Chicago Blackhawks: No Need to Get Caught Up Chasing Anything but a Cup

Jon FromiSenior Analyst IFebruary 19, 2013

The 'Hawks have their hands full with Vancouver coming to town.
The 'Hawks have their hands full with Vancouver coming to town.Rich Lam/Getty Images

The Chicago Blackhawks have an opportunity to accomplish something special with a win over the Vancouver Canucks Tuesday night. A victory means two more points for the team leading the Western Conference.

Getting caught up in the pursuit of anything else is of little consequence.

Unless you've been living under a rock (and even if you have if your rock has the Internet), you know that the 'Hawks can match the NHL record for consecutive games earning points to start a season.

I'm sure the crowd at the United Center will be well aware of that when the teams hit the ice.

It's fine for the fans to get swept up in a record. Let's hope Chicago remains focused on the Canucks.

The 2006-07 Anaheim Ducks are the owners of the current mark. In reality, it's the 2013 Ducks the Blackhawks should be concerned about. That's the team that is right behind Chicago in the conference standings and has dealt the 'Hawks one of their three shootout defeats.

Through 15 games, Chicago has 27 points. The Ducks have 25 in the same number of contests. A loss to the Canucks would end the streak. More importantly, it could allow Anaheim to pull even with the Blackhawks.

Given a choice between a record that most of us were only recently familiar with and hoisting a second Stanley Cup in four seasons, I'll take the cup. I'm sure the 2006-07 Ducks and the other teams who started their campaigns remember over the hot start.

For Chicago, the task will be to turn the tables on the Canucks, who won the first meeting of the teams in Vancouver. Roberto Luongo has seemingly earned his starting job back and will likely be in goal tonight. Ray Emery is his likely counterpart in net, as Corey Crawford has been day-to-day with an upper body injury.

Emery has had the help of the Chicago defense, which has done a nice job clearing his rebounds from the middle of their own zone. That's going to remain a key no matter who is in net for Chicago.

Vancouver has claimed points in eight of its last 10 games but are coming off of Sunday's 4-3 shootout loss to St. Louis. This is still a rivalry game regardless of whatever historical significance is tossed in to the mix.

We can expect a tough game out of Vancouver and a win sure would be nice. You know, for the two points.