys like Andrew Alberts.

Patrick Kane showing up probably did more for his career than anything else but Sharp was already well on his way to establishing himself as a legit Top 6 player in the league.

It’s the right move to look to trade him but that doesn’t mean it’ll be easy to say goodbye. Seabrook and Keith were too young and raw at the time, so Sharp really feels like the last link to that dark era of Hawks history.

–Speaking of, the Hawks gave a subtle love letter to their long time fans by playing “Fanfare for the Common Man” when the Cup came out on the ice. When the Hawks made the move to the United Center, their pre-game montage was one of the few things they did that would be considered progressive.

It was led by that song and even when the team was complete garbage, you’d watch it and think, “It can be good again, dammit.”

Hearing that song while they walked the Cup out to the United Center was perfection. Well done to the stadium production crew there.

–On Sam’s interview with Spiegel and Goff yesterday, he described the whole Hawks mania as surreal which was funny because it was the same word I thought of when they asked (BLOG SYMMETRY!). The more I think about it, though, it’s incredibly bizarre.

Ten years ago, if you saw one other person with Hawks gear on, save for near a hockey rink or punk bar, you would do a double take. To see every other person wearing some kind of Indian head now, it is one of the weirder things I’ve had the opportunity to experience.

The most comparable thing I can think of is the Jordan era Bulls in that the Bulls went from being an afterthought in the city and empty arena to dominating global headlines. I, at the time, thought I was a Bulls fan. I was actually a Michael Jordan fan because I’ve probably watched 8 Bulls games from start to finish since he retired for the second time.

That’s probably a lot of what we’re experiencing here. Everyone loves a winner, after all. And certainly a winner that has a flair for the dramatic is going to tug at the heart strings of the millions.

When this core group eventually does fade away into retirement, that’s when we’ll really have a good sense of their impact on the game and the city. Thankfully, we are a long way from finding out.

–I know this doesn’t pertain to any of the readership here but people who chase the Cup are, by far, the worst thing about the Hawks winning it all. These creatures that hang outside players’ home while they’re having private parties – what do they think is going to happen? Patrick Kane is going to sneak them in through the gates?

Or the cretins that hang out on the street while the Cup is in a bar they can’t get into? What’s their end game? “HEY, I TOOK A PICTURE OF THE CUP WHILE IT WAS ON THE SECOND FLOOR!” Sweet, bro.

It’s not like there aren’t going to be plenty of opportunities to see the Cup. Hell, there are going to be even more opportunities to have your picture taken with it. Stop acting like hill people who have never seen a shiny object before. It’s a bad look.

–Since this was the summer of “Record when Team x loses Game 1” I will close with this.

Hawks record in the playoffs when I wore my blue henley hoodie and Black Sabbath t-shirt underneath: 8-0

Hawks record when I wore anything else: 8-7

You’re welcome, Chicago.

 

  • Nittacci
    • DNP74

      nicely done

  • colby

    “Thankfully, we are a long way from finding out.”

    And that’s probably the big difference. That Bulls team was completely dismantled after the 1998 championship. Capacolypse or no, the core of this team will still be around for awhile, and its competitive days are hardly over.

    Speaking of Sharp, who gets his A if/when he moves?

    • ZigZags82

      Seabs or Saad.

      • lizmcneill

        Or Kane, or Hossa. My money is on Seabs.

        • HawkIPA

          Agree. I think it’s Seabs or Kane. Thinking Seabs will get it.

        • ZigZags82

          I kind of like the idea of Saad though. The symbol of the new refined core long term core, the eventual full time replacement, etc etc. But right, I can’t really Seabs not getting it.

          • jordyhawk

            Seabrook or Hjammer. I really don’t see it on Kane when you have guys who pay such a high price.

        • Oldfarthawkfan

          Seabs, out of respect for what he has meant, and you still have to sign him to a somewhat friendly extension. He could garner $8mil as a UFA after next year.

        • colby

          Wouldn’t it be kind of weird for the two Alternates to be on a line together so much, though? I thought having one in the Forward corp and one on the blue line made a lot of sense.

          I’m not quite sure I can picture Kane with an A. He’s like Wolverine, absolutely essential to the team, but not really the leader…

      • Shooter

        Normally when Sharp or any other captain is out, Seabs gets the A..so I’d assume he’s next in line. Otherwise Hoss if Seabs is traded before his contract comes up.

    • DJ

      If you read that Sun-Times story, it’d have to be Seabrook.

    • GoldenJet

      Biscuit

  • Harry Longwood

    I’ve long preached the unheralded role Seabrook plays on the team, citing it specifically to friends and co-workers as why they’ll move Sharp instead. He probably doesn’t get nearly the credit he deserves, and it’s mostly because he’s played next to a generational talent most of his career, but make no mistake: on at least a dozen other teams in the league, Seabrook is the #1 blueliner.

  • Jane Doe

    NO.

    • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

      Wrong coach with a mustache.

