<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Top Stories]]>Copyright 2018 https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago https://www.nbcchicago.com en-usMon, 12 Nov 2018 16:46:43 -0600Mon, 12 Nov 2018 16:46:43 -0600NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[See Inside the 'Friends' Pop-Up Bar in Chicago]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 11:53:00 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/friends+thumb+2.jpg Sit inside Rachel and Monica's apartment or cozy up in Central Perk while hearing the sounds of Smelly Cat. Replay Lincoln Park's “Friends”-themed pop-up bar has fans of the hit show buzzing. ]]> <![CDATA[Airborne Deer Slams Through Woman's SUV, Lands in Back Seat]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 11:57:06 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/deer+crash+car.jpg

A deer jumped into traffic on a New Jersey highway, then flew airborne and smashed into a woman's SUV, crashing through the windshield, onto the passenger seat and landing in the back of the vehicle, authorities say. 

In a Facebook post, the Howell Township Police Department says the deer ran onto Route 9 Monday morning -- right into the path of Melissa Misthal's Rav4.

The 36-year-old woman swerved to avoid the animal but it rammed her SUV while airborne, police say. The force of the impact sent the deer into the passenger seat and then into the back; the windshield collapsed, as did the roof of the vehicle. 

The deer still in her car, Misthal managed to pull her SUV over to the shoulder. She was treated at the scene for a minor injury. The deer died. 

Police praised the actions of Misthal, though, which they say helped prevent additional accidents and injuries. 



Photo Credit: Howell Township Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Nagy Says Parkey's Job Safe After Lions Game]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 16:30:18 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1060278880.jpg

Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey may have missed a pair of field goals and two extra points on Sunday against the Detroit Lions, but don’t expect there to be competition for his job this week.

Asked after the game about the status of his kicker, Bears head coach Matt Nagy says there will be no competition for the job, even after Parkey managed to hit the uprights on four of the six kicks he attempted in the game.

Parkey has now missed five field goals this season, a career high. The two extra points that he missed in the game were the first he’s missed all season long.

Bears G.M. Ryan Pace signed Parkey to a four-year contract earlier this year, with $9 million in guaranteed money. If the team were to cut him, they would have around over $5 million in dead cap money for the 2019 season.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[CTA Blue Line Service Disrupted Due to Injured Deer on Tracks]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 16:39:11 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/deerblue.jpg

CTA Blue Line service was temporarily suspended from O'Hare and Harlem (O'Hare Branch) Monday afternoon due to an injured deer on the tracks.

A CTA spokesman told NBC 5 that the incident occurred around 1:09 p.m. and it remains unclear as to how the deer was injured.

As of 4:30 p.m., the deer was off the tracks and in custody of animal control, according to a Chicago Fire Media tweet.

In addition, CTA also tweeted around the same time that service is resuming, "Blue Line treains are operating with residual delays."

The Transit Chicago page stated earlier that “trains are operating only between Harlem (O’Hare Branch) and Forest Park."

Crews have been working to restore service and in the meantime are offering full bus shuttle services to riders.

“At this time, also consider #81W West Lawrence, #88 Higgins, #90 Harlem, and #56 Milwaukee buses as alternatives,” the page stated.

No other information was immediately available.



Photo Credit: Travis Borton]]>
<![CDATA[Trump's Acting AG Appointment Dogged by Legal Questions]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 14:53:39 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/whitaker-trump-split.jpg

President Donald Trump faces a growing backlash over his choice of Matt Whitaker to serve as acting attorney general, with liberal and conservative legal experts questioning the appointment, NBC News reported.

The controversy arises because Whitaker was serving Jeff Sessions as the attorney general's chief of staff, a position that was not confirmed by the Senate, and because a federal law specifies that the deputy attorney general takes over when there's a vacancy at the top of the Justice Department.

But in making the choice, Trump bypassed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who had been overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the election and Trump. 



