Blackhawks' motto for the new season: It's "earn it" time
CHICAGO -- Outside the United Center, there are hundreds of folks in Chicago Blackhawks jerseys. Some are running or rollerblading, some are playing three-on-three hockey or waiting for bands to start playing during this first Blackhawks training camp festival.
Let's just say if the event that drew some 5,800 represents the hurricane of enthusiasm that has enveloped this once-moribund Original Six franchise, then the players moving around the ice represent ...
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THE CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS
The Blackhawks had a revival season in 2007-08. Will they be able to take the next step this season and reach the playoffs?:
• The team: Not so long ago, the Blackhawks were an afterthought in Chicago. Now, the buzz around the team is palpable, and so are the expectations. Will this young team be able to deliver? Burnside
• The captain: Jonathan Toews is the youngest captain in Hawks history. Too much pressure? With a strong work ethic and some striking parallels to one Stevie Y, this kid says: bring it on. Burnside
• The parallel: Steve Yzerman was considered to be one of hockey's best leaders. Now, Jonathan Toews is the New Classic leader. Launch
• The mindset: How do teams know a younger player is even ready to be a captain? Former NHL GM Jay Feaster gives us an inside look into what teams look for, from the draft and beyond. Blog
• The pictures: Get an inside look at the Blackhawks' first training camp festival. Gallery