  • SuperHawk27

    But the Hawks are a Dynasty…whether you are tired of discussing it or not.

  • Justin

    This is beautiful. Would blast fanfare before playing basement hockey games in my grandparents basement with makeshift indian head tshirts. Also my grand march intro song

  • Jon Krupa

    Thank you for today’s thoughts. I’ve enjoyed reading this blog since you guys came from SCH and you’re probably the only site I go to after a loss.

    I have a question about seeing the cup that I’ve never been able to get answered. I’m not going to chase the cup to a bar and I have a 20 month old that prevents me from dropping everything at moments notice to go see it. But I would like to get a picture with my wife and daughter. Is there a way I can find out where it might be for pictures (i.e. the Daley Center). I know the convention is a possibility, and I’ll try to get a couple tickets, but was wondering if you had any insight.

    Appreciate all the hard work and countless articles over the years. Looking forward to reading the Exit Interviews this summer and a breakdown of the upcoming season…..obviously weeks from now….need time to enjoy the result of the latest ride.

    Thanks in advance

  • jordyhawk

    A couple or stories from this morning;

    Canucks facing cap problems (and trying to deal Miller. Good luck).

    Blues not going to re-up Jackman (our loss).

    • To Saad be the glory

      Yeah,but river scum re-upped Hitchcock,and were rooting for Bishop/against the Hawks in the finals. we still come out ahead!

    • Sopel the catfish

      I’m torn with Jackman, other than round 3 Corey Perry he is probably the player I hate the most, so I’m glad that he may be done, but also sad since he does so much to help the Hawks beat the blues. I’ll just have to settle with how funny it will be when Colo signs him for like 4 mil to be a “veteran” presence they need on D.

      • To Saad be the glory

        They still have Oshie. I’ve said it before,they will never win the cup with guys like Jackman and Oshie. Sadly,I think they may have listened.

        • Sopel the catfish

          They still are filled with plenty of douche. By the grace of Hossa they will still stay far away from the chalice

          • bigtreina

            Do you mind if I use your “by the grace of Hossa” line for my own personal use? If someone hasn’t already done it, I’d also like to create my own “Finnish Cold” Teuvo T-Shirt.

          • Sopel the catfish

            I do not mind at all, as long you as send me a photo/drawing of the design 🙂

    • Jim

      Can still get Miller for Kane

      • jordyhawk

        Good one.

  • lizmcneill

    At the time of the rumors, Laz was on the radio and described “the emotional heart of the team” as Toews (duh), Kane (well, I guess he is an emotional little dude), and Seabrook.

  • Oldfarthawkfan

    What I find remarkable about Q is that after 6 years at the helm (no matter how much success they have had), is that Q still commands the respect of the team. A lot of that does go to the on-ice leadership, but we also have to commend Q, and even Ktch and this year Dineen (no matter what we think of the clown shoes power play, line-up decisions etc.) for knowing the pulse of the team. the Kings missed the playoffs this year, and it appears the team had a mutiny against Sutter right before that loss to Edmonton. This is way more important than our bitching about Q hating rookies and not playing Pirri, Morin, etc, it is really what the team thinks about how the players are being treated.

  • thefearlessfreep

    Fanfare always give met goosebumps when they play it at the UC. Even more so when they played it for the Cup presentation.
    So I was explaining to somebody about how winning this Cup was so different than in 2010. Back then, the newer fanbase was still coming out of the woodwork, and the older fans had never experienced anything like this. The Hawks have always been my favorite Chicago team, so the Bulls and Sox championships did not resonate with me a whole lot with me, and the Bears was so long ago that I can’t even compare. The 2010 Cup win was, to me, the one that was most incredible. I still feel like that Cup was for the fans that stuck it out during the tough times in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It was for the fans that had to see the Pens sweep the Hawks in 1993, and for those who saw Montreal beat Chicago in 1971. We, as that group of fans, I feel, earned that Cup. That’s why it was so special Just as Jeremy Roenick how he felt after that Cup win.
    The last two Cup wins were awesome, but for different reasons. The new generation of fans expect the Hawks to win, and have only seen the good days. I also wonder what kind of influence this team has with the newer fans. Will they stick it out when the Hawks don’t win Cups every other year? I have my doubts.
    Don’t mean to sound grouchy, but when we talk about the “bandwagon” fans versus the long tenured fans (my first visit to the old barn was in ’72 v the Seals), this is what I think about. I hope the Hawks never go thru what they did during the “dark ages” of Kyle Calder, Tyler Arneson, etc. But I know I’ll still be there even if all the other fans decide it’s not worth their time.
    Congrats on a great year guys. Your blog is always my first read of the day. Thanks.

    • Oldfarthawkfan

      I was 15 and was sitting right below the old press box right under the BlackHawk Standby’s sign in 1971. I had the “perfec”t view of Lemaire’s shot (I couldn’t see it either) from center ice through the fog. This one was more cathartic, because it was at home.

