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Friday, November 21, 2014

Blackhawks - Calgary 4-3 win recap

Circus World



Show of hands if you had Adam Clendening scoring on his second shift, on the power play, in his first NHL game. Alright liars, put your hands down.

However unlikely of a scenario that was, that's the way the Blackhawks got their annual "circus trip" started in Calgary. Clendening got the Blackhawks on the scoreboard first, and later on in the 1st period, another unsuspecting Blackhawk continued the scoring. A hard working shift by the "4th line" resulted in Gorilla Salad giving the Blackhawks a 2-0 lead. After that, the sloppy, careless play of the Blackhawks took over, and they yielded 2 power play goals to the Flames to end the 1st period tied at 2.

Just past the midway point of the 2nd period, Brent Seabrook fired the puck past Jonas Hiller to give the Blackhawks a 3-2 lead. That lead however, was short lived, as the Flames managed to tie it up at 3 just under 2 minutes later.

Its well documented on my feelings on a goalie that plays the puck. I believe they should stay in the damn net. Well Jonas Hiller backed up my opinion by coughing up the puck to Patrick Kane, and Kane made him pay. Kane's goal put the Hawks up for good, and in the end got the circus trip started off on the right foot with a 4-3 win.


The Great

- Thank the good Lord that Brandon Bollig didn't score

The Good

- It was nice to see Adam Clendening score in his 1st NHL game. Way to set the bar high, and become the newest star in the meatball world.
- The hard work of the "4th line" paid off on the Hawks 2nd goal. Dirty work along the boards resulted in a turnover, and Gorilla Salad of all people scoring a goal. That's the kind of effort you want to see out of the grinder line.
- Patrick Kane's first game as a 26 year old was stellar. His steal resulted in the game winning goal, and he also had a sweet centering pass to Seabrook on the Hawks 3rd goal.
- The power play was 1 of 2 on the night. For a change, I'll take that.

The Bad

- Once again the "physicality" of the Blackhawks showed. I am big proponent of the stat of hits in the game, and the Hawks were outhit 15-4. Time to toughen up, and throw the body around when needed.
- Duncan Keith and Brad Richards defensive "positioning"  on the Flames 3rd goal was horrendous. Nothing like being mesmerized by the puck guys.

The Ugly

- Anytime you take five straight penalties in a game, you deserve to lose. Luckily for the Hawks they were able to get away with this tonight.
- Ladislav Smid was a solid -3 on the night. I remember actually wanting the Hawks to take a run at him at the trade deadline a few years ago. See we're not perfect or experts.
- This wasn't one of Niklas Hjalmarsson's strongest games, as he took 2 penalties.



Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Puckin Hostile Shoutcast Episode 15


Gatekeeper and Pat discuss the Blackhawks recent roster moves, the terrible Winter Classic jerseys, the injuries to TVR and Sharp, the Quenneville Lineblender, and the lead up to the circus trip.

Also, discussed is the various league news.

For all your custom jersey needs visit Black and Tan Sports at:
http://www.facebook.com/BlackAndTanSports

Check out Mike Figueroa at:
http://www.figsigarts.com
http://www.facebook.com/FigSIGArts
Portions of his profits go to the Ronald McDonald House Chicago.

You can find the episode on iTunes by following this link: iTunes

Puckin Hostile Shoutcast - Episode 15 MP3 Download

You can listen below on the Talkshoe player:

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Blackhawks - Stars 6-2 Win Recap

One For The Road


It seems like every night there's a different milestone ceremony at The UC. Tonight, that honor belonged to Brad Richards as he celebrated his 1,000th NHL game. Kudos Brad, you're living proof that slow skaters can make it in the NHL. In seriousness, congratulations, well earned.


It seemed as if we were going to see a throwback 10-9 slugfest as the scoring got started early and often. Duncan Keith opened the scoring just over a minute into the game, giving the Blackhawks an early 1-0 lead. Dallas answered back with 2 goals of their own, in just under a minute, to take a 2-1 lead. Brent Seabrook kept the defenseman scoring going for the Hawks, as he tied the game at 2 with a power play goal (I could get used to saying that) just after the midway point of the first.

With no scoring in the 2nd period, the game headed into the 3rd period still tied. Then the Blackhawks finally woke up, and tore the game open by scoring 4 unanswered goals in the 3rd period, for the 6-2 win. The 3rd period scoring was lead by; Kane, Toews, Versteeg, and Saad.

