The Chicago Blackhawks’ incredible point streak continued last night against the Colorado Avalanche. Daniel Carcillo scored his first goal of the season with 49.3 seconds remaining to secure a 3-2 victory and preserve points for the 30th consecutive regular-season game. It’s the second-longest campaign in NHL history and is currently five shy of the mark set by the Philadelphia Flyers in 1979-80.
Excluding the playoffs, Chicago hasn’t been defeated in regulation since March 25 of last year. Hockey remains the least popular of the four major sports; therefore attempts to put the accomplishment into proper context have at times been predictably clumsy and haphazard. Perhaps the best way to demonstrate the breadth of this mark is to highlight all that’s happened since the last time a team dispatched the Blackhawks in the allotted 60 minutes.
We discovered and soon regretted discovering “Call Me Maybe.” We watched LeBron James win an NBA title and then immediately wondered why he doesn’t have as many as Michael Jordan. Tim Tebow became a New York Jet and everyone got excited for one day. Ben Affleck became the most respected man in Hollywood. The Lumineers became a thing people knew.
So, yeah, a lot has happened. And that’s just the really cultural, important stuff.
Look, comparing what the Blackhawks are doing to what teams are doing in other sports is a fruitless exercise in comparing apples to oranges. Even worse, it diminishes what is a fabulous and compelling story line by insisting it fit into a box in which it isn’t necessarily supposed to fit.
One doesn’t have to be a hockey expert – or even a casual fan – to know that avoiding an adverse result for 30 straight games in a world of parity is damn impressive. More than that, the streak is serving as a giant Band-Aid for the NHL as it seeks to regain public favor after yet another work stoppage. The powers-that-be were begging for any pre-playoff happening to draw people in.
And that’s exactly what the Blackhawks are doing. One game at a time.
[Photo via USA Today Sports]