Photo Credit: AP Images; Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA['Marvel' Mastermind Stan Lee's Life in Photos]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 13:56:16 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sl-1975-21.jpg Comic legend Stan Lee, the creator of some of the most iconic American superheros and villains, revolutionized whole industries doing what he loved best - telling a story. Lee, who died on Nov. 12, 2018, at the age of 95, was a leading presence within Marvel for decades. See his life in photos.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[I'll Be There for You: Couple Weds at 'Friends' Pop-Up in Chicago]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 13:45:43 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Photo+Nov+11+4+26+31+PM.jpg

One Chicago couple said their "I'll be there for yous" in a special ceremony at a "Friends"-themed pop-up bar in Lincoln Park over the weekend. 

Jose Martinez, a veteran of the United States Marine Corps, and Cynthia Rivera held their wedding ceremony inside the Chicago bar currently transformed into sets from the iconic show, said to be Rivera's favorite Sunday. 

The two exchanged vows on Veteran's Day, standing in front of carboard cutouts of the hit show's cast. 

Replay Lincoln Park launched the “Friends”-themed pop-up bar last week, turning its venue into spaces like Monica and Rachel’s apartment and Central Perk.

Featuring specialty drinks inspired by the show, trivia night, a 90s dance night and more, the bar says the “smelly cat’s out of the bag.”

The pop-up is set t take place through Nov. 24. 



Photo Credit: Replay]]>
<![CDATA[Teen Charged After Swastika Sent to OPRF Students' Phones]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 12:41:46 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/oprf+google+maps.png

A 14-year-old has been charged after a photo of a swastika was air-dropped to Oak Park and River Forest High School students' cell phones during a morning assembly last week, police said.

The teen was charged with dissemination of an obscene message and is scheduled to appear in juvenile court Wednesday. 

On Friday, officials said an anti-Semitic image was distributed to some students' phones during an assembly. 

"Administration and security are aware and are in full investigation mode," OPRF's Director of Communications Karin Sullivan said in an email alerting students' families of the incident. "Thanks to so many of you for your vigilance in reporting this immediately."

The teen was interviewed by police shortly after the incident, authorities said, noting that the airdropped image also prompted a report of a possible school shooting threat that turned out to be a "misunderstanding." 

According to police, the image led one student to tell a parent that students were talking about shooting up the school, prompting that parent to call police.

"Students, parents and high school staff are understandably on edge given these incidents,” Interim Police Chief LaDon Reynolds said in a statement. “I want to assure them and the entire community that the Oak Park Police and our network of law enforcement agencies across the region are focused on bringing such troubling incidents to an end.”

Police presence has "increased significantly" at the suburban school as the photo marked the third racist and anti-Semitic incident in less than two weeks.

Earlier in the week, graffiti was discovered in a girls' bathroom that called for the deaths of “blacks (and) Muslims,” alongside a swastika and the phrase "gas the Jews."

"I went through the entirety of Monday absolutely fearful for my life," student Jordan Murray said.

The week before, another graffiti message was scrawled on a shed at the school, with the phrase "white power" and two swastikas - this one directed at special education teacher Anthony Clark.

“Whoever wrote that, they want you to be afraid,” he said of the message.

In the wake of the first two graffiti incidents, school officials held a packed town hall meeting Wednesday evening in hopes of bringing the community together to "eradicate intolerance and hate," district Superintendent Joylynn Pruitt-Adams said in an email.

Clark, along with other faith and community leaders, were front and center at Wednesday's meeting as the school, students and parents looked to put a stop to the hateful incidents.

Pruitt-Adams said in her email after the second message was found that the school immediately reported both incidents to the police, as well as launched its own investigation, reviewing hours of security footage in an attempt to identify the perpetrators.



Photo Credit: Google]]>
<![CDATA[Facebook Briefly Goes Down: 'Something Went Wrong']]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 12:31:37 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/971974510-facebook-generic.jpg

Some Facebook users were reporting that the site was down for them on Monday.

For those experiencing the outage, opening a page on the social media site revealed an error message reading, "Sorry, something went wrong. We're working on it and we'll get it fixed as soon as we can."

Facebook appeared to go down just 1 p.m. ET. Users started to report that it was back online about 30 mintues later. A Facebook page that tracks the platform's status said it was healthy after having been inaccessible.

The website outage-tracking site Downdetector reported a spike in reports of problems with Facebook starting before 1 p.m. ET. A map showed the outages concentrated in the Northeast and Midwest of the United States.

NBC has reached out to Facebook for comment. The company hasn't issued any tweets.

Refresh this page for more on this breaking news story.



