Blackhawks

Hawks to honor legends on Heritage Night

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Hawks to honor legends on Heritage Night

Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011
7:32 PM

By Tracey Myers
CSNChicago.com

The 1960-61 Chicago Blackhawks, who won the Cup 50 years ago, can relate to the remaining Blackhawks who won it last season. They remember the joy of claiming the Cup and the feeling of being on top. And since most were there again in 1961-62, they remember just how hard it was to do it again.

We had our eyes on it (in 61-62). We could beat certain teams. But there was always something in the second or third period, wed hit the post or it bounced off the guys stick or went off our ass. And everybody had a good club, said Stan Mikita, one of several 61 Blackhawks who are here to be honored at Sunday nights Heritage Night. Anybody can repeat. But you need luck to go with the talent.

Several of the 61 Blackhawks, including Mikita, Bill Hay, Bobby Hull, Glenn Hall and Ab McDonald will take the ice Sunday night before the 2010-11 squad hosts the New York Islanders. The 61 team will remember how great it was to hoist that Cup. On Saturday, they recalled how tough it is to hold onto it.

When you get to the top, everyone wants to knock you off. Its always that way, no matter what, McDonald said. Everybody wants to knock off No. 1. Whether they become No. 1 or not doesnt matter. They want to beat No. 1.

Wayne Hicks said, its just that it was so tough to win in those days and still is. It takes dedication and very hard work to do it. Any player whos won knows that.

The 61-62 Blackhawks finished the regular-season 31-26-13, third in the then six-team league, but lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Stanley Cup Finals. This years team has struggled, and was eighth in the Western Conference entering Saturdays games.

As for advice for this years team in weathering the storm, Mikita had this to say.

I would say to anybody if youre going to beat a guy, beat him with your best effort, Mikita said. The same goes for defense. You have to think, that guys not getting by me. Give him your best shot. If you dont have your best shot youre in trouble. If its the other way, youve got a chance.

Whatever advice comes, captain Jonathan Toews said its worth heeding.

No matter how good you are, you never know when youre going to be back there. To even get two rounds of the playoffs is a pretty tough thing. Obviously were learning that, he said. Last year we worked hard and now you see how difficult it is to get back to where you want to be. But were not going to let that shake us, thats for sure.
Halls take
Glenn Hall said Saturday hes amazed with how fast the pro game has become since his days. He was also struck by the size of the players and, of course, that goaltending equipment.

Even if it hits you, it doesnt hurt, he said. We had very little equipment. You used to beg to get new stuff. You figured you must be on the trading block because you asked for new equipment.

Hall faced his share of big shooters in his day. The biggest, however, was teammate Bobby Hull.

He had the hardest shot. Dont tell me how lucky I was that I didnt have to look at him in a game. I had to look at him 10 times a week in practice. It wasnt much fun facing Bobby.
They said it

I was president of the Calgary Flames for five years and I had to shower alone because I had the Indian head tattoed on my rear end. I didnt want to show them that. Former Blackhawks center Bill Hay

Lets see, whos the best-looking guy? Stan Mikita, on what current Blackhawk reminds him of himself.

Isnt he a super person? So humble. Hes an all-around hockey player. He does it all. Ab McDonald on Jonathan Toews

Tracey Myers is CSNChicago.com's Blackhawks Insider. Follow Tracey on Twitter @TramyersCSN for up-to-the-minute Hawks information.

Getting to know four newly-signed Blackhawks

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AP

Getting to know four newly-signed Blackhawks

The Blackhawks announced Monday that they have officially agreed to terms with forward Dominik Kahun, defensemen Lucas Carlsson and Darren Raddysh and goaltender Kevin Lankinen on entry-level contracts.

Kahun ($925,000 cap hit), Lankinen ($925,000) and Raddysh ($730,000) each signed two-year deals that run through the 2019-20 season while Carlsson's is a three-year deal that runs through the 2020-21 campaign and carries a cap hit of $792,500.

So who are these guys? Let's meet them:

Carlsson

Drafted in the fourth round (No. 110 overall) by the Blackhawks in 2016, Carlsson set a career-high with 17 points (seven goals, 10 assists) in 44 games this season with Brynäs IF of the Swedish Hockey League. He was tied for fourth among all blue liners with seven goals.

Carlsson, 20, doesn't have major upside, but he's a reliable, well-rounded defenseman and that's what drew the attention of Blackhawks vice president of amateur scouting Mark Kelley.

