Even though last night was the Bears/Lions Monday Night Football game, I'm going to start with the Blackhawks. Why would I do that if the season only just started (two games in)? Well, because after the first month or so last year, the Blackhawks had played 5 more games than the rest of their competition (like 15 games while everyone else had played only 10). It doesn't seem like it's a big deal because they all play the same amount of games, but it was a huge deal for the Hawks as they culled about 40% of their roster from the Stanley Cup winning team the previous year in order to fit under the salary cap. So instead of a lot of practice time and getting used to playing with each other, they had to play actual games that counted. This year they again had significant turnover, but are on par with other teams having played last Friday and Saturday and then had off until this Thursday. Much better and more conducive to winning. Through the end of the month, most NHL teams will have played 11 games, including the Hawks, so at least they aren't behind the eight ball this year. Last year they barely made the playoffs having to get help from another team on the last day of the season.
Now to the Bears. As a nationally televised game, you may have seen the debacle. But I would contend things aren't as bad as they seem. They are 2-3 and not looking awesome, but if you look at their schedule, they've played some tough teams in tough situations. All of the teams they've played thus far are averaging 30+ points a game. If you look forward on the schedule, it would surprise few football folks if they won their next four games to go to 6-3. They could then win four of their last 5 pretty easily and go 10-6 or even 11-5. No need to panic folks!!!