Photo Credit: Alexander Koerner/Getty Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[Vatican Intervenes, US Bishops Postpone Action on Abuse]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 11:40:41 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Catholic+Bishops+Conference+-+08191408_34420581.jpg

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops was meeting in Baltimore this week on the heels of what's been called a "summer of shame" with widespread reports of abuse at the hands of priests and questions on whether bishops looked the other way.

Just as the bishops were expected to police themselves with new, stricter guidelines, the Vatican intervened and asked them to wait - postponing reforms until March.

A complete change of plans was announced as they opened their meeting, an event drawing much attention after an extraordinary few months.

A Pennsylvania Grand Jury released a report in August detailing claims that more than 300 priests had abused 1,000 victims for more than 70 years. Allegations have also surfaced that Cardinal Theodore McCarrick had abused a minor and seminarians — dating back 50 years — leaving questions as to whether the Vatican was aware when it promoted the former Washington D.C. Cardinal.

Catholic bishops, who report only to Pope Francis, were slated to consider a new code of conduct during the meeting in Baltimore, and a commission to review whether they have followed their code.

This action was to be taken after the latest priest abuse crisis focused on bishops' behavior, despite promises of zero tolerance at a 2002 meeting in Dallas.

But Pope Francis called a meeting — bringing global leaders to Rome in February — so now the U.S. bishops will wait.

"It is clear that the Holy See is taking seriously the abuse crisis in the Church, seeing it as a watershed moment not just for the church in this country but around the world, in putting so much emphasis on the February meeting," Cardinal Blase Cupich said at the conference Monday.

"I would suggest that we carry on our discussions on these documents, that we fine-tune them through our understanding, debate and the ways that amendments can be proposed. And that instead of taking a binding vote as an action item, we take a resolution ballot so that we can communicate to you as you go to that meeting representing us, where we stand and what we need to say in that discussion," he continued.

"I also would then suggest, given the urgency of this moment, that instead of waiting until June, we have a special session in March to deal precisely with this issue," Cupich said.

"We need, as a conference, as brother bishops, to take up this issue for the good of the church in this country, without delay. We can benefit from the discussions that happen in February and in fact, may find some new insights that we had not thought of. But we need to act soon, without delay."

There was no commitment Monday on whether that proposed meeting in March will happen, and if it does, where it would take place.

But this new change of plans - postponing action - is not likely to sit well with survivors of abuse or Catholic leaders who have said the bishops have lost credibility and need to respond.

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<![CDATA[Could Flooding Deserts Help Stop Global Warming?]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 07:37:36 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/2179665-Algodones-Dunes.jpg

Flooding a massive desert with desalinated ocean water to grow enough algae to consume Earth's climate-changing carbon dioxide is one of four "moonshot" scenarios revealed by a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, NBC News reported.

The desert flooding project would cost upwards of $50 trillion, according to Y Combinator, which unveiled the plan last month in hopes of inspiring other innovators to explore remedies for global warming.

But experts caution that such plans could create as many problems as they solve, even if they do stand a chance of reducing greenhouse gasses.

Y Combinator President Sam Altman predicted that the firm, which helped finance Airbnb and Dropbnox, will fund three companies to pursue the "Plan B" climate solutions in 2019.



Photo Credit: David McNew/Getty Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[Residents to Rally Over South Side Target Store Closings]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 07:49:16 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Target_to_Offer_Free_Two-Day_Shipping.jpg

Residents and community leaders are not giving up on trying to discourage Target from closing two stores on Chicago's South Side.

A rally was scheduled for Monday outside the Target in the city's South Loop - a store that isn't slated to close, but that Rep. Bobby Rush said is important to its community in the same ways the two slated for closure are to theirs.

"Whoever made the decision didn’t understand, don’t know this community," Rush said at a community meeting last week, where residents of the Morgan Park and Chatham neighborhoods expressed concerns about the closures of the stores in Marshfield Plaza and on West 86th Street and Cottage Grove.

The Minneapolis-based retailer announced plans to shutter the stores the week before, calling it a "difficult decision," but one that had to be made based on performance.

"The decision to close a store is always difficult," a store spokeswoman said in a statement, "and follows a rigorous annual process to evaluate the performance of every store in the portfolio and maintain the overall health of the business."

