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Chicago Blackhawks SIP

Chicago Blackhawks SIP

The Hockey News has been providing the most comprehensive coverage of the world of hockey since 1947. In each issue, you'll find news, features and opinions about the NHL and leagues across North America and the world.

IN THIS ISSUE

DAVID BOLLAND

CHICAGO – A rat running around might unnerve just about anyone, even a confident, big-time NHL star. Now you understand how David Bolland made a name for himself in the 2010 playoffs and earned his nickname from his Chicago Blackhawks teammates. No player in the post-season was more irritating to opponents than Bolland, dubbed ‘The Rat’ in 2008-09 for his disruptive checking. During the Blackhawks’ Cup run, the 24-year-old center not only knocked several high-scoring studs off their games, he sent a couple squealing to the penalty box. And Bolland seemed to get a kick out of it. “I just go out there and play,” he said. “If they get frustrated, they get frustrated. It’s their fault. Just take it.” Bolland’s not flashy or flagrant. He dishes subtleties – lifting and hooking sticks, reading plays…

IN THIS ISSUE

JANUARY

COMING off a solid month of December, the Blackhawks were suddenly faced with a January that provided a few team-defining tests. In an effort to get his promising backup goaltender some more playing time, Joel Quenneville tapped Antti Niemi more often in January than he had all season. Appearing in 11 games from October through December, Niemi was used six times in January and was handed a chance to separate himself as the No. 1 man. Though the opportunity was there, Niemi lacked the consistency to grab the top job outright. Early on he wasn’t tested much, earning a 19-save win against Boston and a nine-save loss to Anaheim, but he showed what he was capable of during a 4-3 shootout win against Detroit, in which he faced the most shots (38)…

IN THIS ISSUE

NOVEMBER

THE Hawks opened and closed November with consecutive losses playing on back-to-back nights. In between, they didn’t drop a game. Chicago won a season-high eight consecutive contests in the month, beginning with a 4-1 win at home over the Los Angeles Kings and concluding with a 7-2 road thrashing of the San Jose Sharks. Both the first and final games of the streak were significant for reasons beyond the positive result. The win over L.A. featured the return of captain Jonathan Toews after he’d missed the first two games of the month recovering from a late-October concussion. The Hawks captain scored a goal in his first game back, which helped calm fears about the state of his health. The Sharks stomping marked the debut of Chicago’s biggest acquisition of the summer, free agent signee…

IN THIS ISSUE

HAWKEYTOWN

PHILADELPHIA – As Jonathan Toews held the Stanley Cup high over his head, did anyone else get the sense he was carrying the hopes of the NHL, too? The Chicago Blackhawks captain just turned 22. It’s debatable whether he or Sidney Crosby is more gracious or which has the worse playoff beard. This much we know – by the end of the playoffs, Toews looked more like an Amish dairy farmer than a hockey player. Each of the past two years, the Stanley Cup has been lifted by young, squeaky-clean and sublimely skilled players. In fact, Toews, along with Patrick Kane, did something many thought impossible in Chicago. They were the cornerstones of the resurrection of a franchise that was on life support, the victim of abuse by neglect under the stewardship…