What to Make of Bobby Clarke's Comments on Blackhawks' Record Point Streak
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Clarke's 1979-80 Flyers team holds the record at 35 straight games, and he doesn't think the Blackhawks should be able to use results from last season to break his team's record.
"They can't use last year's games, that's foolishness," Clarke said Wednesday. "Can Sidney Crosby go back and take the points he got in the last 10 games and add them to this year and add them to the scoring race? Can the Flyers add their point total from the last 10 games and add them to this year so they can get a playoff spot? It's legitimate if they do it in one season. It's not legitimate if they use two season totals."
Whether you agree with Clarke or not, the Blackhawks cannot use last season's games to break the Flyers' record.
According to my official NHL Guide & Record Book (2012 edition), the only winning streaks that are official were accomplished in one season.
With that said, the Blackhawks will have to go 36 games without losing in regulation during this 48-game season to pass the 1979-80 Flyers.
That means the Blackhawks must go 75 percent of the season without failing to take a point from every game. Chicago already has the record for the most consecutive games with a point to start a season (24 and counting).
There are multiple instances in sports where streaks carry over from season to season.
For example, the New England Patriots set an all-time NFL record in 2004 when they won 21 consecutive games, which included the final 15 games of the 2003 season (including playoffs) and the first six games of the 2004 season.
If the NFL used regular-season games only and didn't count the playoffs, the Indianapolis Colts would hold the record with 24 straight wins from 2008-09. The Colts did not win the Super Bowl in 2008, so the NFL did not put them into the record books as the team with the most consecutive wins.
If the Blackhawks break the record with games from this season only, whose record would be more impressive?
Even if last year's Stanley Cup playoffs were included in their current run, the Blackhawks' streak would be what it is now, 24 games.
They lost Game 6 of their first-round playoff series to the Phoenix Coyotes in regulation after the first five games went to overtime.
The Blackhawks' start to the season is incredibly impressive and is one of the best runs of success we have seen in the NHL for quite some time. It would be foolish to suggest that what they're doing isn't extraordinary.
You can argue which streak is more impressive all day, especially since the Blackhawks are not playing any Eastern Conference teams because of the shortened season.
What cannot be argued is if the Blackhawks are going to break the 1979-80 Flyers record officially for the most consecutive games without losing in regulation—it needs to be done in one season.
Nicholas Goss is an NHL Lead Writer at Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter. He was a credentialed reporter at the 2011 Stanley Cup Final and 2012 NHL playoffs.
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