    • HawkIPA

      I was a fan of those early-mid 90s teams with Roenick, Larmer, Chelios, Graham, Sutter, Suter, Belfour, Hasek, and the rest of those guys. That was a hell of a team. My first hockey game was when I was 8 years old in 92 at the old barn. It was incredible (sidenote, I got hit back of the neck with a puck that ricocheted off an empty seat and got to see the trainer’s room, I was fine and got to return to the action).

      That said, the Hawks completely lost me after they dismantled that team for no apparent reason, and then proceeded to give the fans the middle finger on countless occasions. It wasn’t just the ineptitude, it was the contempt that was eminating from the front office. I came back into the fold as soon as Rocky came in and started televising the games again. I couldn’t follow the team as closely at first, since I had moved to Boston, but by 2009, I was on board, watched every game I could, started reading these guys, and the rest is history.

      Point is that I absolutely respect all the fans who stuck by the team in the late 90s – early 2000s, but I just couldn’t do it. Should our Hawks again suffer through rough seasons, I will definitely be there in support. But the complete disregard of the fans by Dollar Bill alienated a lot of longtime fans, including me. Coming back on board with Rocky for people like us wasn’t jumping on the bandwagon, it was more like a restoration.

      • CurvedBlade

        I think many of the new fans will stick around thru thick and thin. The NHL is different now. They have learned how to market it and keep up the interest. When I was a kid it was hard to follow the team. I listened to the games on WGN radio, but that was about all you got most of the time.

        What a waste — to have a Hull, Mikita and Esposito and have to listen on radio. Thank goodness now we can follow the game from anywhere.

        • Matt

          Not only that, but I think a lot of the new fans are pretty young. I’m 29, and while I grew up in the Chicago area and was a Blackhawks fan as a result, it has picked up since I went to college. Why? Because I went to Miami of Ohio, where the team was really good and the games were free, and on top of that the Hawks started changing. I don’t consider myself a bandwagon fan because I know the names of Lapointe, Aucoin, Daze, Amonte, etc., but I’m still young enough that I can’t be like “fan since 19XX”. I think a lot of these young, relatively new fans will stick around.

      • jrzy78 .

        HawkIPA, I can totally can relate.
        I was a rabid fan in the late 80’s and early/mid 90’s …I cried in public when they traded Doug Wilson and in attendance at old Stadium the night the Penguins swept us.
        Dollar Bill spit on everybody and dismantled the team, fired Pat Foley of all things, so I stopped watching for 10 years. I am loving every minute of the teams new successes.

  • Bwana

    Stealing my “jersey record” stat…

    😛

  • To Saad be the glory

    Glad to hear I’m not the only one that keeps wearing this/that stats for wins/losses!

    • Nope, I do the same. I had to wear the same ‘Milwaukee’s Best’ t-shirt, sandals, and black Hawks hat each time I watched at my brother’s house. Hawks were 6-0 in those games. The one time I strayed from this attire, they lost (game 2 of SCF).

      • To Saad be the glory

        I always wear my Kaner jersey. It’s what I was wearing for a shirt that I would pay attention to. However, I broke tradition in the finals,and wore my new Saad jersey,(sweater for all you hosers up north eh) that I got for an early Fathers day present. Hawks won all 3 of those games (4-6) but it still made me nervous. Of course when the cup came out I went ahead and put my Kane jersey back on lol,cause it’s been there through it all.

    • GuyFleegman

      In 2013 I donated to Blackhawks charities for good karma – Keith Relief, a Chicago inner city youth hockey group (Seabrook) and Bolland’s charity. Seabrook was Mr. Overtime and Bolland had the cup winning goal after a so-so playoffs year so it must have worked!

      This year I picked random charities listed on the Blackhawks site and Bickell’s pitbull rescue charity. Thought for sure Bicks would be this year’s hero.

  • HawkIPA

    Great observations, as usual. Q, for all the drama surrounding the lineups, was outstanding this season. The management of the locker room, the discipline the Hawks displayed preparing for games, the in-series and in-game adjustments, and the knack for getting the right guys on the ice at crucial times were essential to this Cup win. Richards and Timonen remarked that they couldn’t believe how disciplined and focused the Hawks were when it came to preparing for games–they had never seen anything like it. A lot of the credit goes to Toews, Seabrook, Keith, and the guys, but it starts at the top, and there are few/none better at getting a team ready to play than Q.

  • Preacher

    I cannot hear Fanfare without hearing “BobbyHullshootshescores!” said impossibly fast from the accompanying video that used to open the Hawks’ games. It was a very nice touch to the proceedings Monday night. As someone who attended games during the “glory days” of Eric Daze I was reminded of just how far this team has come. And brought the rest of us with them.

    Great write up, Feather.

    • CurvedBlade

      Bobby Hull still has the best one timer I’ve ever seen. Burned in memory.

