Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Banner Raising
Blackhawks vs Capitals - Win Recap

"Hit The Lights"

Game 1 2013. After the unbelievable summer the Blackhawks just had, it was time to start all over again. This time as defending Stanley Cup Champs. The banner was raised, and the season began. Once the cup circus was over it was time to put it all behind them and get this train rolling. Before we get to that, let's relive it just one more time.

The Hawks opened up a lead, early on, and then another lead later in the period, after Washington tied it up. Despite the Hawks lead, they were out shot 13-8 for the opening twenty minutes. A couple of bad penalties were pretty much the key to that shot differential.

The Hawks started out as flat as could be in the first half of the middle period and it cost them the lead. As they got their feet back under them, a fortunate powerplay goal ended up putting the Blackhawks back up by one going into the final frame. The Hawks dominance in the second half of the period was clear by their clownish shot total of 18-6.

The Hawks lost their lead early in the third period, but then came back to finish strong, eventually pulling out a 6-4 win and outshooting the Caps 34-32. 1-0 on a night where focus could have very easily been lost. THey have a lot of work, but a win is a win.

The Good

  • Just 4 minutes into the game and the last person anyone would have picked to score the first goal of the 13-14 season put the Blackhawks up 1-0.

    Yeah, THAT guy. Brandon Bollig continued his hot play by fighting through a check and picking up a Nik Hjalmarsson rebound to Holtby's right. After gathering the few wits he has, and his stick, he jammed it into the gaping net. Don't get to used to that. 1-0 Hawks!
  • Just mere seconds after the Ovechkin goal, Toews and Kane just marched right into the zone and put the Hawks back up by one. The Caps defense let El Capitan walk in and eventually feed Crazy 8s. Kane had about a day and a half to pick Holtby apart, thanks to what can be best described at "lax" defense. The kid just did what he does, and by that I don't mean get drunk and insult drunken Madison Wisconsin trixies. He lit the lamp.
  • The fourth line was the most consistent line in the first period, and they were rewarded with the first goal. They were one of the better lines in the second period as well. This Nordstrom kid might be a find....he just needs to be counted on a little less on the PK. We'll get to that later.
  • Carter Seven put the Blackhawks back up, on the powerplay. Yeah, the Hawks scored a powerplay goal in GAME 1! A fat Hossa rebound trickled into the slot and Seabrook buried it, immediately after Doc, Eddie and the little penis with glasses just spoke at length about the Hawks previous troubles with the powerplay.
  • Manchild scored his first goal of the season about eight minutes into the third period, when he worked a perfect give-n-go at the Caps blue line with old man Zeus. Zeus threaded the needle and his Saad on the tape, behind two Caps defenders. This tied the game back up at 4-4.
  • With six minutes remaining a Brandon Saad keep in ended up going over to Johnny Oduya. Oduya's shot looked like it was going wide but Holtby still casually played it, waving at it and knocking it into his own net. A gift that put the Hawks back up 5-4 for good.
  • Sharp and Nordstrom ended in the box late in the third period, giving the Caps a 5-on-3. Surprisingly, to every one in the building and watching on TV, the Blackhawks killed it off.
  • Hossa finished off the Caps when he raced in on the open net and was hauled down. Game, set, match.
  • Hjalmarsson and Oduya were both plus 4 on the night. Nice start gents. Since all the goals against were on the powerplay, everyone was even or plus, except Deuce, who was a minus 1. Oddly enough, Hjalmarsson was a plus 4, but had 3 giveaways.
  • I know this will come as a shock, but the Hawks actually beat the Caps at the dots, 52% to 48%. That's about as much as we can ask for, from this team.
  • not only did they win the battle at the dots, but they OUT HIT the Caps. Seriously, we all need to buy a lottery ticket, because this will NEVER happen again.
The Bad

  • A Brandon Bollig penalty ended up an Ovechkin goal about halfway through the first period. The new PK duo of Kruger and Nordstrom got to watch Captain Tramp Stamp put them in their place. As pass across the crease was redirected by Hjalmarsson right to the tape of Ovechkin, who just beat Crawford high glove. 1-1
  • Halfway through the second period Handzus disappeared into the locker room. Stop me if you didn't see this one coming.
  • Grabovski tied the game at 2 about half way through the game. Keith got caught with his head down and deep in the Caps zone, leaving everybody's favorite corpse, Rozy-Val, to fend for himself with a 2-on-1 bearing down. Grabovski really didn't even sell the pass, and just blew a shot past Crawford.
  • Mike Green was thought to have scored the Caps second powerplay goal just a couple of minutes into the third period to tie the game back up. El Capitan lost the faceoff deep in the Hawks zone, and the puck was quickly worked to Green. Green just sized up Crawford and beat him stick side. Lets not forget that this was the best powerplay in the league last year. Something we're not used to seeing in Chicago. The goal was later given to Grabovski, so whatever.
  • Green and Grabovski hooked up for the second Caps powerplay goal of the third period to put the Caps up for the first time. An iffy Rozsival penalty led to the powerplay.
The Ugly

  • Just prior to the third Caps goal, Doc and Eddie seemed to miss that it looked like Crawford was having an issue on the ice. I originally thought it was an injury, and it may have been, but they were babbling about water bottles or some shit.
  • Three powerplay goals against is completely fucking unacceptable. Once you give up two, and you have to change shit around. You can't keep trotting the same nags (I'm staring daggers through you Nordstrom) out there to get their asses kicked over and over. It's the kid's first NHL game. Don't keep throwing him to the wolves, and I don't mean the Wolves that play a few miles west.
  • Toews took a high elbow to the dome in the third which made the buttholes of all the Blackhawks faithful clench.
  • 4 points for Grabovski. For all those who thought I was insane for thinking the Hawks might be able to use him between Sharp and Hossa, SUCK IT! For that matter, Toronto can suck it, too.

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