Good morning, Chicago!
We’re coming off a huge week at CHGO. Ayo Dosunmu pulled his first podcast shift. Marian Hossa graced us with his presence in studio. Cubs pitching coach Tommy Hottovy dropped knowledge on the Cubs show. We unlocked more content on allchgo.com than ever before. And we successfully launched our new Diehard Level membership program to praise from both existing members and new ones.
Time has been moving fast since we launched in March and time really just moves fast in general. I was reminded of that while watching the jersey retirement party the Blackhawks threw for Hossa at the United Center last night.
It seems like only yesterday the Hawks shocked the hockey world by luring Hossa to their young and promising team. He was the final piece for a team that would end a 49-year Stanley Cup drought and the engine of a mini-dynasty that would produce three titles in six seasons.
There was a time when it felt like the Hawks run might go on forever. That Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith would be an ever-present core the front office could rebuild around on the fly. That didn’t happen, of course and — just like it did with the Cubs — the end came sooner than we imagined.
It eventually led to last night’s ceremony, which was a reminder at how much time has actually passed. Hossa was the man of honor, a stoic girl dad with five years of retirement under his belt. Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook were in from Canada, both looking a step slower from their lockdown days. Niklas Hjalmarsson still looked ready to block shots later in the night, but his NHL days are also over.
Patrick Sharp? Well, he didn’t look any older, but did you expect anything else?
Toews and Kane were on the ice, too, as the remaining pillars of the championship era. But their days in a Blackhawks sweater might be numbered too and it won’t be long before everyone is getting together to see their numbers fly up to the rafters.
It’s been a long time since both were just teenagers winning titles and selling Chevrolets.
Today, we’re investing our hope in a new crop of young stars with Justin Fields leading the way. But while it might seem like the future is now limitless, we know there’s an end date for everything.
Let’s enjoy it while we can.
CHGO Trivia Question
Name the most recent jersey retirements for the Cubs, White Sox, Bears and Bulls.
A Legend in The Rafters … and Now in Our Shop
The Week Ahead
• All eyes at Halas Hall will be on Justin Fields’ left shoulder and whether he’ll be ready to go for next Sunday’s road game against Zach Wilson and the New York Jets. The Bears are 3-8 and have lost seven of their last eight after Sunday’s loss in Atlanta. Sitting Fields would help in their quest for a higher draft pick; they’d be picking third if the season ended today.
• The Bulls are reeling at 6-10 and facing a daunting schedule that will really decide the trajectory of their season. They get the Celtics at home tonight before a Thanksgiving Eve matchup with the Bucks in Milwaukee. A tough swing out west follows so Will Gottlieb writes the Bulls need to get things figured out — and fast.
• The Blackhawks have dropped four straight and 10 of their last 12 as they head to Dallas on Wednesday. They currently have the sixth-worst record in the league.
• The Cubs and White Sox might sign a big free agent or swing a big trade this week. Or they might not. Just make sure that Twitter account is real before you get dogged by fake news this week. Here’s Ryan Herrera on whether the Cubs will make a big free-agent splash at shortstop.
Cubs: 31 for Greg Maddux/Fergie Jenkins in 2009
White Sox: 56 for Mark Buehrle in 2017
Bears: 89 for Mike Ditka in 2013
Bulls: 33 for Scottie Pippen in 2005