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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Penguins
5-1 Win Recap

"Empire of the Clouds"

by Patrick Norton

After two straight losses in Florida earlier in the week, the Blackhawks had one chance remaining to make the best of their three game road trip. The Blackhawks occupied NBC’s Wednesday Night Rivalry timeslot with a possible Stanley Cup Final preview between the two previous Cup winners, Chicago and Pittsburgh. With Corey Crawford letting in four goals against the Florida Panthers and Scott Darling giving up another eight goals over a two game stretch, Coach Quenneville opted for soon-to-be-ex-Blackhawk Corey Crawford to guard the twine against the injury-laden Penguins.

The first period began with back-and-forth action highlighted by Jonathan Toews and Sidney Crosby. It took a few minutes to get settled, but the Blackhawks struck first on a nifty dish from Kane to Panarin. Minutes later, #DickF***ingPanik netted his twenty-second goal of the season off of a pass from Nick Schmaltz skating behind the blue line. Then, Panarin hit Kane with a pass who tapped it along to #ExpansionDrafteeMarcusKruger. Kruger shot the puck at Marc-Andre Fleury with hopes of Kane picking up his loose change, but instead got a nice surprise when Fleury lapsed and let through an easy wrister with just under one minute remaining in the first. While it was expected that Fleury could get the hook in the intermission, Penguins coach Mike Sullivan opted to let Fleury finish the first. Big mistake. Just thirty-nine seconds later, Marian Hossa rifled home a one-timer from Ryan Hartman. After a three minute offsides review, the goal was confirmed and an eventful first period finally came to an end with the Blackhawks leading the Penguins, 4-0.

The second period brought a whole lotta nothin’. The only eventful thing that happened was me setting up a brand new wireless keyboard after all the keys on my laptop became sticky. I swear to God, no Kleenex aided the stickiness of the keyboard.

The third period started with Tanner Kero scoring his sixth of the year, this one unassisted. While all hope seemed lost for the defending Cup champions, Bryan Rust tallied an unassisted goal to bring the deficit back down to four goals with fifteen minutes left on the clock. In the blink of an eye, the final buzzer sounded and that’s all she wrote for this one as the Blackhawks dismantle the Penguins, 5-1.

The Good

  • After getting blanked by James Reimer and the Florida Panthers on Saturday night, the Blackhawks offense has been on fire. Four goals in a losing effort on Monday and five in tonight’s win.
  • Goodness gracious, Patrick Kane is so freaking smooth. His behind-the-back assist to Panarin and his tap pass to Kruger were so sweet. 
  • Marcus Kruger scored.
  • I don’t think you understand… #ScorelessExpansionDrafteeMarcusKruger scored.
  • Richard Panik continues to prove his worth to the top line. Netting his 22nd goal of the season, Panik has already superseded expectations from Blackhawks faithful.
  • Tanner Kero has fit with Kane and Panarin well in the absence of Artem Anisimov. The centerman picked up a goal and an assist tonight to bring his point total to fifteen in forty-two games this season.
  • The Schmaltz-Toews-Panik line is scary good right now. Schmaltz and Toews picked up helpers on Panik’s goal and they just seem to click on the ice. It’s wonderful to feel comfortable with more than one steady line heading into the playoffs.
  • I love Eddie Olczyk. All of his haters are Blues and Wild fans that are so committed to their team, they can’t see past the Indian head. Edzo truly is the color commentary standard in hockey; fun, knowledgeable, insightful, not Steve Konroyd. 
  • Kane picked up assists 49 & 50 tonight. He won’t reach 100 points this year, but another strong showing from the reigning MVP.
  • Corey Crawford had an outstanding night. Not only did he thwart any attempt at a Penguins comeback, but he bounced back in the crease after a rough outing in Florida.
  • I love the yellow and black 100% more than the beige and black uniforms the Penguins sport. Much more crisp and sleek. If there was somebody I liked on the Pens, I’d consider purchasing one. Maybe I’ll get a customized “Ho-Sang #66” black and yellow jersey. I don’t think anybody would mind.

