Hawks aim for record-breaking performance


Hawks aim for record-breaking performance

For the first time since 1972, the Blackhawks have tied their franchise-best start to a season. As the only team to achieve a 4-0 record during the shortened 2013 campaign, the Blackhawks sit comfortably at the top of the NHL standings.

On Saturday night, the team will fight to go 5-0 for the first time in their history as they head to Columbus to face the Blue Jackets.

Previous matchups

The Blackhawks have continued to build momentum throughout their wins against Los Angeles, Phoenix, St. Louis and Dallas.

Up until their matchup against the Stars, Chicago had established and maintained the lead in their previous three games. But on Thursday, the team had to prove that they are capable of coming back from behind as well.

Derek Roy and Ray Whitney each recorded a goal, giving the Stars a 2-0 lead heading into the third period. But the Blackhawks never slowed their aggression and tied the game by the end of regulation after Jonathan Toews and Patrick Sharp each found the back of the net. Despite goaltender Kari Lehtonen's strong performance in net, Marian Hossa scored the game-winning goal in overtime.

The Blue Jackets, however, haven't exactly had the smoothest start to the year. After winning their season opener in Nashville, Columbus was unable to earn another two points against the Red Wings, Coyotes or Avalanche. In fact, the Blue Jackets are heading into tonight's game after being shut out by Colorado Thursday night.

Since the start of the 2009-10 season, Chicago has only dropped one game at Nationwide Arena. Between the Blackhawks' strong start and the Blue Jackets' struggles early on, Chicago is highly favorited to continue their undefeated season.

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What's the next move for the Blackhawks?

What's the next move for the Blackhawks?

When the Blackhawks traded Andrew Shaw it meant the team gave up a key player, but also got essential breathing room under the NHL's hard salary cap.

While losing Shaw is a blow, the team netted draft picks and salary cap relief. The move came just after Bryan Bickell and Teuvo Teravainen were traded for a pair of draft picks.

CSN Chicago's Blackhawks Insider Tracey Myers went on SportsTalk Live to talk about the Blackhawks' recent moves and what's ahead in the video above.

The question now becomes what's next? The Blackhawks have holes to fill heading into the season and now do have some room under the salary cap.

Myers said adding a veteran defenseman is arguably the top priority and Brian Campbell and Andrew Ladd are mentioned as possibilities.

How the Blackhawks will replace Shaw specifically will be tough. Recently signed prospects Tyler Motte and Nick Schmaltz could help to add some depth, but it's hard to rely on those players right away.

Watch the video above to see the full discussion of what the Blackhawks can and should still do in the rest of the offseason.

Canadiens agree to six-year deal with former Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw

Canadiens agree to six-year deal with former Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw

The Blackhawks probably would've liked to be the ones to sign Andrew Shaw to a long-term deal. Instead, it was the Montreal Canadiens.

The Habs announced Monday they agreed to terms on a six-year contract with Shaw, who according to reports will take home an annual average salary of $3.9 million.

"We are very pleased to have agreed to a long-term deal with Andrew Shaw," Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin said in the announcement. "As I mentioned last Friday following his acquisition, we are adding a solid character player to our team, a reliable player who plays with grit and a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Chicago Blackhawks over the past five seasons. Andrew will add more leadership to our team. I had the opportunity to discuss with him over the past few days, and I sense his determination and excitement in joining the Canadiens’ organization for many years to come."

The Blackhawks, in another salary-cap squeeze this offseason, traded Shaw to the Canadiens last week in exchange for a pair of draft picks.

In five seasons with the Blackhawks, Shaw totaled 137 points, scoring 70 goals and tallying 67 assists. He was a key member of a pair of Stanley Cup winners in 2013 and 2015. In 67 playoff games, he registered 35 points.

Blackhawks' Patrick Kane nominated for ESPY Award as NHL's best player

Blackhawks' Patrick Kane nominated for ESPY Award as NHL's best player

Shortly after he collected a handful of hardware at the NHL Awards last week, including the Hart Trophy for league MVP, Patrick Kane may have another accolade coming his way.

The Blackhawks superstar has been nominated for an ESPY Award as the NHL's best player in 2016 following a season in which he set career highs in goals (46), assists (60) and points (106).

He also set a new American-born record and franchise mark by earning at least a point in 26 straight games, the longest point streak since Mats Sundin (30 games) did it in 1992-93.

Kane looks to make history with Jonathan Toews, who captured the same ESPY Award in 2015, as the first set of teammates to have won in back-to-back years.

The four other nominees are Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby, Washington's Braden Holtby and Alex Ovechkin, and San Jose's Joe Pavelski.

The winner will be selected on July 13 at the ESPY Awards in Los Angeles. Click here to cast your vote.