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Blackhawks Wed Mar 09 2011

Foot, Meet Mouth: Hawks Roar Back to Life

Thumbnail image for blackhawks.gifWas it something I said?

Last time we checked in on the Blackhawks, I was lamenting their fall from Stanley Cup champions to borderline playoff contenders. But they had begun to pick up steam at the end of February, and they surged into March, running their win streak to eight games before last night's 3-2 loss at Florida.

Formerly kicking around the edge of the Western Conference playoff standings, the Hawks now sit in fourth place as they get ready to drop the puck tonight in Tampa Bay.

Tuesday's first period was arguably Chicago's ugliest of the season, as the Panthers took a 3-0 lead and Marty Turco replaced Calder Trophy contender Corey Crawford at the first intermission, but the Hawks otherwise have been playing as well as they have all season. The chemistry on the ice is palpable, with the first line staying hot.

Adding new players to the roster hasn't thrown clearly hasn't shaken the team either. The trade acquisitions of Chris Campoli and Michael Frolik have seemed to pay off, with Frolik scoring two goals and assisting two others and Campoli earning two assists so far.

Although it would have been nice to watch the Hawks ride a victory wave into playoffs, one loss after eight wins isn't exactly heartbreaking. The team was taught a lesson on Tuesday: Coming out flat won't earn you a win.

Hopefully the lesson goes to heart against the Lightning tonight; they're fifth in the Eastern Conference, led by the NHL's leading scorer, Steven Stamkos.

 
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