Monday, January 23, 2017

Blackhawks vs Canucks
4-2 Win Recap

"Confidence Vs Consequence"

by Gatekeeper

The Blackhawks were not resting on the 7th day, this time. The, now pretty terrible, Vancouver Canucks were in town to help celebrate the Jeremy Roenick "One More Shift" shenanigans. Now, looking at the Canucks record, you might think that "terrible" is extreme, but they are playing above their means in a pretty awful division. 22-19-6 was good enough 9th in the conference and the Canucks were only one point out of the wild card, but nursing a -17 goal differential. This was, and continues to be, a team with no discernible identity. They continue to ice Jack Skille, folks. That should tell you enough.

The Blackhawks simply imposed their will on the Canucks, in the first period, Sunday. They averaged almost a shot a minute and had a final tally of 18-9. It was great to see this success but, let's be honest, this was against a simply inferior team. This is why they were also up 2-0. Looks like they didn't need any help from Jeremy Roenick, right? Well, if we've learned one thing, it's that the Blackhawks are consistently inconsistent.

As is in the Blackhawks DNA, they flipped the script in the second period and managed only 4 total shots on net, while giving up 8. Again, this is an inferior opponent. While the first period was fairly clean, the second was more sloppy and there were three power plays, as a result. This is certainly part of the reason for the shot differential, but the Blackhawks definitely took their foot off the gas pedal. With 2-0 lead going into the third, the Blackhawks had themselves set for two more points.

Or so you'd think.

The Canucks came out in the first half of the third period and not only unleashed 7 shots, but scored two goals. Nothing like keeping that intensity for 22 of 60 minutes, and then squeaking out a win, right? Luckily for the home crowd, the Hawks then eventually woke their asses up, but it took until the final minutes. Two goals in the final 1:18 gave the Blackhawks a win that turned out to be much harder than it should have been. Playing down to your competition is a great describe their play, as of late.

The Good
  • As I said, The Blackhawks had a lot of pressure in the first period, and #DickFuckingPanik gave the Blackhawks a 1-0 lead with about 6 minutes remaining. Brian Campbell found Panik in a soft spot between the circles, and Panik was able to get off a decent one timer, even with a wobbling puck. Miller never really saw the shot and it went bar down.
  • Three minutes after the Panik goal, Patrick Kane gave the Blackhawks a 2-0 lead. He picked up the puck in the corner and drove out to the slot but as he cleared the goal line, he surprised Miller with a quick snipe over the left shoulder. The route was on, right?

  • Very late in the third period, just like in Boston, the Blackhawks mustered up some pressure, and this time it was by the 4th line. Quenneville followed up their shift with the first line, who had had a great night overall, and it proved to be the right move. Richard Panik took a long shot from the half boards that ended up short of the net but bounced out from behind the end boards, right to the stick of Jonathan Toews who deposited it in to the back of the net.
  • Usually, Empty net goals are pretty uneventful but tonight's empty netter was Toews' 4th point of the night and Marian Hossa's 400th point as a Blackhawks player. Both noteable.
  • Corey Crawford had a good night overall, and collected his 200th career victory. He finished with 26 saves.
  • The Roenick one more shift was pretty damn cool to see. As a hockey player, not many have been as fun to watch, here in Chicago.
    My issue with this is that with these ordeasl, they usually interview the player between periods and get some content out of them. It was like Roenick skated out there, waved, kissed the ice, listened to the anthem, and then they booted him out the door. Something was amiss.

The Bad
  • The Hawks were pretty awful at the faceoff dots. Brandon Sutter just put a clinic on, winning 18 of 21 by himself. The usually great Toews only won 8 of 24 (33%)
  • Kempny was having a decent night until the Canucks second goal, then it all ended. Great job just shitting all over this guy's confidence, Coach Wizzo. I cannot see him long for this team, if this is how he's going to be treated. I've heard the old, "He's much older and a professional". That's plain horseshit. He was a pro in the KHL on bigger ice, with lots of players that spoke the same language. He's learning the smaller ice surface, better players, dealing with a language barrier, and now a moody coach. He watched Forsling swallow himself several times, and just keep getting thrown out on the ice, but Coach Wizzo pulls Kempny's ice time at the first mistake. The only player getting shit on like that, even the slightest, is Campbell. Even Campbell isn't getting dumped on like that during games, though, just the healthy scratch shuffle. If Kempny was abjectly bad, I'd shut my mouth. He's not, though. He's battling some confusion and it looks like he's got some anxiety. You would too, if every single mistake you made cost you 3 games in the press box. I'm not sure what this accomplishes, other than scrambling the brain of your potential 4th defenseman. I sure hope they have a backup plan, because they are handling this situation like absolute shit. TVR gets himself walked all over in possession, night after night, but he does no wrong. Whatever.

The Ugly
  • Yup, We all got stuck with Steve Konroyd again. Who can think of a better way of spending 2 hours on a Sunday night?
  • On one easy call in the second, The puck went off the post and hit Crawford right in the yap. Konroyd kept saying, "It hit the post and hot Corey in the body". While, technically, he was correct, it was an inaccurate analysis of the play. Between the second and the third, he made the bold proclamation that "You wanna possess the puck". Brilliant, Captain Obvious.
  • The Canucks took advantage of an early third period power play to finally break the shutout. The goal was a pretty innocent long shot by Troy Stecher that Crawford anticipated being tipped. It was never touched by Sedin and fluttered past Crawford's glove.
  • Forty seconds after the Stecher powerplay goal, Bo Horvat just clowned a reaching Michal Kempny and powered his way to the front of the net. Horvat was able to not only get a shot off, but pick up his rebound to poke it past Corey Crawford, and tie the game. Kempny didn't see the ice for the rest of the game. Right back to the doghouse for #KempnyGod. I wouldn't be surprised to see him sitting next game.

The #Fatrick Stankus Fatsy Stats
  • The 3rd line of Hinostroza/Kero/Hossa had a rough night possession wise. They were all heavy in the negative, at -11, -21, -11 respectively.
  • The #AK72Line, on the other hand, were plus 18/19/19 respectively.

The Lineblender

Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
Hartman - Toews - Panik
Panarin - Anisimov - Kane
Hinostroza - Kero -Hossa
Desjardins - Rasmussen - Schmaltz

Keith - Hjalmarsson
Kempny - Seabrook
Campbell - van Riemsdyk


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