The Bad

  • Maybe rest is an option, but for crying out loud, our defense is losing a step. Overall, it was a decent night from the blue-liners, but it’s difficult to turn blind eye when Brent Seabrook makes inexcusable turnovers and Duncan Keith just looks like he doesn’t care. There’s a good chance that this will all blow over in time for the playoffs, but there’s decent reasoning for concern.
  • I kind of felt bad for him after his defense imploded and he ate all sixty minutes and took the bullet tonight, but Marc-Andre Fleury still sucked. The Kruger goal was awfully weak. I’ve never been a big fan, but the guy was dominant in the regular season just a few years ago. You take that away from him and he’s living in Tomas Vokoun’s shadow his whole life. Realistically, he’s got what? One? Two years left as a serviceable split-time starter?

The Ugly

  • Really nothing comes to mind. This was a fun hockey game to watch. It’s always nice to show Pittsburgh where the real “City of Champions” is.

The Great

  • I almost forgot to mention #SaviorJohnHayden picked up his first penalty of his NHL career tonight. #TemperExpectations *full disclosure, I think this kid might turn into something, but then again, what do I know?

If anybody is heading to the United Center for the Frozen Four on April 6th and 8th, let me know. I’d love to meet up with some listeners and readers.

Also, Episode 79 of the Blackhawks Shoutcast dropped on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Unless you’d like to miss out on some inside jokes for the next week, I highly suggest downloading it through iTunes or Soundcloud. We record a new episode next week, so hop on that before Ep. 79 gets buried alive.


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Puckin Hostile Shoutcast
Episode 79

In this 79th Puckin Hostile Shoutcast (the Alexei Yashin episode) Gatekeeper, Fatrick, Norton and Ol Freckles, Billy Beck talk about the Blackhawks latest slide and the late March doldrums of a division leading team.

The topics discussed include:
-The US Women's team plight, the baiting of Patrick Kane AGAIN and we issue a #McPology
-We debate pizza places
-Fatrick has a tin can connection
-Atomic Froster's little Tim Horton
-Norton's sister enters the "Win a date with #Fatrick" contest
-John Hayden goes through the us and down of his first few NHL games
-Stupid Panthers fan twitter accounts
-Blackhawks sign Roy Radke, Matheson Iocapelli, and extend Tanner Kero
-Hawks played some games vs the Sens, Leafs, Avalanche, Canucks, Stars, Panthers, and Lightning
-And of course, as always, an abundance of extremely inappropriate references and jokes in incredibly bad taste

You can find the episode on iTunes by following this link: iTunes

Get the Shoutcast directly though Soundcloud here:

For all your custom jersey needs visit Black and Tan Sports at:

Monday, March 27, 2017

Blackhawks at Tampa Bay
5-4 OT Loss Recap


by Gatekeeper

I think we can all agree that Saturday night's game was forgettable? The final two periods of that game, to be more precise. As always, the meatballs poked their heads out from the rocks they have been hiding under for most of the last 2 months, which was fully expected. Coach Joel Quenneville hinted at a few changed for Monday night's game, but we never really know what will happen until the warmups. Ryan Hartman was hinted at, as the Coach Wizzo healthy scratch-a-palooza. Scott Darling made the start in net, which was scheduled, based on the tight schedule. Not like they could possibly play any better than they did in Sunrise this weekend.

The opening period was the polar opposite of Saturday night. Action was fast and furious as the teams combined for four goals between them, on 20 shots (11-9) in favor of the Blackhawks. That is how you rebound from a total ass whipping, well, if you can maintain that pressure for the final forty minutes. Two sloppy penalties left a bit to be desired, but the Hawks made some progress.

