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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Blackhawks Week That Was - 11/29

11/23 - Blackhawks at Vancouver - 2-1 Win

  • Talk about a boring game. Other than the Kesler goal, there wasn't anything to stay awake for until late in the third.
  • Speaking of Kesler's goal. Crawford did just about everything, but destroy his groin, to save that shot. Sometimes they just find that one small hole. It was a 5-on-3, for christ sakes. Aside from that, Crawford had an excellent night. 36 saves; one goal; in a hostile environment.
  • The Shaw goal was vintage Shaw. He was in the right place at the right time, and made a play. He might be one of the dirtiest diggers in the league, but you have to love him. Kane tried to make, what seemed to be a stupid blind backhand pass across the slot to El Capitan, but Shaw stepped in front of the pass and redirected it past Sweaty Lu. Can't fault him in that play. Shaw just made a great play.
  • How great is it that the Hawks player that Vancouver poached off waivers ends up being the person responsible for the bad pinch that led to the game winning 2-on-1? NINE SECONDS after the tying goal. I'm slyly looking in your direction, Ryan Stanton. I hope one of your old boys slipped you a couple hundies after the game. You made it look believable, kid. Somewhere Chelsea Daggar was ringing in heads of every Canuck.
  • As shocking as this has become, the Hawks were above 50% at the dots again. It has gotten to a point that you should be surprised when they aren't. Shaw was the only Hawks center under 50%, but we'll let him slide thanks to his other contributions. He only took 5 faceoffs.
  • In what might be one of the more surprising stats of the night, the Canucks were only credited with 16 hits. Usually they are throwing their bodies, in stupid fashion, at the Hawks players.
  • After discovering a certain greasy haired goalie's twitter account what seems like a decade ago, I cannot hate the guy. If he was anywhere but Vancouver, he might be one of my favorite players.
Here are the video highlights:
11/25 - Blackhawks at Edmonton - 5-1 Win
  • El Capitan's single handed shorthanded goal set the tone for the night. He realized that the Erlers had a forward at the point and pressured him to cough up the puck. After that, it was vintage Jonny Serious. All business.
  • After the Toews goal, it was time for Kane to tally on the powerplay. Nothing pretty, just found a loose puck in front and dunked it.
  • Oduya was the fortunate recipient of some Erler shenanigans, when they put the rebound of Oduya's long shot into their own net.
  • Jeremy Morin made a nice play to set up Andrew Shaw for another slam dunk not even half way through the second period, to end Dubnyk's night. Not that the goals were his fault. In comes the Russian Cosmonaut. Raise your hand if you had any idea Bryzgalov was on the Erlers.
  • The Justin Schultz goal was a really nice one timer from the Hawks left dot and surprised Crawford. Meh!
  • The Hawks only had 27 shots on net and scored on 5. Tell me again how bad Corey Crawford is, meatballs?
  • The Hawks won their, now usual, 50% plus at the dots. Shaw was woofed, going only 1 of 8, but the rest picked up the slack. Hell he had 2 goals and an assist. I'll lay off his ass for the faceoffs.
  • The only players to play less than Kris Versteeg were J-Mo and Bollig. Coach not happy already eh? Maybe all those with the happy pants should have watched his play in 2010, and not just his terrible rapping skills.
Here are the video highlights:
11/27 - Blackhawks at Calgary - 3-2 Win
  • The Hawks were down 2-0 and looking like there was no life, halfway through the third period, and the Patricks decided to take over. Back to back Sharp and Kane goals, fifty six seconds apart, erased the Flames lead, and a Kane goal with eighteen seconds left won it for the Hawks. None of the three goals were stellar shots, but they all count.
  • The second goal, by Sharp, was a herculean effort by Hossa, which left room for Sharp to find a soft spot and redirect it on net. Of course Edzo and Pat completely ignored the set up.
  • For the first time in quite a while, the Hawks lost the faceoff battle, which still left them as the 8th best team in the league at the end of the night.
  • Antti Raanta looks really composed in his first NHL start. He only had to make 20 saves and certainly didn't look out of place.
  • Even though he's unconventional, and kind of overly aggressive, I like this Reto Berra kid. He's exciting.
Here are the video highlights:
11/22 - Blackhawks at Dallas - 2-1 Shootout Win
  • Crawford made nice enough effort on the Alex Chiasson penalty shot was enough to force him to shoot off the far post.
  • The only Dallas goal was a complete and utter shitshow. Crawford tried to play the puck but was too close to the ridiculous trapezoid and he coughed the puck up. It finally ended up on the stick of Peverley, who had a gaping net.
  • Once again, Shooter to the rescue. He redirected a long Keith shot, that the Stars couldn't get out of the zone, and tied the game, which ultimately led to overtime and the shootout.
  • For the second game in a row, the Hawks were beaten at the dots. Pirri was dicked at the dots for the second game in a row.
  • The ELEVENTH shooter for the Blackhawks, Ben Smith, took the extra point for the Blackhawks. Sharpie was the only other Blackhawks player to score in the shootout, and Crawford only gave up one.
  • Stars Jamie Benn had SEVEN shots and none beat Crawford.
  • Yes, the Stars goal was ugly, but Crawford is the reason that the Hawks won. One goal, and 10 of 11 saved in the shootout.
Here are the video highlights:

