Preps Talk

Blackhawks President & CEO John McDonough to be next featured guest on Inside Look

Blackhawks President & CEO John McDonough to be next featured guest on Inside Look

CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS PRESIDENT & CEO JOHN MCDONOUGH TO BE THE NEXT FEATURED GUEST ON
COMCAST SPORTSNETS MONTHLY INTERVIEW SERIES, INSIDE LOOK

Inside Look presented by Cadillac, hosted by Comcast SportsNets Pat Boyle, featuring John McDonough to debut Saturday, March 31 at 6:00 PMCSNChicago.com to provide additional web extras coverage of Inside Look, including extended video clips

Chicago, IL (March 27, 2012) Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the Chicago Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs and White Sox, continues to delve into the lives of some of the biggest names in Chicago sports with its candid, monthly, one-on-one interview series Inside Look presented by Cadillac.

Debuting Saturday, March 31 at 6:00 PM, Comcast SportsNets Pat Boyle hosts an exclusive one-on-one interview with Chicago Blackhawks President & CEO JOHN MCDONOUGH. McDonough discusses everything from the challenges of rebuilding the Blackhawks franchiseto his pride and organization-wide appreciation for the teams Stanley Cup championship in 2010. Plus McDonough also discusses his successful tenure with the Cubs and much more.

In addition, viewers are urged to check out Comcast SportsNets website, CSNChicago.com, for additional web extras interview content never before seen on TV, which includes interview footage with Blackhawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz and Executive Vice President Jay Blunk.

Fans will also be able to watch every Inside Look guest interview online after it debuts on Comcast SportsNet. Comcast SportsNet will also re-air Inside Look with John McDonough on the following datestimes: Thu, Apr. 5 at 11:00pm - Fri, Apr. 6 at 11:00am - Sun, Apr. 8 at 2:30pm & Fri, Apr. 13 at 4:30pm.

Note the following quotes from Inside Look with John McDonough presented by Cadillac premiering Saturday, March 31 on Comcast SportsNet:

MCDONOUGH on the daunting task of rebuilding the Blackhawks organization:
The first couple weeks I would be driving home on the Eisenhower and I would be saying to myself, I think I made a mistake. Now, this was to myself. Because again, this was much grander than I thought and the franchise, I thought, needed a complete overhaul from top to bottom and I almost didn't know where to start. And I am thinking, we have to start from scratch and that, at that point, is exactly what we did. It almost became personal.

MCDONOUGH on the state of the franchise when he first accepted the job as Blackhawks President:
I didnt feel it was in a very good place. This was a much more daunting ordeal than I had ever anticipated, but not insurmountable. I remember, after the press conference, I gathered the entire organization or the people that were here at the time and I really remember the message very clearly - the expectations are going to be higher, the pace is going to be swifter and you are going to need to be onboardand as I looked out at this group, I could see in their eyes, a good number of them were not onboard. They just were not onboard. And then it got into that we had to make seismic, profound change. This wasn't an assignment. This was not an assessment where I could have sat back, looked at the terrain, kind of a two-year plan and report back to (Rocky). This was a 911. There was a great sense of urgency.

MCDONOUGH on thinking about the Cubs on his way down to the Blackhawks Stanley Cup Championship Parade:
I remember driving down to the parade with my wife and I remember having this moment saying, I really thought this would be with the Cubs...I really thought this moment would be with the Cubs. I will tell you something that I never said publicly before. In my mind's eye...I dont know why I had this indelible snapshot, but I did. In my mind's eye, about eight to ten years ago I had envisioned a fly ball to centerfieldCorey Patterson catches itnational bedlam ensues. The Cubs win the World Series and it's the biggest civic celebration in the history of sports. That is what I thought would happen. I believed that was going to happen. I never envisioned it would be with the Blackhawks.

MCDONOUGH on wanting the Stanley Cup Championship Parade to last forever & moving forward the following week:
While I was on the bus and there were a few million people at this parade, I felt how proud I was to be from Chicago and whether it's with the Cubs or the Blackhawks that I am really fortunate to play a small role and be a part of this. I needed to savor that momentI never wanted that parade ride to end. I wanted to continue to go down North Michigan Avenue and go down Lake Shore Drive and just go on forever. Unfortunately that couldn't happen. I remember coming back on Monday, the parade was on a Friday, and really sending a simple message to the staff, business operations and hockey operations - Party's over, let's move on.

