It’s not that the Chicago Blackhawks are playing poorly, because they’re not. But no team in today’s NHL has set a higher bar than the defending Stanley Cup champions, who you’ll also recall barely lost a game in the 2013 regular season.
Since starting the current season 20-4-4 and looking like they’d be romping to another Presidents’ Trophy, the ‘Hawks are just 19-11-11. Which isn’t exactly terrible, but again, high bar.
“We’ve got to find a way to be better,” said captain Jonathan Toews, per CSN Chicago, after Tuesday’s 3-2 overtime loss in Philadelphia. “If we play better and we sharpen up on little things, we’ve got a lot of skill and we’ve got a lot of ability; it will take care of itself. We’ll find a way to get points.”
Tonight, it’s the NHL-leading St. Louis Blues paying a visit to the United Center (on NBCSN, 8 p.m. ET).
“Obviously, it’ll be a huge game for us and it will be exciting to get to play these guys,” said ‘Hawks coach Joel Quenneville. “I see our team responding and being excited about that game.”
Worth mentioning: the way the standings look, the ‘Hawks and Blues are on a collision course to meet in the second round of the playoffs, assuming both of them make it that far.
Related: St. Louis or Chicago — who ya got?