The company said it also considers the proximity of other Target stores before deciding to close a location.

"Target remains committed to Chicago and will continue to serve guests at nearby stores,” the spokeswoman said.

But Rep. Bobby Rush said he is hoping Target will reconsider, sending the company a letter and hosting the community meeting to hear from residents of the predominantly African-American communities.

"What are the seniors going to do? What are the kids going to do? Where are the jobs gonna go?" asked Michael LaFargue, of the West Chesterfield Community Council.

The company said it wants to ensure no job losses and planned on helping employees relocate to other locations.

While the decision stands as is, Rush said he was expected to meet with Target executives Thursday in an effort to change their minds.

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<![CDATA[How to Help Victims of California Wildfires]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 06:15:36 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/fireGettyImages-1060089764.jpg

More than 30 people have died and tens of thousands of Californians have been forced from their homes as huge wildfires continue to rage in the northern and southern ends of the state. 

The Camp Fire has become the most destructive wildfire in state history, killing at least 29 people and destroying more than 6,400 residential structures over nearly 175 square miles. The 130-square-mile Woolsey fire north of Los Angeles, meanwhile, killed at least two and has the potential to grow with the return of Santa Ana winds. Burning near the Woolsey fire, the Hill fire is smaller and three-quarters contained.

Here are some ways to help:

DONATIONS
Anyone who wants to help can text "CAWILDFIRES" to 90999 to make a $10 donation to support RedCross disaster efforts.

GoFundMe has also set up a page with fundraising campaigns for victims of the fires in both northern and southern California.

Donations can also be made through the Salvation Army.  

North Valley Community Foundation is accepting monetary donations as well as supplies.

Caring Choice, a nonprofit in Chico, is accepting donations to help offer relief to those affected by recent Northern California Fires. You can make a note in the memo whether you prefer your donation be used for, food, clothing, housing or other things.

Among supplies needed are paper products (toilet paper, forks, spoons, paper plates, tissues, paper towels), and women's undergarments, as well as warm clothes, including shoe and socks, Butte County officials said.

The North Valley Animal Disaster Group is taking care of 729 animals as of Saturday morning and it's accepting donations. Call ‪530-899-3873‬ or visit this site for more information.

United Way of Greater Los Angeles has started a disaster relief fund for victims of the Hill and Woolsey fires. Similarly, United Way of Northern California has set up an option on its donation for page for people to put money toward Camp fire relief.

The Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation has also put out a call for donations to raise money to purchase hydration backpacks for firefighters. Donations can be made online at the organization's website

AirBnb was looking for host homes to open their spaces for evacuees of the Woolsey and Hill Fires through Nov. 29. More than 850 homes throughout the SoCal region, including dozens in San Diego County, were available.

Those wishing to volunteer should fill out an application and wait for instructions. Notarized applications are required. Contact Caring Choices by calling 530-899-3873 or visiting them at 1398 Ridgewood in Chico. 

AT&T was waiving charges for those affected by the fires. See more information here. T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon are offering a similar deal, with more information available on their websites.  

T-Mobile support trucks were also to be in the greater Ventura area Monday and Tuesday to help those affected by the Woolsey fire. They would provide connectivity, USB cables, chargers, battery packs, masks and toiletries. See more information here.

Additionally, NBC Los Angeles has a Southern California wildfires Facebook group with local information on ways to help. 



Photo Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Veterans Not Getting GI Bill Benefits Due to IT Issues at VA]]> Mon, 12 Nov 2018 14:20:45 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/veteransGettyImages-622412368.jpg

The Department of Veterans Affairs is suffering from a series of information technology glitches that has caused GI Bill benefit payments covering education and housing to be delayed or, in some cases, never delivered, NBC News reported

"I’m about to lose everything that I own and become homeless," said Shelley Roundtree, a U.S. Army veteran and student at Berkeley College in New York. "I don’t want to be that veteran on the street begging for change because I haven’t received what I was promised."

Veterans across the country are still waiting for the VA to catch up with a backlog created after President Donald Trump signed the Forever GI Bill in 2017. The landmark piece of legislation greatly expanded benefits for veterans and their families, but it did not upgrade the VA's technical capabilities to account for those changes.

