Blackhawks: Marko Dano wants to replicate Marian Hossa's game


Blackhawks: Marko Dano wants to replicate Marian Hossa's game

Marko Dano described his style of play after his first practice session on Sunday.

“I like to play a hard game and Marian Hossa plays kind of the (same) style of game as me. But he’s at a different level,” Dano said of his fellow Slovakian, with a smile. “So I’m trying to catch him with that.”

Hossa and Dano reside in the same city in Slovakia (Trencin), and an 18-year-old Hossa played hockey with Dano’s father, Jozef. Otherwise, Dano’s been watching the Blackhawks right wing from afar. So to know he’ll be playing on the same team as Hossa come this fall is a thrill for the young forward.

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Dano, who the Blackhawks acquired in the seven-player deal that sent Brandon Saad to Columbus, is participating in prospect camp this week in Chicago. For Dano, it’s a chance to get acclimated to Chicago as well as the Blackhawks’ staff and players, some of which will be vying for jobs in the fall. But there’s no doubt he’s ready for the season and the chance to show the Blackhawks what he can do.

The trade came as a surprise to Dano, who comes here with Columbus teammate Artem Anisimov. The two played together some with the Blue Jackets, and just having that familiar face in the locker room should help the 20-year-old Dano.

“I'm a young guy so I'm glad there's a couple guys who I know, a couple guys who got traded with me. So I'm not starting from zero here,” Dano said. “[Anisimov] is a big guy, a responsible center, so it was fun playing with him.”

As much as the Blackhawks look for Anisimov to solve their second-line center issues, they’re just as thrilled to see what Dano can provide. He had a solid rookie season, recording eight goals and 13 assists in 35 games for the Blue Jackets. He’ll be another right wing for the club, although he’s fine with playing the left side, too.

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And for a young right wing who’s looking to hone his two-way game, there aren’t many better examples to follow than Hossa. Dano got a text from Hossa not long after Dano was traded here, and the two will get together for lunch soon.

“He’s a great player,” Dano said. “He’s played so many years here, so there are a lot of things I can learn from him.”

Dano has much to learn but he’s with a group that will teach him plenty. He was surprised when he was traded here last month. But to get a chance to improve his game, and to do it with Hossa and the Blackhawks, is going to be a treat for the young forward.

“It’s a great feeling for me to be a part of an organization that’s playing for a Cup [almost] every year,” Dano said. “Every player wants to win the Cup, and with this team there’s a bigger chance for me to raise the Cup above my head.”

Blackhawks release 2018-19 schedule


Blackhawks release 2018-19 schedule

Uncap those markers and start circling your calendars, Blackhawks fans. The 2018-19 season is officially out.

The Blackhawks will kick off their 91st campaign in franchise history with a road contest against the Ottawa Senators on Oct. 4 at 6:30 p.m. The home opener is set for Oct. 7, with an Original Six matchup against the Toronto Maple Leafs at 6 p.m.

The Blackhawks have 14 back-to-back games, and the longest road trip of the season is three, which takes place five times over the course of the season; the longest homestand is four games, from Dec. 12-18.

The biggest highlight of the season will be the Original Six Winter Classic Showdown between the Blackhawks and Boston Bruins on Jan. 1 at Notre Dame Stadium. It will be the sixth outdoor appearance for Chicago, and fourth in the Winter Classic.

The Blackhawks will also square off with the defending champion Washington Capitals on Nov. 21 at 6 p.m., and welcome them to Chicago on Jan. 20, set for NBC's Game of the Week at 11:30 a.m.

Here's a look at the full schedule:

Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman: 'We expect Corey to be back'

Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman: 'We expect Corey to be back'

Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman said that the team expects goalie Corey Crawford to be back next season around training camp. Bowman also mentioned that Crawford might speak about his status himself during the Blackhawks Convention.

“What I said at the end of the year was still the case now, which is we expect Corey to be back,” Bowman said in a Thursday afternoon conference call. “We don’t have any reason to think that’s not going to happen.”

According to Bowman, Blackhawks players, including Crawford, already have their eyes set on next season.

“At this point in the summer, all the players are preparing for next season,” Bowman said. “Corey’s in that same preparation mode.”

Crawford is nursing what has been labeled an upper-body injury by the team. The two-time Stanley Cup winner was put on the shelf for the rest of the season back in late December, and he has not seen the ice since he skated in a February practice.

“Nothing has changed,” Bowman said. “We expect him to be back and ready to go in training camp.”

The Blackhawks have chosen to keep any groundbreaking news with Crawford under wraps, which the organization has done with other player injuries in the past. Bowman spoke about his vagueness in this situation.

“We’ve never gone into specifics about injuries,” Bowman said. “I realize this probably gets more attention because he’s our starting goalie and he won the Stanley Cup.”

Fans will have to take a wait-and-see approach, because it is unlikely that there will be a significant update regarding Crawford’s health before the season gets closer to its start.

Last season, Crawford only appeared in 28 games, posting a record of 16-9 with 782 saves before going down for the rest of the year.