POSTED ON Monday, 03.2.2015 / 4:13 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: RW Mark McNeill, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 2GP, 2G, 4A

McNeill’s line led Rockford to two wins over the Texas Stars last weekend, with the 2011 first-round draft pick notching a goal and two helpers in each contest, including the only assist on Pierre-Cedric Labrie’s overtime game-winner in a 4-3 win on Friday. McNeill’s offensive explosion snapped a six-game streak without a point, and he now shares second on the team with 31 points (16G, 15A) in 43 games this season.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 02.24.2015 / 10:40 AM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
Stan Bowman's dedication to advanced stats and Joel Quenneville's ability to draw success out of his team: a winning combination for the Blackhawks.

ESPN The Magazine released their Analytics Issue this week, featuring a comprehensive ranking of 122 professional sports teams across the MLB, NBA, NHL and NFL on their use of analytics—assessing buy-in from executives and coaches, investment level and overall approach.

Hockey, as a whole, may be a bit behind baseball and basketball in the prevalence of analytics, but the Blackhawks certainly break the mold. They’re the only NHL organization to appear in the Overall Top 10, and the only club in the “All-In” category among hockey teams. While other clubs are certified “Believers” in the analytics movement, the Blackhawks were early adopters, hiring an analytics firm in 2009 shortly after Stan Bowman was promoted to General Manager.

It’s a winning strategy, especially combined with Head Coach Joel Quenneville’s experience behind the bench: Chicago has posted the highest SAT% among 30 teams since 2009-10, the season they broke a 49-year championship drought.

Bowman is quoted in the article as saying, "We're always trying to expand and add a new component each year that we do a little more with."

Considering the growing list of teams that have also bought into the statistical revolution, staying one step ahead of the pack could be crucial for the Blackhawks on their quest for more Stanley Cups.

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POSTED ON Monday, 02.23.2015 / 3:11 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Photo courtesy MJB Images)

1st Star: LW Fredrik Olofsson, Chicago Mission (USHL)
The Line: 3GP, 4G, 2A

Olofsson enjoyed a big week for the Chicago Mission, posting a goal in all three games and compiling six points total. The 2014 fourth-round pick established a season high four points with the game-winner and an empty-netter, as well as two assists, in a 5-3 win over Muskegon on Saturday. Olofsson leads Chicago with 22 goals and ranks second with 45 points in 41 games this season.

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 02.17.2015 / 1:38 PM CT
By Leah Pascarella - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane are household names for any Blackhawks fan, but there are some diehards who go a step further and literally bring these names into their homes. The Blackhawks Blog caught up with a few families who named their children after Blackhawks players – and we aren’t talking Jonathan or Patrick – to get the story behind their child’s unique name.

Hossa and Niemi Singer cheer on the Blackhawks from Montana. (Photo courtesy of Amanda Preston)

Michael and Mikaela Singer moved to Billings, Mont., about seven years ago, and brought a little bit of Chicago with them.

The couple has two daughters, 4-year-old Niemi Hope and 17-month-old Hossa Marie. Their names may not be recognizable to most Montana residents, but people who know hockey know the Chicago Blackhawks are the Singers’ favorite team.

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POSTED ON Monday, 02.16.2015 / 12:02 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Photo courtesy Rockford IceHogs)

1st Star: D Ville Pokka, Rockford IceHogs (AHL)
The Line: 3GP, 1G, 3A

Pokka extended his point streak to a career-long four games with contributions in all three Rockford games last week. The rookie defenseman picked up an assist on Friday at Milwaukee, posted a goal and a helper the next night against Oklahoma City, then finished off the weekend with his 16th assist of the season against San Antonio. Pokka ranks second among team defensemen and sixth overall with 23 games in 45 games this season.

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POSTED ON Thursday, 02.12.2015 / 11:54 AM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Searching for the right words to tell your special someone how much they mean to you this Valentine's Day? The Blackhawks Blog is here to help, with a variety of sweet messages featuring your favorite Blackhawks. Save your favorite image and send it to your Valentine, or download the full set and print them at home to hand out in class or at work.


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POSTED ON Monday, 02.9.2015 / 3:29 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Richard Gagnon/Notre Dame Athletics)

1st Star: C Vincent Hinostroza, Notre Dame (H-EAST)
The Line: 2GP, 2G, 4A

Hinostroza extended his recent hot streak with six points in two games last weekend, as the Fighting Irish went 1-0-1 at Maine. The 2012 sixth-round pick notched three helpers in Friday’s 4-4 tie, including one on the game-tying goal in the last minute of regulation, then posted two goals and an assist the next night. Hinostroza’s seven-game point streak (3G, 11A) has propelled him to the top of Notre Dame’s scoring table; he now has six goals and a team-high 25 helpers in 30 games.

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POSTED ON Friday, 02.6.2015 / 3:59 PM CT
By Leah Pascarella - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

From outstanding rookies to seasoned veterans and everyone in between, it is often hard to decipher where players rank.

ESPN Insider Rob Vollman recently announced the most valuable NHL players in each age group, compiling his list using several advanced hockey metrics in order to compare skaters to goalies and offensive contributions to defensive play. Here's how the Blackhawks ranked (links for ESPN Insiders):

Captain Jonathan Toews was named the best 26-year-old in the NHL. This is nothing new for the center, as he led his age group last year, when he was 25.

Vollman wrote that Toews is "the league’s most complete player in every zone, game situation and time of the season," and commented on his ability to play against top opponents in both zones while dominating possession. Toews also leads 26-year-olds in the important category of faceoff prowess.

The captain isn’t the only Blackhawk getting noticed in his age group, however. Duncan Keith led his age group last year and grabbed a nod in this year’s group for 31-year-olds. The same goes for Patrick Sharp, who led the 32-year-old category last year. Marian Hossa, 36, received an honorable mention in the 35-and-up age group, as well.

The results were divided among the league, but as always, the Blackhawks' depth from top to bottom was well represented.

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POSTED ON Monday, 02.2.2015 / 11:56 AM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame Athletics)

1st Star: C Vincent Hinostroza, Notre Dame (H-EAST)
The Line: 2GP, 1G, 3A

Hinostroza extended his point streak to a season-long five games with a goal and three assists over the weekend, helping Notre Dame to a split against New Hampshire. The 2012 sixth-round pick had a goal and a helper on Friday in a 5-2 loss, then tacked on two more assists the next night in a 5-3 win, including one on the game-winner. Hinostroza moved into second in team scoring with four goals and a team-high 21 assists in 28 games this season.

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POSTED ON Monday, 01.26.2015 / 4:13 PM CT
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog

Each Monday, the Blackhawks Blog will highlight prospects who stood out for their minor-league, junior, college, or European teams in the previous week’s action. All prospect stats will be updated weekly throughout the 2014-15 season.

(Photo courtesy Whiteshark Photography)

1st Star: G Mac Carruth, Indy Fuel (ECHL)
The Line: 3GP, 3-0-0, 26-save shutout

Carruth backstopped the Fuel to their best week of results in their inaugural season, winning all three of his starts and extending his win streak to five contests dating back to Jan. 16. The 2010 sixth-round pick posted his first shutout of the season with a 26-save effort at Gwinnett last Monday, then allowed just one goal in each of his other appearances, making a combined 74 saves on 76 shots. Carruth improved his record to 6-9-2-2, with a 2.69 goals-against average and .905 save percentage in 20 games this season.

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