by Patrick Stankus
The Blackhawks visited Dallas on Saturday night, looking to end their 3 game, post All-Star break road trip on a positive note. The Hawks were coming off an ugly overtime win in the desert on Thursday night. Tonight's matchup featured the top 2 teams in the Central Division, and some familiar faces now in Dallas green.
Once the puck the scoring would not be far behind. The Hawks got on the board first, just 34 seconds courtesy of a bomb by Brent Seabrook on the power play. After lull in scoring for about 15 minutes, the scoring would return in bunches over the final 5 minutes of the period. TVR would find a loose puck at the bottom of the circle, and hammer it past Niemi to give the Hawks a 2-0 lead. Just under 90 seconds later, Tyler Seguin would cut the Hawks lead in half with a rebound goal just outside the crease. Not happy with their lead being cut in half, the Hawks would respond a little over a minute later. Jonathan Toews lead a great rush up the ice shorthanded, Hossa followed up Toews' shot and was rewarded with a juicy rebound off of Niemi's pads. Hossa buried the puck past Niemi to make it a 3-1 game when the first period came to an end.
The second period would be a lot like the first period. It was filled with end to end action, but also featured a little more goaltending than the first. Corey Crawford absolutely stood on his head while the Hawks killed off back to back penalties midway through the period. As if Crawford stoning them wasn't bad enough, Artem, (not Artemi, Mr. Konroyd) Anisimov would add salt to the wound and score shorthanded on the second Stars power play. Later in the period, the #AK72Line struck, with a snipe by Patrick Kane to make a 5-1 game after 40 minutes.
The final 20 minutes of the game would prove to be a lot quieter than the opening two periods. The Hawks killed off an early third period penalty, and would basically be on cruise control the rest of the way. The highlight of the period would be the crowd breaking out a "Corey, Corey, Corey" chant in the final minutes of the game. When the final horn sounded, the Hawks would thrash the Stars by the final of 5-1.
- Corey fucking Crawford. Lets revisit that sequence of saves he made in the second period while the Stars were on the power play. Seriously, if there are any Crawford haters left, they can all go to hell. In the end he made 36 saves on the night.
- How important are face offs? See the Hawks opening goal. Anisimov wins the draw, Seabrook lets one go from the point, and into the back of the net it goes. To make it even better, it was on the power play.
- Artem Anisimov had himself a nice little night. Anisimov had a goal (shorthanded) and 3 assists on the night. The honeymoon is still going strong with the #AK72Line.
- The Hawks PK units were on their game tonight. They killed off 6, yes 6 Dallas power plays.
- After being dominated at the dot on Thursday, the Hawks responded by winning the faceoff battle 33-24.
- On the backend, TVR and Hjalmarsson both had solid games. They also had 2 points a piece tonight.
- Remember when Marian Hossa was struggling? Yeah I don't miss that time.
- A power play goal, 2 shorthanded goals, and the PK goes 6 for 6. I'd say the Hawks special teams had a good night.
- Jonathan Toews took a hooking penalty off of a face off draw just two seconds into the Hawks second power play of the night. Thanks for that Captain Serious.
- This one is just for @UncleRozsival , the Hawks took 6 penalties tonight. Most notably was the one Rozsival took in the third period. All I can say is fucking Rozsival.
- The Stars defense and goaltending is, well, not good to put it politely.
- Lets ask Antti Niemi what he thought of the Blackhawks fans chanting "Corey, Corey, Corey" in Dallas, during the third period.
- The Blackhawks did Antti Niemi's receding hairline no favors tonight. The Hawks chased Niemi after the first period in which he yielded 3 goals on 11 shots. We're still counting the rebounds he was kicking out.