If you take a look at the Western Conference standings in the NHL, you will find the Chicago Blackhawks and the St. Louis Blues tied for first place in the Central Division. If you are a Blues fan then I am sure you are jumping for joy, but if you are a Blackhawks fan, your very heart and soul is sure to be torn with anguish and grief.
This tie is even more disparaging when you look a bit further into the statistics and see that the Blues have two more overall wins than the Blackhawks. And if you want to rub just a little more salt in the wound, the Blackhawks and Blues have faced each other three times so far in the 2013-14 season, and the Hawks have lost each time. Two of those losses were in the form of a shootout.
The Blackhawks and Blues have a rivalry that goes back for some time now, and it is this season that the rivalry has been brought to the foreground due to the depth and skill found on both benches. Just to toss in a little fun fact, both teams are sending 10 members of their respective rosters to the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. While being an immense honor for both teams, this also illustrates the skill and talent that can be found in each franchise.
Chicago is known for its offensive might, but as of late they have been struggling to bring that force into the spotlight to steer games in a favorable direction. This is most evident in their on-ice duels against the Blues. The Blues take to the ice and skate their hearts out in order to make their case against the Blackhawks.
To the Hawks, this should be a prime justification to step up their game defensively. While it has shown improvement over the last few games it is still being called into question. There is no doubt that the Blackhawks have one of the best, if not the best, all-around squad in the entire NHL. They run the risk of losing that title if they cannot come out with a victory over the Blues in their subsequent games this season, of which there are two.
If the Blackhawks can overcome the stamina built up by the Blues, it will warrant their place at the top of the division. As of right now the Blues are fairly deserving of their spot, and it should be the mission of the Chicago organization to change that.