Not really sure what Jon Cooper was thinking but he started Andrei Vasilevskiy in the second period, but I suppose it worked out alright. Why go back to the well, though? The Blackhawks did put themselves up 4-1 but it was all downhill after that. The Bolts scored three straight goals, and had the Blackhawks on their heels for the entire last 2/3rds of the period, where the Lightning out shot the Hawks 14-10, but it might as well have been 14-2 the way the ice was slanted.

As full of scoring as the opening two period were, the third was much less eventful. In fact, there were no goals either way, which meant that each team was going to grab a standings point and go to overtime. The Hawks actually made a good showing in the period, out shooting the Bolts 10-3. I guess if you don't blow a three goal lead, you don;t need third period goals, but I digress.

Overtime action, at least in the beginning, was heavily in favor of the Lightning, and their fourth shot of the period ended up the game winner. I guess a single point isn't a total loss, but this was an opportunity blown.

The Good
  • Just under 1:30 in, the Blackhawks already had more success than they did the entire previous game. Artemi Panarin found a blocked Tanner Kero shot on his blade and one timed it on Andrei Vasilevskiy. Vasilevskiy made the initial stop, but it squirted through him and dribbled just over the goal line.
  • Patrick Kane grabbed back the lead for the Blackhawks just moments after the Ondrej Palat goal. Kane was in almost the identical position as Panarin was for his goal, but this time Kane beat Vasilevskiy clean to the stick side, through a Lightning screen.
  • With Tomas Jurco in the lineup, he paid dividends right away. Jurco got his first goal of the year with just over six minutes remaining in the first period. Nick Schmaltz let a long shot go and Jurco chipped the rebound past Vasilevskiy for a 3-1 Blackhawks lead. This would be the end on Vasilevskiy's first period. In came Peter Budaj.
  • #DickFuckingPanik put the Blackhawks up 4-1 about halfway through the second period, which was his 21st of the year. The Lightning couldn't get the puck out of the zone and Panik drove to the net poking his own rebound past Vasilevskiy. Panik's 41 points are 13 more than Andrew Shaw at a fraction of the price. It cannot go without mentioning that Panik also has half the penalty minutes.
  • The speed that Jonathan Drouin skates around with in the 3-vs-3 overtime is terrifying. There was one point that I thought he was going to repeatedly skate around the Hawks zone with not a single player able to get a hand or stick on him, until they were all too tired to chase him anymore.
  • I'm not exactly keen on the details of the mask, but the primary black colors on Scott Darling's mask are sexy.

The Bad
  • It took the Lightning roughly seven seconds into their first powerplay, with some help from a lost Blackhawks faceoff, for them to tie the game about halfway through the first period. The powerplay was set up by a bad Brent Seabrook delay of game penalty, that resulted in Ondrej Palat tipping a long Victor Hedman clapper past Scott Darling
  • About two minutes after the Panik goal, Jonathan Drouin tipped an Alex Killorn shot that pinballed past Scott Darling to cut the Blackhawks lead back down to two goals.
  • Anton Stralman shaved the Blackhawks lead back down to one goal just about a minutes after the Drouin goal. At this point, Scott Darling was all over the fucking place. He was over sliding and forcing himself to make much more difficult stops than he needed to. This would have been a great time for a timeout to calm down their goaltender, as well as their defense, but Quenneville was fine watching his goalie flounder around.
  • The next meatball savior, John Hayden played on the forth line all night and was only mentioned a couple of times. It's safe to say that Space Shuttle Hayden has safely landed back down on earth. Healthy scratchville, population him, isn't too far in the future, like I predicted.

