POLLING PLACE

Chicago Sun-Times - - SPORTS - with steve greenberg sgreen­berg@sun­times.com @slgreen­berg

What­ever the ex­pla­na­tion — the re­turn of goalie Corey Craw­ford af­ter he tested pos­i­tive for COVID-19, hav­ing Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane on fresh legs, an im­pres­sive ex­hi­bi­tion vic­tory against the Blues or a com­bi­na­tion thereof — the Black­hawks seem to have a good col­lec­tive vibe head­ing into their best-of-five se­ries against the Oil­ers in Ed­mon­ton, Al­berta.

‘‘I think every­one feels very com­fort­able now and ex­cited for Satur­day,’’ coach Jeremy Col­li­ton said.

They aren’t the only ones with a pos­i­tive view of the Hawks’ road ahead.

‘‘Polling Place’’ — your weekly home for Sun-Times sports polls on Twit­ter — asked how the Hawks, the 12th and fi­nal team in the Western Con­fer­ence post­sea­son mix, will fare against Con­nor Mc­David, Leon Drai­saitl and the rest of an Oil­ers group that was, when the NHL put things on hold in March, 11 points bet­ter in the stand­ings.

No doubt, the Oil­ers are the fa­vorites. Per­haps un­sur­pris­ingly, this be­ing Hawks ter­ri­tory and all, a ma­jor­ity of vot­ers didn’t see it that way.

Also, we asked about baseball with­out fans as a TV prod­uct and about the NFL pre­sea­son. This year, those pre­sea­son games have been called off. What good are they, any­way?

‘‘The pre­sea­son is not for fans,’’ @scot­tbears85 com­mented. ‘‘It is for coaches to eval­u­ate the ros­ter. [Over] four pre­sea­son games, your starters play about one game. If you don’t like it, don’t watch.’’

Don’t watch? As if we have some­thing bet­ter to do even in non-pan­demic times.

On to the polls:

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