Friday, November 22, 2013

Blackhawks Week That Was - 11/22

11/16 - Blackhawks at Nashville - 7-2 Loss

  • Khabibulin was rather terrible, giving up two questionable goals, before leaving the game injured in the first period.
  • Versteeg made his debut with the Hawks by taking a bad penalty behind the play that eventually let to the Preds third goal. It was technically on Bollig's delay of game penalty, but Bollig air mailed the clearing attempt while killing off Versteeg's dump penalty.
  • After going down 4-0 with 21 minutes to play, Crazy 8s broke the shutout right before the end of the second period.
  • Fifteen seconds after Pirri scored his third goal in as many games, Viktor fucking Stalberg put the Preds back up by 3 goals. Sometime that epitaph writes itself.
  • The Hawks gave up a total of SEVEN goals, which obviously is fucking brutal.
  • Ben Smith and Marcus Kruger were both minus 3.
  • Hawks faceoff percentage was a paltry 36%. Pirri and Shaw won 6 of 31 total draws.
Here are the video highlights:
11/17 - Blackhawks vs Sharks - 5-1 Win
  • Sharpie had two goals and an assist. One of the goals was a late third period penalty shot goal that put the Sharks to bed for good.
  • Tyler Kennedy is the fucking pigman.
  • The Pavelski goal that Crawford gave up was just oogly. He swatted at it like a fruit fly and pretty much directed the puck into his own net, after completely losing it. They happen. They didn't cost the Hawks. I'm no one to talk.
  • Kruger's feed to Sharp, for Sharp's second period goal, was pretty crisp and precise. He not only knocked the original pass right out of the air, but he then put the brakes on and hit Sharp on the back door between three defenders.
  • El Capitan's third period goal was sheer determination. He just stayed with the puck and eventually tucked in a rebound behind Niemi. His balls are bigger than yours.
  • Vertseeg's goal was set up by Saad's blazing speed. Saad took two steps and was in behind Hannan. Niemi stayed with Saad, but the rebound popped loose right back onto his stick. Versteeg just camped out in front of the net long enough for Saad to find his tape, and it was a slam dunk.
  • Shooter's penalty shot move was pretty sick, and roofing it that close to the net isn't all that easy.
  • Funny how the Hawks generally dominate when they are over 50% at the dots, eh? Actually it's not funny OR surprising. They were at 52% for this game. Consequently, Sharp won 6 of 8 faceoffs, but Quenneville won't allow him to play center. Shaw and Pirri were both under 45%. ::headdesk::
  • Bickell only played 13 minutes, which means he did something to piss off Q, or he got hurt.
  • Everyone but Kane, Pirri, Bickell, and Brookbank were minus on the night.
Here are the video highlights:
11/19 - Blackhawks at Colorado - 5-1 Loss
  • Crawford was chased form the game after giving up 3 goals in under 14 minutes, on only 6 shots. The team didn't play well in front of him at all, but one of two of those needs to be stopped. Raanta looked pretty good. The first goal was a 2 on 1 where he was picked apart like a desert carcass, and the second one was a rebound that went off Hjalmarsson's skate and right onto McLeod's stick. The kid can play.
  • The first Avs goal was atrocious, and it all went downhill from there. Seabrook tried to pass off the back boards to Keith, and it shot directly out into the slot. Crawford panicked, never got set, and it's 1-0 Avs.
  • Bickell went into the net awkwardly in the first period and never returned. The grim reaper is watching over.
  • A huge break up at one end on a Toews rush ended up in an odd man break back the Hawks way, and eventually into the net. This night just went that way.
  • Saad continued his hot play with the only Hawks goal of the game. It was far too late at that point for the goal to matter.
  • On a positive note, the Hawks won 59% of their faceoffs. All Hawks players were 50% or above.
  • No more use beating this dead horse.
Here are the video highlights:
11/22 - Blackhawks at Winnipeg - 6-3 Win
  • The Saad goal, in the second period, was a thing of beauty, and completely set up by Boss 81's ferocious forechecking. Hoss looked like he was snuffed out in the corner by two Jets defenders and ended up walking out with the puck. Saad was camped out in the slot and one timed the shot past Pavelec.
  • Nineteen seconds after the Saad goal, Ladd and Little caught the Hawks with a little afterglow, and a one time pass across the Hawks slot to Lad ended up beating Crawford.
  • Twenty nine seconds after the Ladd goal, an almost identical play resulted in the tying goal. Keaton Ellerby took a pass from the Big Fluff, and one timed THAT past Crawford. Three goals in 48 seconds. Wasn't THAT fun?
  • Later in the second period, El Capitan absolutely mugged Keaton Ellerby with a shimmy/spin move and drive to the net from the boards. Toews worked himself one on one with Pavelec and roofed a shot up and over the former Wolves goaltender's glove.
  • The Hawks pulled it together in the third period, scoring three goals, to put the Jets to bed.
  • Two powerplay goals against is concerning, especially from the Jets, who are 26th in the league on the PP. The Hawks PK is now second worst in the NHL behind the Islanders.
  • The Hawks had another great night at the dots, with a very nice 63%. Shaw was the low man at 57%. I'll take it. Bryan Little couldn't win a faceoff agains any Blackhawks, winning only 7 of 27 draws. That's 26%!
  • Toews had a 4 point (1G, 3A), and the dynamic duo on Deuce and Carter Seven each had a plus 4.
  • It wasn't Crawford's best night, giving up 3 goals on 25 shots, but the rest of the team picked him up. I would expect to see Antti Raanta make his first NHL start in the near future.
  • Jets' stars Evander Kane and Olli Jokinen were a combined minus SIX.
Here are the video highlights:

Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Week That Was - 11/15

11/10 - Blackhawks vs Oilers - 5-4 Win

  • Pirri is starting to get the NHL game. He helped set up the first goal, by Saad after his pass went through Kane and right onto Saad's stick. Saad pumped it past Dubnyk, with Belov on his back, for a 1-0 Hawks lead late in the first.
  • Sam Gagner was stopped by Crawford on a penalty shot, in the second period, after Gagner got in behind Deuce and Carter 7.
  • Not only is Pirri getting the NHL game, but Saad has turned into a serious threat and playmaker. His pass, in the second period to Shaw, was extremely slick with a guy draped all over him.
  • After getting torched for the first Oilers goal, the fourth line to put the Hawks up by one in the third, with a Smith to Kruger goal. This fourth line is really coming together.
  • Sheldon Brookbank skated 8 minutes at 3rd line wing. ::head desk::
  • The Hawks BEASTED the Oilers at the dots. El Capitan was at a clownish 75% and none of the other Hawks were under 60%. The overall team percentages were 68% to 32%.
  • Not sure how this happens in a 5-4 game, but the Oilers Philip Larsen had 3 assists and a minus 3. DOH
Here are the video highlights:
11/14 - Blackhawks vs Coyotes - 5-5 SO Win
  • Rostislav Klesla was a minus three. Whipping boy.
  • Even though Martin Hanzel dick whipped the Hawks centers at the dots, the Hawks were still over 50% as a team.
  • If you're looking for a Morin silver lining, considering he was sent to Rockford after the game, he had 5 shots in only 7 minutes of TOI.
  • Saad, with a little help from Pirri, opened up the scoring. He continues to be a horse in the slot.
  • The Hawks powerplay got on the board again, with a Sharp one timer finding the back of the net. Smith is going to have Andrew Shaw in his nightmares. That goal put the Hawks up 2-0, but they immediately let the Yotes tie it back up.
  • Hoss'a second period goal was pure determination. He plowed right up the gut, put a shot on Smith and followed up his rebound. This temporarily put the Hawks back up.
  • Pirri continued his hot play, tipping in a Carter 7 shot early in the third period, which eventually sent the game to OT, and then a Shootout. He ended up with the shootout winner, too.
  • Anyone see Feee Agent prize Mike Ribeiro out there? Money well spent, Phoenix.
Here are the video highlights:

