Hoge: Bears-Packers Rivalry Dividing Blackhawks Locker Room
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By Adam Hoge
Jake Dowell and Jack Skille know it’s risky, but both are planning on wearing Packers gear to practice this week.
“I might roll in here with a cheesehead,” Skille said. “We’ll see what happens, but I’ll see if one of my relatives can send one down.”
“I’ve got a lot of Packer stuff,” Dowell added. “Some old sweatpants and sweatshirts I can dig up from when I was younger.”
Clearly the Blackhawks’ two Wisconsin natives aren’t afraid to admit which team they want to win Sunday’s NFC Championship Game between the Bears and Packers, but at least one teammate is questioning their allegiance to the green and gold.
“Well it’s funny because they all the sudden became huge Packers fans when they got in the conference finals,” Bears fan Patrick Sharp said. “Haven’t heard from them all year long and all the sudden they are huge Packers fans.”
The truth is that both Dowell, an Eau Claire, Wis. native and Skille, a Madison, Wis. native, are indeed Packers fans and Patrick Kane can at least vouch for Skille.
“I made the mistake … I brought Skille to the (Monday night game between the Bears and Packers this year),” Kane said. “You guys know how Skille is, he likes to get a little loud in the crowd and he drew a lot of attention to us. So if I do get tickets for (Sunday’s game) he won’t be a guy who I’m bringing. That’s for sure.”
The Blackhawks host the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday at 11:30 a.m. CT, which means their game will be over right around kickoff of the NFC Championship Game. Kane is obviously hoping to run over to the stadium with a ticket, while Dowell said he might watch some of the game in the locker room and then go somewhere else once there is a break in the action.
So who do they think will win the game?
“I’ll bet (Dowell) anything he wants to bet,” Sharp said. “Whatever makes him nervous, because I know the Bears, they got a good thing going and they are going to pull it out.”
Maybe it was cold feet, but neither Skille or Dowell made an official prediction.
“I can’t,” Dowell said. “I don’ t have a prediction because it will come back and bite me.”
Asked if he was worried about getting booed by his own fans Sunday, Dowell responded: “I will get booed. Tough crowd out there.”