Friday, October 8, 2010

That John Denver is Full of Sh*t

A funny thing happened this morning as I walked up Madison street. The sun was rising over the lake. Imagine that; the sun is going to rise today, after the Hawks lost their season opener, and, as it turns out, the Rocky Mountains ARE a bit rockier than we'd hoped. Of course, I'm speaking of the 4-3 overtime loss late last night to the Avalanche. Opening on the road, against what could be one of the fastest teams in the conference wasn't going to be easy. The Hawks battled back from a 3-1 deficit to tie up the game in the 3rd period and eventually lose on a shot that snuck through Turco and dribbled in. Where does one start? I'm going to get the bad out of the way first, and end on a high note, because it's not all gloom and doom.

Natually, losing your opener is never "good", but they played a team that is very talented, and certainly faster. That can't be said about many other teams in the NHL, because the Hawks are a young, quick team, themselves. It's nothing to be worried about. The first issue I need to address, or in this person's case get undressed, is Nick Friggin Leddy. On the north side of the center line he looks like an NHL defensman, but south of that line, he's not even a bad stand-in. It's painful to watch, at times. The first goal was a direct result of Leddy not being able to take a pass that was in his feet. Stewart then blazed by Leddy, as he mentally pouted because it was a difficult pass, undressed Hjalmarsson, and sat Turco on his ass with a pretty move. Grantite, Hjalmarsson sent over a pass that was perfect for a right handed shot, but you have to know how to coral a less than perfect feed, in the NHL. Leddy is very talented, but he's green as goose shit, and looks confused and overmatched on the back end. He should be a #5 guy, at this point in his career. Talk about trial by fire. I really believe that Brian Connelly would have been a better selection to log NHL minutes, because he's played against professionals. Hammer is going to have a LONG 4 or 5 weeks if Leddy is going to continue to be his partner, until Soupy gets back. Hammer was a team worst -3 last night, but it's not all his fault, when he's basically alone in his own zone. Goal #2 he was out there with Keith, who let Duchene keep his stick on the ice and redirect Foote's pass into the net, and Goal #3 Leddy and Hammer just stood there and watched Stastny pick up a loose puck and fire it through Turco. Sloppy, to say the least. The powerplay looked relatively good , but the penalty kill took a few steps back. As far as the rest go:
-Stalberg looked uninspired

-Brouwer was up-and-down

-Kane looked a little tentative, and maybe a tad rusty

-Seabrook looked slow at times, and must have wind burn from those fast little bastards skating by him.

-Scott just IS slow, all of the time, and he skates like he had a load in his pants.

-I was shocked to see Pisani playing with Shooter and Kane early on. That's CLEARLY not where he belongs. Lets end that experiment real soon.

-Skille was back in the lineup, but really didn't do anything of note. Unless, of course, you consider a hooking penalty something of note.

Now for the good, or at least the "not bad". First is the subject I'm going to have to debate 400 times in the coming months; Marty the Midget. I have no problem with his performance last night, and I promise you 3 or 4 of those high shots would have beaten Niemi and certainly would have beaten Huet. More specifically this save. Marty looked quick and confident in net. He single handedly kept the Hawks in the game, in that first period. He might like one or two of those goals back, but what goalie doesn't want a few back. I'm going to write a note that says "It's not Marty's fault", and tack it to the forehead of any douche that tries to blame these things on him. The team gave up 41 shots! That's 16 more than they AVERAGED last year. If they only yielded 25 shots, the Hawks win that game 3-1. If it weren't for Marty, they would have lost that game 7-3. I'm moving on before this gives me a migraine.
-Shooter was the Hawks best player with a goal and an assist.

-In typical Hossa style, he played a great game with a pretty redirection.

-Bickell had an excellent goal, but he still carries the puck like my 2 year old. He passes and shoots like a big boy, but if he tries carrying the puck, someone needs to just take it away from him, because it's brutal.

-Kopecky seemed to be everywhere, and didn't disappoint. Looks like he took a few lessons from the big fluff on how to annoy opponents, and I thoroughly enjoy watching him do it. It literally makes me laugh out loud.

-Keith was average.

-Jake Dowell showed some flashes of talent especially with that nice drive to the net.

-They were only credited with two shots in OT, but they pretty much dominated it.

Here are the highlights, have a look for yourselves:

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