Blackhawks’ Bandwagon Hits a Speed Bump

As part of the Winter Classic buildup there was a lot of talk over the last week or so about how the Blackhawks consider themselves to be just as good as the Red Wings. Coming into last night’s game the NHL had a dream storyline on its hands for its annointed team of the future in Chicago. Then Detroit ended it.

The Blackhawks came into Tuesday’s game on a franchise-high nine-game winning streak and just four points back of the defending Stanley Cup Champions. Regulation wins by Chicago last night and at the Winter Classic would have pulled them into a tie.

The Red Wings – without the best defenseman in hockey, with a defenseman filling in at forward, and with their supposed backup goalie in net – proceeded to blank the ‘Hawks in what was being billed as a statement game for Chicago.

Maybe the Blackhawks will bounce back on New Year’s Day. Maybe the Red Wings will roll again. Either way, I hope Tuesday’s game teaches everyone not to get too caught up in the Blackhawks bandwagon, they haven’t won anything yet.

Red Wings – Blackhawks Pregame Notes

Thanks to the Winter Classic, Detroit’s annual New Year’s Eve game has been bumped up a day, giving us the first game of the home-and-home with Chicago tonight.

Chris Chelios remains in the lineup as Nicklas Lidstrom is staying out for another game. Derek Meech could also be back in as Mikael Samuelsson has been ill and may not be able to play.

Ty Conklin gets the start.

The Blackhawks are riding a franchise-high winning streak and by sweeping the Wings in these two days could tie them for first place in the Central Division.