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NHL Chicago Blackhawks

Extended Time Off Will Help the Chicago Blackhawks

Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

After the Chicago Blackhawks won their series against the Minnesota Wild, the team has some time to relax before the Western Conference Final. Given that the road to a second-straight Stanley Cup championship inevitably goes through Southern California, the Hawks need all the rest they can get. And with the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks set to battle in a seventh game, the Hawks are sitting pretty.

The Hawks fought two very hard series against a tough St. Louis Blues team and a surprising Minnesota Wild. The Hawks have also played more games than any other team over the past year. Yeah, they’re tired. But in a long season, all the rest a team can get matters. Rumors that the Hawks are running on fumes are being denied by the team themselves. Sure, they can say it, but is it true? There’s no easy way to tell.

But the Hawks have the advantage of watching the Ducks and Kings fight it out for the chance to face them. The Hawks may be bruised, beaten and battered, but their opponents will be even more bruised, beaten and battered when it’s all said and done. The Hawks just need to sit back and watch if the Kings can pull of the two-game comeback or if the Ducks can set up the showdown that fans of the Western Conference have salivated over all year.

The extended rest also gives the Hawks a chance to formulate a strategy to take out either the Kings or Ducks. Even more importantly, the injured players have time to recuperate.

Patrick Kane‘s goal in overtime of Game 6 let Hawks fans breathe a sigh of relief. With no Game 7, the Hawks can just sit back and watch as SoCal’s two teams battle for dominance. Sure, the third round might not be easy, but it’s always best to be ready for whatever comes next.

Paul Chancey is a Chicago Blackhawks writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter at @ChanceyPaul and add him to your network at Google+.