It's unclear how many GI Bill recipients were impacted by the delays, but as of Nov. 8, more than 82,000 were still waiting for their housing payments with only weeks remaining in the school semester, according to the VA. Hundreds of thousands are believed to have been affected. 

A VA spokesperson told NBC News over email that "further system changes and modifications are being made and testing is ongoing on the IT solution" to fix the delay in monthly stipend payments.



Photo Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images, File ]]>
<![CDATA[Lions vs. Bears: Winners and Losers]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 21:37:53 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1060357488.jpg

It was a big day at Soldier Field for the Chicago Bears, as they snapped a 10-game divisional losing streak and beat the Detroit Lions 34-22.

The win puts the Bears in great position as they head into their next game against the Minnesota Vikings, but before we start delving into that game, here are our winners and losers for Sunday’s game:

Winners:

Matt Nagy’s Aggressive Play-calling

The Bears have made it a point lately to keep the pedal to the metal when leading in games, and that’s exactly what they did on Sunday, as Mitchell Trubisky and company continued to move the ball around the field even after building up a big lead.

That evolution of strategy on the part of head coach Matt Nagy is a welcome sight, as the Bears continue to do exactly what they need to do: put away lower-tier teams when given the opportunity.

The Bears’ Pass Rush

The Bears have struggled to get to the quarterback in recent weeks, but that was not an issue on Sunday, as the Bears registered six sacks on Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford and made his life miserable in the pocket.

A big part of that success was the return of Khalil Mack, who looked positively dangerous after sitting out for two weeks with an ankle injury. He had a pair of sacks in the game, and was a much more effective player than he was in his last appearance against the Miami Dolphins.

Roquan Smith was another key contributor, as he registered 10 tackles and a sack in the game. His intuitive play has been a blessing for the Bears, and he is quickly becoming one of the top defensive rookies in the league.

Losers:

Jordan Howard

Howard’s up-and-down season continued on Sunday, as he rushed for just 21 yards on 11 carries. There were questions upon the hiring of Nagy about whether Howard would fit into his offense, and for the most part, he has been playing second-fiddle to Tarik Cohen, who got 13 touches and had 44 all-purpose yards in the game.

That being said, Howard does still have a role to play in the offense, but he needs more than 11 carries to do it. Most of those carries came late in the game after the contest had effectively been salted away, so it will be interesting to see how big a role he will play against the Vikings.

Cody Parkey

Any time a player misses two field goals and two extra points he’s going to feel the pressure a bit, but his job is safe, according to Nagy, so he can focus on improving for next week’s game against Minnesota.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Thump Lions Behind Big Game From Trubisky]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 15:21:56 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Bears+Celebrate+11-10.jpg

The Detroit Lions tried to make it interesting at the end, but the Chicago Bears still prevailed at Soldier Field in a 34-22 triumph.

The win is the first divisional victory of Mitchell Trubisky’s career, and he played a big role in the triumph, throwing for 355 yards and three touchdowns in the win. Trubisky also rushed for a touchdown in the game as the Bears won their third straight contest and pushed their record to 6-3 on the year.

Allen Robinson had a massive day for the Bears after missing the last two games with a groin injury, hauling in six catches for 133 yards and two touchdowns. Anthony Miller had four catches for 107 yards and a touchdown in the winning effort.

Linebacker Roquan Smith had a monster game for the Bears, registering nine total tackles and a sack in the game. Khalil Mack, who had missed the Bears’ last two games with an ankle issue, had two sacks in the game.

The Bears made sure to get off to a hot start for the second consecutive week, hanging 26 early points on the Lions. Cohen and Robinson each scored touchdowns in the first quarter to make it a 13-0 game, and then Miller hauled in a 45-yard touchdown pass from Trubisky early in the second to make it a 19-0 game.

After a Trubisky rush for a four-yard touchdown made it 26-0, the Lions started slowly clawing their way back into the contest. Kerryon Johnson rushed for a touchdown with a minute to go in the half to get Detroit on the board, and Matt Prater drilled home a 52-yard field goal early in the third quarter to make it 26-10.

The Lions kept pushing in the fourth quarter, as Kenny Golladay and Johnson both hauled in touchdown catches from Matthew Stafford, but it wasn’t enough as the Bears’ offense was able to drain the clock and seal the victory.

