I was watching Tuesday night’s Blackhawks game when I heard the strangest sound – a low, guttural rumbling that did a decent imitation of an approaching storm.
It sounded like … boos. No, I thought to myself. Can’t be. The Hawks might trail the Stars 4-0 heading into the first intermission, but no one would be silly enough to boo a team that had won three Stanley Cups in the previous six seasons. And certainly no one would be booing that team for one period in a game in March.
But, sure enough, those were boos at the United Center. Hawks TV play-by-play man Pat Foley even pointed them out on the air.
Blackhawks fans have every right to boo. They also have every right to look foolish doing so.
Their team has not been playing well of late. That’s not a state secret. But if the defending-champion Hawks have shown us anything the past six seasons, it’s an ability to turn on their talent full blast when the playoffs come. The regular season is simply the slow, ponderous vehicle to get them to the games that matter.
Grumbling Hawks fans will say that the team should be held accountable for its poor play. They will say that they simply are living in the moment, a dark moment. The problem with that thinking is that the Hawks aren’t a moment. They’re a six-season movement that still has traction. Zeroing in on a bad stretch is shortsighted.
You booers are going to regret your booing. But it’s not too late to repent. Might as well do it sooner rather than later. So, repeat after me:
“I (your name here) was one of the goofballs who booed the Blackhawks on March 22 at the UC. I don’t know what I was thinking. I got caught up in the fact that they were losing 4-0 and forgot that this is the team of Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, Niklas Hjalmarsson and Corey Crawford. And I completely forgot that Crawford wasn’t playing that night and that he’ll be in net in the playoffs. I reserve the right to boo if they play poorly in the postseason, but there’s no excuse for booing during a meaningless regular-season game. And they’re all meaningless with a semi-dynasty like the Hawks. Forgive me my sins, Father Q.’’
Now, don’t you feel better?