Sunday, April 14, 2013

Blackhawks at St. Louis - Shutout Win Recap

"Dissident Aggressor"

The Blackhawks traveled to the hideous hole in the earth, otherwise known as St. Blewus, Sunday. Before the game, it was announced that Sharp would be out with a lower body injury, and Dave Bolland would be returning. Personally, I would have preferred the opposite, seeing as how Sharp can actually win a faceoff and score a goal. Sitting Sharp against the thugs in the St. Louis is not a bad idea, considering their tendency to main people. Anyhow, The Blackhawks were on autopilot, with the playoffs and the division titles locked up, but beating St. Louis is always fun, and will never get old. Live from St Louis, it's Blackhawks and the Blues.

The first period was an absolute bloodbath. Eight penalties were called and several borderline plays filled play. The Blues were clearly out to hurt someone, which is purely barbaric and simplistic. When all was said and done the Blues out shot the Hawks 11-10, even though no goals were scored. If the game was going to continue at this pace, there were going to be quite a few injuries.

The Blackhawks shaped up in the second period, scoring the only goal of the period, and also out shooting the Blues 9-7. Much better play with actual hockey and less thuggery.

The Blues brought the pressure in the third period but the Hawks were able to score a shorthanded insurance goal, and win the game 2-0. Just a great example of how the Blackhawks skill can eventually just wear a team down.

The Good

  • Bickell finally got the Hawks going in the second period, finishing a great Stalberg rush. He got two whacks at a chance on Elliott, the second of which ended up in the net. That's how you silence a bunch of thugs. Shove it right up their asses. Plays like that really have me warming up to Bickell, it's just too bad he'll be gone come season's end. He's been an idea third line size guy.
  • A whistle in the Hawks zone for playing the puck with a high stick led to the second Hawks goal of the game. The faceoff ended up all the way back in the Blues zone, and Toews won the faceoff to Hoss. Hoss just throttled a shot past Elliott for a 2-0 Hawks lead. Did I mention that this was all while shorthanded? Way to stick it right in their ass.
  • Corey Crawford had one of his strongest games of the year. Thirty saves, with several great scoring chances and no goals. Maybe that will shut the naysayers up. This was the 7th shutout of the year, and most since the '09-'10 championship season.
  • Plus 2 for Seabrook, who looks like he has shaken off the cold spell.
The Bad

  • Bolland returned to the lineup to take a cross checking penalty. After 10 minutes of complete ass hattery up and down the ice, it really took a lot to earn a penalty, and Bolland did that.
  • The Hawks shitty powerplay bit them in the ass again. They had a chance to take a late lead late in the first, on a 4-on-3, and couldn't muster up more than a weak chance or two.
  • Based on the tone of the game, I guess 7 Hawks penalties is understandable, but they really need to tighten up come playoffs. As good as their penalty kill is, you don't want to have to depend on it.
  • Bolland shows up, and suddenly the Hawks lose in face offs. Not all his fault, but he certainly doesn't help. Especially since Sharp was so good the previous game, and not dressed in St. Louis. Winning three of ten face offs is just plain terrible.
The Ugly

  • Backes is such a dirty fucking prick. From the opening faceoff he was pulling his crap, cross checking Hossa for digging at free puck that Brian Elliott mishandled. Then later in the period, Backes went knee to thigh with Toews. Fuck him and everything he stands for.
  • Late in the first Shaw drew a crosscheck and all hell broke loose. Stalberg ended up earning himself a roughing penalty in retaliation. Shaw is definitely cut from the Brad Marchand cloth, because trouble follows him and he certainly knows how to exaggerate.
  • With all the shenanigans going on in the first, all Brandon Bollig could manage is negating a Hawks powerplay. Please tell me what this guy is providing, because I don't see it. The guy is useless. I don't care if he's the nicest guy in the world; he's terrible at hockey.
  • Shat-in-pants and Chris Stewart were both minus 2. Glad to see the St. Louis big guns towing the load.

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