  • HawkVision

    Well said, FF. I’d like to think they were getting together at Sharp’s house because they all know he’s not coming back, and it was kind of a farewell party. And remember, he was the only other person, probably on Earth, (besides Kane) that knew the puck went in…we “dark days” fans, especially, will definitely appreciate his contributions for many years to come.
    Always loved Aaron Copland’s ‘Fanfare’, one of my favorite classical pieces, mainly because of its use during the pre-game…and I’d think the same things, “these days will be back again, dammit”. Though I remember hearing it well before then – my Mom had an Aaron Copland cassette tape – which also featured ‘Rodeo’, best known for its use in the “Beef. It’s what’s for dinner” commercials. And I used ‘Fanfare’ during the parent and grandparent introductions at my wedding reception. I hope the Hawks use it forever…and when I eventually go to a game with my son (only 2yrs old now) I’ll share my memories of this group, as my old man shared with me about Bobby, Stan, and Tony.

  • Bobby Otter

    Amen on Seabrook. For years I though he was the steady presence that let Keith be Keith. Keith wouldn’t have been able to do all that he did from ’09 to, oh, last year, without Seabes imo. And who can forget all his shots from the point in OT that always seem to find a way in. Not that Seabrook does the dirty work, but he always seems to be the one that pushes them over the edge at the darkest moments. One of my all time favorite Hawks.

    I was going through old ticket stubs a few weeks ago I surprised myself. I found five or six 2005-2007; 300 level, $8/10 bucks tickets. I don’t remember these games, but I went. So weird.

    • HawkVision

      I remember $8, 300 level tickets…got ’em with my college ID (went to Lewis in Romeoville, ’99-’03) and when we were really bored on some weeknights, we’d drive up 55/Stevenson to catch a game. We weren’t too worried about seats not being available, as you had to get those tickets at the UC the night of the game. As we all know, the place was half empty, and the Anthem, the game, etc, were…underwhelming…compared to games at the Old Barn growing up (and even mid 90s games at the UC) it was sad.
      So, to be the 4,947,821st person to say this for the 10,000,000,001st time…these are terrific times.

  • Big fan

    Who came up with the brilliant idea to hold the rally in Soldier Field? The stadium holds 60,000, and there will be several 100,000 fans looking to go. It was impossible to get tickets on-line. I’m sure all the politicians got tickets to hand out to their friends.

    • GoldenJet

      Grant park is too muddy…If they’d drive a little slower this time the parade would be much for fun for the fans lining the streets…more like in 2010.

      • The_Cheeb

        Speaking of 2010, why couldn’t they run the parade up Michigan Avenue, stop at the river, and just clusterfuck the hell out of Michigan Avenue for 2 hours? It worked in 2010.

    • Brandon Murray

      Just make your way into the crowd of the parade route somewhere, it is awesome. The only thing I will miss about not being at the rally in Soldier Field is not hearing Crow drop a few F-bombs and refer to his teammates as the biggest bunch of beauties in the league again. Classic Crawford.

  • “Fanfare” always gets me…every damn time.

    • WhiteSox_History

      I always think about the banner ceremony at the old stadium’s last regular season game.
      Of course, I had to listen on the radio because it wasn’t on tv.
      I think about how far this organization has come since 10 years ago. It truly is amazing. Talks of dynasty, RFA, UFA, NWA, can wait a little while longer. I’m savoring this.

      • Brandon Murray

        The whole not on TV until the last 7 years when we were well into the age of iPods, video calls, curved and flat televisions, etc…..still blows my mind. To be the LAST pro sports teams to broadcast on tv is insane. It’s like when my kids are playing video games or computer games and the shit looks so real and I remind them that on my computer at school I played Oregon Trail & Carmen San Diego and once I got home it was Mario and Tecmo Bowl. Of course that was about a 35 minute computer class and 22 minutes of it was waiting for the game to boot-up.

  • ShinPad19

    I have pictures of my daughter at an auto parts store where Sharpie was signing autographs and the lines weren’t long. Those were the dark days when the Hawks “convention” was at a Dave & Busters. If you’ve been through the valley you truly appreciate the mountain top. Congrats 10!

    • Jim

      Now they’re complaining Soldier Field isn’t big enough (it isn’t, holds 65K, they need 2M+)

  • jordyhawk

    TM just tweeted that Richie would not rule out possibility of coming back. I have been wondering about that. Amazing how much jump he had the entire playoffs and the deeper they went. Danault and TT are the only guys we have to fill the slots at center next year. Kruger is RFA as well, which means from the SC champion roster we really only have one center coming back for sure. If Richie wanted to do it again (even with a token bump) I think Stan should do it.

    • HawkIPA

      Richards’ buyout payday was enormous. Maybe he says, “what the hell, my financial future is secured, I’ll give it another go!”

      • DJ

        An example of the “team discount” that Detroit would benefit from in recent years?

      • cza

        That’s been my hope. How much more do you suppose he could get on the open market? Maybe another million or million and a half? I’d skip that to stick with a winner, an increasingly legendary group, in a hockey-crazed, original six city.