The Ugly
  • The Bolts' Brayden Point took a high clearing shot from Anton Stralman right in the side of the melon, while killing an early second period penalty, but was able to continue. Those are scary plays, for sure.
  • To complete the collapse, the Blackhawks took their second delay of game penalty, late in the second period, where they also gave up their second powerplay goal of the game. Nothing special about this one, as Jonathan Drouin blew a long clapper through an Ondrej Palat screen and past Scott Darling. There was still twenty three minutes left to play and EIGHT damn goals had been scored.
  • The Blackhawks Shitshow Petroleum powerplay was, as the name indicates, useless. They went 0-3 while the Bolts went 2-3. That's your game, folks.
  • The anarchy that is 3-vs-3 overtime ended up with the Blackhawks, first of all, not getting the puck over the Bolts blue line and, secondly, getting caught in a slow lazy change. Duncan Keith was slow getting off the ice, which kept Trevor van Riemsdyk from getting back to help Darling but this would have been a non-factor if Artemi Panarin would have been able to get the puck into the offensive zone. Patrick Kane was cheating and off to the races as well, so this left Yanni Gourde a break-a-way, where he beat Scott Darling for the game winner.
  • In the third period, the Trevor van Riemsdyk PR crew was in full lamentable form. Edzo had to point out that van Riemsdyk looked over his shoulder before he ate the puck behind his own net before his defensive partner had to come bail him out. This horseshit is so egregiously bad that is makes me want to vomit. How many player get this kind of unwarranted "spit-on-the-palm" hand job session?

The #Fatrick Stankus Fatsy Stats
  • Did I mention I was filling in for #Fatrick tonight?

The Lineblender
Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
Nick Schmaltz - Jonathan Toews - Richard Panik
Artemi Panarin - Tanner Kero - Patrick Kane
Tomas Jurco - Marcus Kruger - Marian Hossa
John Hayden - Andrew Desjardins - Jordin Tootoo

Duncan Keith - Niklas Hjalmarsson
Johnny Oduya - Brent Seabrook
Brian Campbell - Trevor van Riemsdyk

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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Panthers
7-0(!) SO Loss Recap

"Joker and The Thief"

by Patrick Norton

I thought I’d take a more unorthodox angle with the recap from last night’s game. Yes, I watched the game, but this is the only way to truly capture the utter beat down endured.


First Period

  • Nobody scored

My thoughts after the period: Okay, okay. Not bad. We were a little sloppy, but we got out alive. All that matter. As long as we come out strong in the second we’ll be okay.

Second Period

  • FLORIDA GOAL - Aleksander Barkov - Assisted by Huberdeau and Demers - 0:17
  • FLORIDA GOAL - Jonathan Huberdeau - PP - Assisted by Barkov and Yandle - 10:21
  • FLORIDA GOAL - Jonathan Marchessault - Assisted by Barkov and Huberdeau - 11:40

My thoughts after the period: What in the name? That sure escalated quickly. Damn, we’re just not playing well tonight. Maybe we’ll turn it around and force overtime again.

Third Period

  • FLORIDA GOAL - Jonathan Marchessault - Assisted by Sceviour - 4:59
  • FLORIDA GOAL - Jonathan Marchessault - Hat Trick - Assisted by Huberdeau and Trocheck - 7:13
  • FLORIDA GOAL - Nick Bjugstad - Assisted by Sceviour and Pysyk - 7:53
  • FLORIDA GOAL - Reilly Smith - Assisted by Trocheck - 11:45

My thoughts after the game: Well that sucked. At least Kansas is keeping it close. *insert sad Price Is Right noise*

The Good

  • Absolutely nothing. This game was a heaping pile of trash. I don’t remember the scores from last year, but I remember the Hawks having a pretty unsuccessful road trip down in Florida last year, too. Let’s hope they throw this one in the trash and halt the comeback efforts of the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday night.

The Bad

  • A whole lot, but “The Ugly” takes the cake with this game. If the result had been slightly better, you’d see me giving the benefit of the doubt with this, but 7-0 is excessive and unacceptable.