This was a nice win against a division opponent, in the final home game before the Circus Trip. Hopefully the Blackhawks can build some moment thru the road trip.


The Good

- Aside for the mental lapse in the 1st period, the Hawks played a complete game. This is the kind of response I want to see after Friday's embarrassing performance.
- We've been hard on Andrew Shaw this year, and rightfully so, but thank you for finally fighting that dickbag Antoine Roussel.
- 47 shots, 6 goals. That's what you're supposed to see, not 49 shots, 1 goal. Great to see the Blackhawks find the back of the net.
- In the 6 goal theme, it was also nice to see the scoring spread around to 6 different Hawks. A nice balanced attack.

The Bad

- Screw it, I really didn't see too much bad tonight, except for the aforementioned 1st period lapse. I'm not going to nitpick. Enjoy the win.

The Ugly

- TVR left the game in the 1st period and didn't return. Afterwards, Coach Q said TVR would be out for awhile. In other words, fire up the Rockford Shuttle for a defenseman.
- New punching bag, Bryan Bickell managed under 9 minutes of ice time. When Versteeg doubles your ice time, you know you've hit a new low. How much longer until we seriously start considering giving Bickell the Rene Bourque treatment?









Friday, November 14, 2014

Blackhawks - Red Wings 4-1 Loss Recap

Motor City Meltdown



That wasn't just the look of Joel Quenneville during and after the game, it was also the look that Blackhawks' fans had after the shellacking they took in Detroit on Friday night.

The scoring got started early in the 1st period as, Kris Versteeg reverted back to his old self, and centered a pass from along to boards to a wide open Drew Miller, and Luke Glendening hammered home the rebound to give the Wings a 1-0 lead. Versteeg's assist was rewarded with a seat on the bench for the remainder of the period. The Hawks were able to answer back with a power play goal (jump for joy) by Patrick Kane just past the midway part of the 1st period.

You could make an argument that the Blackhawks were lucky, and had no business being tied at 1 after the 1st period, but they were somehow. Whatever interest the Hawks had in playing during the 1st period, was long gone when the 2nd period began. Again, two turnovers in the center of the ice proved costly. This time Versteeg's "turnoveritis" infected Kane and Rundblad, thus giving the Wings a 3-1 lead after two.

While the Hawks outshot the Wings 10-6 in the 3rd period, it was too little, way too late. The Wings added an empty netter to seal a 4-1 win over their former division rival. (NBCSN this is type of matchup that should be on rivalry night, not random Eastern Conference teams to fill an early timeslot)


The Good

- Corey Crawford (when he wasn't being hung out to dry) along with TVR were the two most notable Hawks to me that had some level of interest in playing.
- The Hawks were lucky this game wasn't even more embarrassing with a final score of 7 or 8 to 1. They can thank their goalie for keeping it closer than it should have been.


The Bad

- Why the hell did Duncan Keith get over 27 minutes of ice time in this beat down?


The Ugly

- Turnovers. A trio of turnovers by Versteeg, Kane, and Rundblad were brutal to say the least. Its not complicated, never throw a lazy pass to the open ice. Maybe Q and the coaching staff should find something other than clown faces to draw on the dry erase board.
- In keeping with the turnover theme, both Kane and Versteeg were a well earned -3 on the night. But the highlight may have been Versteeg just standing along the boards like an ass clown after he turned the puck over.
- Steve Konroyd's analysis is awful. He is the ultimate homer. Yes, the goalie interference call on Shaw was bad, but if you really think that would have changed the outcome of the game, you need to have your head examined.
- I love hearing Coach Q say he wants "consistency" on the ice. Well how the hell are they supposed to develop chemistry and consistency with the coaching decisions that are being made? The only thing that is consistent on the Blackhawks is the constant and unnecessary line shuffling that goes on.
- Seriously, what the hell was that, that I just wasted my time watching? That was pathetic.






Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Blackhawks vs Lightning
3-2 Shootout Win Recap

"Mouth For War"



After a weird day in Chicago, with the temperature dropping 30 degrees and the legendary Turano Bakery exploding into a ball of flames, the Blackhawks hosted the Tampa Bay Lightning for a frosty November tilt. The Bolts came in as one of the hotter teams in the NHL, and the Blackhawks could be best described as tepid.

The Blackhawks first period should have very well been at least 1-0 in their favor, but the Lightning took advantage of another poor Hawks line decision, and held a 1-0 lead after twenty minutes.

