CSN to celebrate 'Blackhawks Day' on Tuesday, Oct. 4

CSN to celebrate 'Blackhawks Day' on Tuesday, Oct. 4

COMCAST SPORTSNET TO CELEBRATE BLACKHAWKS DAY ON TUESDAY, OCT. 4

Network preps for the start of the 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks season with a full day of Blackhawks-themed programming, including Live appearances from Blackhawks playerscoachesfront office execs & more!

CSNChicago.com to feature full-blown Blackhawks content including exclusive, live-streamed features, live interactive chats with players, plus - fans can win Blackhawks signed items via live interactive chat and Twitter
Chicago, IL (October 3, 2011) To celebrate the start of the upcoming 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks season, Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the Blackhawks, is celebrating Opening Week in a big way with BLACKHAWKS DAY on Tuesday, October 4.

Blackhawks Day on Comcast SportsNet is highlighted by the replay airings of a pair Blackhawks Classic telecasts from their thrilling, seven-game, 2011 first round Stanley Cup Playoff series against the rival Vancouver Canucks (airing at 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM). In addition, viewers can look forward to Blackhawks-themed season preview & player profile features, live playercoachesfront office exec interviews and full plate of online offerings via CSNChicago.com, will have fans whetting their appetites for the start of yet another action-packed Blackhawks season.

REMINDER: The 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks regular season on Comcast SportsNet opens up in a big way with back-to-back nights of live coverage showcasing the SEASON OPENER on Friday, October 7 at 7:30 PM (live coverage starts at 7:00 PM on Chevy Blackhawks Pre-Game Live) and the HOME OPENER on Saturday, October 8 at 7:30 PM (live United Center coverage starts at 6:30 PM on SportsNet Central presented by AT&T U-Verse) as the Blackhawks face the Western Conference rival Dallas Stars on both nights.

Note the following on-aironline highlights from Blackhawks Day on Comcast SportsNet coming up TOMORROW (Tuesday, October 4)

THE DAN PATRICK SHOW (8:00 AM)

- Blackhawks Day festivities on Comcast SportsNet kick off with an appearance by NHL All-Star Patrick Kane on The Dan Patrick Show, which is scheduled for 9:05 AM. Kane will preview the upcoming Blackhawks season with DP among other topics of discussion.

BLACKHAWKS CLASSIC: BLACKHAWKS vs. VANCOUVER (2011 Rd. 1, Gm. 4) (3:00 PM)

- After returning to the Blackhawks line-up for the first time in six weeks after suffering a concussion, center Dave Bolland was determined to make his presence felt once again as he scored a goal and added three assists in the Blackhawks 7-2 rout over the Canucks at the United Center.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE LIVE presented by Captain Morgan (5:30 PM)

- It will be a star-studded Blackhawks edition of CTL as host David Kaplan will be joined by array of Blackhawks playerscoachesfront office execs and more including Blackhawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz, President & CEO John McDonough, Executive Vice President Jay Blunk, Vice PresidentGeneral Manager Stan Bowman, Head Coach Joel Quenneville, Comcast SportsNets Blackhawks play-by-play announcer Pat Foley, along with team members Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa, Brent Seabrook and newcomer Dan Carcillo. Plus Blackhawks legendteam Ambassador Denis Savard, Tommy Hawk and the Blackhawks Ice Crew will join the festivities andmake sure to tune in for a special feature as Kap learns exactly how hard it is to be a professional NHL goalie.

SPORTSNET CENTRAL presented by AT&T U-Verse (6:30 PM)

- Hosts Pat Boyle and Mark Schanowski will be a joined on set by a Blackhawks player during the telecast, while Chris Boden will also be on hand to host a roundtable discussion featuring Blackhawks players and head coach Joel Quenneville discussing the upcoming season. In addition, viewers can look forward to interaction with Blackhawks players throughout the network as help out CSN employees with their jobs. NOTE: The 10:00 PM & 10:30 PM editions of GMC SportsNet Central, along with the midnight edition of SportsNet Central, will also feature a heavy Blackhawks Day focus.

BLACKHAWKS CLASSIC: BLACKHAWKS vs. VANCOUVER (2011 Rd. 1, Gm. 6) (7:00 PM)

- After being down 3-0 in their first round series against the Canucks, the Blackhawks stormed back to force a Game 7 following right wing rookie Ben Smiths dramatic goal in OT, lifting the Blackhawks to a thrilling 4-3 victory in front of yet another sold-out, rocking night at the Madhouse on Madison.

CSNCHICAGO.COM (ALL DAY)

The Blackhawks will have a complete take over of CSNChicago.com on Oct. 4, providing a full interactive experience for fans. Note the following highlights:

Blackhawks Talk Live on CSNChicago.com will be a live stream and interactive chat showcasing the Blackhawks visit to the Comcast SportsNet newsroom including interviews with players via Comcast SportsNets Blackhawks PrePost Game Live host Chris Boden

Blackhawks players to answer fan questions via live chat on CSNChicago.com

The live stream will include CTL Interactive on Chicago Tribune Live with Blackhawks Insider Tracey Myers participating in the live chat with fans during the show and interacting with host David Kaplan and Blackhawks guests. Fans can interact via CSNChicago.com and Twitter CSNHawks.