The Ugly

  • The powerplay looked like the penalty kill for the Hawks. Lazy passing, not wanting to shoot, and lacking a net front presence resulted in a nice 0/3 on the man advantage. Sure, even if you score on those it’s still a four goal game, but it would’ve been nice to have SOMETHING to cheer about.
  • Patrick Kane fought… in a fight. Yeah, cool, we’ll never see that again, but I hoped we never saw that at all, especially when there’s only seven games before the playoffs. We can’t have Kane going down with a shattered orbital bone.
  • Brent Seabrook slipped backwards on the powerplay in hilarious fashion. This was in the first period on a powerplay, so it was kind of a sign of things to come.
  • Corey Crawford gave up four goals and Darling gave up a three spot in relief. Not Jimmy Waite’s proudest moment. It didn’t matter though as one goal would’ve been enough.
  • We’ve complained and said the Hawks can’t play one period a night and expect to win. Well tonight they played zero periods and I can’t imagine they expected much of a nice result.
  • Steve Konroyd was in the booth. True story: I watched this one in a crowded room, so I didn’t have to hear his annoying Canadian wail. That was the only positive of my night. He still probably stunk up the booth, so he still lands down here. 
  • WGN needs to figure out how to made a gosh darn clear picture. It sucks. I’d rather watch a CSN game on my phone than a WGN broadcast on a 60” HDTV. (presented by Samsung. #PleaseSponsorUs)
  • The Hawks did not seem committed to putting a decent product on the ice. Hopefully we don’t look back in five years and remember this as the turning point in the season. This was the equivalent of the NBA resting players because I’m pretty sure nobody played tonight. 
  • What do Brent Seabrook, Dennis Rasmussen, Richard Panik, Johnny Oduya, and Andrew Desjardins all have in common? Their +/- was a 0, which isn’t much to brag about, but when everybody else is a minus, it’s almost impressive. 
  • Toews, Kane, and Campbell (Welcome home!) all finished with a -4. Hjalmarsson and van Riemsdyk ended up at -3. The rest went between -2 and -1. 
  • There was a combined thirty-four minutes of penalty minutes from the Blackhawks side. Ruh roh. The PK actually wasn’t bad surrendering only ⅕ chances, but you can’t win games when you’re playing undisciplined.
  • Kansas lost to Oregon. I can’t believe it. I’m lost for words. For any of you Hostile readers that watched the basketball game last night, Josh Jackson was atrocious. I’m so pissed off about this and I don’t even go there yet. 
You have to listen to Ep. 78 of the Shoutcast to understand tonight's title. Find it on iTunes or Soundcloud. We're recording three weeks in a row starting on Tuesday, so get ready for a Hostile takeover on your iTunes downloads.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Blackhawks vs Stars
3-2 SO Win Recap

"Eddie the Head"

by Gatekeeper

If you told most Blackhawks fans that the team would be competing for the Presidents trophy just a mere 60 days ago you'd get laughed into obscurity, but the Blackhawks sat on March 23rd, just two points behind the league leading Washington Capitals at 100. Even more surprising would be the fact that they came into Thursday night's action tied with the COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS. Fancy that! Honestly the Presidents trophy is over rated and just a big silver piece of added playoff pressure. I'd just assume the Blackhawks slide through the rest of their schedule unscathed by any more injuries and take it easy. Also, Patrick Kane came into action five points behind Connor McClavicle in search of back to back Art Ross trophies.

After another come from behind effort against a far inferior team two nights prior the Blackhawks faced, yes, another inferior team, the Dallas Stars, Thursday night. It would be perfectly reasonable for one to be worried that they might play down to the Stars level, which they totally did. We were all also treated to Ryan Hartman's debut at Artem Anisimov's usual second line pivot, which shaped up to be an adventure. Whatever, give it a shot.

Adding to the late season festivities this game was the next in the Blackhawks #OneMoreShift campaigns. This time Eddie Belfour was back with the organization. One of the absolute legends of my childhood/young adulthood and a huge influence on my early goaltending. It was super surreal to see him back out on the ice with the Blackhawks crest on and, honestly, he looked like he could have still played.

