Back for more punishment.

Dear 1995 X:

Don't despair. Times are tough, I know. You're losing so many favorite players. You're about to watch JR get dealt. Eddie will follow. Soon, Cheli will be gone. And Cheli will maybe be the worst because he's going to Scumville.
But you hate the Scum. Dearly. You plan entire weeks around Hawks-Scum games. You stay up late to watch replays. But they always beat you. The Hawks always seem one player away. You almost saw Keith Tkachuk in a Hawks sweater. "We would have won the Stanley Cup", you mumbled in a depressed mood when Winnipeg matched before the team moved to Phoenix.
And you despise Detroit. Their fans are so entitled. They're so damned talented. Fedorov. Man, that guy is incredible. Yzerman. He's great. You love watching him play but... they beat you every time. That Scotty Bowman- he's something. A living legend back there behind the bench. An aura, a presence.
But just hold on a little while. Hang in there, 1995 X. You'll go through a few years where you'll swear you have an entire row to yourself. You'll be depressed. The Anthem will go from incredible to louder than the crowd itself. It won't feel good. Foley will be jettisoned to... the Wolves.
But in that last year of misery, you're going to see a few players' names that you'll want to take note of: Seabrook. Keith. A trade for a guy from Philly named 'Sharp'. Soon, you'll see sweaters all over Chicago with 7, 2 and 10 on it. And not Cheli, Weinrich and Amonte. Those three will be all-world. Olympians. But it gets better...
Two back to back draft picks will be guys named 'Toews' and 'Kane'. Toews will immediately remind you of Yzerman or Sakic. He's going to change the way this franchise is treated all over the world. And then there will be Kane. He's magic. He will bring fans out of their seats mid-stride over the blue line. His hands are indescribable.
And Old Man Wirtz will depart. His son will take over. And literally the night Rocky Wirtz takes the reigns, things will be different. Foley will be brought back. Home games will be on television. On TV.
And the Hawks will make a splash in free agency. And they'll hire some guy named Joel Quenneville. He's going to change everything... with Scotty Bowman's son.
And you will watch the Hawks sign huge free agent names to big contracts. You'll be so excited to see a redheaded dude named 'Campbell' anchoring the back end until suddenly, two other defensemen emerge. (You'll know them when you see them.) And the Hawks will out-bid the mighty Scum for the one of the best all-around players in hockey. He will be worshiped by the fans from his first game, coming back from surgery to score a pair of goals... one of which will be mid-air. You will build an altar to him.
And Scum will take one more swing at your dreams. They'll knock your fast-rising boys from the post-season after a magical run. But if you wait, you will see a team and a dynastic run that will make you feel fortunate that you didn't quit when you had an entire row to yourself against Nashville in a 2005 game.
You'll get to see incredible achievements. Again and again. The Hawks will surpass the Bears in Chicago sports during the winter. Your nieces and nephews will grow up knowing a feeling you thought only other cities felt- that Scum fans got to feel.
But they won't have what you guys in Chicago will have. Hang in there. It will be worth it.
-2016 X