Know Thy Foe: According to @ChiBlackhawks

With a tip of the hat to Yost Built for the format, I thought it might be fun to do a mini preview of the Chicago Blackhawks…according to a Blackhawks fan. I could think of no one better than the aptly named @ChiBlackhawks on twitter, self described as the “unofficial Twitter for Blackhawks fans by Blackhawks fans.”

I sat down for a quick e-mail interview with one of Chicago’s finest yesterday, and here’s what we came up with. Enjoy.

  • Biggest key to the Blackhawks success this postseason?
  • I don’t know if I can speak for the team when I answer this question, and to be quite honest I really don’t know either what the key to their success has been. They’ve been doing plenty of things better than during the regular season, though, that’s for sure, and many players have hit their stride at almost exactly the right time.

  • What’s the biggest strength as a team for the Blackhawks?
  • Around December or January, papers were starting to talk about a certain ‘chemistry’ that the players had, and you hear it in most interviews, especially during that road-trip-filled February. The guys gel, they like hanging out together, they trust each other, and it translates on the ice, I think.

  • Biggest team weakness?
  • I can’t believe I’m saying this, but yes, they are a young team and they are bound to make a few mistakes. The first game against Vancouver nearly went into overtime if not for a few costly mistakes in the last three minutes–I think they’ve learned from that, but I don’t think they’ll be able to avoid making any more. That being said, they do their best of making up for those mistakes.

  • One player who could make the biggest difference against Detroit?
  • I’ve never believed any one player would make a difference in a series, and for the Blackhawks that’s even less true. You can tell me Byfuglien got in Luongo’s head and that was how the semifinals were won, but it was Havlat/Bolland/Ladd line that saved the series from going 3-1, and it was Toews and Kane who clinched the series. Against a team that’s got as much depth as Detroit, I doubt the series lies on the shoulders of a single Blackhawk.

  • What will the Hawks have to do if they want to beat Detroit?
  • You know the usual– stay out of the box, win faceoffs, etc etc. 😉 But seriously, the Red Wings are as complete a team as they come. The Blackhawks will have to be, and better, to beat them.

  • A prediction for the series (if you are so inclined)?
  • A Central division team will come out of it this series to make it to the Stanley Cup Finals. 😉

    A big thanks to @ChiBlackhawks for being a good sport and taking the time to speak with me.

    Be sure to catch Game 1 of the WCF today at 3:00 PM on NBC. Go Wings!

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