      • To Saad be the glory

        I looked it up the other day.He is still making 3.05m off the Rags for 15/16 .

      • GoldenJet

        Well…he says wants back…if Kaner has any influence he’ll be back…

        I would bring him back for the $2mildo.

  • CurvedBlade

    I”m really tired of all the rumors and innuendo. The team lost focus and didn’t make a max effort to win every regular season game. That doesn’t mean you come up with some soap opera story to explain it. Writers/bloggers and media like to get attention for themselves by attacking others. What they say is about as believable as any politician, which is to say totally NOT believable.

    The fact is we have no idea what Q does in the locker room. According to him, he doesn’t make inspirational speeches. Most likely, he just expresses his opinions in the quiet of his office. If anybody has more to say on this subject — fine, enjoy yourself. But we all know you are just spinning a yarn.

  • Matt

    Q made two dumb lineup decisions in the playoffs — Game 3 against the Ducks (which they lost by 1) and Game 4 against the Lightning (which they won anyway). Other than that, I thought he did a pretty awesome job with the lineups and in-game work.

  • Brandon Murray

    If you just consider the hockey renaissance that has taken place, we are very lucky. If you take the time to actually consider the special human beings we have wearing the Indian head sweater, well it should give you goose bumps. This is a high character, class filled group of men. From time to time they’ll fight and bitch at each other, as all teammates do. Yet when things look bleak, when things seem lost, this group of men find a way to defy logic, defy the odds, & come out on top. I’ll be sad to see anyone go, saying goodbye is never easy, but often necessary.

  • Sopel the catfish

    Didn’t notice this earlier, but in addition to Seabs helping lead the team look at how he easily he helps Drunk Kaner walk in the photo above.

    • To Saad be the glory

      lol,I was thinking the same thing,Kaner was still drunk. Sharp looks like he got dressed in the dark with the sweater on and Bickell looks like he is the one they are making carry the cup around.

    • Brandon Murray

      Gotta have wingman to help you walk the straight and narrow when you’re hammered before 6 pm, or since 6 am…….

  • cza

    Will be sad to see Sharp go (his name is on the only piece of Hawks clothing I own), but a new generation is ready to fill his shoes. He and Soupy were big adds to the Hawks (though I didn’t fully appreciate Soupy at the time, because I was dumb), so it was good to see the latter on the postgame coverage.

    • jordyhawk

      For sure sad to see him go. He played a huge role in our amazing success of the last (I would call it) 8 years (remember we came close to the playoffs in 2008 until Jonny got hurt late).

      His legacy will be that he was a key component in one of the great runs of all-time (Burnside ranked us #5 among the dynasty teams and I think that’s probably about where we belong–so far). That’s not bad and given he’s a real pro I would fully expect him to make an impact and have some good years wherever he lands (as long as it’s in the east). We’ll miss him though and as with all our ex-pats it will be an electric moment when he takes the ice at UC for the first time with his new club.

  • ballyb11

    Didn’t read first link because Dan Bernstein Is the biggest j***ff in the history of the spoken and written word.

  • cza

    Just read the CSN story about Saad possibly taking less money to stay here (I still think he’ll be close to $6 million). On this score, does anyone know if the NHLPA has any power over contracts, so they could reject a discount just like the MLBPA blocked A-Rod’s deal with the Red Sox?

    • Brandon Murray

      I don’t think the NHLPA views the player deals the same as the MLB, but then again the MLB is a totally different animal. Pittsburgh seems to be the only competition because of the hometown thing, but being a RFA is a good thing because the Hawks can match any offer which means Pittsburgh can’t just throw a ridiculous number out there because if they do and the Hawks call their bluff, they might be screwed.

      I just don’t see any way that Saad passes up on playing with Toews, Kane, Keith, Seabs (hopefully), Hossa, Teuvo, Hammer, Kruger, and the youngsters coming up (including the Russian whose name I can never spell correctly). The kid has won 2 Cups in 3 years and knows the foundation is there for at least one more because let us be honest, even though we can’t expect this type of success every 6 years, it seems highly likely that this core has at least 1 or maybe even 2 more Cups in them.

      The math is astonishing. This group has played by my count 311 games the last 3 years and are a blown off-sides goal (against LA) and an unfortunate defelction in OT (against LA) from being 3 time Stanley Cup champs (consecutive). Wow.

      • cza

        Yeah, I agree that Saad isn’t going anywhere. I just didn’t know if the NHLPA could step in if he signed for, say, $4.75 million, arguing he’s worth $6 million and the discount was artificially depressing the market for other free agents.

        • GoldenJet

          I’d be very surprised if he gets less than $5mil.

        • jhb

          The NHLPA can’t step in when a player makes up his mind and signs a contract. Anyways, I don’t see him making more than Ryan Johansen, who signed a 3-year $12M deal. A nice bridge deal and he can make bank when he’s 25/26. But I guess you never know.

