Brooke LoFurno The Hockey Writers
Blackhawks’ News & Rumors: Kubalik, Crawford, Game Recaps & More
In the latest edition of Chicago Blackhawks’ News & Rumors, this piece is the most exciting because it is the last one that will be done before the Blackhawks’ season officially resumes on Aug. 1. Chicago had an exhibition game on July 29 and the result came as a pleasant surprise. Here is the latest with game recaps and new stories to come from the team.
The exhibition game against the St. Louis Blues was a fun one. When you are a team that wouldn’t have made the playoffs in the regular sense, and go against a team that is the defending Stanley Cup champions, it doesn’t usually spell the recipe for success. But, in the Blackhawks’ case, it was just that. They shut out the Blues 4-0. Here are some important notes:
The four goals were scored in order by left-wing Brandon Saad, center Dylan Strome, and left-wing Dominik Kubalik.
Kubalik played exactly as you would expect for someone who is a finalist for the Calder Memorial Trophy, awarded to the best rookie in the league.
He had two goals; both of which were power-play goals. He was high-flying even before the season was paused. It’s great to see that he hasn’t missed a beat.
3. Penalty Kill
The Blackhawks’ penalty kill was one of the spots that didn’t need improvement. That aspect hasn’t missed a beat either. They killed all four of the Blues’ penalties.
Corey Crawford and Malcolm Subban both split playing time against St. Louis. Crawford stopped all 11 of the shots he faced, while Subban turned aside the 10 pucks thrown his way.
Chicago looked fast, organized, and had good puck possession. I don’t know who these Blackhawks are and I don’t know what they did with the old ones, but the time for them to be playing their best hockey is now. Here’s to hoping that wasn’t a fluke and that it will carry into the playoffs.
We have talked about Crawford a lot when it comes to news, but this one is important to share because fans finally have the news they have been waiting for. Crawford told the media what his status may be for Game 1.
There you have it, folks. Looks like Crawford will indeed be starting.
John Dietz of the Daily Herald published a story on July 29 that was focused on defenseman Slater Koekkoek. Koekkoek has been with the Blackhawks since January of 2019 when he was traded from the Tampa Bay Lightning. With him not being part of the team for long, fans haven’t gotten a chance to get to know him well.
Related: Top 3 All-Time Blues Goalies
But, Dietz’s article gave Koekkoek the opportunity to share things from his faith to his career. Here is an excerpt of a quote he gave when he was asked about if he believes he should be an 82-game player:
Everybody has a different path. Whether I was put in this position for a reason, or spent those years in Tampa for a reason, it ultimately led me to growing stronger as a person.from (‘Glass-half-full approached has served Blackhawks defenseman Koekkoek well’, Daily Herald – 07/29/2020)
I highly recommend reading the article if you are interested in learning more about Koekkoek’s story.
Lastly, for the other fun news to come from the team is that Crawford and right-wing Drake Caggiula both showed up for their media sessions on July 30 with nothing but “Chicago” on their minds.
Related: Jarome Iginla’s 5 Greatest Highlights
Caggiula had a Michael Jordon shirt on, in which he explained he got the inspiration for it from Jordan’s documentary series, The Last Dance. Crawford decided to sport a Chicago White Sox baseball cap.
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All is well in Blackhawks’ land right now. There are no injuries or anything of that sort (knock on wood), and the team is going into their series versus the Edmonton Oilers on a high note. With that in mind, what you can expect to see are recaps from Game 1, important news additions related to the series, and more!
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