The Chicago Blackhawks’ 2018-2019 season has been nothing short of a roller coaster. They came out of the gates strong with a 6-2-2 record. A few weeks later, the Blackhawks were sitting in the basement of the Western Conference standings and appeared to be favorites for this year’s first-overall pick. However, recently the Blackhawks have pulled themselves together and are looking to configure an enormous comeback.
After a 4-3 overtime victory against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night, the Blackhawks have now won six straight games. Despite their record sitting at only 22-24-9, the Blackhawks’ 53 points is just four points behind the St. Louis Blues who hold the final wildcard spot with 57 points. This current reality is a lot brighter for the Blackhawks considering the fact that they were ranked second worst in the Western Conference with a 16-24-9 record just two weeks ago.
Another aspect that can be added to the Blackhawks’ rejuvenated hope for a postseason appearance is the mediocre play of bubble teams in the West. For instance, the Anaheim Ducks and Colorado Avalanche, who were both once securely in a playoff spot, have drastically fallen in the standings. The Ducks have only won two games in the last 54 days while the Avalanche have only won four according to WTPuck Hockey.
Although the Blackhawks are far from the stacked roster they contained when they hoisted three Stanley Cups in six years. The impressive production of their star players have been enough to secure victories.
Right-winger Patrick Kane is having another one of his usual stellar seasons. The Buffalo, New York native has a whopping 79 points in just 54 games. With Kane currently ranked third in the league in scoring, another Art Ross trophy for the 30-year-old is certainly not out of the question.
Captain Jonathan Toews is having a solid bounce back season. After finishing with less than 60 points in his last three seasons, the two-time Olympic Gold Medal winner is back on his point per game pace. At the moment, Toews has notched 54 tallies in 55 contests.
Left-winger Alex DeBrincat has continued to improve after a solid rookie campaign where he put up 52 points in 82 games. The 2016 second-round pick is poised to thoroughly beat this total as he already has 50 tallies in merely 55 contests.
The biggest gift for the Blackhawks however, has been the heightened performance of forward Dylan Strome. Strome was selected by the Arizona Coyotes at third-overall in a talent loaded 2015 draft. However, after three years, the promising prospect had only dressed for 48 games and recorded 16 points according to NHL Discussion.
Earlier this season, Coyotes General Manager John Chayka decided to trade Strome and forward Brendan Perlini to the Blackhawks for forward Nick Schmaltz according to Sportsnet Canada. Since the trade, Strome has registered 27 points in 31 games with the Blackhawks according to NHL Discussion. The 21-year-old is finally starting to live up to all the hype that came with him on draft day.
The Blackhawks’ next game will be in Chicago against the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday afternoon. With a win against the Red Wings tomorrow, the Blackhawks will be one step closer to completing a monumental comeback. One thing’s for sure though, veterans such as Kane and Toews have been in tighter situations before and know how to play the long game in order to come out on top.