CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks have played the most games in the NHL the past two seasons and are halfway to repeating as Stanley Cup champions.
Between the regular season and Stanley Cup Playoffs they've played a whopping 165 games in the past 16 months, and that's not including games played by the 10 Blackhawks who participated in the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
That's a lot of hockey, with a lot of high-intensity games and wear and tear on their bodies and minds. Coming off a six-game victory against the Minnesota Wild in the Western Conference Second Round, there are murmurs that some of Chicago's players are running on fumes heading into the Western Conference Final, which will start Sunday. They'll play the winner of Game 7 on Friday between the Anaheim Ducks and Los Angeles Kings.
The Blackhawks strongly disagree.
"I don't think we're worried about anything right now," said right wing Patrick Kane, who scored the series-clinching overtime goal in Game 6 on Tuesday at Xcel Energy Center. "We're in a pretty good position that not a lot of teams get to go through. We're in a conference final and it's going to be a great matchup whoever we face, so there's no real cause for concern and we feel our best game's ahead of us. So it's exciting."