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Blackhawks changes begin with firing of assistant Mike Haviland



The Chicago Blackhawks had an up-and-down 2011-12 season, yet their power play was mostly down. It looks like that flaw won’t cost head coach Joel Quenneville’s job, but assistant Mike Haviland is out of a top after four years as a helper.

(Quenneville is currently holding an informative press conference that we’ll break down pretty soon.)

Haviland was primarily in charge of the power play for some time before making way to Mike Kitchen.’s Chris Boden points out that unit started off in the bottom of the league with Haviland, received a nice boost when Kitchen took it over and then flat-lined again. Not taking advantage of the man advantage reared its ugly head on the largest scale in Chicago’s six-game series defeat at the hands of the surging Phoenix Coyotes.

Here’s your totally random question to chew on for a moment, then: would the Blackhawks’ power play have struggled so much if Brian Campbell wasn’t traded? Keeping his hefty cap hit on the docket would have been a challenge in itself, but one cannot help but wonder if it’s something that Haviland (and Kitchen too, to some extent*) might ponder as he searches for his next coaching gig.

* - Kitchen probably will keep his job, so he’ll lose less sleep.