Before you bail, Hawks fans, ask yourselves this

For second-wave Blackhawks fans, you've finally got a real reason to hate Detroit. Since Chicago's 2009 playoff elimination at the hands of the Wings, the historically testy rivalry hasn't featured the same acrimony as Vancouver. Or St. Louis. Or even Phoenix. The Hawks have dominated, going 15-4-3 against Detroit since the '09 ouster.

And then the Blackhawks lost two games in a row and you've already tossed your Hossa shirtsey into the hamper. For shame.

How soon we forget 2010. Remember that scrappy 7-seed Nashville Predators team that seemed to be "coming together at the right time" and had "hot goalie" Pekka Rinne? They smoked Chicago 4-1 in Games 1 and 3, taking a 2-1 series lead and freaking out the more-freakoutable hockey fans and media. (On April 21, 2010, this very newspaper ran the headline "Smashed in Nashville," with quotes like "officially jangled the last nerve of Hawks faithful everywhere" and "the suddenly-wobbly Hawks assured of another 48 hours of teeth-gnashing over the possible seismic upset at hand." That was US!)

Feel familiar? Fact is, the road is almost never smooth for a Stanley Cup-winning team. Since 1988, only the 2008 Red Wings and last year's L.A. Kings hoisted the Cup without trailing in a postseason series. That's going back to when Wayne Gretzky was winning Hart Trophies in Edmonton, and also the year Paulina Gretzky was born. (Whoa.) Falling behind in a series should be expected by a Cup-winning team.

If the Blackhawks had played Game 3 like they played Game 2, there'd be more evidence to worry. But if you're still ready to jump ship, ask yourself these questions:

>> Do you think Jimmy Howard will stop 39 of 40 shots again? The same Jimmy Howard who allowed eight goals on exactly 100 shots against Chicago this regular season?

>> Do you think Andrew Shaw will get another perfectly legal goal taken away from him?

>> Do you think Jonathan Toews will hit the crossbar on a wide-open 8-footer again?

>> Do you think Michal Roszival will even play in Game 4?

>> Why am I on this ship?

If Game 3 were replayed with the same chances, same intensity and same players four times, the Blackhawks would win three of them. And that's all they need to do now, in this series. Save the "season in danger!" talk for actual elimination games.

Alex Quigley is a RedEye special contributor.

Want more? Discuss this article and others on RedEye Sports' Facebook page

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • 'Furious 7': At this point, you know, whatever
    'Furious 7': At this point, you know, whatever

    Muscular, perpetually mumbling bowling pin Dominic Toretto (Human Aggro Crag Vin Diesel) doesn’t just prefer Corona, the beach-branded standard of Mexican beer-flavored water. He won’t even consider trying a Belgian Trappist ale, widely regarded as being among the world’s...

  • '5 to 7' is hot and bothered
    '5 to 7' is hot and bothered

    Not long after hordes of viewers hungry for some good, clean (dirty) spanking action flocked to “Fifty Shades of Grey,” a smaller, better movie comes along that actually contains, you know, passion between its characters.

  • 'While We're Young' is hilariously wise
    'While We're Young' is hilariously wise

    That’s so old-fashioned, Cornelia (Naomi Watts) remarks warmly when 20-somethings Jamie (Adam Driver) and Darby (Amanda Seyfried) say that they’re married. Then they add that their wedding took place in a water tower to the sounds of a mariachi band. And there was a slip...

  • Where do Emanuel, Garcia stand on the issues?
    Where do Emanuel, Garcia stand on the issues?

    Chicago's April 7 runoff election is looming, and there are plenty of people undecided about whether they'll hand Mayor Rahm Emanuel another term or go with the new guy—Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia. So we've rounded up the top issues and where the candidates stand to...

  • McDonald's raising its minimum wage, but some say it's not enough
    McDonald's raising its minimum wage, but some say it's not enough

    McDonald's plans to raise starting wages by $1 above the local minimum at select restaurants, just one of the changes on tap as the world's largest fast-food chain tries to win back customers and fend off a union-backed effort to raise pay throughout the industry.

  • Teen who got controversial heart transplant dies in crash during police chase
    Teen who got controversial heart transplant dies in crash during police chase

    An Atlanta area teenager who said a heart transplant two years ago gave him a second chance at life died this week when he lost control of the car he was driving while fleeing police, according to police records.