Blackhawks

NBC Sports Chicago to carry 70 Blackhawks games in 2019-20

blackhawks.jpg
USA TODAY

NBC Sports Chicago to carry 70 Blackhawks games in 2019-20

NBC Sports Chicago and the Chicago Blackhawks announced the team's broadcast schedule for the 2019-20 season on Tuesday.

NBC Sports Chicago will be the exclusive broadcast holder for 70 Blackhawks games this season, with a number of games appearing on NBC Sports Chicago+. Games appearing on the Plus channel will be announced at a later date, in conjunction with the 2019-20 Chicago Bulls broadcast schedule. 

NBC Sports Chicago will kick things off with the Blackhawks' regular season opener on Oct. 4 at 1 p.m. against the Philadelphia Flyers in Prague, Czech Republic. The Blackhawks' home opener will then follow on Oct. 4 against the San Jose Sharks, also airing on NBC Sports Chicago.

The Blackhawks will also appear on NBCSN a league-high 12 times in 2019-20, as well as two additional (non-exclusive) NBCSN games, bringing the total to 14. The first NBCSN game is Nov. 13 at 9 p.m. CT against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Blackhawks Pregame Live will air ahead of every NBC Sports Chicago broadcast, with Blackhawks Postgame Live immediately following. And, for the first time ever, all 82 Blackhawks games will be live-streamed; the 70 games will be available to authenticated NBC Sports Chicago subscribers on NBCSportsChicago.com and the MyTeams app, while the 12 NBCSN games can be live streamed at NBCSports.com or the NBC Sports app.

Six of the Blackhawks' preseason games will air on NBC Sports Chicago/NBC Sports Chicago+, as previously announced.

Blackhawks National TV Schedule (home games in bold)

Nov. 13 at Vegas Golden Knights 9 p.m. CT NBCSN
Nov. 26 vs. Dallas Stars 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Dec. 18 vs. Colorado Avalanche 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Jan. 5 vs. Detroit Red Wings 6:30 p.m. CT NBCSN
Feb. 4 at Minnesota Wild 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Feb. 5 vs. Boston Bruins 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Feb. 19 vs. New York Rangers 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Feb. 25 at St. Louis Blues 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
March 8 vs. St. Louis Blues 6:30 p.m. CT NBCSN
March 11 vs. San Jose Sharks 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
March 22 vs. Nashville Predators 6 p.m. CT NBCSN
March 25 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins 7 p.m. CT NBCSN
Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.

What changes should Blackhawks make to power play?

blackhawks_usa_today.jpg
USA Today

What changes should Blackhawks make to power play?

In the month of October, no team scored fewer goals than the Blackhawks (25). Since the calendar flipped to November, no team has scored more goals than the Blackhawks (38).

Oh, how things can change in a month.

But the interesting part about the offensive turnaround is the fact the Blackhawks are doing it without having much power play success.

The Blackhawks have had 65 power-play opportunities this season and have converted on only nine of those attempts. That's a 13.8 percent success rate, which ranks 28th in the NHL.

Head coach Jeremy Colliton changed things up at the beginning of the month by dividing the units to spread the wealth rather than overload the first unit, the latter of which worked so well from December and on last season. 

It's time to go back to overloading the first unit.

Erik Gustafsson, who has three goals in his last four games, is finally looking like himself again after a 16-game goal drought to start the season. Patrick Kane is on a 10-game point streak. Alex DeBrincat and Dylan Strome have combined for 19 points (three goals, 16 assists) in the last 10 games. And Jonathan Toews has nine points (three goals, six assists) in November after having only two points (one goal, one assist) in October.

There's a newfound confidence within the group, especially the top players, and reuniting the five of them could translate into power play success. 

And while we're on the subject: It's also time to put Kirby Dach on one of the two power play units.

He has seven points in a five-game point streak and four goals during that span. He's noticeably getting more and more comfortable each game and it's reached the point where giving him more responsibility wouldn't be overwhelming for the 18-year-old, who's ready for more ice time.

The Blackhawks' power play is the one area of their game that hasn't been consistent this season. If they can get it back to the level it was at during the second half of last season, it's scary to think what the ceiling of this team could be because it doesn't look like their 5-on-5 game or elite goaltending will drop off anytime soon.

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Blackhawks games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.

Blackhawks receive Joseph Cramarossa from the Penguins in minor league trade

joseph-cramarossa.jpg
USA Today

Blackhawks receive Joseph Cramarossa from the Penguins in minor league trade

The Blackhawks have acquired forward Joseph Cramarossa from the Pittsburgh Penguins for forward Graham Knott in a minor league trade. Cramarossa will report to the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League.

The 27-year-old had three points (two goals, one assist) in nine games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this AHL season. Cramarossa was the alternate captain during the 2018-19 in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, playing 56 regular-season games, scoring four goals.

Cramarossa was initially drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the third round of the 2011 NHL Draft, making his NHL debut on the Ducks in 2016. He played with the Ducks until he was traded to the Vancouver in 2017, playing in 10 games for the Canucks. He signed with Calgary as a free agent in September 2017 before being acquired by the Penguins in February 2018. Throughout seven seasons in the AHL (2013-2019) playing for the Norfolk Admirals, San Diego Gulls, Stockton and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Cramarossa recorded 72 points (32G, 40A) in 294 regular-season games.

Graham Knott is a 22-year-old forward selected by the Blackhawks in the second round of the 2015 NHL draft. Knott had eight goals in 126 career games with the IceHogs. The Blackhawks have now traded their top draft selections from 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2009. Only Dach (2019), Boqvist (2018) and DeBrincat (2016) remain from this decade.

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Blackhawks games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Blackhawks easily on your device.