      • To Saad be the glory

        Fortunately Walkom isn’t refereeing anymore and Seabrook has a hell of a money shot in big games. As dumb as it sounds,that game 7 vs Detroit bugs me more than any of the other stuff because thats a year we did win it all and the refs almost shit on us. I assume we would have beat the Rags last yr,but the deflection is what it is. I seriously wonder if any team is capable of wining 3 straight in this era,even the Hawks.

      • Dangles-a-Plenty

        I just read something on NHL.com (lmao), Saad said that winning in Chicago and having a tight group that they have trumps him going home (to Shitsburgh). Hope he ain’t lying.
        http://www.nhl.com/ice/m_news.htm?id=771336

        • Sopel the catfish

          They didn’t reference it in the NHL article for some reason, but in the same breath that Saad talks about how winning is everything he leads of by saying that money will come and go.

    • To Saad be the glory

      If he’s smart he’s gonna do a bridge deal.

  • Brandon Murray

    By the way, I know you have all seen it, but at the 2:49-2:51 mark of this closing montage, who doesn’t love Showtime telling Patrick Maroon he better “get home for those roller hockey championships”. Absolutely classic Kane, the dude is just a BEAST even in talking trash, so subtle yet so filthy. The whole thing makes me realize just how special the NHL playoffs have and always will be.

    http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Video-Stanley-Cup-Playoffs-Immortalized-in-Epic-Video-Montage-307538761.html

    Reminded of this last night as I watched the trophy presentation in the NBA and how it doesn’t even remotely compare to the NHL. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Bulls fan, but the NHL >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>NBA all day every day.

    • To Saad be the glory

      nba trophy presentation sucks ass,I won’t even watch it anymore.

  • Pierre Wolfthing

    Can’t go wrong with Sabbath man…
    I didn’t comment here a whole lot during the season or the playoffs, but I certainly came hear to read your recaps and paruse the comments pretty much after every game and have been here since the blog started. I just wanted to thank everyone involved in making the Committed Indian happen and tap my stick to all your hard work. I love the shit outa the Blackhawks and feel lucky as hell to be witnessing this historic era in Blackhawk Hockey. Here’s to hoping it continues on.
    Go Hawks!!!!!

  • Jane Doe

    You know it.

    • To Saad be the glory

      Yeah,it took me all of two minutes to put that on my facebook page. Priceless!!

    • Brandon Murray

      This is now my screensaver on my phone because we all know……..

    • Sopel the catfish

      In the full picture Marcel is on the lady’s right, when I first saw it I was like, dam even her BF looks like Hoss, until I read the caption.

    • D_Smith

      I wish I could upvote this 100x

    • Goose

      Hossa Loves Bitches

  • Dangles-a-Plenty

    Fifth, gotta say thanks for everything dude. I started reading your blog after the Winter Classic in 2010 and you actually brought me to TCI (at the time they were still Second City Hockey). I can’t thank you enough man. Always a great fucking read. Always there to talk me off the ledge. You’re the fucking man.

  • Jane Doe

    Fucking right, Chicago

  • Brandon Murray

    Gotta love Richards taking the mic for a quick second to basically say “Kaner has some pull, maybe he wants me back”. Richards was a steal. First half of the year I wasn’t sure, but by April I knew. A good buddy of mine from work who is a huge Rangers fan but was transplanted here from Connecticut said back when we grabbed him that we would lift the Cup and Richards would play a bigger role than all of us thought…..

    • Lionel Hutz

      I think he is back on another team friendly deal.

      • To Saad be the glory

        Rangers still owe Richards over 3 mil in 15/16. After winning a cup and hitting it off with Kaner me thinks he’s coming back.I wouldn’t be surprised.

    • Sopel the catfish

      Kane and Toews ought to be buying Saad, Richards, and Desjardins loads of steak dinners…and cars…to help keep them here

  • jhb

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/04/sports/hockey/04blackhawks.html?_r=0

    I really don’t know why this time, the third Cup, is making so many look back to where it began: the darkest days a living fan of the Blackhawks in Chicago, or anywhere, could have faced. But for the people who call Hawks fans bandwagoners in the insulting sense, this NYT article says a little different to me. Blackhawks fans were pretty much driven away by the worst run franchise in sports but they wanted a winner. And even when the numbers in the UC dwindled, there always seemed to be hope for a renaissance. This was the time when maybe there wasn’t a lot of day light but Toews would play in the World Championship that summer with Shane Doan, of all people, telling him he should go pro at 19. And and at the time of this article Dale Tallon was highlighting Patrick Kane’s name after the WJC despite the names of Turris and van Riemsdyk swirling around the top pick candidates, even without knowing he would even have a shot of drafting him. It’s like another fucking universe and I’m so glad it won’t be like that again.

