It's finally here. Game one 2013. Roughly 125 days after we expected it, but it was here nonetheless. What kind of shake did the Blackhawks draw? The Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings! That's who. Maybe the motivation of watching another team raise their banner on opening day will be enough for the Blackhawks to blast through this shortened season with a vengeance. We won't know the real answer for 99 days. Let's Roll!!!
The first period could not have gone ANY better for the Hawks and their fans. They come out with a 5-on-3 powerplay and ended up with a 3-0 lead going into the break. The Hawks only outshot the King by 1, 9-8, but they were already up 3-0 before the Kings had any pressure.
The second period was much more even, with goals each way, but the Hawks still sat on a 4-1 lead. The Kings actually outshot the Hawks 6-5, but it was a much more slow period. The Hawks still seemed to have a swagger, going into the third.
The third period had more action, and goals both ways again, but the Hawks outshot the Kings again 8-7. The 3-0 first period did the Kings in, and they never recovered. One game, one win, 47 to go. Next in line, Phoenix on Sunday.
- The Hawks were the luckily recipients of a 5-on-3 early in the game, and took advantage with a new look. Kaner opened up the scoring on a 5-on-3 powerplay from a brutal angle. He got a nice feed from Hossa, just under 4 minutes into the game, and sniped Quick to start the ball rolling. Hossa was at the point, and that doesn't disappoint me at all. The shot was hell of a snipe, just off of the goal line. Unfortunately, after that goal, the Hawks went 0-6.
- Drew Doughty helped Hossa out a little, by redirecting a weak flip from the half boards past Quick, for an early 2-0 lead.
- Just a minute and 14 seconds after Hossa scored, my pick to click in my season preview, Frolik, gave the Hawks a 3-0 lead. Kruger made a nice play to dance around Matt Greene, and dished it over to and open Frolik for a lazer of a one timer, off the near post and in. 3-0 and the Hawks were rolling.
- Just a minute into the second period, Pat Kane squirted past Voynov and was sprung on a break-a-way, after a flurry in the Hawks end. Quick made the original save, but the rebound popped out into the slot where a trailing Captain Serious shoveled it past the scrambling LA goaltender, to put the Hawks up 4-0.
- Hossa put the Hawks back up by 3 with a 40 foot wrist shot that went off the leg of Martinez and past Quick just 15 seconds after Nolan's goal. Nothing special about either goal that Hoss had, but they all count the same.
- Toews was on fire at the dot (64%), and Shaw was at 50%, but the rest were pretty bad.
- The Hawks were 5 for 5 on the PK, which is promising, considering the firepower LA has.
- Even though he didn't do much, it was really nice to see some Handsome Viktor Swede-berg on the powerplay
- Following up his assist, Kruger looked really good. He set up Frolik's goal, and sidestepped a big hit on a second period right after back checking hard and breaking up a shorthanded Kings rush.
- Shock-n-Shaw on the first power play unit? Holy christ this is going to be a long 99 days.
- "It's interesting having Carcillo on that first line". Exactly Brian Engblom, EXACTLY.
- Matt Greene was abused by the Hawks all game long, and the more strict interference rules didn't help his cause, either.
- He wasn't needed much, but Crawford looked slow and sometimes out of position. It's only game one, but it's worth pointing it out.
- Carcillo was injured while trying to squeeze past a Drew Doughty check, and never returned. Even though he was a plus 3, I can't say I'll be disappointed to see Saad in his place in Phoenix. I don't wish ill on the guy, but he really had nothing to do with the 3 goals he was on the ice for.
- Listening Dave Strader call Sheldon Brookbank, Brent Seabrook , mentioning "Joel Crawford", and referencing a "shot clock" made me want to kick puppies and punt babies.
- Rob Scuderi broke the shutout with just over a minute left in the second. New Hawk Sheldon Brookbank chose to dance around with a Kyle Clifford, and help said forward screen Crawford so bad that Crawford didn't even know the shot was taken. Welcome to Chicago, Brooksie. Now quit playing like you're still an Anaheim Suck.
- During the second intermission the Hawks site actually crashed from what they are saying was high traffic.
- The second Kings goal was another adventure with the Sheldon Brookbank circus, as Kyle Clifford horsed him in front of the net again for a good 20 seconds, which led to Brookbank knocking down Crawford. Crawford was EXTREMELY slow getting up and never recovered. A long shot from the point was redirected by Nolan off the crossbar and in. Fucking shitshow!!
- Minus 3 for Richard, Gagne and Brown. Ouchie, LA.