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Fans Thankful For Chicago Blackhawks Improved Play

Fans Thankful For Chicago Blackhawks Improved Play

After the offseason roster overhaul, it’s taken the Chicago Blackhawks longer than expected to find the consistent play that’s expected in Chicago. The Blackhawks seem to be rounding into form. So far in the month of November, Chicago has gone 6-2-1. They have won four of their last six games and secured nine of a possible 12 points over that time. The recent play against the Eastern Conference has made the fans thankful for Chicago Blackhawks improved play.

Fans Thankful For Chicago Blackhawks Improved Play

Giving Thanks

The number one thing that Hawks fans have to be thankful for is Corey Crawford. He has stood on his head this season facing 558 shots against as his teammates have searched for consistent play in front of him. Crawford is now fifth in the NHL with a 2.19 Goals Against Average and tied for second with a .933 Save Percentage. Without his outstanding play in net, usually facing 34 or more shots a night, the Hawks would be at the bottom of the Western Conference.

To complicate his life, Chicago defensemen playing in front of Crawford have had 97 turnovers so far through 20 games. Crawford has bailed them out of trouble numerous times, keeping pucks out of the net and games close. On the bright side, the Hawk defensemen do have over 180 blocks so far this season. Hawks fans would love to see more blocks and fewer turnovers.

Thanks, Part II

The Hawks have done a better job with defensive coverage and clearing the puck out their zone lately. When finding themselves in trouble in their own end, the Blackhawks have been “protecting the house” a lot more. Every player has come to the net to help cover and clear pucks out of danger. They’ve also been better at breakouts, not relying on the blind passes up the boards that were so predictable. These trends have to continue if the Hawks expect to contend for a playoff spot.

More Thanks

The recent hot offence by Artem Anisimov and Alex DeBrincat have Chicago Blackhawk fans thankful too. Artem Anisimov has been lighting the lamp at a torrid pace in November. He’s been playing on a line with Patrick Kane and Nick Schmaltz and has scored five goals in the last five games. Anisimov is finding success because of his net drive and becoming a much needed net-front presence. Most of his goals have been from a few feet out from the net while creating havoc in the slot. Check out this recent article on Anisimov’s success from Tracey Myers with NBC Sports Chicago.

Alex DeBrincat is second in the NHL rookie goal-scoring race with seven goals. He’s been on a roll recently scoring four goals and six points in is last four games. Unfortunately, his scoring streak was halted Wednesday night versus the Tampa Bay Lightning. Still, DeBrincat is having a strong season in Chicago. He shares second place in team scoring with 13 points this season. The pint-size rookie has lived up to the hype after leading the OHL in scoring last season with 127 points.

More Work To Do

As the Blackhawks move into the second quarter of the season, they still have a lot to improve on to be a contender. While they’ve shown signs of improvement this month, they have barely crept back into playoff contention for a wild-card spot. If they can go on a run and pull into the Central Division race, that would be something the Blackhawk fans would really be thankful for.

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