Sunday, November 15, 2015

Blackhawks at Blues
4-2 Win Recap

"Rozy Is Red, Backes Is Blue"

by Patrick Stankus

On Saturday night, the Blackhawks made the trip down I-55 to the smoldering tire fire of the Midwest known as St. Louis to take on the Blues. This marks the second meeting of the year between the two, with the Blues taking the first game in Chicago. Although judging by the crowd in St. Louis, you could argue this game was also taking place in Chicago.

The Blackhawks got off to a slow start, despite having an early power play. The sloppy play by the Hawks was bailed out by some big saves by Corey Crawford. Just before the 5 minute mark, Duncan Keith, or Andrew Shaw, its still being debated, would get the Hawks on the board first. As the period continued, the play turned into what we expected between the Blues and Hawks. The Hawks would hold their own despite all the hits being thrown, and after 20 minutes would lead the Blues 1-0.

The second period would get underway the same way the first period ended, with a lot of nastiness. This played right into the hands of the Blues, and they capitalized. Tarasenko would score 2 goals in less than 2 minutes, the 2nd being a power play goal, and put the Blues in the lead. The Hawks though, would not back down despite the physicality from the Blues. With the period coming to a close, TVR would tie the game at 2. In the final minutes, Marko Dano thought he had put the Hawks up, but was absolutely robbed by Jake Allen with a goal line glove save, that was reviewed. Nevertheless, the Hawks got a late power play, and Patrick Kane extended his point streak to 12, and put the Hawks up 3-2 after 40 minutes.

The final 20 minutes of the game was dominated by the Blues. Duncan Keith took an early penalty, which turned the momentum in favor of St. Louis. Luckily for the Hawks, Corey Crawford was on his game, and make some huge saves down the stretch to preserve the lead. With just under a minute remaining, Artem Anisimov would seal the win by adding an empty netter and give the Hawks a 4-2 over the Blues.

The Hawks are right back at it on Sunday night at home against Calgary. The biggest Mike Vernon fan in the world will have your recap on that one to close out the weekend.

The Good
  • Welcome back Duncan Keith. Whether or not that was his or Andrew Shaw's goal, its nice to have a defenseman on the point who won't second guess a chance to shoot the puck on net when there's a lane.
  • Speaking of Duncan Keith, he had a fantastic defensive play during a Blues 3 on 1 1/2 (since it was Rozsival skating back.) Keith made a sprawling sweep check on his stomach to break up a cross ice pass.
  • Come on people, jump on board. The AK72Line is the real deal. Whether they're at even strength or on the power play, they are a force. See Kane's power play goal.
  • Corey Crawford was huge in net for the Hawks in the 3rd period. In the end he made 29 saves en route to the win.
  • After some recent struggles at the dot, it was nice to see the Hawks win the faceoff battle tonight 35-28.
  • TVR had another solid night on defense, while adding his 2nd goal of the season. This kid keeps getting better and better.
  • I thought this was by far Marcus Kruger's best game of the season. In fact this was the "fourth" line's best game of the season. For the most part it consisted of Shaw-Kruger-Teravainen.

The Bad
  • Early in the game, Teuvo took an illegal check to head from Joel Edmundson. Thankfully, Teravainen popped back up after the hit. The last thing the Hawks now is an injury that would probably result in a Bickell call up.
  • Jonathan Toews leveled David Backes with a "hit to the head" late in the 1st period. What irritates me the most is, could someone please tell Backes to skate with his head up? Of course he's going to be hit in the head when he's constantly skating with his head down.
  • This is why I hate replay. The save Allen made on Dano was ridiculous, but it warranted a review. I like the rule of you need visual evidence the puck is completely across the goal line. The other night the Red Wings had a goal taken away even though Braden Holtby's glove was completely across the line, but there was no visual of the puck whatsoever. I get why that is not a goal. On the Allen play however, on the overhead, you can see the puck in the webbing of Allen's glove, and the puck is across the line. The problem is how quick the War Room in Toronto was to call that a no goal. I wish they would have spent more time looking at it, because isn't the argument for replay to "get calls correct" ? I find it hard to believe the War Room was able to made a decision with 100% certainty in 30 seconds.
  • The entire 3rd period was basically played in the Hawks defensive zone. The Hawks were playing with fire, luckily this time they didn't get burned and blow the lead.
  • Sadly for everyone but @UncleRozsival , Michal Rozsival returned for the Hawks tonight.

The Ugly
  • That opening power play by the Hawks was just brutal to way.
  • David Backes left the game in the final minute of 1st period after the Toews hit, so how does a guy who was thought to have a concussion respond? He comes out, levels Hammer with a hit from behind, and the drops the gloves with Toews. Yep, classic pig vomit David Backes there. How's that concussion going?
  • The Trevor Daley - Michal Rozsival pairing is a disaster waiting to happen. We were treated to that disaster on the Blues first goal, with Rozsival overplaying to one side of the ice, and Daley allowing Tarasenko all the time in the world he wanted.
  • Marko Dano took a bad boarding penalty, that of course resulted in the Blues scoring on the power play that ensued. That clearly didn't go over well with Quenneville as Dano only played a team low 5:58.

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