The Chicago Blackhawks are off for a few days. Unfortunately, the 'Hawks didn't finish their last game on a positive note. The 'Hawks gave up a 2-1 lead in the final minutes in Anaheim, losing 4-2 to the Ducks and leaving fans four days, including the weekend, to sit and stew about it.
A weekend with no Blackhawks action. Nothing to get excited about until Chicago hosts the Kings Monday to start a three-game homestand. What can we do until then?
You could dwell on the blown lead, the disallowed goal by Brandon Bollig and the fact that Anaheim is three points behind the 'Hawks in the Western Conference. Or, you could turn your thoughts to something else.
Here are five ways to get your mind off of a tough loss over the next few days.
Sure, the Blackhawks dropped the last game on the road trip. However, they won the first three games of said trip in three different time zones.
After beating Columbus 2-1, Chicago left the Eastern time zone and clubbed Dallas 8-1 in Central time. They then went west and beat Colorado 5-2 in Mountain time before heading to the coast and the showdown with the Ducks.
It hurt to watch the lead slip away Wednesday, but Chicago still took home six of eight possible points.
GM Stan Bowman should be looking for help regardless of Chicago's record in 2013. With the trade deadline being April 3, there are still ways to improve this club.
First and foremost is a center for the second line. Dave Bolland is hovering between adequate and lacking in this position. Not moving to upgrade may or may not be a difference-making decision, but as the deadline approaches, Bowman may have a move in store for us.
The fans have four days off. Why not speculate on a deal?
Rockford has won 10 of its last 13 games stemming back to a February 16 win over Abbotsford. It has had two straight weekends of three games in three nights and has won two games each weekend.
The IceHogs have just two games this weekend. However, they are both in Western Canada against the Heat. Get the AHL Live stream of one or both of the games Friday or Saturday and check out the youngsters.
See what all the fuss is about regarding the way Jeremy Morin and Ben Smith are playing. See for yourself if Brandon Pirri can help the 'Hawks in the middle. Check in on Steve Montador's recovery.
Of course, if you want to see Morin, opt for the Saturday game. He's suspended for Friday's action due to Sunday's dust-up in Chicago against the Wolves.
Several conferences are wrapping up their tournaments this weekend. It might be a good time to check out a 'Hawks prospect like Stephen Johns, a big defenseman from Notre Dame.
Notre Dame takes on Ohio State, for whom Chicago prospect Sam Jardine plays, in the CCHA semifinals Saturday at 1:05 p.m. Look around for some other conference finals over the weekend.
Naaaaaah...that's an option I doubt most of us will take.
There are plenty of choices for fans over the weekend. I'll be weighing in on a number of things during this short hiatus. Check back in over the next few days to see what I'm thinking about.