The Bears will have an opportunity to make a huge divisional statement next week as they take on the Minnesota Vikings at Soldier field in a nationally televised contest. They will rematch with the Lions just four days later, as the two teams will meet in Detroit on Thanksgiving.

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<![CDATA[Opinion: Blackhawks Stuck in Limbo as Losses Mount]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 18:57:34 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-915145662.jpg

The Chicago Blackhawks’ front office and executive team has been talking all week long about how they believe they are still a playoff contender, but the reality is that the team is stuck in a nearly-impossible spot as they move into the future.

The Blackhawks, who have lost seven games in a row, fired former head coach Joel Quenneville on Tuesday, and they did so because they believe that they had to “improve” if they wanted to have a shot at the postseason.

“We have to improve if we want to have a chance,” G.M. Stan Bowman told the media this week. “We have to be better.”

Things haven't gone well after the firing, as the Blackhawks have dropped their first two games under new head coach Jeremy Colliton, but that is to be expected after dismissing a veteran coach that has been with the team for over a decade.

With that being said, the Blackhawks can continue to insist all they want that they are still thinking playoffs and that a rebuild is not on the table (team president John McDonough called their current course a “remodel”), but the reality is that they wouldn’t be able to easily execute a rebuild even if that’s what they chose to do.

Unlike the Chicago Bulls, White Sox, and Cubs, the Blackhawks can’t simply decide to sell off assets and go for broke with youngsters, and the reason is as simple as looking at their contract list. 

Of the Blackhawks’ top nine contracts in terms of average annual value, only one, Brandon Saad’s $6 million per year deal, does not have at least some kind of no-movement or no trade clause. Five of the contracts, belonging to Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Brent Seabrook, Duncan Keith, and Cam Ward, have full no-movement clauses, meaning that if the player does not want to go anywhere, the Blackhawks’ collective hands are tied.

Even players like Marcus Kruger, who has two goals this season, has power over his future, as he can name seven teams he won't accept a trade to. 

Even if those players decided that they wanted to get out of Dodge and play with another potentially contending team, the term and cost of their contracts are extremely prohibitive. Toews and Kane each have five years left on their current deals, and even if one of them were willing to waive their no-movement clauses, it's virtually impossible to imagine a scenario in which McDonough or team owner Rocky Wirtz would approve a trade involving the faces of their franchise. 

Keith still has five years left on his deal as well, and the line to acquire a 35-year-old defenseman who has played more minutes than nearly any other blue liner in the league over the last decade is probably pretty short, even before you add in the $5.5 million per season that he is owed. 

Then there’s the contract of Seabrook, who still has a staggering six years left on a deal that pays him nearly $7 million a season. Add in his age and the miles he’s logged, and there likely isn’t a sweetener in the world that can convince a team to take on the deal.

Throwing out all of those factors, there is still the simple question of whether a trade that would hurt the team so much in the short-term could help them enough in the long-term to be worthwhile.

Would trading a player like Kane, who is the team’s best offensive player and has a proven track record of being able to succeed with virtually any linemate, really make the Blackhawks better?

Would trading a player like Corey Crawford, who has one year left on his deal after this season, make a big enough difference to justify? Would the Blackhawks even be better without their star goaltender? 

The reality of the situation is that the Blackhawks are in a position where hope is their best strategy, and the odds of success are low. It is at least possible that the team could get out from under their myriad of bad contracts without having to take on equally bad deals, but it’s far from a given that he can be successful.

 It’s a brutal truth that Bowman is forced to grapple with, and for as adamant as he is that the Blackhawks’ goal this season is to make the postseason, he would probably be better off stocking up on rabbit’s feet and lucky pennies.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[1 Dead, at Least 10 Wounded in Chicago Shootings Sunday]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 22:19:12 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/63rd+and+King+Drive+Shooting+-+Johnson+-+Noel+-+21515704_341951841.jpg

A 24-year-old man is dead and at least seven others have been wounded in shootings across the city of Chicago on Sunday.

The fatal shooting took place in the 4600 block of South Lamon just after 7 p.m., according to police. The victim was standing on a sidewalk when a person walked up to him and opened fire, striking him in the chest and abdomen.