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Week That Was - 11/9

Sorry for the late recaps. I was playing a little puck myself in wonderful Grand Rapids Michigan, where the Detoilet fans are delusional as ever. 2008, guys. That's the last time the Wings were relevant. Since then, the Hawks have 2 cups. LET. IT. GO.

11/2 - Blackhawks at Winnipeg Jets - Win 5-1

  • The Hawks went down 1-0 early in the first and never looked back, scoring 5 unanswered goals.
  • the Hjalmarsson goal was a fucking laser beam, and it was all made possible by a nice Marcus Kruger offensive zone faceoff win. Funny how that works.
  • Cleanly shaven Brandon Bollig put all us haters who said he has no talent to shame. He rushed up the ice on a 2-on-1 with Kruger and undressed Pavelec with a great snapshot. Even I can admit that it was impressive. Maybe he'll prove to be a worthy player after all. He later assisted on a nice deflection goal by Ben Smith. This 4th line is coming together. Bollig had a goal, an assist, a penalty and a plus 3. Almost a Gordie Howe Hatty.
  • Crazy 8s was given a penalty shot against Montoya, and had him beat with a sweet backhand shot, but hit the iron.
  • After the first goal, which wasn't his fault, Crawford was excellent. For all the hate directed his way, his good performances need to be pointed out.
  • Barely, but the Hawks were over 50% at the dots. Kruger led the way with 73%, surprisingly, while Pirri and Shaw got pistol whipped into the 30s.
Here are the video highlights:
11/3 - Blackhawks vs Calgary Flames - 3-2 OT Loss
  • Rookie Reto Berra made his NHL debut for the Flames, and was outstanding. This kid looks like he's going to be a player.
  • for the second game in a row there was a penalty shot. This time it was TJ Galiardi against Crawford. Galiardi missed the net, but I can't ever remember back to back games with penalty shots.
  • Kane put on a puckhandling clinic for his first goal. The kid is just plain dangerous with the puck on his stick.
  • Of course, less than a minute after the Kane goal, Hjalmarsson left Mike Cammalleri in front of Crawford all alone. I'm not sure exactly just what the hell he was doing, because there was no one else anywhere near the Hawks half of the ice. He watched Cammalleri tip Wideman's long shot right past Crawford. Not much a goalie can do in that situation. Nice time to have a brain fart, Hammer.
  • Curtis Glencross took advantage of Brookbank's lead skates and was able to separate himself enough to speed up the left wing after a long Bulter breakout pass, and beat Crawford cleanly, early in the third.
  • Hossa and Kane tied the game up late, on a Blackhawks powerplay. Kane held onto the puck long enough for Hossa to set up for a one timer about 5 feet away. That was enough to get Berra off his angle and tie the game.
  • The overtime winner was a TERRIBLE goal for Crawford to give up. Kris Russell just unleashed a 55 foot slapshot from the blue line, with no one in front of the net. Crawford just whiffed. Just bad timing for an awful goal.
  • The Hawks were actually up of 60 percent at the dots; Yes SIXTY! This was with Pirri only winning 2 of 10 faceoffs. Kruger was big, again, winning 9 of 13. El Capitan and Shaw were both at 67%.
  • The fact that J-Moe has been logging the least amount of ice time shows that Bollig has moved up the depth chart. Not sure what that means for Morin, though.
  • The Hawks also out hit and out shot the Flames. Clearly the win was a fluke, but those nights happen. A point is a point.
Here are the video highlights:
11/6 - Blackhawks vs Winnipeg Jets - Win 4-1
  • The entire shift of Toews, Kane and Sharp was dominating just previous to the first goal by El Capitan. They had the puck on a string, with behind the back passes and great stick work by Jonny B Goode. By the time the puck was in the net, it just wasn't fair. The play looked like a bunch of adults toying with a midget team.
  • Kane followed up with another puck control clinic just two minutes after the Toews goal. When you leave Patrick Kane between the dots, deep in your zone, he's going to eat you alive. Dinner is served, Mr. Kane.
  • Ben Smith made a nice steal in the neutral zone and fed Brandon Pirri for a breakaway goal, late in the second period. Credit Smith with getting his head up and finding Pirri across the ice, quickly.
  • Shooter McSharpie found a loose puck deep in the Jets zone after a failed attempt to get the puck out, four minutes into the third, and snapped the puck over Montoya for a 4-0 Hawks lead.
  • We couldn't count on the Hawks to pay attention long enough in a 4-0 game to get Crawford a shutout. Setoguchi stole it from him midway through the third period. Crawford kicked the rebound out to his right, and Setoguchi jumped on it, before Seabrook could get to him. MEH!
  • Bollig continued to make himself get noticed for positive reasons. Late in the third he put Adam Pardy THROUGH the glass in the Jets zone.
  • Two games in a row that the Hawks were 60% or better at the dots. Yanic Perreault is doing something right. Give that man a raise and an extension. Captain Serious was EIGHTY EIGHT percent.
  • Buff, Ladd, Wheeler and Little were all minus THREE on the night. Woof!
Here are the video highlights:
11/6 - Blackhawks at Dallas Stars - Win 5-2
  • The Stars actually went up 2-1 in the second after Jamie Benn hit Tyler Seguin, with a wide open net in front of him. Then the Hawks decided to show up.
  • The Hawks took the lead, in the powerplay, very late in the second and never looked back. Shaw has proven to be a huge part of this team, and helped set up the goal with a nice touch pass to Kane for the goal. A few minutes later, he sent Kane in on a break-a-away.
  • Shooter's persistence along the boards got the puck loose to Hoss for a break-a-way goal with a minute and a half left in the third period, which iced the game. Clutch.
  • The Hawks continued to be at, or over, 50% at the dots.
  • They Hawks were outshot on the road, by three, and won by 3. I'll take it.
Here are the video highlights:

