Blackhawks Circus Trip Wrap-Up

When the final horn sounded on Saturday night, the Chicago Blackhawks were ready to board a plane headed for Chicago.

The annual Circus Trip is over.

At the end of the trip, the Blackhawks emerge with a 4-2 record and eight points in the six games. There were a lot of questions when the trip started, and despite some of those questions being answered even more have been raised. However, if the performances from the Hawks on Friday afternoon and Saturday night showed us anything, it’s that the chemistry that the team was lacking may have been found on the road.

The biggest, and most pleasant surprise of the trip was the play of Corey Crawford. The young Blackhawks netminder won all three of his starts on the trip, and allowed only three goals against 77 shots – a ridiculous .961 save percentage! In his last five starts, Crawford is 4-1 and has allowed only seven goals against 129 shots (an incredible .946 save percentage).

Other trends that were encouraging from the trip included a noticeably increased amount of physical play, especially in the final two games. As you will see in the stat summary of the trip below, Bryan Bickell led the team with 12 hits in the six games, while Troy Brouwer added 11 hits. The Blackhawks also picked up their pressure on the puck before it got to the crease, and blocked a big number of shots on the trip. Duncan Keith was credited with a team-leading 15 blocked shots in the six games.

Overall, the Blackhawks have a lot of positives to take away from the trip. The team won games at Edmonton, Vancouver, Anaheim and Los Angeles. The Hawks also played fairly well in San Jose despite the outcome. Patrick Sharp led the team with eight points and five goals in six games, but five Hawks players had at least five points on the trip. Brian Campbell led the team with a plus-nine rating.

Outside of the obvious superstars, perhaps the most valuable player on the Circus Trip was Jake Dowell. He posted strong numbers across the board, played smart, strong, physical hockey and won critical faceoffs throughout the trip.

The Blackhawks now get a much-needed light week, hosting four games in the next 11 days. They welcome the St. Louis Blues to the United Center on Tuesday night.

Here are the stats for the road trip:

Forwards:

  • Patrick Sharp: 5 G, 3 A, 8 pts, +5, 2 hits
  • Patrick Kane: 2 G, 5 A, 7 pts, +3, 1 hit
  • Jonathan Toews: 4 G, 1 A, 5 pts, +3, 4 hits
  • Marian Hossa: 5 A, 5 pts, +4, 4 hits
  • Jack Skille: 1 G, 4 A, 5 pts, +5, 6 hits
  • Troy Brouwer: 3 G, 1 A, 4 pts, +1, 11 hits
  • Jake Dowell: 1 G, 3 A, 4 pts, +6, 9 hits
  • Bryan Bickell: 1 G, 2 A, 3 pts, +1, 12 hits
  • Dave Bolland: 2 A, 2 pts, +3, 5 hits
  • Tomas Kopecky: 2 A, 2 pts, +1, 4 hits
  • Fernando Pisani: 2 G, 1 A, 3 pts, E, 6 hits
  • John Scott: 2 hits, 1 fight victory
  • Viktor Stalberg: 0 pts, E, 9 hits

Defensemen:

  • Duncan Keith: 1 G, 1 A, 2 pts, 15 blocked shots, +2, 3 hits
  • Brent Seabrook: 1 G, 1 A, 2 pts, 9 blocked shots, +2, 10 hits
  • Brian Campbell: 1 A, 1 pt, 6 blocked shots, +9, 4 hits
  • Niklas Hjalmarsson: 1 G, 1 A, 2 pts, 9 blocked shots,+5, 5 hits
  • Jassen Cullimore: 7 blocked shots, +4, 4 hits
  • Nick Boynton: 2 A, 2 pts, 10 blocked shots, +2, 2 hits

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One Response to Blackhawks Circus Trip Wrap-Up

  1. Schumi says:

    I remember being brushed off after the Cup and after the trade regarding comments in terms of Buff’s value, contributions, etc., etc., etc. to the Blackhawks. I even remember some of the mindless puckhead followers of this blog even trying to make it a black/race card thing. Whatever. At the end of the day, the game is Hockey with the game played on white ice but the results laid out in plain black print. The Blackhawks have struggled mightily season to date while the Thrashers are up and coming. And to wit:

    PLAYER
    GP
    G
    A
    PTS
    +/-

    Patrick Sharp
    25 15 12 27 -6
    Dustin Byfuglien*
    24 9 16 25 4
    Marian Hossa
    21 8 10 18 4
    Duncan Keith
    26 2 13 15 -4
    Troy Brouwer
    26 4 9 13 1
    Seabrook
    26 3 9 12 3
    Kopecky
    25 2 9 11 -9
    Bickell
    23 4 6 10 2
    Dowell
    26 4 6 10 8

    *16th in NHL in Scoring (Total Points)
    *Leads all NHL Defensemen in Total Points, Goals and leads the NHL in Game Winning Goals with 4.

    For the record, I am 15 year Hawks season ticket holder who bleeds Red just like you, and who hates that we are are stuggling, just like you. However, I just happen to think open mindedly that Buff is “currently” making a huge impact for another team that he could instead be making here for us where he deservedly belongs. I’m sure we’ll “face-off” on this issue sometime during the season – but for now, its my Home Ice and I just won in a shootout.
    [P.S. YOUR Bears looked real good against the Eagles!]

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