The Digital Journalism Blog

NHL Lockout 2012: The Ultimate Penalty Kill

By: Meg Ryan

The NHL lockout has taken a toll on everyone: avid hockey fans are left without a decent hockey game in English to watch on TV and the players are left to take a step back and play with minor league teams or even in other countries. But just exactly where are they playing?

For starters, Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane announced Wednesday that he has officially decided to join the Swiss National League A during this unusual off-season. Other players that are also choosing to play internationally include Bryan Bickell, who is playing for the Austrian League, and Viktor Stalberg, who plays for Sweden for the time being.

However, some players aren’t so lucky to have the opportunity to play overseas. In fact, if you look at the roster for the Rockford IceHogs, the Blackhawks’ AHL affiliate, 10 of the 25 players played for the Hawks last year. These players are forwards Brandon Bollig, Jimmy Hayes, Marcus Kruger, Jeremy Morin, Brandon Pirri, Brandon Saad, Andrew Shaw and Ben Smith as well as defensemen Nick Leddy and Dylan Olsen.

Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa isn’t completely devastated by the lockout. He is using the extra time to make sure he is fully recovered from a concussion during the 2011-2012 postseason. Hossa just got back on the ice for the first time earlier in October.

Blackhawks players that have no plans so far to play for another hockey league during the remainder of the lockout are Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Duncan Keith.

Until the lockout is over, the closest thing we have to real Blackhawks hockey is from cheering on the IceHogs.

Photography by Meg Ryan, 12-21-11

The Chicago Blackhawks celebrate a 5-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens last December.

Photography by Meg Ryan, 12-21-11

The United Center ice is empty as the NHL lockout continues.

The United Center ice is empty as the NHL lockout continues.

Photography by Meg Ryan, 12-21-11

This post was written as if it could appear on


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