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Blackhawks on way to best season in Chicago sports history


On Feb. 22, the Blackhawks set the NHL record for the best start to a season with 17 straight games recording at least one point.

Now up to 19 straight games without a regulation loss, they have solidified themselves as a legitimate Stanley Cup contender.

The Hawks have notched 35 out of a possible 38 points during this 2012-13 campaign — a labor strike-shortened 48 games — and are clicking every time the skates hit the ice, dropping a contest in a shootout or overtime just three times.

Well, we may be witnessing history. Perhaps the best season in Chicago sports history.

There are three teams that provide the biggest competition for that title: the 1985 Bears, 1995-96 Bulls, and 2005 White Sox.

The ’85 Bears are probably the most legendary team in the entire sports landscape in Chicago and its surrounding area. Even today, any member or former coach of that team is introduced as such and remain a major part of the Bears franchise.

That team, coached by Mike Ditka, notched a 15-1 overall record and then coasted in the playoffs to 18-1 overall and Super Bowl champions. The Bears rattled off 12 straight wins before falling to the Miami Dolphins, but it was always clear — evident by the midseason “Super Bowl Shuffle” — they would cement their place in NFL history.

Not much to say about the Bulls of the 90s, as they won six total titles under coach Phil Jackson.

Led by Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman, the Bulls went 72-10 and won playoff series 3-0, 4-1, and 4-0 before securing their fourth of six championships of the decade. At one stage, the Bulls were 41-3 in the standings.

The last challenger are the 2005 White Sox, managed by Ozzie Guillen. The Sox won 99 games in the regular season before posting 11 playoff wins and the 2005 World Series championship.

These are all historic performances, with a blend of both immense regular season success and postseason greatness, but coach Joel Quenneville and Co. have something special brewing.

Nearly halfway through the season already, the Hawks have yet to lose in regulation and are a plus-24 in goal differential.

Let’s see if the Hawks lose in a seven-game series this spring and then we can talk.