Yell at Gatekeeper
Not much time for the Blackhawks to gloat on their big win in Buffalo Sunday night, as they headed to Minnesota to face the ice hillbillies; otherwise known as the Wild. It has been made pretty evident that the Wild will be a pain in the Blackhawks' collective asses for the remainder of the regular seasons. Then bulbous Bruce Boudreau will face a coach that will completely out coach him for games 6 and 7 of a series, and we will all laugh heartily at them once again. For now, at least, this Wild team will continue to prove to be a proverbial thorn in the Blackhawks' side, which will also make those ice hillbillies utterly intolerable.
The Wild were not impressed by the visiting Blackhawks at all, and came at them hard to open the game. The Hawks had a couple of decent early chances but the Wild certainly had a majority of the quality scoring opportunities in the opening half of the period. The action seemed like an end to end race for a good portion of the play despite the Wild chances, but the Blackhawks eventually started to catch up in scoring chances in the later half of the first period. Luckily for both teams, their goalies were dialed in. The Hawks led in the first period shots on net 15-14, and it could have easily been 2-2, but the goaltenders kept it a scoreless game.
The Blackhawks took little time grabbing a lead early in the second period, doing so just a mere 60 seconds out of the intermission. The Wild were able to quickly regroup and tie the game, but the Blackhawks came right back and answered under a minute later. It was nice to see the Blackhawks look like they gave a wet rats ass, and the Wild didn't really know how to handle them, especially the newly coined #PTSDLine. The Blackhawks dominated the Wild in shots 13-5 and also led 2-1 going into the second intermission. There is nothing to complain about there, but you have to think the Wild weren't going to go down that easy.
Just as I said that, the Blackhawks immediately grabbed a 3-1 lead just thirty three seconds into the third period, and it seemed like they might run away with this game. Even though the Wild tied the game around the thirteen minute mark, the Blackhawks turned right around, again, to open the two goal lead right back up. The action wasn't done there, though, with the Wild almost cutting the lead again. Luckily the officials made the right call this time around, waving off a goal that was clearly scored with a high stick. There were still 10 minutes to play, though. I bring that up because the Wild continued to bring serious pressure and did finally cut the lead down to one goal with just over five minutes remaining. A late flurry was narrowly averted by the Hawks even though they were out shot 13-11, and the inevitable empty net goal sealed the deal.
- Jonathan Toews gave the Blackhawks a 1-0 lead just one minute into the second period. Brian Campbell let a long shot from the blue line go, into traffic, and into the Wild defender Dumba. The puck dropped into the crease for El Capitan shoveled into the net. Nice to see that fat ass slacker increasing his trade value, so they can trade him for something that will never equate his value, and appease the asshole meatball collective.
- El Capitan then answered the Wild power play goal by feeding #DickFuckingPanik, just 41 seconds later. Toews out worked two lackadaisical Wild defenders and Panik found a soft spot in the slot. As we've grown to love, Panik can let a snap shot go as good as anyone. Goal number 16 and point number 30 for #DickFuckingPanik. As Terry Boers used to say, MY GUY! I might have missed on the success, or lack thereof, for Michal Kempny but I nailed the hell out of Panik. He has more than filled the hole left by the overpriced head case Andrew Shaw. Mock Richard Panik all you'd like, and many have, but 35+ points from a guy that was acquired in a throw-a-way deal is phenomenal. Bowman really clowned Toronto on this one, right Stan?
- Thirty three seconds into the third period, Nick Schmaltz gave the Blackhawks a 3-1 lead. Jonathan Toews won a clean faceoff to Schmaltz, who wasted little time getting a shot off through a screen. Dubnyk never saw the shot and suddenly the red light was flashing.
- Less than two minutes after the Zack Parise goal, the #PTSDLine was at it again. Nick Schmaltz made a beautiful reverse pass, while going behind the net, to Jonathan Toews and El Capitan poked it past a surprised and clueless Devan Dubnyk.
- It wasn't pretty but El Capitan was able to finish the hat trick, and fifth point of the night with an empty net goal. Surprised that Toews' fat, lazy, overrated ass could manage that one, right intarwebz experts?
- Future slam dunk hall of famer Joel Quenneville got his 400th Blackhawks win. Props to Q. As frustrating as he can be, we're lucky to have him.
- I was really impressed with Nick Schmaltz's puck control, skating and confidence in this game. There were a few spots where I was shocked at how impressive he looked. I have been pretty hard on the kid but, especially in the seconds period, he looked great. That said, the entire #PTSDLine gave the Wild absolute fits.
- Just over six minutes into the second period, the Wild turned a Blackhawks penalty into the game tying goal. Corey Crawford make a couple of excellent saves, including one on a redirect. Not only that, but Duncan Keith basically shot the rebound back at Crawford, which he ALSO saved. Mikael Granlund was then able to finally push the third try past Corey Crawford to tie the game. This wouldn't last long, though.
- With just over 13 minutes left in the third period, a long wide Marco Scandella shot was redirected by Zack Parise about 10 feet in front of Crawford and ended up in the net. You can point towards a failed Blackhawks powerplay just a few minutes earlier as the catalyst for this goal.
- A few minutes after Jonathan Toews gave the Blackhawks back a 2 goal lead, the Wild looked like them might have cut the lead to one goal again but the officials waved it off with a clear high stick.
- Patrick Kane led the Blackhawks with 6 shots on net, and walked away with nary a point.
- Right towards the end of the first period, Edzo was complaining that a backhand cross ice pass from Panarin to Kane wasn't hard enough, even though it ended up right in Kane's wheelhouse. Must be nice in that perfect little world his mind is sitting in.
- A Tanner Kero penalty late in the third, turned into a Wild powerplay goal. Once again the Wild had cut the lead to just one goal. The Blackhawks penalty kill left much to be desired while failing to clear yet another great Corey Crawford save and gave up goals on 2 of 3 Wild powerplays.
- The Blackhawks defense looks like a steaming pile of cow dung in the last 3/4 of the third period, leaving their goaltender hung out to dry several times. It looked like a free for all, but they were able to eventually keep from totally pissing themselves.
- While I'm on the subject, To anyone who entertained the thought of trading Jonathan Toews, this is for you dumb assholes:
- The third line was not good at all. Marian Hossa had a bad turnover and they just had a bad night overall. They were the only forwards with negative plus/minus.
- Toews and Panik led the possession numbers, as you might expect.
- Even thought Jonathan Toews won a key faceoff that led to a goal, they were under 45% as a team.
Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
Schmaltz - Toews - Panik
Panarin - Anisimov - Kane
Rasmussen - Kruger - Hossa
Hartman - Kero - Hinostroza
Keith - Hjalmarsson
Kempny - Seabrook
Campbell - van Riemsdyk