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posted: 5/31/2013 5:35 AM

Momentum should help Hawks down Kings

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    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer@Captions:The B

 
By Mike North
The Rebel Inside

It seems some people think the Chicago Blackhawks will have a more difficult time against the Los Angeles Kings than they did against the Detroit Red Wings.

The Hawks were down 3-1 against their all-time rivals, yet with their backs against the wall they came back to win. How much tougher can a series get?

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Unless they are down 3-1 to the defending Stanley Cup champs, I don't think it can be any more challenging.

When I picked the Hawks to win 4-1 against Detroit, I believed their depth, star power and above-average goaltending would win out. The Red wings had a little more cache than I anticipated.

For over 15 years, the Red Wings were the team the Hawks had to beat and wanted to be. So much so, the Hawks brought the Wings' main man, Scotty Bowman, and family to Chicago.

I know the Kings have it all -- a complete team, goaltending, defense and size, but the way the Hawks came back against Detroit just might give them the momentum they need to win. My prediction: Hawks win the series 4-2.

I can't forget to congratulate coach Joel Quenneville and his staff. Coach Q showed no panic, kept an even keel, and was tough when he had to be. He deserves the kudos because if he had lost, coach Q would have to explain why he went home early for the third year in a row.

Greatest Living Bear?

I'm getting a lot of response to my comment about the greatest living Chicago Bear.

After seeing some Facebook answers and emails, can I remind you the only caveat was the Bear had to be alive?

So sadly, Walter Payton is not eligible, otherwise he would be the obvious winner. Mike Ditka is garnering his expected share of votes along with Dick Butkus, Gale Sayers and a few notable others -- Dan Hampton, Mike Singletary and Doug Buffone, to name a few. There was even a vote for Bob Parsons, a popular tight end and punter.

Here's my top five living Bears in order: Mike Ditka, Dick Butkus, Gale Sayers, Johnny Morris and Jim McMahon.

McMahon is the only one I debated, but leading the Bears to the Super Bowl in 1985-86 was something that wouldn't have happened without him. It didn't matter how good Payton or our defense was, we needed McMahon and his leadership to bring us that trophy.

Email me at Mike@northtonorth.com if you think I forgot someone.

Program note:

Watch me on "Mancow" on WPWR Ch. 50 at 6 a.m. Friday, Monday and Wednesday.

• Mike North's column appears each Tuesday and Friday in the Daily Herald, and his video commentary can be found Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at dailyherald.com. For more, visit northtonorth.com.

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