The victim later succumbed to his injuries, and police are still searching for a suspect.

Earlier Sunday, a 17-year-old boy was standing on a sidewalk in the 7700 block of South Normal at approximately 3:45 p.m. when a person walked up to him and opened fire, striking him in the head.

The victim was taken to the University of Chicago Medical Center in critical condition, and police are still searching for a suspect.

In the city's most recent shooting, two men were inside of a fast food restaurant in the 7100 block of South State Street when another men walked inside and fired shots at them. 

A 29-year-old man was taken to the University of Chicago in critical condition after he was shot in the face, and a 20-year-old man was taken to the same hospital in critical condition with a gunshot wound to his chest. 

No one is in custody, and police are still investigating. 

Here are the rest of Sunday’s shootings:

 

  • A 28-year-old man was shot in the leg after a fight broke out in the 800 block of West Jackson at 12:30 a.m., police said. The victim was taken to Stroger in stable condition, and four persons of interest are being questioned in the incident.
  • In the 4500 block of South Lawler at approximately 12:38 a.m., a 28-year-old man was sitting in a parked car when he heard shots and felt pain in his ankle. He was taken to Mount Sinai in good condition, and told police he did not see where the shots came from.
  • A 21-year-old man was standing on a sidewalk in the 2300 block of West 19th Street when a person in a passing vehicle fired shots at him, striking him in the leg. He was taken to Mount Sinai in stable condition, according to police.
  • At approximately 2:30 p.m., a 29-year-old woman was driving when a light-colored SUV pulled up alongside her car in the 5800 block of South Shields and opened fire, grazing her in the left side of her torso. She was taken to St. Bernard’s in good condition according to police.
  • Two men were shot in the 1500 block of North Kostner at approximately 6 p.m., police say. A 19-year-old man was shot in the abdomen, and was taken to Stroger Hospital in critical condition, and a 20-year-old was in good condition after being shot in the hand. Both victims are being uncooperative with police.
  • A 59-year-old man was shot multiple times during a domestic-related altercation in the 4800 block of West Gladys, according to police. The man was taken to Stroger in stable condition, and police are speaking to a person of interest. 

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<![CDATA[Three Phase Report Card: Lions vs. Bears]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 17:54:17 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1060302784.jpg

Many observers wanted the Chicago Bears to make a statement against a division opponent before giving them credit for their strong start, and that’s exactly what the Monsters of the Midway did on Sunday as they beat the Detroit Lions.

The Bears took a 26-0 lead in the first half of the game, and then held off a furious Lions comeback attempt to move their record to 6-3 on the year and put themselves in a position to add some distance between themselves and the Minnesota Vikings next week.

Without further adieu, here are our Three Phase grades for Sunday’s victory.

Offense: A-

The offense gets mild dings for not running more against a horrendous Lions rushing defense and for some execution failures in the third quarter, but those were minor quibbles compared to the effusive praise that Mitchell Trubisky and company deserve after the game.

Trubisky has had some very good games this season, but this one may have been his best, as he threw for 355 yards and three touchdowns, and even scored a rushing touchdown as well in the game. He was very accurate with his throws, completing 23-of-30 on the day, and his touch was very good on a lot of passes, including his touchdowns to Allen Robinson and Anthony Miller.

Speaking of those receivers, they did a great job of getting open as Taylor Gabriel, one of Trubisky’s favorite targets, struggled in the game. Robinson showed no ill effects from his groin injury, as he racked up 133 receiving yards, and Miller romped his way to 122 yards through the air in the game.

The Lions may not be the league’s best secondary, especially with Darius Slay out of action, but the Bears still did a wonderful job of scoring at will, and they really carried the day as the defense stumbled a bit in the second half.

Defense: B-

The defense’s grade was originally much higher, thanks to the six sacks that they racked up on Matthew Stafford, but their struggles to keep Detroit at bay in the fourth quarter led to them getting dinged a bit.

That being said, there was plenty to be happy about. Khalil Mack, who missed the team’s last two games, was outstanding, racking up two sacks and terrorizing the Lions all day long, and he got some great backing from Eddie Goldman and Roquan Smith, who continue to be a strong presence up the middle of the field for the Bears.