    • Sopel the catfish

      I’m not sure if more people are looking back this time, but those dark times look even darker now with 3 cups shining in our memories rather than just the one after 2010 (or for those old enough to remember, the Hawks of the 60’s) Hawks could have been gutted by the cap and been relegated to Penguins 2010-current status, but instead continued to improve and deliver a great product. The more people that appreciate the current the better. Expectations are higher than they were 6 years ago, and we are truly lucky to be able to watch a team that has had a legitimate chance to win the cup each of these last few years and the next ones coming.

      • jhb

        I guess I should clarify and say it’s me noticing, in particular, how much reflection is going on. I’m doing a bunch of it myself.

        Long story coming up.

        I’ve never lived in Chicago, so what things were like are only experienced by the message boards I’ve been part of since around 2001 (anyone remember the old Blackhawkzone by Frank Porcelli?). And a trip I took to Chicago on draft day 2007. At the time, basically the only place to post thoughts on the state of the Hawks was on the team site. BHZ was dead by then. Not for lack of interest, but, you know, an individual running a message board for an NHL laughingstock probably gets tiring, what with real life, jobs, etc. But the Hawks had the first pick in team history. Along with the enormous promise of JT from the year before, the Hawks site was buzzing with opinions on who to pick. I kept thinking, dare I hope they get this right? Even though Kane was rated #1 by THN, he would be the smallest player to go in that spot and lots of people lobbied for the second center in Turris, or the ever-loved power forward Chicagoans desire in JVR. I was truly intrigued and my trip (not for the draft specifically) to Chicago was so exciting, to be around my fellow Blackhawks fans as we see the team select the player that will lead the change into respectability. Well, I went to Hawkquarters on Michigan to see if there was an official draft watch party. I stepped through the maze of jerseys (Karpotsev, Arnason, maybe even saw a Vorobiev … nah) to ask. No one had any idea. I ended up watching in some restaurant, after asking them to switch it from golf. And of course, things didn’t change right on that day. But when Dollar Bill came out and signed the contracts of his two golden prospects that summer … Something about that whole thing. These long suffering fans (myself included, since I started following in 1989) at least got hope. Then they got way, way more. Three fucking championships, are you kidding? And a nice big window for a couple more? I don’t think in the history of earth have any set of fans got repaid for their fandom like us Hawks fans.

        Shout out to two posters from those old days. leoleo, who was probably some middle aged Canadian guy with a push broom mustache, who constantly called Duncan Keith “a Chinese fire drill in his own end”. I mean, Racist and Wrong are two bad things to be in this life. And hawksfan50, whose obsession with hockey prospects (names always posted in all caps) was so all-consuming he couldn’t bother caring about the current team. What a bunch of misfits!

  • Red Grange

    As I saw them carrying the cup out, I thought they were playing “Fanfare to the Common Can.”

  • To Saad be the glory

    First the Blues won’t re-up Jackman and now this. It is indeed a good time to be a hockey fan in Chicago my frents.
    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=771387&navid=nhl:topheads

    • Sopel the catfish

      So I just bought a ticket for the Saad autograph signing at Hawthorne tomorrow ($79 but I figured fuck it, right?). It says no photo opportunities, but I would like to shake his hand. Going to have him sign my red #20, do you think it would be out of line to ask him to sign the 2 as Saad, and the 0 as The Manchild? Does anyone know if he even likes that nickname?

      • GoldenJet

        Maybe have him sign “Baby Hossa”

      • Sopel the catfish

        It’s settled, going with The Manchild

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P9iJudPqN8Y

      • Sopel the catfish

        Another fun blast from the past (not really that old but still fun to read)

        http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=662850

      • Brandon Murray

        Saader signed a puck for me his rookie year when he was still wearing #43 and so the puck has “Saad #43” on it which I think is pretty cool. I don’t know if he dislikes the nickname, but I know he seems to laugh at things like “Kneel Before Saad and To Saad Be the Glory”. To me Manchild is a huge compliment, I’m sure he’ll do it.

  • Cluster_Puck

    What is the over/under on days until Stan’s first move?

    • SuperHawk27

      1 Day

  • Sopel the catfish

    First thing my coworker says to me this morning is that he heard Steve Konroyd talking about how Jackman wants to win a cup, and how much Q likes him…haven’t been able to find anything on the interwebs about it, but please for the sake of Hossa let that never happen.

    • jordyhawk

      His last contract was slightly over $3 million per with a slightly lower cap hit than Oduya’s. Given the obvious difference in quality between them I think (hope) that there is no way they would touch this bum. And if you project 2/4/7/57 as the top 4 right now and Stephen Johns (34) as the RH guy on the bottom pairing then you’re still looking for another PMD to play with him. I guess what I’m saying is he would be too expensive, he’s a poor fit, and he would shrink the season’s ticket holder base so I think Konroyd is still drunk and it (hopefully) will never happen.

      • Sopel the catfish

        I agree that with any sort of logic he wouldn’t fit, but apparently Konroyd seemed to think there was a good chance (I keep almost throwing up in mouth when I think about that douche disgracing the Indianhead) Ideally since he can’t help the blues lose anymore I’d like to see the NHL leave him behind, or go to somewhere like COL and screw them with his poor play.