CSNChicago.com home page take over by the Blackhawks with players serving as Managing Editors in selecting Blackhawks content to publish

Behind-the-scenes videos of Blackhawks interviews will be posted on CSNChicago.com during the CSN visit

Twitter Q&A with players via @CSNChicago , @CSNBoden and @TraMyersCSN

Fans can win Blackhawks signed items via live interactive chat and Twitter

Photo galleries and much more

Fast Break Morning Update: White Sox, Cubs both drop series openers

Fast Break Morning Update: White Sox, Cubs both drop series openers

Here are some of Monday's top stories in Chicago sports:

Preview: Cubs look to bounce back vs. Giants tonight on CSN

White Sox fall to Diamondbacks in series opener

Cubs can't complete another miracle comeback against Giants bullpen

Should Blackhawks' next assistant coach be Joel Quenneville's choice?

How Bears are using veteran videos to school rookies on NFL way

Luis Robert the latest high-end acquisition for White Sox

For Joe Maddon, Cubs winning World Series came down to Giant comeback in SF and avoiding Johnny Cueto in elimination game

Carlos Rodon 'getting closer' but still without time frame for return

Have the Cubs found their new leadoff hitter in Ben Zobrist?

MMQB's Peter King's thoughts on Trubisky, Howard, White and the Bears offense

Theories on why Cubs haven’t played up to their defensive potential yet

Theories on why Cubs haven’t played up to their defensive potential yet

“That’s what we’re supposed to look like,” Joe Maddon said Monday night after a 6-4 loss where the San Francisco Giants scored the first six runs and Wrigley Field got loudest for the David Ross “Dancing with the Stars” look-in on the big video board, at least until a late flurry from the Cubs.

But for a manager always looking for the silver linings, Maddon could replay Addison Russell’s diving stop to his right and strong throw from deep in the hole at shortstop to take a hit away from Christian Arroyo. Or Albert Almora’s spectacular flying catch near the warning track in center field. Or Anthony Rizzo stealing another hit from Brandon Belt with a diving backhanded play near the first-base line.

The highlight reel became a reminder of how the Cubs won 103 games and the World Series last year – and made you wonder why the 2017 team hasn’t played the same consistently excellent defense with largely the same group of personnel.

“Concentration?” Jason Heyward said, quickly dismissing the theory a defensive decline could boil down to focus or effort. “No shot. No shot. It is what it is when it comes to people asking questions about last year having effects, this and that. But this is a new season.

“The standard is still high. What’s our excuse? We played later than anybody? That may buy you some time, but then what?

“The goals stay the same. We just got to find new ways to do it when you have a different team.”

FiveThirtyEight.com, Nate Silver’s statistical website, framed the question this way after the Cubs allowed the lowest batting average on balls in play ever last season, an analysis that goes all the way back to 1871: “Have the Cubs Forgotten How to Field?”

Even if the Cubs don’t set records and make history, they should still be better than 23rd in the majors in defensive efficiency, with 37 errors through 43 games. The Cubs have already allowed 28 unearned runs after giving up 45 all last season.

“We just got to stay on it and keep focusing and not let the miscues go to our head,” Ben Zobrist said. “We just have to keep working hard and staying focused in the field. A lot of that’s the rhythm of the game. I blame a lot of that on the early parts of the season and the weather and a lot of difficult things that we’ve been going through.

“If we’re not hitting the ball well, too, we’re a young team still, and you can carry that into the field. You don’t want to let that happen, but it’s part of the game. You got to learn to move beyond miscues and just focus on the next play.”

Heyward, a four-time Gold Glove winner, missed two weeks with a sprained right finger and has already started nine times in center field (after doing that 21 times all last season). Zobrist has morphed back into a super-utility guy, starting 16 games at second base and 15 in two different outfield spots.

[MORE CUBS: Have the Cubs found their new leadoff hitter in Ben Zobrist?]

Maddon has tried to drill the idea of making the routine play into Javier Baez’s head, so that the uber-talented second baseman can allow his natural athleticism and instincts to take over during those dazzling moments.

The Cubs are basically hoping Kyle Schwarber keeps the ball in front of him in left and setting the bar at: Don’t crash into your center fielder. Like Schwarber and Almora, catcher Willson Contreras hasn’t played a full season in The Show yet, and the Cubs are now hoping Ian Happ can become a Zobrist-type defender all over the field.

“I’m seeing our guys playing in a lot of different places,” Heyward said. “It’s not just been penciling in every day who’s going to center field or right field or left field. We did shake things up some last year, but we did it kind of later in the season. We had guys settle in, playing every day. This year, I feel like we’re having guys in different spots.

“It’s May whatever, (but) it seems like we haven’t really had a chance to settle in yet. Not that we’re procrastinating by any means, but it’s just been a lot of moving pieces.”

The Giants won World Series titles in 2010, 2012 and 2014 with a formula that incorporated lights-out pitching, airtight defense and just enough clutch pitching. The Cubs are now a 22-21 team trying to figure it out again.

“Defense comes and goes, just like pitching,” said Kris Bryant, the reigning National League MVP, in part, because of his defensive versatility. “I feel like if you look at last year, it’s kind of hard to compare, just because it was so good. We spoiled everybody last year. Now we’re a complete letdown this year.”

Bryant paused and said: “Just kidding. Different years, things regress, things progress, and that’s just how it goes sometimes.”