The game itself started off a little, alright ALOT, sloppy. Both teams had multiple penalties each but only the Blackhawks took advantage of the powerplay time. That said, the Stars out shot the Blackhawks pretty considerably 13-7 and had the majority of quality chances, including a breakaway from the corpse of Patrick Sharp. This was already a better start than the Vancouver game earlier in the week, defensively.

In the second period, the play was slightly less sloppy which led to less quality chances overall. Dallas was able to tie the game on one of their 14 shots on Corey Crawford, and the Blackhawks were held well under ten shots for the second period in a row. If the Blackhawks were going to do anything other than squeak by, they were going to need to put a lot more pressure on the Stars. They preferred the "squeak by" method.

The Blackhawks actually came out and took the lead early in the third period, but then gave up that lead with five minutes remaining on more sloppy play. They also were held under 10 shots once again, with the Stars getting 11. With goals scored each way, this game was headed to #Fatrick's favorite hockey spectacle, 3vs3 O-VER-TIME.

The overtime was dominated early by the Blackhawks thanks to some powerplay time but the Stars came on hard late. Corey Crawford held his net and took the game to a shootout where the Blackhawks went down 0-1 but came back to score two straight goals and gain the extra standings point.

The Good
  • About eight minutes into the first period, Patrick Kane led a rush from his own end after a failed quality Stars shorthanded chance. Kane used #DickFuckingPanik as a decoy and took the shot himself, beating Kari Lehtonen 5-hole. This would be a theme repeated later.
  • At the eleven minute mark of the third period, the Blackhawks third line gave the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead. New third line wing Nick Schmaltz fed Marian Hossa, who sent a shot through a screen and hard driving Marcus Kruger to beat Lehtonen.
  • Corey Crawford was pretty great in this game, making 42 saves. After his pretty poor effort earlier in the week, he was a huge reason the Blackhawks didn't roll over and give the Stars a useless win.
  • I usually hate the staged fighting but Ryan Hartman and Dan Hamhuis got into an actual "heat of the game" tussle and Hartman put a thorough beatdown on Hamhuis.

The Bad
  • With about seven and a half minutes remaining in the second period, the Blackhawks got a little jumpy trying to get out of their own zone and the Stars' Ales Hemsky eventually beat Corey Crawford high to the stick side.
  • Hemsky tied the game once again, later, this time it was with 5 minutes remaining in regulation. Corey Crawford was able to make the initial save on the play after the Blackhawks lost a defensive zone faceoff, but the puck squirted out to Crawford's right, and Hemsky was left with a gaping net.
  • Patrick Kane almost ended the game on the powerplay in overtime, but hit the post and Lehtonen's back.

The Ugly
  • For the first game SINCE his first game, John Hayden wasn't noticeable at all. Listed with 3 shots and 4 hits, but I honestly cant remember seeing a single one of either.
  • Keith and Hjalmarsson were out for both goals against, so we can't blame it on player quality.
  • With all the powerplays and extra time, the Blackhawks only had 26 shots on net. That's terrible.
  • in the middle of the first Stars powerplay Crawford slid awkwardly to his left and had difficulty getting back to his feet. I thought he might have tweaked a groin but, of course, they completely glossed over it. Crawford didn't talk to the media after the game and there was some hint at maybe a minor injury.
  • Later in the period Jonathan Toews took a shot in the leg on the powerplay and the broadcast team completely ignored him gingerly coming off the ice as well as the time to took as nice shot in the back on overtime and came off slowly. Not anything the viewers at home might need to know, guys.

The #Fatrick Stankus Fatsy Stats
  • The only Blackhawks with positive overall Corsi were Toews, Panarin, Kane, and Panik.
  • The Blackhawks only win 46% of their faceoffs and lost a huge one that turned into the game tying goal, late in the third.
  • Brent Seabrook ate shit in this game, with a team low -14 overall Corsi

The Shootout
  • Jonathan Toews stickhandled himself out of space
  • Tyler Seguin beat Crawford high stick side.
  • Patrick Kane beat Lehtonen badly 5-hole.
  • Jamie Benn couldn'r beat Crawford.
  • Artemi Panarin beat Lehtonen with a top cheddar backhand
  • Ales Hemsky was beaten by Crawford.

