An indicator for being successful and winning the Stanley Cup, the annual Circus Trip is underway, and the team won't be returning to the United Center until Nov. 29 after seven straight games away from Chicago. Most NHL coaches usually gauge success during the season by winning at least 66 percent of home games and posting above the .500 mark on the road, and the Circus Trip is the team's first real test away from home.
Last year the Blackhawks went 3-1-2 on the western road trip, which included three overtime games. They wound up with a road mark of 21-15-5 at the end of the season. The 2015 Cup-winning squad went 5-1-0 on the western swing while compiling a franchise-record 24 road victories.
In the lockout-shortened 2013 Cup championship campaign, the Blackhawks went 6-1-0 on their long road trip (the ice show trip) and put together an impressive mark of 18-4-2 in road games, which was bolstered by their team record of starting the season with points in 24 straight games. The 2010 Cup champions had a a 4-1-1 record on the fall road trip and went on to set a 23-14-4 total for the season, which was a record until it was eclipsed by the 2014-15 team.
With a number of rookies on this year's roster, the long road trip will present a new challenge, but hopefully the blend of solid veterans will ensure that when the Blackhawks return on the 29th, the results will aqain be positive!