        That PMD could be left handed Mike Reilly, the soon to be UFA that most say should sign with the Hawks.

        • jordyhawk

          Yeah, the Reilly watch is going to be interesting (maybe karma coming our way for Kayes). As TVR and Dekeyser have shown some of these guys coming out of college after 3/4 years can be ready (or at least close). I’m really excited to see what our backline looks like next year (Paliotta killed it last year as well).

          • Sopel the catfish

            It’d be fun (heart attack inducing at times possibly too) to see some kind of a rotation of Pokka, Paliotta, Johns, and Reilly on the third pair.

          • jordyhawk

            I totally agree. I pissed and moaned for 2 years for Dahlbeck to get a chance and I thought he looked good when he was up (and in Yotes games too). If we’re that good (and apparently we are) I don’t know why we can’t give the yutes more of a look especially over the first 40 games. I think part of it is Q and part of it is the point structure where the difference between being in/out of the playoffs is so compressed. (Nice to be able to complain and at the same time have a parade 🙂

    • Brandon Murray

      No. Just no. I loathe Jackman he is easily in my top 3 of can’t stand asshats in the league. No. Dear God NO.

    • Jane Doe

      If you asked anyone 20 years ago, no one would want or potentially welcome Rodman to the Bulls.

      Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Jackman is a HOFer by any stretch of the imagination (unless there’s a d-baggery HOF, of which he would be a cinch for the 1st ballot), but most can be forgiven and he could be a solid 6-7. It’s all about money though.

  • HawkIPA

    If the Hawks roster shakes out with Sharp, Bickell, Vermette, and Oduya gone, with Saad, Kruger, Desjardins, and Richards staying, Panarin coming in, Johns and Hartman (and Denault maybe?) moving up, with the potential for Reilly joining, I think the Hawks are still a very competitive team next year. TT and Saad will only be getting better, and the rest of the Core is in their primes, with Hossa still very effective at 36/37. I think the whole “Blackhawks will be decimated by the Cap” narrative isn’t going to play out quite like many in the media expect it will.

    • GoldenJet

      Dare I say it…The Hawks could actually be better by the end of next season?

      I don’t think that’s much of a stretch, actually. Sharp and his wandering pecker gone…They’d have to have hits with Panarin and one or two defensemen…This team, which is already blessed with a stacked lineup.

      Not the worst problems to have, Stanley.

  • Hags

    Reports saying Stan is asking for a 1st, an A-level prospect, and Top 6 forward on an Entry Level deal for Patrick Sharp. That’s…a lot. I’d be excited if he got any one of those things, much less all three.

    • Sopel the catfish

      For Sharp?

      • Hags

        yes.

        • Sopel the catfish

          Edmonton has a 1st round pick I’d be fine getting without a prospect or player…Buffalo too…

          • Lionel Hutz

            Florida could use him too. They were close last year. And when is the last time they didn’t take on a Hawks cap casualty?

          • Sopel the catfish

            I say we trade them Bickell and the other half of Steegers salary for whatever Uncle Dale sends back

          • HawkIPA

            Sharp to Florida, Bicks to Calgary–after all, Brian Burke was more than happy to take Bollig off our hands, why not add some more GRIT to his lineup?

          • jordyhawk

            LMAO.

          • jhb

            Dude, Sharp in Florida? Playing pranks on Roberto Luongo all year? I’d subscribe to that channel.

            Also, since we can just dream whatever the hell we want and it comes true: getting the #11 pick from FLA and all the teams 1-10 go forwards, leaving Hanifin or Werenski available.

          • Hags

            that would be great if Edmonton and Buffalo found a way to blow the McDavd/Eichel but I have a just a slight hunch they won’t haha. in all seriousness though, Sharp actually makes some sense for Edmonton and they do have the 16th overall pick to trade. A top 6 with Sharp-McDavid-Hall and Eberle-RNH-Yakupov would be a somethin’.

          • Sopel the catfish

            We give Sharp and Bicks to Buff for #2, Edmonton blows everyone’s mind by picking Eichel first, McDavid gets to learn from the best captain in the league and one of the best all around players…ah gotta love Friday afternoon pipe dreams, it’s too nice outside to be working right now

  • Sopel the catfish
  • Lionel Hutz

    This piece of shit…

    “Mike Ribeiro came back sometime later— this time just in his underwear. [The nanny] woke up with Mike forcing his hand down her panties. She grabbed at the blanket and started saying: “What are you doing?!?” He took his other hand that had been down his underwear and put it over her mouth and held down, intentionally and willfully restraining her against her will and without her consent. [The nanny] could not excercise [sic] her will to leave due to the force and threat of force from Mike.”

    http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2015/6/19/8812037/mike-ribeiro-sexual-assault-case-details-allegations

  • Jim