The Flying Hagel, Oh My Darling, G.O.A.T Birthday, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

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The Flying Hagel, Oh My Darling, G.O.A.T Birthday, and Other Blackhawks Bullets

Chicago Blackhawks

As the temperatures in the Midwest begin to warm up, so do the Chicago Blackhawks. They have wins in back-to-back games and a 6-2-2 marker in their last ten contests. They take on the Detroit Red Wings tonight for the second half of a two-game mini series, and after stealing a win in a lackluster performance on Monday night, could very well take four points on the road.

For now, bullets.

•   It seems like a long time since the Blackhawks gave up five goals against in four-straight games to begin the season. But they look like a different team today – a better team. And since those first four games, they’ve gone 8-2-3 to prove it.

•   The Blackhawks have been benefitting from a mix of their top guns performing up to their billings and rookies performing better than expected in their first tastes of NHL action. One of those top guns is defenseman Duncan Keith, who’s been paired with Adam Boqvist and Ian Mitchell for the majority of this season. He has had a big impact on their development (specifically to Mitchell’s progression). But he’s also done hearing about it:

•   Dominik Kubalík on the other hand can’t rave enough about rookie Brandon Hagel’s speed…

•   I really hope Hagel gets a breakaway chance tonight and buries it. He’s so, so due.

•   We know that Kevin Lankinen will be the starter tonight for the Blackhawks, but speaking of players who are “due” for anything, it’s third goaltender Collin Delia. He has not played a game in over a month and has been leapfrogged by Malcolm Subban and Lankinen in the rotation. If there was ever a time to get him back into NHL game action, it would have been against the Red Wings. He’s being the good solider for the Blackhawks, but in a recent interview with The Athletic, Delia expressed his frustration with the situation. He’s not one to stir the pot, but he deserves his chance to get back in the net.

•   Lucas Wallmark returned to the Blackhawks lineup first out of the three players who were out with positive COVID diagnoses, the others being Ryan Carpenter and Adam Boqvist.

•   Wallmark’s experience getting back into the lineup hopefully can foreshadow a quick re-assimilation to NHL game speed for Carpenter and Boqvist when they do eventually return to the lineup themselves.

•   In Rockford IceHogs news, the team released goaltender Scott Darling from his Professional Tryout agreement this morning. Darling made one appearance for the IceHogs in a 5-2 loss to the Chicago Wolves. Pour one out for the short-lived return of the former Stanley Cup Champion.

•   Speaking of the IceHogs, they are still looking for their first win of the season, having an 0-3-1 start to the year. Wait…that sounds familiar.

•   A double Happy Blackhawks Birthday today for Michael Frolik and Darren Pang!

•   Also a Happy Birthday to the Greatest Basketball player ever, Michael Jordan!

•   Also, a huge Blackhawks fan!

•   While it wasn’t a Birthday, it was a HAPPY anniversary for a certain golf/hockey movie yesterday…

•   25 (!!) Years ago, Happy Gilmore was released in theaters (remember those?) and Adam Sandler gave us a pretty good patented drive. But not everyone was so impressed…

•   If you grew up in the 90’s or played golf, or hockey, or all three (like me) this was a pretty damn fun little moment on social media yesterday. I loved it.

Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.