The team’s secondary was solid as well, baiting Matthew Stafford into some bad throws and defending most of his passes beautifully. Bryce Callahan was especially good in the game, and Prince Amukamara registered eight tackles and defended two passes in the game.

Special Teams: D+

There’s really not much of an explanation needed here. Cody Parkey missed two field goals and two extra points, and there were no return touchdowns, so the grade was destined to be bad.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lions vs. Bears: Offensive Preview]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 00:58:06 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1038902830.png

A week after lighting up the Buffalo Bills, the Chicago Bears will hope to have similar success on Sunday when they tangle with the Detroit Lions at Soldier Field.

The Bears, who have one of the league’s top offenses under head coach Matt Nagy, have put forward a balanced attack in each of their last two games, and they’ll have a chance to make even more hay on Sunday as they face a Lions defense that has struggled.

The Lions will be without cornerback Darius Slay in the game, and that is bad news for a secondary that is already giving up 357.1 yards per game through the air. Add to that the uncertain health of Ziggy Ansah, and the Bears could have plenty of opportunities to pass the ball with Mitchell Trubisky.

If the Bears want to balance things out, they will have a great opportunity to run as well, as Detroit is giving up 142.5 yards per game on the ground. Jordan Howard should get plenty of play early as the team looks to soften up the Lions’ front seven, and Tarik Cohen should get some opportunities in space as the Lions deal with injuries to linebacker Eli Harold, who will miss the game, and Jalen Reeves-Maybin, who is questionable.

On the Lions’ side of things, their offense is undergoing some changes as they deal with the aftermath of trading away Golden Tate. Wide receiver Kenny Golladay has been one of the team’s most dynamic threats all season long, and Matthew Stafford should get plenty of chances to work him against Kyle Fuller in one of the game’s key matchups.

The Lions have struggled at times to move the ball on the ground, but Kerryon Johnson has begun finding his footing, giving the Bears’ front-seven another challenge to deal with. Fortunately for Chicago, they have one of the league’s best rush defenses, giving up the third-fewest yards on the ground in the NFL.



Photo Credit: Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lions vs. Bears: Grizzly Details]]> Sun, 11 Nov 2018 15:41:40 -0600 https://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-1060249522.jpg

The Chicago Bears came into Sunday’s game against the Detroit Lions looking to make a statement in their division, and while they let their opponent hang around, they still finished off a 34-22 victory at Soldier Field.

The Bears took advantage of some key Lions injuries and aired the ball out at will, as Mitchell Trubisky threw for 355 yards and three touchdowns in the contest.

To take a deeper dive into the game, here are our Grizzly Details from the victory:

Bryce Callahan’s Value Continues to be Evident

A free agent at the end of the season, Bryce Callahan was a monster for the Bears again in this game, defending several deep passes and making some huge plays, including an interception, two defended passes, and a sack of quarterback Matthew Stafford.

There are few slot cornerbacks in the NFL that are able to make as many plays as Callahan has this season, and even though the Bears will be operating with some salary cap limitations next season, they should still make it a priority to get Callahan locked up to a deal.

Jordan Howard’s Work Load Continues to Shrink

The Bears have been trying to get their passing game going a lot lately, but even against a Lions team that was missing its top cornerback in Darius Slay, one would have thought that they would have gone with a bit more of a running attack.

The Lions came into the game allowing 142.5 yards per game on the ground, the third-worst total in the league, and yet Howard only got 11 carries in the contest. Tarik Cohen only had seven, but it seems pretty obvious at this point that the Bears’ offense is not going to really run through Howard, and that’s unfortunate because of just how good he is out of the backfield.

Some Perspective on Cody Parkey

Coming into Sunday’s game, Parkey was 13-of-16 on field goals this season, and hadn’t missed an extra-point in 28 tries.

That obviously did not translate into any success for Parkey on Sunday, as he missed two field goals and two extra points, drawing boos from the Soldier Field crowd.

Even though his performance was absolutely awful, Bears fans can take a small bit of comfort in the likely event that the team holds onto him going into next week’s showdown with the Vikings: Packers kicker Mason Crosby missed four field goals and an extra point against the Lions on Oct. 7, and has proceeded to make his next seven field goals and eight extra points since. That includes three kicks from beyond 40 yards, so it is possible for Parkey to bounce back.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>