We’re still waiting for the Blackhawks to play another game because the schedule makers gave them almost a full week off between a win in San Jose and hosting Detroit. So here we are, watching the Bulls get a W and baseball’s playoffs go crazy. Fun times!
- When the Blackhawks face the Red Wings tomorrow night, Detroit will be without two forwards. Tyler Bertuzzi suffered a hand injury that will cost him 4-6 weeks. And, yesterday, Jakub Vrana was placed in the Player Assistance Program.
- The PAP was created jointly by the NHL and NHLPA in 1996 to help players and their families deal with substance abuse, mental health, and other personal challenges. Last season, Montreal goaltender Carey Price spent a month in the program. I hope Vrana gets the help he needs while out because his life is much more important than being on the ice.
- During the Blackhawks’ down time, Scott Powers made a trip to Seattle to dig into Kevin Korchinski‘s development and season with the fabulous Thunderbirds.
- Powers points out that the Blackhawks are keeping close tabs on Korchinski. Last week, he was visited by Brian Campbell and Blackhawks development strength and conditioning coach Christian Burrus while playing three games.
- When he was in Chicago, I was always impressed by Korchinski’s perspective. And that stuck out again in the Powers piece. Korchinski talked about playing the piano to get away from the ice. Here’s what he said about why, and — again — the larger perspective from an 18-year-old is fascinating.
“You have so much in life after hockey,” Korchinski told Powers after the Thunderbirds game on Friday. “If you have a 20-year career, you still have so much life. And even after practice and you do all your stuff, you might be at the rink from 8 (a.m.) to 4 (p.m.), you might have a long day, but you still have time, you can see people and do stuff, you want to keep your mind going. My mom wanted me to be a big piano person when I was a kid, so I kept going with it. She always thought it makes you smarter, so that’s how I started.”
- Today’s “yup, we’re talking about the Patrick Kane/Jonathan Toews trade rumors” story comes from Ben Pope. He spoke with Danny Wirtz and Jaime Faulkner about how the top tier of the organization is staying on top of what it might look like if/when the future Hall of Famers aren’t wearing a Blackhawks’ sweater any longer.
- Chris Vosters is going to host a podcast this season, talking with players and sharing some additional insights outside the broadcast booth. The Hawks shared the first conversation with Jack Johnson yesterday. He talked about how classy it was that Toews offered to have the entire Blackhawks team on the bench with him in Denver for the Avs’ banner raising ceremony to celebrate their new teammate’s accomplishment.
- The biggest dumpster fire in the NHL right now is in Vancouver, where the Canucks have started the season historically bad; they’ve blown multi-goal leads in four losses to start the season, something no team has ever done. New Blackhawks forward Jason Dickinson got out of that mess when he was traded to Chicago, but finding out was… awkward.
- Finally, the Bulls came back in Miami and won their first game of the new season last night. It was a terrific game to watch. As a reminder, you should be following our Bulls coverage. And, as another reminder, you should never count DeMar DeRozan out.