For the Chicago Blackhawks, the last three seasons have been very inconsistent.
They missed the playoffs last season, were swept by the Nashville Predators the season before, and got knocked out of the playoffs the year before that. For a team that won Stanley Cups in 2011, 2013, and 2015, this was all very surprising.
Due to a lack of success the last few seasons and the fact that they are 6-6-3 to start the season, the team clearly felt that now was as good a time as ever for a fresh start. This is why they went ahead and fired head coach Joel Quenneville.
For the Blackhawks, this may have been a long time coming. The team simply did not have what was needed to be a true Cup contender. There were rumors the past two seasons that Quenneville was going to be let go. That was particularly the case after the spring of 2017.
In the playoffs that year against the Predators, they were manhandled in every facet of the game. They had trouble putting the puck in the net, their goaltending was not great, and they flat out looked inferior to the Predators.
Despite that, the team’s ownership wanted to give Quenneville and general manager Stan Bowman a chance to get the team’s act together and make sure that what happened in 2017 did not happen again.
Unfortunately, last season was absolutely brutal for the Blackhawks. Yes, a lot of that was because Corey Crawford, their netminder and best player when he was healthy last season, got hurt and missed most of the season.
With that said, the club’s goaltending was not the only reason why they struggled. They just did not play well all year long and in the end, it caused them to miss the playoffs.
One has to feel badly for Quenneville, the second-winningest coach in NHL history. He led the Blackhawks to three Cups and made them a Cup contender for several seasons.
With that said, the team’s start this season has not been good enough. After getting off to a decent start this year, they have only picked-up one out of a possible 10 points, which is not good enough in a very competitive Central Division and Western Conference.
It is time for this team to have a fresh voice and a new start. That new voice is Jeremy Colliton, who was coaching the the club’s AHL team in Rockford.
It’ll be interesting to see if the Blackhawks can turn it around because if they can’t, Bowman may lose his job as well and the franchise will really need to start over.
*Photo: Chicago Tribune