Hey all! Sorry for the delay on November’s report card. I’m still recovering from my Thanksgiving food coma! I hope everyone’s was as wonderful as mine. As I was out of town over the holiday weekend, store I learned how terrible it must be for Blackhawks fans who don’t live in Chicago; it was SO hard to find the games on TV! Never fear, decease this Hawks fan prevailed and found at least one game. Enough about me, nurse let’s get to the report.
During the month of November the Blackhawks played 15 total games; only 5 of which were at home thanks to the annual Circus Trip. Thankfully the Circus Trip didn’t seem to mess with their game. They won 12 of those 15 making them first in the league, conference and division. You can’t ask for much more than that.
The Good: The Hawks took on the Winnepeg Jets 3 times last month and beat them each time. They’re also undefeated against the Dallas Stars and Edmonton Oilers during the month of November.
Hawks fans got their first taste of new comer Antti Raanta in November as well. He started in three games last month, against Phoenix, Calgary and Colorado, helping to win the Phoenix and Calgary games. In only three NHL starts, Antti’s save percentage is .917. That’s pretty darn good if you ask me. Mark my words, you will see big things from this young Finnish goalie.
The Bad: Two words…Nashville Predators. Need I say more? Ok! I will. If you watched this game you know just how bad it was. Nashville played 14 games in November, winning only half of them. When the Predators beat the Hawks 7-2 on November 16, they were on a four-game losing streak. After mopping the ice with the Hawks, the Preds went on to win their next two games. The Hawks had a terrible showing in Nashville but went on the beat the San Jose Sharks the very next day.
Overall Assesment: The Hawks definitely stepped up their game from October and had a great showing on the Circus Trip, winning their season high six games in a row. Again, the Hawks sit first in the league which ain’t too shabby. Even though they were missing a few of their men, Bickell, Roszival, and Khabibulin were/are all injured, they still played great hockey throughout November.
November’s Most Valuable Player: Patrick Kane. This really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. Kaner had an amazing month. Kane burned through November, patchy beard and all, with 19 points in 15 games. He earned his career high 12 game point streak in the month of November and was named the NHL’s number 1 star. If Kane keeps up this pace and maybe even spreads some of that magic throughout the rest of the team, the Hawks will have nothing to worry about.
What To Watch for in December: December brings the Hawks a number of opponents they have yet to face this season. 12/6 they take on the Anaheim Ducks. 12/11 the Hawks will face the Philadelphia Flyers and their former goalie Ray Emery. They’ll also see the Toronto Maple Leafs and the LA Kings for the first time in December. The Hawks need to take the momentum they generated during November and carry that through the rest of this year. If they do that, once their injured players return, they’ll be unstoppable.