The fall of the Blackhawks is the biggest story in Chicago sports right now. Losing nine straight games after falling to the Nashville Predators 3-2 on Tuesday has kick-started speculation that the job of head coach Joel Quenneville could be in jeopardy. There's no relief in sight, either. Chicago isn't finished with a nine-game road trip until they play the New York Rangers and Columbus Blue Jackets, and while the latter is a bottom-feeder, the former is a legitimate Stanley Cup threat.
The Rangers blew past the defending champion Boston Bruins on Tuesday 3-0 and are first in the Eastern Conference with 79 points. The Rangers boast one of the top defenses in the NHL and goalie Henrik Lundqvist has been excellent all season long. New York is second in the NHL in goals against, giving up just 1.9 per game.
The Rangers' offense has benefited from a healthy Marian Gaborik, who has already equaled his point output from last year with a team-leading 48.