How to Fake It: The 2022/23 Blackhawks
The Blackhawks begin their season tonight against the Stanley Cup champion Colorado Avalanche in Denver.
State of play: Blackhawks brass should get some credit for being the only local sports franchise to have the guts to tell the fans what's actually happening. It's a full rebuild at the United Center. No bones about it.
- You may find yourself at a season kickoff gathering tonight, so here's a quick primer to get you up to speed:
What's happening: The only two players left from the Stanley Cup runs are stars Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane.
- Both are in the final year of their eight-year contracts, which usually means they won't last past the trade deadline.
- A well-timed, "It's going to be hard to see Kane in a Rangers sweater," will elicit both laughs and groans. Follow that with, "As long as Toews doesn't end up on the Blues," and you will earn instant credibility. Hawks fans hate the St. Louis Blues.
State of play: The Hawks enter this season with a lot of rookies and journeymen. If you find a lull in the conversation, talk about newly acquired forward Max Domi.
- "Domi from the Hurricanes? He single-handedly beat the Bruins in that Game 7 last year." The party will love you. But a word of warning — leave on a high note to avoid any follow-ups because that's all we've got on Max Domi.
- Also, if the conversation turns to goaltenders, a quick "If Petr Mrazek stays healthy, we might have a winner. He's no Corey Crawford, but can anybody be Cro?" At this point, ask for a beer and someone will instantly get you one.
What's more: If the Hawks can't keep up, talk about how you can't wait to go to the UC this year to see them live.
- Hit 'em with this line: "The Hawks have the best pregame in hockey that isn't a ripoff of Medieval Times."
- That sly dig at the Vegas Knights will get you invited to many games this year.
If you watch: The puck drops at 8:30pm, televised on TNT.
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