Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 11/8/14

WASHINGTON DC, DC - SEPTEMBER 23: Corey Crawford #50 of the Chicago Blackhawks defends his net against the Washington Capitals during their preseason game on September 23, 2009 at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The Chicago Blackhawks clinched a playoff spot for the third year in a row this past weekend.

I am very excited to once again be able to watch my favorite team compete for the Stanley Cup, but after the initial excitement concluded, worry began to set in.

Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (Photo by Hockeybroad Own work via Wikimedia Commons)

While I am certainly more optimistic about the ‘Hawks’ chances compared to last season, I couldn’t stop thinking about the potential problem at the goaltending position that could haunt the ‘Hawks this postseason.

For a good part of the regular season there was a power struggle between the ‘Hawks’ two goaltenders, Corey Crawford and Ray Emery, for the starting position. We heard Coach Joel Quenneville talk a lot about “playing the hot hand.” While “playing the hot hand” might help a team deal with a short-term goaltending problem during the regular season, it definitely does more harm than good during the postseason.

Recently, Crawford has gotten the call for starting goaltender, as he should. But let’s say he performs just average these last two games or has a few bad playoff games; is there going to be some doubt by the ‘Hawks’ coaching staff on who is going to get the starting job come playoff time? I’d like to think there won’t be and that Crawford will get the starting job drama free, and keep it, but with Coach Q’s knack for switching up the lines and personal, I can’t be too sure.

For however long the ‘Hawks make it in the playoffs, or no matter how bad one goaltender plays, the ‘Hawks need to live or die with one goaltender. If you’re going to start Emery, keep him there till the end, and the same with Crawford. Now, of course, if one goaltender lets in the first three shots he’s faced, then I could see putting in the backup, but I couldn’t think of a worse general plan of action to take than one that will create uncertainty about which goaltender is going to start in net in the next game.

A huge part of being successful come playoff time is maintaining stability. There’s very little room for big changes or huge gaffes, and if a team suffers from either one of those, they only have a game or two at max to fix it or face being eliminated.

No matter how painful it might feel to start a goaltender who’s just had a terrible game, it’s key that the Blackhawks remain vigilant with one goaltender.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Bruce Jenner: "For all intents and purposes, I am a woman"

Report: Angels, Rangers talking Josh Hamilton trade

Roger Goodell calls both Los Angeles stadium plans 'viable'

Five-star hoops star Malik Newman commits to Miss State

Crabtree on joining Raiders: 'Ain't got nothing to lose'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Hardy gets in 'verbal altercation' with teammate

NFL exec compares Jameis Winson to JaMarcus Russell

Report: Chris Sale wanted to fight Yordano Ventura

NFL does not care about Rams' future in St. Louis

Eagles VP Ed Marynowitz says he's not Chip Kelly's 'yes man'

Jonathan Papelbon wants out of Philadelphia

5 most boring NFL prime time matchups for 2015

Steve Carell, Emma Stone to star in Bobby Riggs-Billie Jean King film

Calipari’s new project: Create virtual reality experience for fans

Maurice Jones-Drew will retire with the Jaguars on Tuesday

Ovechkin jokes about taking a chair from Nassau Coliseum

Uniform colors have already been picked for Vegas NHL team

Golden State: Not losing to New Orleans, but still snoozing

Ventura, Royals need to simmer down before someone gets hurt

The Mets and their weak opponents

Report: Gronk dating former Patriots cheerleader

Nothing gleams like late-round draft gold

The Ultimate All-Living MLB Team

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

5 boring NFL prime time matchups

Bruce Jenner: "For all intents and purposes, I am a woman"

Jameis Winston vs. Marcus Mariota: Perception vs. reality

Report: Gronk dating former Patriots cheerleader

NFL exec compares Jameis Winson to JaMarcus Russell

NFL does not care about Rams' future in St. Louis

Nothing gleams like late-round draft gold

The Ultimate All-Living MLB Team

Dubs wanted to gain momentum for Game 4 ... then won

Teams who need to ace the NFL Draft

10 bold predictions for the NFL Draft

Ten things you need to know about Mayweather vs. Pacquiao

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.