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 vs 

Game Time: 7:30PM
TV/Radio: CSN, WGN-AM 720
Fireman Ed’s Cousin Gord: Illegal Curve

In what was a tradition unlike any other, the Hawks for seemingly eons played a home game on West Madison on Boxing Day, and even during the Stone Ages the building was more packed than usual. The league in its wisdom has opted to extend the holiday break, pushing the return to action to the 27th, and even giving the Hawks a road game or two in recent years on the date. But tonight will be as close to the Boxing Day games of yore as the league will allow, and the Hawks will be welcoming the Jets to the UC once again already.

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The Rockford IceHogs, AHL affiliate to the Chicago Blackhawks, had some trouble with one of the league’s worst teams when the Manitoba Moose came to town. The Hogs dropped a pair to the antlered ones at home this week before hopping on I-90 East and beating the Wolves.

Despite two defeats, some new faces on defense and a gaffe by coach Ted Dent, Rockford maintains hold of first place in the Central Division standings. They are, however, a little banged up as they continue a five-game road jaunt.

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The Rockford IceHogs were atop the AHL’s Central Division going into this weekend’s home and home with the Grand Rapids Griffins. They were coming off an 8-2-1-1 January record and were facing a Griffins team that had dropped five straight. Rockford was recharged following the All-Star break and had the hottest goalie in the league manning the pipes in font of a big home crowd at the BMO Harris Bank Center.

How, then, did that all add up to one of the worst losses in the history of the franchise? Submitted for your approval is a blow-by-blow account of a historic defeat.

(Trust me, readers…you’ll dig this…I think)

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It was a rough holiday stretch for the Rockford IceHogs. The Blackhawks AHL affiliate dropped three games this past week.

Goals were hard to come by, with Rockford finding twine just four times in the three losses. Two of those defeats came at the hands of Milwaukee, who supplanted the Hogs at the top of the Central Division. Rockford also dropped its first game to the Iowa Wild in just over a year.

All of a sudden, the IceHogs are on a four-game losing streak as they prepare to enter the new year. In addition, the Hogs lost the services of one of their leading scorers for a few games.

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The Rockford IceHogs, AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks, continue to play impressive hockey as we approach the holidays. The IceHogs completed a sweep of their four-game trip to Texas and split a weekend set with Iowa and Grand Rapids.

Rockford is on top of the Central Division standings with a 17-6-1-2 record. A loss to the Griffins Saturday put an end to a five-game winning streak, the longest of the season for the Hogs. Playing a big part in the success this team is veteran center Jake Dowell.

Relax, folks; Dowell is only on an AHL deal signed with the IceHogs this fall. He can’t be called up to the Hawks for you to disparage. This is not a plea for Stan Bowman to sign Dowell to NHL ink. Just know that the guy has been a key component of Rockford’s lofty position in the standings.

This weekend, the guy just got some terrific news to boot.

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evil empire at edmonton_eskimos20logo

Game Time: 8:30Pm
TV/Radio: CSN, SportsNet 1, WGN-AM 720
Lost’n For Auston: Copper & Blue, Oilers Nation

No matter how hard they try to convince themselves, their fans, and the rest of the league, the Edmonton Oilers just can’t seem to stop tripping over their own collective dick. As of last night with John Torotrella’s Columbus Blue Jackets defeating the Blues on home ice, the Oilers are once again dead last in the NHL, and now welcome in the Blackhawks to Rexall as they begin their annual November road trip.

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250px-Ozymandias vs. old_school_blue_l

PUCK DROP: 7pm

TV/RADIO: WGN For both

THOSE WHO CAN’T WRITE FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T READ: St. Louis Gametime

Blues Stats

Blues War On Ice

When you’re a team that is still trying to settle at least half the roster, and you have two returning d-men who have been out at least a month, you’d probably prefer a softer landing than traipsing down across Big Muddy into the gaping maw of the hellscape that is West East St. Louis. But you don’t get to raise objections once the schedule comes out (unless you’re Detroit), so that’s the task ahead of the Hawks tonight.

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Box Score

Event Summary

War On Ice

Natural Stat Trick

Sorry for the delayed wrap. None of us could get to the game live, and after watching it going to bed seems a far more pleasant option than thinking about this slog in any other meaningful way. If such a thing was possible.

The Hawks essentially got Devils-ed last night. At least for 40 minutes, and when you’re then down four you’re just not going to make that up against Corey Schneider no matter how much shelling you do. The Devils snuffed out all the Hawks offensive dash, keeping them to 15 shots through the first two periods and maybe three or four good chances. Maybe. The Hawks couldn’t get through the neutral zone (though not in the normal New Jersey way and we’ll get to that in a second). The Hawks for the second game in a row were the victim of some pretty silly bounces (a blocked shot landing right on Zajac’s forehand), or bad turnovers from the guys they just can’t have them from. And Crawford wasn’t able to bail them out of their biggest mistakes, though that 1st period could have been worse without him.