Blackhawks

Alexandre Fortin passes latest test with Blackhawks

Alexandre Fortin passes latest test with Blackhawks

The fact that Alexandre Fortin, who went from prospect camp invite to signed player, is still at Blackhawks training camp speaks volumes for how he’s impressed the team.

His line mates in Tuesday’s game confirmed it a little more.

Fortin started with Patrick Kane and Artem Anisimov when the Blackhawks beat the Detroit Red Wings 6-1 on Tuesday night. It was a good night for the forward, who scored a third-period goal and recorded an assist on Richard Panik’s power-play goal.

While he said Tuesday morning that he’d be fighting nerves playing with some of the Blackhawks’ best, Fortin didn’t look it come game time.

“I think that I was a little bit more calm. Kane and Anisimov talked to me before the game (to) just play my game and everything's going to be all right,” Fortin said after the game. “It's hard. It's a lot of pressure to play with two very good guys. It's stress, it's a lot of stress. But I just have to play my game and every shift that I'm doing, I'm just more comfortable and it's what I did tonight.”

Part of the Fortin promotion is coach Joel Quenneville still tinkering with lines, trying things out. But Fortin has been impressive in every situation in which he’s been thrown, and he earned a chance with Kane and Anisimov.

“You certainly like his speed, I think that’s the thing you notice right off the bat,” Quenneville said. “He’s got good patience and play recognition. He played with a couple of players who are definitely special in a lot of ways, so it was a different type of line he was with. He wasn’t too intimidated by their presence. So I commend him on handling that situation as well.”

What will the Blackhawks do with Fortin? He very well could start the season on the roster, but would it be for long. If Fortin played in more than nine games, the first year of his entry-level deal would be burned. The Blackhawks faced a similar situation with Brandon Saad at the start of the 2011-12 season. Saad played in the first two regular-season games before being sent back to the Saginaw Spirit; the Blackhawks recalled Saad for the playoffs that season.

[MORE BLACKHAWKS: Duncan Keith has two assists in preseason debut]

Then again, if Fortin’s current work translates into early regular-season games, the Blackhawks may be tempted to keep him longer. Regardless, there’s no doubt the Blackhawks like what they’ve seen in Fortin. The forward has talked about how much his life has changed in just these past few months. It’s all been good, and the future should be positive, too.

“Certainly to forecast down the road, it’s encouraging,” Quenneville said of Fortin. “Certainly we have some real tough decisions to make, and he’s one of the guys that’s making it interesting.”

Notes:

  • Referee TJ Luxmore was down briefly after taking a redirected puck off his leg. He finished the game.
  • Corey Crawford is scheduled to play the Blackhawks’ entire preseason finale on Saturday against the St. Louis Blues.
  • Quenneville said the Blackhawks could keep 23 players on the roster to start the regular season.

Blackhawks honor Dave Bolland with “One More Shift” Friday

Blackhawks honor Dave Bolland with “One More Shift” Friday

Former Blackhawks forward Dave Bolland will be honored with “One More Shift” on the ice at United Center this Friday prior to Hawks matchup against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Bolland will stand with the team during the National Anthem and skate on ice in full gear. Along with time on ice, the United Center will also honor Bolland by showcasing his career highlights throughout the arena.

The Blackhawks will be celebrating the 10 year anniversary of their 2010 Stanley Cup win at five games this season, coinciding with “One More Shift” nights to honor individual players.  The United Center Atrium doors will open at 4pm, giving fans a chance to look at the interactive photo opportunities and historical items on display. Bolland will participate in a Q&A in the atrium at 6:30 p.m. before he hits the ice.

Dave Bolland was drafted by the Blackhawks in 2004 and spent ten seasons of his NHL career in Chicago. Bolland played with the team during two Stanley Cup championships, scoring the game-winning goal in the final minute of Game 6 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals against the Bruins. Bolland played in all 22 playoff games in 2010, garnering 16 points (eight goals, eight assists) which shared fifth among Blackhawks skaters in the postseason. Bolland recorded his best season of his career during the 2008-09 campaign with the Blackhawks, skating in a career-high 81 regular-season games and recording career highs in goals (19), assists (28) and points (47).

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 Talk Podcast: Blackhawks show urgency vs. the undefeated

blackhawks_oilers.jpg
USA Today

Blackhawks Talk Podcast: Blackhawks show urgency vs. the undefeated

The Blackhawks finally got on the board for the season and did so in front of the 500th consecutive capacity crowd at the United Center.

Pat Boyle, Jamal Mayers and Charlie Roumeliotis break down the impressive performance by the Blackhawks against the undefeated Edmonton Oilers and discuss how Jeremy Colliton’s message got through to Alex Nylander and the rest of the team.

Plus, after an impressive performance in net, should Corey Crawford get the next game vs. the Blue Jackets? And what does the future have in store for Kirby Dach? Jamal makes a bold prediction.

0:54 – Blackhawks finally show urgency in 2nd period

2:47 – Penalty kill starting to show some life

5:00 – Thoughts on the Shaw/Strome/Kane line

6:43 – Blackhawks eliminating some defensive breakdowns

9:23 – Big rebound performance from Corey Crawford

11:36 – Colliton’s message to Alex Nylander got through

15:21 – Brandon Saad has been a pleasant surprise early on

17:15 – Dominik Kubalik’s impressive performance

18:31 – Will Kirby Dach be with the Blackhawks all season?

22:42 – Does Crawford or Lehner start vs. the Blue Jackets?

Listen to the entire episode here or in the embedded player below.

Blackhawks Talk Podcast

Subscribe:

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.