IHSA Football Playoff Pairings Show Roundup

IHSA Football Playoff Pairings Show Roundup

CLASS 1A

Revealing the Class 1A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 1A Bracket

CLASS 2A

Revealing the Class 2A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 2A Bracket

CLASS 3A

Revealing the Class 3A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 3A Bracket

CLASS 4A

Revealing the Class 4A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 4A Bracket

Predicting Class 1A-4A

CLASS 5A

Revealing the Class 5A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 5A Bracket

CLASS 6A

Revealing the Class 6A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 6A Bracket

CLASS 7A

Revealing the Class 7A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 7A Bracket

CLASS 8A

Revealing the Class 8A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 8A Bracket

Class 7A and Class 8A Predictions

 

In ugly home opener, Lauri Markkanen gives a glimmer of hope

In ugly home opener, Lauri Markkanen gives a glimmer of hope

Keeping the game simple is often a tough task for rookies entering the NBA, but it seems Lauri Markkanen has been a quick learner in that aspect.

Through two games he’s probably the lone bright spot, especially after the Bulls’ cringe-inducing 87-77 loss to the San Antonio Spurs in their home opener at the United Center.

Jumper not falling? Okay, go to the basket.

“It wasn’t falling so I tried to get to the rim a couple times,” Markkanen said. “At the end, I was like let’s do it and I connected on a 3-pointer, I felt more open just because I was at the rim. I think that helped.”

He was asked what the difference was in the second game of his career compared to the first.

“I mean the crowd was chanting for us (tonight),” Markkanen said, referring to Thursday in Toronto.

He wasn’t attempting to display any dry wit but applying common sense seems to work for him, even though he’s been thrust into a situation after an incident that doesn’t make any sense.

With Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic out for the foreseeable future, playing a game-high 37 minutes will be more common than anomaly.

“Whatever your minutes are, you gotta play them to the best of your ability,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He’s being allowed to play through some mistakes right now. He’s gonna play heavy minutes every night.”

He only shot five of 14 but achieved his first double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds after a 17-point, eight-rebound debut against the Raptors Thursday.

No, someone didn’t open a door for a draft to come into the United Center on that three-pointer that went wide left, but it didn’t stop him from being assertive and continuing to look for his shot.

There was plenty of muck, easy to see on the stat sheet. The 38 percent shooting overall, the lack of penetration, the 29 percent shooting from 3-point range and 20 turnovers.

It’s not hard to imagine what Markkanen will look like with competent and effective NBA players around him, along with a true facilitating point guard that will find him in this offense.

“Markkanen is a wonderful player,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “He’s aggressive, he’s smart and obviously, he can shoot the ball. He’s just going to get better and better as he figures things out.”

He received a crash course, facing the likes of Pau Gasol, LaMarcus Aldridge and Rudy Gay Saturday night. On one instance, Gay drove baseline and made Markkanen buckle with a 3-point play.

Aldridge had 24 shots in 32 minutes as a new focal point with Kawhi Leonard out with injury.

So he’s not getting treated with kid gloves, nor is he backing down from the assignments.

“He didn’t shoot the ball well but he battled,” Hoiberg said. “He had a tough assignment with Pau, who’s gonna be in the Hall of Fame one day. Good experience. He guarded Aldridge, Rudy Gay some. He battled, he fought them.”

Even with the airball, had the moment that gives the Bulls fans hope, when he drove on Gasol, spun and hooked a lefty layup while being fouled by the veteran in the first half—giving the United Center faithful something to have faith in for a moment.

“Sometimes you get labeled as a shooter. That’s the label Lauri had,” Hoiberg said. “But he really is a complete basketball player. He’s versatile, he can put in on the deck. He slides his feet very well for a guy that’s seven feet tall, someone his age. Yeah, he’s learning on the fly. He’s gonna have ups and downs, as young as he is. He’s gonna have some struggles at times. But he’s played pretty darn well for everything he’s been through, understanding two days ago he’s gonna be in the starting lineup.”

And for all the bad air around the Bulls right now, from the on-court product to the off-court drama that seems to follow them around like Pigpen, it would be even worse if Markkanen’s first two games had him looking like a corpse, or someone who would be a couple years away from reasonably contributing to an NBA team.

“He’s good, he’s very good,” Gasol said. “I like him. I like his game.”