"Mean Green Killing Machine"
by Patrick Norton
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Coming off of two straight wins across the border aGAINst our neighbors to the north, the Blackhawks had the opportunity to sweep a Tim Horton’s filled road trip opposing the Toronto Snow Mexicans. The Leafs sported their green and white throwbacks while paying homage to the franchise’s former name: the Toronto St. Pats. The biggest downside about playing in another country is that you’ve got to sit through two anthems by some random broad who thinks she’s auditioning for Canada’s Got No Talent. With Minnesota playing against the good team from New York, picking up two points meant something significant to players in the Indian sweaters. And boy, they came out committed to picking those up.
The first period left much to be desired from the Hawks. Auston Matthews picked up his first goal in eight games, but that’s all the Leafs could scratch on the score sheet. Mitch Marner had a breakaway early in the period, but Crawford made an easy stop after Marner stick handled himself into trouble with the approaching Blackhawks brigade. It was a boring period with both teams looking sluggish out of the gate. Unfortunately, the lackluster first frame set the tone for the whole night. At the end of one, the Leafs led, 1-0.
The second chapter kept with the downtempo style that the first brought. Trust me, I swear I was watching, but it was just empty hockey. Maybe smaller pads and bigger nets will help make the sport more exciting… *waits for Fatrick to awake from a non-existent slumber*. Anyways, back on the ranch, the Blackhawks finally broke through on Season Savior John Hayden’s first NHL goal off of a saucer pass from the ever-deteriorating Captain Jonathan Toews. Besides the excitement from the goal, that’s all the period brought. Heading into period number three, the Hawks had knotted up the score at one apiece.
The third was a whole lotta nothin’. Back-and-forth, but nothing worth noting. Both teams picked up a point and this one headed for extra hockey.
The fourth quarter followed suit with 95% of the extra frame proving to be as dull as the previous three. Luckily, before a shootout would decide the outcome, a two-on-one with Panarin feeding Hartman finished off the Leafs, green jerseys and all. Not only do the Blackhawks pick up two important points, but the Wild fail to keep steady behind Chicago with a 3-2 regulation loss to the Rags.
- Let’s begin with the obvious: John Hayden had a pretty slick goal and received some mighty words of approval from Coach Wizzo after the game. Maybe he’s more than a “three games, scratch, and Black Ace” kinda guy.
- The pass from Toews that lead to the goal wasn’t too shabby either. If you ask me, Hayden will always remember that the team captain assisted on his first career point.
- Toronto’s St Pat’s uniforms were fantastic. I’m trying my best to snag myself one of those.
- Hartman head faked, froze Frederick “Game Seven Loss” Andersen to seal the deal in OT. Not the typical OT demographic, but it certainly made Quenneville look pretty smart for trusting the kid.
- Corey Crawford stopped a dandy twenty-five shots, including one in the OT period. He tallied an assist on Hartman’s OT clincher and forced another team to throw in an extra 3rd round pick when they trade for the six million dollar man this summer.
- Ryan Hartman has sixteen goals this season. Some guy on the Canadiens named Shaw has ten. It seems we’re already forgetting about that loudmouth nuisance.
- Sure, 3-on-3 isn’t real, but those two points Chicago picked up tonight count in full. That’s 97 for us and a measly 95 for Winlessota.
- Not a bad night for the defense. Couple things, but I’ll mention that soon enough.
- It's only been a week, but it has felt like five years since my last recap. Glad to be back.
- Corey Crawford just had a brain fart when Auston Matthews scored. That’s that. Other than that, great night for #50 in white.
- Leafs were a much faster team than the Hawks. Doesn’t look like the Leafs will cause the Hawks trouble in a Cup Final, but it causes concern when there are teams with similar styles in the West playoff picture. Still won though…
- Seabrook looked like he had lost a step early on, but his game recovered throughout the game. His lacking defense and random ass turnovers are going to cost this team a win unless he cleans that up. Simple as that.
- Dear God, Martina WhateverHerLastNameWas butchered the anthems. Key change in the middle of O Canada? Get outta here.
- This game was a boring Original Six match-up. Yes, it’s possible. Great job, NHL. Don’t know how it’s your fault, but give me some time; I’ll find a way.