1. Continue the “O” from the “D” — Blackhawks defensemen have scored four goals in the last three games. That is fantastic production from a crew that isn’t known as goal scorers. All six of these defenders have taken the opportunity to exploit opposing teams who “collapse” in front of their net. With so much scoring talent up front for Chicago, a lot of teams’ game plan is to create a 5-on-3 in front of their own net, allowing the D-men to be open. Blackhawks forwards have done a great job recognizing this, and have been feeding the points for points. 12 points from the defensemen in the last three games, all wins. Pretty impressive stuff.
2. Use forward speed on Calgary defense — The Calgary Flames received some bad news a few games ago when Captain and defenseman Mark Giordano broke his foot in a win against the LA Kings. They have won only one game in the five games since. They have given up 17 goals in the four losses, and clearly miss their leader. Use speed wide on the defense and try to back off their coverage.
3. Keep the offensive momentum rolling — 16 goals scored by the Blackhawks in their last three wins, and it hasn’t been all run-and-gun either. Great defense has led to some odd man attacks, and that has been sparking the offense. Coach Joel Quenneville will be the first to tell you, how you check determines how you perform offensively. The Blackhawks have been creating turnovers all over the ice, and their quick transition offense has left the other teams in their dust. Check the puck well and you will get plenty of chances.