Don’t look now, but the Chicago Blackhawks are on the verge of an NHL record that no team wants to have. The record – most games to start a season without a win. Currently, the Blackhawks are 0-7-2. They’re yet to win a single game this season. The current record is 15 games (14 wins, one tie) from the 1943-44 New York Rangers.
Since the Blackhawks have lost two games in overtime, they’ve saved themselves from the longest losing record to start a season. They still are getting closer to the Rangers’ record, though. It took Chicago 366 minutes and 41 seconds to hold their first lead of the season. Even with a lead, this team cannot hold on to win games, as they’re winless in nine attempts.
Outside of having no wins in nine games, the Blackhawks have a -20 goal difference this season. That’s the second-worst in the NHL. The only team that is worse than Chicago is the Arizona Coyotes.
The Blackhawks are in luck, though. If they start their first 14 games off without a win, they play Game 15 against the Coyotes. Both teams are winless, and something has to give.
What’s yet to be seen is how this team will respond from this terrible start. For starters, Jeremy Colliton is yet to be fired. There does not seem to be many key changes on the ice and their defense is a mess. After an offseason with many moves made, the product on the ice has somehow been worse.
The season is far from over, as there are still 73 games to go, but there has to be some sort of a move before the hole is too deep. If the Blackhawks are to salvage the season and not break the Rangers record, something has to give. The easy answer would be a head coaching change. This team is struggling to gel and they need a new main voice in the locker room. Whether they turn to an assistant coach or go out and hire someone, it has to work. This roster, on paper, is too good to have these issues.
Publicly, the players have backed coach Colliton, despite losing nine games in a row. Both Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane have backed him. Seth Jones has too. The consensus from the star player is that “coaching is not the problem.” Toews echoed that after the team lost 6-3 to the Red Wings last week.
“I’ve been here a short time, but his message has been great for us,” Jones told the media last week speaking about his new head coach. “100 percent the team has faith in Jeremy (Colliton).”
If coaching isn’t the problem, what is? Even if it isn’t, at the end of the day, team struggles will always fall on the head coach. If Colliton can not get this team back on track, he won’t have a job for much longer. It’s year four with him, it’s only gotten worse.
The Blackhawks have to find themselves in the win column soon, or else they’ll end up with the record of most games without a win to start the season. Chicago does have the record for most games (24) to start a season with a point, so why not take the record for most games without a win?
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