The second period was more successful for the Blackhawks. While they only out shot Bolts 12-7, they were able to tie the game and take a 1-1 tie into the third period.

THe Blackhawks came out and took a fast lead in the third period while getting out shot 11-7, but could not hold the lead. A late Lightning goal forced this game into extra time and, eventually, a shootout.

The Good


  • Despite the goal results, the Blackhawks outshot the Lightning in the first period 19-6, which is what we should be happy with. Shooting percentage is another story altogether
  • Halfway through the second period, Quenneville threw the defensive combination of Rozsival and Richards out on the powerplay, which might be the slowest combination ever imagined. Sure enough, Versteeg gets thrown into Bishop and Richards eventually gets a goal, which means Quenneville with beat us to death with his newest asinine Boggle combination. That said, the Blackhawks had tied the game. I suppose we were supposed to be happy about that.
  • Just a minute and a half into the third period and Marcus Kruger tipped a long Hjalmarsson shot past Bishop to give the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead. The Blackhawks were due for a bounce and this was it.
  • Crawford rebounded from giving up the first shot of the game to save 28 of 29, including the shootout. By the way, this was priceless:
  • Even though he got the loss, Ben Bishop is the real deal. In the mold of a Pekka Rinne, I'm glad he is in the eastern conference.

The Bad
  • The second period rolled around and Quenneville pulled out the Lineblender once again. The Defense was Keith/TVR, Oduya/Seabrook, Hjalmarsson/Rozsival. Not only that, but Richards was right back on the fourth line, which means his promotion lasted all of 20 minutes. Shaw was moved back to the second pivot.
  • During two consecutive shifts, in the second period, Versteeg had 2-on-1 breaks with Toews and Kane. Both times he saucered the pass, and both should have been goals. Bishop robbed the Hawks on both plays, but I have to give Versteeg credit where it's due.
  • Johnny Oduya blocked a Jason Garrison slapshot just previous to the second Bolts goal, and didn't return. Just previous to overtime Oduya was seen heading to the locker room and angerly threw something down the hallway. Not a good sign.
  • The Blackhawks had 23 shot attempts blocked. Still an issue that needs to be addressed.

The Ugly
  • If there is one thing everyone agrees about, it's that Brad Richards and Brent Seabrook are a terrible second powerplay pairing on defense. The only person that can't see this is, of course, Joel Quenneville. Not 5 minutes into the game, the Blackhawks earned a powerplay, and sure enough Dr. Lineblender throws his horrible nag out there. Sure enough, Richards makes a terrible play at the Bolts blue line and gives up a 2-on-1...WHICH ends up in the back of the Blackhawks net. What a stupid stubborn asshole, Quenneville is. Maybe Crawford should have made the save, but there is no way that he should have been put in that position.
  • Late in the second period, after a play in front of Bishop, Jeremy Morin was slammed to the ice by JT Brown, and the only one to stick up for him was...Jeremy Morin. Bickell just stood there like Frankenstein staring at a flaming torch. Morin ended up in the box but drew the extra 2 minutes.
  • Ben Smith got one of the worst goaltender interference penalties I have ever seen. He bumped Bishop just outside the crease and Bishop just gave him the Rock Bottom.
  • Halfway through the third period the Blackhawks misfortunes started when Johnny Oduya blocked a shot. The Lightning pinned the Hawks deep in their zone, and a Deuce clearing attempt took a bad bounce off the official. All these circumstances totaled one thing, a Lightning goal. Nikita Kucherov took a Drouin pass on the back door and tied the game.
  • I'm pretty sure that I've come to the end of my time as Bryan Bickell apologist. I watched him let a smaller teammate get pounded right in front of him, and then later he basically did a fly-by rather than actually doing a quick stop and fighting for the puck. I can't defend that. It's lazy and worthless.
  • Fourth line wingers Regin and Morin played under 14 minutes total. I guess rolling 3 lines is part of "the plan". Can't wait for March, when all those well rested forwards will still be stapled to the bench, and Marian Hossa can barely stand up. Lets hear it for blind faith!

The Shootout
  • Callahan ran out of room
  • Toews stopped by Bishop'spad
  • Crawford closed the 5-hole on Kucherov
  • Kane backhand top shelfer
  • Crawford stops Stamkos

The Lineblender

Versteeg-Toews-Kane
Bickell-Richards-Saad
Smith-Kruger-Hossa
Regin-Shaw-Morin

Keith-Seabrook
Oduya-Hjalmarsson
van Reimsdyk-Roszival