Starting Friday, the Hilton Chicago will host thousands of Blackhawks fans for the 7th annual Blackhawks Convention. Below is a partial list of events and discussion panels that will take place at the Convention, sorted by day. Full schedule and autograph signing schedule will be available at the Convention. All panel participants are subject to change.
Not coming to the Convention? Tune in and watch the Opening Ceremonies and select panels live on chicagoblackhawks.com and the official mobile applications.
Friday, July 18
International Ballroom: 5:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
Join Master of Ceremonies Eddie Olczyk as he welcomes you to the seventh annual Blackhawks Convention. See Blackhawks past, present and future, and get ready for a weekend of fun while celebrating your favorite team!
The Second City
International Ballroom: 8:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
For more than 50 years, The Second City has been a launching pad for all-time great comedians such as John Belushi, George Wendt and Shelley Long, as well as current stars Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert and Tina Fey. Now, two of Chicago’s most famous franchises collide as Blackhawks players join the comedy troupe for an improv show unlike any other.
Saturday, July 19
Hall of Fame Broadcaster Pat Foley
International Ballroom: 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.
For more than three decades, play-by-play voice Pat Foley has been the soundtrack of some of the Chicago Blackhawks’ greatest moments. Comcast SportsNet’s Pat Boyle sits down with Foley, his broadcast partner Eddie Olczyk, as well as Murray “BAAANNERMAN!” and Denis “SAVAAARD!” to remember some of Foley’s greatest calls and most memorable moments of his Hall of Fame career.
Continental Ballroom: 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.
Charged with making the Chicago Blackhawks one of professional sports’ premier franchises, Chairman Rocky Wirtz, President & CEO John McDonough and the dedicated Blackhawks leadership have undertaken a rebuilding effort like no other in the industry. Join Wirtz, McDonough, Executive VP Jay Blunk, VP/GM Stan Bowman, VP of Hockey Operations Al MacIsaac and VP of Ticket Operations and Customer Relations Chris Werner as they sit down with Blackhawks radio voice John Wiedeman to talk about the resurgence of one of the most storied teams in hockey.
Blackhawks Baby Boom!
International Ballroom: 10:15 a.m.-11:15 a.m.
As members of the Chicago Blackhawks family have grown up, many have begun to start families of their own. CBS 2’s Rob Johnson joins Brent Seabrook, Marian Hossa, Niklas Hjalmarsson and Michal Rozsival to discuss the “Blackhawks Baby Boom,” becoming new parents and balancing the demands on the ice with personal needs away from the rink.
Coach Q and His Crew
Continental Ballroom: 10:15 a.m.-11:15 a.m.
With 706 regular-season wins to his credit and three Stanley Cup rings in his trophy case, Blackhawks Head Coach Joel Quenneville and his staff provide the guidance and system needed to help the Blackhawks compete for a title every year. Eddie Olczyk sits down with Coach Q, Assistant Coaches Mike Kitchen and Kevin Dineen and Goaltending Coach Jimmy Waite to talk about their views from behind the bench and guiding a Stanley Cup contender.
What It Takes!
International Ballroom: 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
As former Conn Smythe Trophy winners, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Brad Richards have all achieved personal recognition as the Stanley Cup Playoffs’ MVP and—more importantly—helped lead their teams to championships. The trio joins Mark Giangreco from ABC 7 to talk about reaching the pinnacle of hockey excellence, and what it takes to get back to those heights.
The Swedish Invasion
Continental Ballroom: 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Hockey is enjoyed on nearly every continent, and the Blackhawks dressing room is home to a number of international players. No Chicago contingent is bigger, however, than the Swedes, five of whom ended the 2013-14 season on the Blackhawks roster. Niklas Hjalmarsson, Marcus Kruger, Johnny Oduya, Joakim Nordstrom and David Rundblad talk with host WGN Radio’s Dave Eanet about playing hockey across the ocean, adjusting to North America and more.
Blackhawks TV All-Access
International Ballroom: 12:45 p.m.-1:45 p.m.