The Lineblender
Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
John Hayden - Jonathan Toews - Richard Panik
Artemi Panarin - Ryan Hartman - Patrick Kane
Nick Schmaltz - Marcus Kruger - Marian Hossa
Dennis Rasmussen - Tanner Kero - Jordin Tootoo

Duncan Keith - Niklas Hjalmarsson
Johnny Oduya - Brent Seabrook
Brian Campbell - Trevor van Riemsdyk


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Canucks
5-4 Overtime Loss Recap

"Big Ole Pile Of Them Bones"
by Patrick Stankus

The Blackhawks took to the ice on Tuesday night, riding a five game winning streak, and for the first time, as a team headed to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Following Sunday night's game, the Hawks were able to clinch their ninth straight playoff appearance, thanks to the Calgary Flames defeating the Los Angeles Kings. The playoffs were never in doubt for the Hawks, but now the question of how much rest will Coach Q give the players as we head down the stretch? With the division still at stake as of Tuesday's game, the lineup was much of the same, with the addition of Marian Hossa following his two game absence. I guess I should mention that the Hawks were taking on the Vancouver Canucks tonight, Look at that. I made it all the way to the end of the intro before I said the Hawks were playing the Canucks. It seems like just yesterday these were the games we used to get pumped up for. My how times have changed.

Once the puck dropped it appeared as if both teams had very little interest in actually playing tonight. The Canucks could barely manage to get the damn puck on net, while the Hawks best chance came from a line of Rasmussen, Kero, and Jurco. Yes, that same Tomas Jurco that looks completely lost out there. Not even a power play for the Hawks could muster up a spark. Finally, with a minute remaining, the Canucks found the back of the net to put the Hawks down one after twenty minutes.

The second period didn't exactly get off to the best start for the Hawks. Following a turnover by Nick Schmaltz, Vancouver found the back of the net less than two minutes in to increase their lead to two. The Hawks however did find some life in the second period. Less than two minutes later, Ryan Hartman cut the Canucks lead in half with a power play goal. That would prove to be the highlight of the period for the Hawks. Just before the midway point, the Canucks redirected another puck past Crawford to increase their lead to two again. Despite having two more power plays in the period, and registering fifteen shots, the Hawks couldn't score another and trailed 3-1 after forty minutes.

If you enjoyed the third period by the Hawks on Sunday night, then you were in for more excitement tonight. The Canucks opened the scoring a little after the two minute mark to give them a three goal lead. That also proved to be the end of Corey Crawford's night, as Scott Darling came on in relief. The spark Quenneville was looking for from the goaltending change happened as the Hawks scored two goals in under four minutes to cut the Canucks lead to one. Late in the period, John Hayden had the game tying goal taken away after a Canucks challenge for offside, but the Hawks didn't quit. Ryan Hartman tied the game with a minute remaining to send the game to overtime.

To start the overtime, the Hawks had some carryover time from a third period penalty by Vancouver. As the Hawks power play came to an end, Jonathan Toews was called for goalie interference, and the Canucks headed to the power play. It took just over thirty seconds for Daniel Sedin to cash in and win the game for the Canucks, by the score of 5-4. The war room in Toronto reviewed the goal to see if there was goalie interference, but there was none, and the Hawks winning streak was snapped at five.

