Today the Chicago Blackhawks fulfilled my demand by adding another defensemen. Thirty year old Johnny Oduya began his hockey career in the J20 SuperElit, then bounced between a few European and Junior teams including the two teams in the QJMHL; Moncton Wildcats and Victoriaville Tigers, back to Hammarby IF, Djurgårdens IF and finally Frölunda HC before making his first apperence with the New Jersey Devils in the 2006-2007 season where he played three more season and was traded to the Atlanta Thrashers. Some might say giving up a 2013 2nd-round pick & 2013 3rd-round pick might of been to much. The Hawks might have traded away more value than would he is worth, but in the end hes here, and the team needs help on the blueline.
Just a few days ago Icethetics posted their NHL Jersey Watch for 2012. Reports say the black jersey from 2008 will make its return. I have been a fan of this jersey and was sort of disappointed when they used the Winter Classic jersey in replace of this design. I personally think the logo is the best thing about the Blackhawks design, followed by the color scheme. The circle logo from the Winter Classic wasn’t that good, and the design was pretty basic and I have seen it already. Wasn’t anything that stuck out to me. What I did like was the main color being black. I really like the team in black. I hope Icethetics is right and this happens next year.
The mascots all came out before the skills comp. and played a quick game. They took a group shot after and of course Carlton would pose in the opposite direction.
Five players from each team will compete, one rookie per team, a goalie, and three All-Stars, one of which will be skating backwards. That is always fun to watch, as well as the Goalies skating, wounder who will crash first? A point is awarded to the winner of the race, and one to the team who won the event.
Three skaters will be compete against the opposite teams goalie. One rookie and two All-Stars will compete against a goalie. One point is awarded to the shooter with the highest fan votes. Each skater will attempt 3 shots. This will be a fun event to watch, since the players add some skill and are less serious than they would be in a regular game shootout.
Four players will compete, three All-Stars and one rookie, as well as four passers for each team. Five points are available, with the winner receiving the point. This is where the snipers shine. I’m always amazed at the players who hit the targets in 4-5 shots. Hell if someone does it in 3 shots I’ll become a fan of that player forever.
The Skills Challenge consists of five different events, One timers, Passing, Puck Control, Stick Handling, and Accuracy shooting. One timers have three shooters, and 1 passer. Each shooter needs to score three goals. The next event is Passing, where one passer needs to pass the puck into each of the six nets. Puck Control Relay consists of one skater who will skate through a series of cones. Stick Handling consists of one skater who will attempt to control the puck through a series of pucks. Finally the Accuracy Shooting event returns with one shooter per team who must hit four targets. This is my second favorite event, by the time this starts, fans are pretty excited. The competitive spirit comes out in all of the players in this event.
Four players from each team will attempt their hardest shot. Five points available, with the winner of each match being awarded the point. Last year we had Chara destroy this event, then in the KHL he was outdone. Lets see if he can beat that. I would hate to be a goalie with these shots coming at me.
This is my favorite event, 11 All-Stars, one Rookie and three Goalies from each team, with a goal scored counting as one point. Shooters that score move onto the next round with the event ending with all shooters being stooped by the goaltenders.
All-Star Weekend is coming quicker than you might think. It is the beginning of the month, and just about the beginning of classes for some of you. The month might drag on for some, and go by fast for others. With just six games left on the schedule till the All Star Break, the Blackhawks surely are ready for a little break. With Patrick Sharp hurt, a break is much appreciated from my eyes. But for three players, their break will be spent in Ottawa. Jonathon Toews and Patrick Kane will appear in their 3rd All-Star Games, and Marian Hossa will make his 5th appearance. Hossa will make a return to the city that drafted him as a young lad. Their will be no one representing the Blackhawks Blue Line this year, instead Dustin Byfuglien and Brian Campbell will be their instead. I know I am asking for a lot hoping that Toews, Kane, Hossa, Campbell and Byfuglien make it on the same team, but that would be awesome.
The Senators are well represented, and the fans sure did vote a ton during the Fan Voting. Daniel Alfredsson, Jason Spezza, Milan Michalekm and Erik Karlsson all made it in to represent the home team. Toronto’s Dion Phaneuf and Bostons Tim Thomas also made it in during the fan voting. But you should know that by now, if not than yay I helped you learn!
Theres a few players on here that I am happy to see during the game. Claude Giroux, Steven Stamkos, and Phil Kessel mostly. Those three deserve it the most out of the whole list.
The entertainment starts Thursday January 26th at 7PM CST with the Fantasy Draft, the skills competition Saturday January 28th at 6PM CST and finally the NHL All-Star Game is Sunday January 29th at 3PM CST in Ottawa. You can catch the All-Star events on the all new NBC Sports Network, as well as TSN and other channels.
The World Juniors are over, Sweden won Gold in OT vs the Silver Medalist Russia, and Canada beat Finland for Bronze. The good news about this for Blackhawks fans would be Sweden winning gold. The Blackhawks had three Swedish players in the tournament. Swedish Center Joakim Nordstrom had a total of 4 goals and 1 assist with a +6 rating. While Winger Ludvig Rensfeldt had 1 goal and 5 assists with a +2 rating. Goaltender Johan Mattsson did not participate in a game. On the American side Blueliner Adam Clendening had 1 goal and 4 assists with a +2 rating. While his linemate Stephen Johns had 1 goal and 1 assist with an even rating. Winger Brandon Saad had 1 goal and 5 assists with a +8 rating.