For years, Blackhawks TV has brought fans behind the scenes and inside the dressing room with their favorite players. Join Senior Director of New Media and Creative Services Adam Kempenaar as he breaks down some of BHTV’s funniest and most exciting footage with Marian Hossa, Patrick Kane, Andrew Shaw and Ben Smith, plus members of the Banner Collective video production team.
Continental Ballroom: 12:45 p.m.-1:45 p.m.
The best hockey teams are built from the ground up, and championship-caliber organizations benefit from dedicated scouting, great drafting and effective player development. VP/GM Stan Bowman, VP of Hockey Operations Al MacIsaac, Asst. GM Norm Maciver, Director of Hockey Administration/GM of Minor League Affiliations Mark Bernard, Rockford IceHogs Head Coach Ted Dent, Senior Advisor of Hockey Operations Scotty Bowman and Senior Director of Amateur Scouting Mark Kelley sit down with John Wiedeman to discuss building a winner.
Old Rivalries Renewed
International Ballroom: 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.
With the new divisional alignments in the NHL, the Blackhawks have reignited rivalries with Norris Division foes, including St. Louis and Minnesota, and started new feuds with Winnipeg, Dallas and Colorado. Dave Kaplan moderates a panel discussion with Brent Seabrook, Brandon Saad, Steve Larmer, Troy Murray and Denis Savard as they explore the rivalries of the 1980s and ’90s and the future of the new-look Central Division.
Raising a Pro
International Ballroom: 3:15 p.m.-4:15 p.m.
It’s every parent’s dream to see his or her child succeed at the highest level, and Doug Shaw and George Saad have seen that dream come true. Join them, their sons, Andrew and Brandon, and host Ravi Baichwal from ABC 7 for a discussion on raising Stanley Cup champions, watching their sons play in the NHL and more.
Life on the Road
International Ballroom: 4:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.
Traveling tens of thousands of miles every season is a daunting task, but the Blackhawks, their coaches and support staff are more than up for the challenge. Pat Foley moderates a panel with Bryan Bickell, Jonathan Toews and Peter Regin to discuss traveling city to city, bonding on the road and pranking your teammates.
Blackhawks Game Show
International Ballroom: 6:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
Coming to you, live from Chicago…it’s Blackhawks Game Night! Bryan Bickell, Ben Smith and Jeremy Morin, along with anthem singer Jim Cornelison and WGN-TV’s Pat Tomasulo, will team up with the cast of The Second City to participate in a variety of your favorite game shows. Fans will also be asked to participate!
Sunday, July 20
Life Outside the Rink
Continental Ballroom: 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.
Between family life, other interests and more, NHL athletes have more responsibilities away from the rink than ever before. Join host Pat Foley as he sits down with Bryan Bickell, Eric Daze, Eric Nesterenko, Brent Sopel and Mike Stapleton as they talk about balancing their work and their home life, as well as everything they love to do outside of hockey.
International Ballroom: 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
You know their names. You watched their greatest moments. You saw their numbers hoisted to the rafters. Now hear from Blackhawks legends Tony Esposito, Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita, Pierre Pilote and Denis Savard as they remember their biggest moments in Chicago and discuss the current team’s success with Blackhawks Team Historian Bob Verdi.
A Classic Moment
Continental Ballroom: 10:15 a.m.-11:15 a.m.
For the third time, the Blackhawks will take part in one of the NHL’s signature outdoor events when they face off against Washington on New Year’s Day in the 2015 NHL Winter Classic. Host Dan Roan from WGN-TV talks with Niklas Hjalmarsson, Marian Hossa and Ben Smith to discuss the excitement of playing in the great outdoors.
International Ballroom: 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
In today’s digital age, social networking platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have given fans more access to their favorite athletes than ever before. Join @BSaad20 (Brandon Saad), @shawz15er (Andrew Shaw) and @crow_50 (Corey Crawford), along with Blackhawks Senior Director of New Media and Creative Services Adam Kempenaar, for a discussion about life in the Twitterverse and the benefits of social media in sports.
Salon A, Interactive Hall: 11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.
“For all you young hockey players out there…” Join host Darren Pang as he teaches the Xs and Os of hockey with Blackhawks prospects Adam Clendening, Phillip Danault, Ryan Hartman, Stephen Johns, Mark McNeill and Teuvo Teravainen. Telestrator not required.