Blackhawks

Word on the street: Heat break Jordan-era Bulls record

Word on the street: Heat break Jordan-era Bulls record

Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010
CSNChicago.com
Heat-Celtics opener breaks Bulls record

It may have only been game one of a long 82 game season, and the Heat may have lost the game, but they have already surpassed one of the Chicago Bulls long-standing records from the Jordan era. Last night's regular season opener between the Heat and Celtics drew a record 7.4 million viewers, surpassing the previous record of 7.27 million for a Bulls-Lakers game in February 1996. However, nine more performances like last night's will keep the other Jordan-era record safe for another year. (The New York Times)

Toews featured in Men's Health

Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews is a StanleyCcup champion, a Conn Smythe award winner, and now he's a model of fitness according to Men's Health magazine. Toews is featured in an article called "Are you 'Men's Health' Fit," cited as an athlete who displays a "unique combination of speed, strength, power, and agility."

The article provides workout secrets from Toews as well as San Francisco 49ers linebacker Patrick Willis, UFC fighter Josh Koscheck, and Ironman world champion Craig Alexander. (Men's Health)

Bulls name captains

Prior to their Wednesday night regular season opener, Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau named the new team captains for the 2010 season. Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Carlos Boozer, and Luol Deng were all bestowed the honor.

"I'm not as concerned about the naming of captains as I am about leadership," Thibodeau said. "To me, those four are our leaders. That's really what I'm looking for." (ChicagoBreakingSports)
NHL, Officials reach 4-year agreement

The National Hockey League board of governors and the NHL Officials Association have come to an agreement on a new four-year labor deal that will last through the 2013-2014 season. The deal was finally agreed upon on Oct. 4 after the officials worked the entire preseason without a labor contract in place.

"We are pleased to have reached a new agreement with our officials," NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said. "We look forward to working closely with our officials to ensure that the quality of our game continues to be the best that it can be." (Miami Herald)

Cubs' Jackson shows health

After being sidelined by an ankle injury suffered in Puerto Rico while playing for Team USA earlier this month, Brett Jackson, the Cubs No. 1 draft pick in 2009, has returned to the field in the Arizona Fall League. In his third game back Jackson hit a two run single, promptly stole second base, then scored on a base hit, showing the health of his ankle. (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Bulls to sign Beverly?

Rumors are beginning to spread that the Bulls may look to sign Patrick Beverly. Beverly was the second-round (42nd overall) draft pick of the Lakers in the 2009 draft but decided to stay in Europe. He was traded to the Heat in a draft-night deal and now finds himself job-less after being cut by the Heat on Monday. (SBNation)

Martz changing the game plan?

It looks like Mike Martz may be tweaking the Bears offensive game plan before next Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills. Martz said Wednesday that the offense is beginning to get more comfortable with his style of offense and he feels they have made great strides just in the last three weeks.

"Those are things now that they're more comfortable with than maybe they weren't as comfortable with before. As we move on, there are things that maybe we can be a little more complex and move in and out of as we need them," said Martz. (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Notre Dame student dies filming practice

A Notre Dame student died Wednesday after a tower used to tape football practices toppled over. The 21-year-old man was atop the hydraulic scissor lift when it fell. He was transported to a South Bend hospital, where he later died. Notre Dame says they will not identify the student until they are able to notify his family. (Fanhouse)

Blackhawks looking for defensive improvement from everyone, not just defensemen

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USA TODAY

Blackhawks looking for defensive improvement from everyone, not just defensemen

The Blackhawks were able to get away with their defensive lapses in the past solely because of Corey Crawford. When he went down with a concussion last December, those issues were magnified because he wasn't there to mask the flaws.

But it's reached the point where they can't rely on their goaltender to bail them out on a nightly basis, which is becoming another trend. Cam Ward allowed six goals to Tampa Bay on Sunday night, but made 49 saves — including 30 in the second period alone. He did everything he could to keep his team withing some sort of reaching distance and without his timely stops, the scoreboard could've looked much worse for the Blackhawks.

Something's got to change. 

When the Blackhawks talk about tightening things up defensively, they're not just putting it all on the defensemen. All five guys on the ice need to do their part and they're not doing it right now.

"I think we're trying to do too much and running around trying to do each other's job," Jonathan Toews said. "Sometimes we just need to simply and finish our checks and support each other."

No team has given up more even-strength high-danger chances through eight games than the Blackhawks at 110. That's 15.77 per 60 minutes. For reference, the New York Islanders finished worst in the league in that category last season and their number was at 12.96.

It didn't help that the Blackhawks spent nearly the entire second period in their own end on Sunday.

"We just couldn’t get it out of our zone, couldn’t get our stick on it, didn’t see pressure, didn’t feel pressure when we had it, were stripped," coach Joel Quenneville said. "Hence, we didn’t advance it. Kept looking like we were going up the ice and there were going to be some odd-man situations and then we’re the ones who were facing it."

That's one way to eliminate those high quality scoring chances, is getting the puck out of their own zone effectively or else it opens the door for Grade-A opportunities because of self-inflicted wounds. And it usually happens at the end of shifts when guys are tired, which often leads to goals.

"We have to learn how to play without the puck better and learn how to keep it," Quenneville said. "Whether it was our execution going up the ice, first pass poor and then we couldn’t change. A lot of things that happened yesterday were there tonight."

The Blackhawks weren't using three games in four nights as an excuse because Tampa Bay was in the same situation. It was an even playing field in that respect.

It's all about execution from everyone involved, forwards and defensemen. And the Blackhawks feel they're correctable issues.

"Of course," Toews said. "We've had some good periods this season so far. The first three, four, five games, everyone was excited and you guys are all talking to us much differently than you are right now. It's just getting back to playing that smart defensive game and playing with effort and letting our offense do the work. We know what's got to improve. It's right there in front of us."

White Sox sign Enoy Jimenez, the 17-year-old brother of Eloy Jimenez

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USA TODAY

White Sox sign Enoy Jimenez, the 17-year-old brother of Eloy Jimenez

One Jimenez just isn't enough for the White Sox.

The White Sox signed the younger brother of top prospect Eloy Jimenez this weekend. Enoy Jimenez is a 17-year-old infielder, and the 21-year-old outfielder ranked as the No. 3 prospect in baseball was on hand for his brother's big moment.

Eloy figures to hit the big leagues early next season, though it will likely be a while longer before his teenage brother could do the same. Still, they're likely hoping for the chance to play together one day.

According to this pretty exhaustive list from MLB.com, four sets of brothers have played together on the White Sox: Homer and Ted Blankenship in the 1920s, Dick and Hank Allen in the 1970s, Roberto and Sandy Alomar in 2003 and 2004 and John and Jordan Danks in 2012.

Should we be getting ready for the fifth pair?