It’s the same thing every year with this Blackhawks team. “Can we just get to the playoffs already?” The Hawks dropped another to the Stars on Friday night. I think it’s pretty evident that they’re in Jay Cutler mode at the moment.
That’s not to take anything away from the Stars. I actually don’t understand why everyone seems to be writing them off when it comes to playoff success. Sure their defense sucks but if you score five goals per game it doesn’t really matter. And it’s always possible Niemi or Lehtonen could get hot at the right time. However, we won’t know what the Hawks really look like against this team unless they meet in the playoffs. Toews and company are skating hard, but you can tell that they have a different level that they’re not going to. Whether that’s a conscious effort or not, I have no clue. But it’s true.
I’ve admittedly been here for awhile myself. After they made all the trades to posture up for another Cup run I said “Yup, okay. When do the playoffs start?” The rest of the regular season almost feels like a chore in some ways. It’s something we have to do until the really good stuff starts to happen. Maybe that’s a pompous attitude to take, especially with so many other fan bases hanging on every game (Minnesota) or wondering how they can win when the playoffs start (St. Louis). But honestly, what other NHL fans are saving for playoff tickets a month into the season every year?
The Hawks feel the same way, and you can see it in their game. You can see it every year. They play well enough during the regular season and then turn it on when it’s time to shine. In the first three Cups we all wondered “Can they continue to just turn it on like a light switch?” It’s pretty evident that not only can they turn it on, they can flip on a strobe in this bitch if they want to.