West race: Thursday costly for Hawks

Everyday between now and the end of the regular season I'll update you on the ultra competitive Western Conference playoff race as it relates to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Thursday was a bad night for the Hawks and not just because they lost 5-0 to the Dallas Stars. Nearly every other playoff contender in action won its game except for the Los Angeles Kings. Nashville, Calgary, Phoenix, and of course Dallas all earned two points while the Hawks stood still.

At 38-25-8, the Hawks and Stars have identical records and point totals. Dallas wins the current tie-breaker due to winning the season series so they rank sixth while the Hawks are seventh in the West.

If the season ended today the Hawks would take on their arch rival Detroit Red Wings in the first round but that's subject to change on a daily basis in a crazy playoff race. The Hawks are two points out of ninth while just three points out of fourth in the West.