“When he’s on the ice, he makes things happen," Kelley told Scott Powers of The Athletic last summer. "I think what impressed the Sweden under-20 coach was Lucas’ ability to challenge in all three zones. He’s an active defensively. Offensively, he challenges. He keeps plays alive.”

Kahun

The 22-year-old forward spent the last four seasons with EHC München of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga, Germany's top professional hockey league, where he established career highs in assists (29), points (41) and tied a personal best with 12 goals, leading Munchen to their third straight championship in 2018 after recording four goals and 10 assists in 17 playoff contests.

He raised eyebrows at the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, where he compiled five points (two goals, three assists) in seven games and won 55.4 percent of his faceoffs (41 of 74), helping Germany capture a silver medal.

“He has made an enormous step this year, has become much more stable and mature," German national team coach Marco Sturm said after the Olympics. "I am sure that he would grab it in the NHL,” Sturm told the Hamburger Morgenpost.

Most recently, Kahun had a goal and two assists in seven games for Germany during the IIHF Men's World Championship. He's 5-foot-11, 176 pounds whose known to be a solid two-way player and can play center but may need some time to adjust to the smaller ice surface and NHL style of speed and physicality.

Lankinen 

Lankinen is 23 years old and coming off a season in which he was in the discussion for the Urpo Ylönen trophy, annually awarded to the top goaltender of the Finnish Elite League, after registering a league-best 1.33 goals against average and .946 save percentage in 15 games with HIFK.

He missed a large portion of the season because of an injury, but it didn't stop him from turning in a strong postseason, guiding his team to a bronze medal after posting a 1.99 GAA and .936 save percentage in 13 playoff games. The year before that, he led the league with seven shutouts in 42 games, backstopping his team to a silver medal.

This is a low-risk, medium-sized reward signing for the Blackhawks, who could use some more young goaltending depth in the pipeline, especially given how this season unfolded with the big club.

Raddysh

The Blackhawks signed Raddysh to a one-year AHL contract last June, and he turned it into an NHL one after a strong season with the Rockford IceHogs.

Raddysh, 22, accumulated 22 points (five goals, 17 assists) in 66 regular-season games with the IceHogs, and has appeared in each of the team's playoff games en route to the Western Conference Final.

Last season Raddysh was named the OHL's top defenseman after scoring 16 goals and 65 assists for 81 points in 62 games for the Erie Otters, where he was teammates with current Blackhawks winger Alex DeBrincat. He's the Otters' all-time leader in assists (143) and points (184) among defensemen.

Raddysh might be nothing more than a depth defenseman, but his development is worth monitoring because the offensive production is there and that's something the Blackhawks lacked this past season from their back end.

Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa: 'I will not play hockey anymore'

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AP

Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa: 'I will not play hockey anymore'

Days after putting his Gold Coast condo on the market, Blackhawks winger Marian Hossa revealed to a Slovakian newspaper that he is moving back to his hometown country and doesn't plan on returning to the NHL.

"I will not play hockey anymore," said Hossa, who missed the entire 2017-18 campaign due to a progressive skin disorder and the side effects of the medications involved to treat it. "I have a valid contract with Chicago for the next three years, but I have only one health and it does not allow me to return."

Because he has three years left on a deal that carries a $5.275 million cap hit, Hossa is not expected to sign his retirement papers until the contract is completed or else it would result in salary cap consequences.

The news is not surprising, but it officially allows the Blackhawks to move on without him in the fold roster-wise and toy around with some options this summer.

The first is stashing his contract on long-term injured reserve, as they did last season when they utilized the in-season preference.

The second, which Hossa wondered could happen, is finding a trade partner that would absorb the remainder of his contract, usually done by lower payroll teams aiming to reach the cap floor.

And it wouldn't be difficult trying to find a buyer, considering Hossa's actual salary is $1 million per year over the next three seasons. Hossa, of course, has a no movement clause but it's likely he would waive it given his status at this point.

The good news for Chicago is, the three-time Stanley Cup winner didn't rule out joining the Blackhawks organization in some capacity after his contract expires in 2020-21, whether it's in a front office role or as a team ambassador.

In 19 NHL seasons, Hossa accumulated 525 goals and 609 assists for 1,134 points in 1,309 regular-season games, and added 149 points (52 goals, 97 assists) in 205 postseason contests. He's one of 45 players in league history to net at least 500 goals in his career.