Saturday, May 23, 2015

PLAYOFFS: Blackhawks vs Ducks
Game 4 Double OT
5-4 Win Recap

"Loose Change"

by Gatekeeper

On a beautiful Chicago Memorial Day Saturday, the sun was out, the smells of grilled meat perforated the air and the Blackhawks were at the United Center to attempt to avenge their disappointing loss to the Ducks in game 3. Quenneville pulled his head out of his ass long enough to ice a reasonable lineup, and fans were eyeing up some revenge. The Blackhawks were either heading back to California down 3-1 or tied 2-2. They held their own fate in their hands.

The Blackhawks opened up the first period on fire, which is something we've seen plenty of times with mixed results. The led the shot total 14-6, and the score 1-0. This was a really good start, but one goal would never be enough to go the distance.

The second period did not go as well for the Blackhawks. The shots and score were almost the polar opposite of the first period. The Ducks led 13-6 in shots and 1-0 in score, to set up quite a third period. Nothing was coming easy in this series.

The third period lived up to the hype. The Blackhawks took an early 3-1 lead and promptly gave up 3 goals in 37 seconds to surrender the lead. Shots were 13-13. They fought back to tie the game back up, but were not able to win it in regulation.

The first OT wasn't how the Blackhawks would have liked, but they made it out without surrendering the game winning goal. Even though they had an OT powerplay they were only able to manage 5 shots to the Ducks 17.

Even though the Blackhawks didn't get much pressure in the second OT, they were able to eventually pull out the win. They're going back to Anaheim tied at 2 games.

The Good
  • The Hawks were all over the Ducks the entire first 10 minutes of the game. They didn't get any goals but controlled the play.
  • Late in the first period, while killing a terrible Brent Seabrook, Brandon Saad took advantage of a pick by the official, and found himself in alone on a shorthanded breakaway. He fought off a diving defender and bet Andersen stick side. Saad ended up with 3 points. Stan Bowman is going to pay dearly for this kid.
  • Forklift at Hockeenight started #CoreyPerryFacts during the first period, and the entire Blackhawks twitterverse joined in. Good times.
  • Johnny Oduya got beat by Andrew Cogliano and was able to make a successful last second diving attempt to knock the puck away. Excellent play.
  • Jonathan Toews grabbed the lead back early in the third period on excellent plays by Duncan Keith, Brandon Saad and Marian Hossa. First of all, Keith was able to make a difficult play to keep the puck in the zone. Even though Keith made a bad pass to Saad, he was able to kick the puck to Hossa. Hossa was left wide open, but couldn't get his shot through. The rebound landed back on his stick and he passed across to a wide open Toews. Toews waited out Andersen and roofed the puck from a bad angle.
  • About halfway though the third period, the Toews/Hossa/Saad line stepped up big once again. They controlled the puck down low and it was eventually worked around into the slot, where Seabrook stepped up and unloaded a cannon past Andersen.
  • Not to be denied, after the Blackhawks gave up a 3-1 to go down 4-3, a Blackhawks powerplay resulted in Patrick Kane tying the game back up. Who would have thought that a powerplay lineup change would result in success?
  • I've come to the realization that Cumiskey is definitely the best choice for a #5. Rundblad plain fucked himself, and Timonen is terrible in every way. I watched Timonen's gap increase every time he faced a rush. By the time OT hit, he was backing into Crawford.
  • The game winner was nothing special. Sharp found Vermette in the slot and his shot was blocked. The puck hit him in the chest and dropped to his stick. Andersen committed to the initial shot and left the entire net for Vermette to hit.
  • Contrary to what some may thinks, none of the goals were solely on Corey Crawford's shoulders. He ended up with 47 saves and has now been unscored upon in almost 5 overtime periods. Hate him all you want, but he's been pretty clutch.
  • No shock that the Blackhawks were dominant at the faceoff dots. Toews and Vermette were both over 65%, and the team was at 55%.
The Bad
  • Brad Richards had an uncontested change late in the first, on a nice saucer feed from Bickell, and could not figure out what he wanted to do with the puck. Eventually, he was too close to do anything, and really didn't get much of a shot off.
  • Late in the second period, The Ducks were able to tie the game after they had about 3 minutes of solid pressure. It was only a matter of time before the puck ended up in the back of the net.
  • Teravainen hit Patrick Sharp in the end of the first OT for a breakaway and was not able to beat Andersen.
  • Vermette and Bickell ended up playing the least of all forwards. Chateau Bow Wow.

The Ugly
  • Almost half way through the first period, Duncan Keith sent a suicide pass to Hjalmarsson who was way too blase and Corey Perry picked it off Hammer's stick. Crawford bailed Hjalmarsson out big time.
  • Anaheim scored 3 goals in 37 seconds right after the Seabrook goal. All the plays were bad coverage or terrible turnovers. I'm not even going to break each one down, but they were all terrible. Vermette and Timonen fucked themselves on one, Keith let Corey Perry in behind him for two chances on another, and Ryan Kesler was left wide open to one time the puck through Crawford.

The Lineblender



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