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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Wednesday, October 28

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« All In Favor, Say 'Aye' And Now Back To Your Regularly Scheduled Local Sports Scene... »

Blackhawks Fri Oct 02 2009

Hello to Helsinki

Half a world away in Helsinki Finland, the Blackhawks start their 2009-10 campaign at 11 a.m. this morning against the Florida Panthers, with a return engagement the next morning - same time, same channel (Comcast SportsNet).
The team returns to the U.S. for a game at Detroit next Thursday, before a belated home opener Saturday, Oct. 10 against the Colorado Avalanche.

Following a too-short yet tumultuous offseason after last season's playoff success, the Hawks had only a four-game preseason before jetting to Europe for a pair of exhibition games against HC Davos and ZSC Lions Zurich earlier this week. While the team took 28 players to Europe, their final roster cuts down to 23 will have been made by the time the puck is dropped this morning. The most intruiging roster selection will come down to the backup goalie battle between Corey Crawford and Antti Niemi.

Already missing free agent signee Marian Hossa due to shoulder surgery, the Blackhawks also need to find a replacement for Adam Burish, whose torn ACL in his first exhibition game will have him missing 6 months of the season. Other players suffered the normal bumps and bruises of preseason practice, but are expected to be ready to go for the regular season.

Check back this week for a full season preview of what may be the most anticipated Blackhawks season in at least 15 years.

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