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Week That Was - 11/1/2013

10/26 - Blackhawks vs. Minnesota Wild - Loss 5-3

  • For probably the longest stretch in recent history, the Hawks were over 50% again at the dots. After starting slow, they have moved up to 13th in the league.
  • Seemed like every time the Hawks were able to claw back, the Wild would pot a quick tally.
  • Minus 2 for Deuce, Carter 7, and Kruger. Minus THREE for Kane.
  • The second goal was on Crawford, but he didn't have much help all around.
  • With another PP goal, the Hawks sit right in the middle of the pack at #13 in the league. I can dig that.
  • The Hawks PK, on the other hand, is league worst at 72.2%. Terrible!!!
Here are the video highlights:
10/28 - Blackhawks at Minnesota Wild - 5-1 Win
  • Nice to see our favorite mouth breather score against the team that drafted him.
  • Brad Mills and Jeremy Morin made their 2013 Blackhawks debuts in this game. Mills looks like a nice under the radar 4th liner find.
  • The only goal Crawford gave up was pretty much a 2-0, and Pominville had days to pick him apart.
  • Brandon Saad is a fucking beast. Even though his behind the back pass should have been intercepted, he made that play. The kid is all over the ice every night.
  • Pirri and Shaw took a beating at the dots, which led the Hawks to a team percentage of 43%.
  • Brookbank played a team low 9:10 but still ended up with a goal, a plus 2, 4 hits, and 10 PIMS.
Here are the video highlights:
10/29 - Blackhawks .vs Ottawa Senators - 6-5 Win
  • Four points, including a natural Hat Trick for El Capitan, more than make up for his 39% at the dots. He carried the team on his back. El coco grande.
  • In addition to Toews, Shock-n-Shaw had 2 goals, and Boss 81 chipped in three points.
  • Khabby was pretty damn awful, once again. His bad play helped bury the Hawks in a 4-2 deficit halfway through the second. All of those calling for Antti Raanta, hold your fucking hats on. Khabby makes far too much, in a tight salary cap year, to bury in the press box for a backup. They'll suffer as long as they can until they panic.
  • J-Mo, Jeremy Morin, played a team low 8:40 but still managed an assist and 3 shots.
Here are the video highlights:

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