The Good
  • Marian Hossa returned to the lineup after missing the last two games, and tallied his twenty-third goal of the season.
  • As bad as the Hawks power play was in the first period, their power play goal in the beginning stages of the second period was a thing of beauty. A sweet passing play by Schmaltz to Hossa to Hartman cut the Canucks lead in half.
  • #DickFuckingPanik scored his twentieth goal of the season. That loud chuckling noise you hear isn't The Joker, its Gate laughing with a cigar in his mouth at all you people who called him crazy for saying Panik would score twenty goals.
  • With just over a minute remaining in regulation, Patrick Kane fed a fantastic pass to a wide open Ryan Hartman, in front of the net, and Hartman tied the game at four.
  • John Hayden continues to impress by making his presence felt with physicality and play making abilities. While he's been good, lets not get the anointing oil out for him just yet. Its early in his career.
  • Despite shitting the bed in the second period, overall the power play wasn't too bad. They ended the night 2/6.
  • Ryan Hartman had two goals tonight to give him eighteen on the season. Money well spent Montreal.
The Bad
  • What little momentum the Hawks had in the beginning stages of the first period were killed by a lifeless power play. A power play that managed one shot.
  • After scoring on their first power play chance of the second period, the Hawks squandered the next two power play chances in the middle frame.
  • John Hayden looked as if he tied the game at four, late in the third period. However, Vancouver challenged the play for offside, and after review it was deemed Panik was offside and the goal was taken away. I'm not saying this because the call went against the Hawks, I've said this all along, REPLAY SUCKS.
  • On the Canucks game winning goal, Scott Darling and the war room in Toronto felt the need to look for goalie interference. Thank the Lord, this goal wasn't overturned because of "goalie interference." As I said to Gate, if that was goalie interference, I give up.
  • Unlike Sunday night, tonight the Hawks couldn't get the win in comeback fashion. Frankly you deserve to lose when you have to play catch up to teams like the Canucks and Avs.
  • Forty-four shots against the Canucks, and the Hawks lost. That should not happen. EVER.
The Ugly
  • Who the hell decided to give the Bulls the prime time slot on CSN, and bump the Hawks to CSN Plus?
  • Just over ninety seconds into the second period, Nick Schmaltz had forced a turnover while exiting the Hawks zone. Unfortunately for Schmaltz, he had his pocket picked immediately afterward, and the puck wound up in the back of the Hawks net. Not exactly an ideal start to the second period.
  • Through two periods, the Hawks held the Canucks to eight shots, but somehow the Canucks managed three goals.
  • Tomas Jurco earned himself a set of healthy scratches coming up. Early in the third, Jurco failed to see TVR pinch in, and got caught drifting out of position. This resulted in a two on one, which allowed for a tap in goal for Vancouver.
  • Corey Crawford allowed four goals on ten shots. That's deceiving though because a couple of the goals were redirected, and one he was hung out to dry for.
  • Speaking of Crawford, I'm gonna feel bad for him when he's stuck wearing a Canucks jersey.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Avalanche
6-3 Win Recap

"Faster We Run"

by Patrick Stankus

After taking six of a possible six points during their three game road trip in Eastern Canada, the Blackhawks returned to the UC on Sunday for a meeting with the sorry ass Colorado Avalanche. Sunday's game also marked the last of set of back to back games for the Hawks, something that will be more than welcomed for a now banged up team. With this being their third game in four nights, and facing a last place team, it's all setting up for the Hawks to lay a big, fat egg on home ice. Luckily, if it happens, the rest of the country is preoccupied with March Madness and the World Baseball Classic, so no one will really notice.

To the surprise of many, the Hawks actually came out with a decent start despite the week long road trip and this being a back to back. The Hawks used that energy wisely, and less than five minutes in, Patrick Kane, gave them a 1-0 lead. Sadly, that was the high point of the period for the Hawks. Following Kane's goal, the Hawks were guilty of taking their foot off the gas. During the opening twenty minutes, the Hawks had a power play chance, but nothing came of it, and the momentum shifted in Colorado's favor. Mikhail Grigorenko added two goals before the period ended to give the Avs a 2-1 lead. Frankly the Hawks were lucky they weren't down more than that after the first period.

Whatever was said to the Hawks during the second intermission to try and get them motivated, clearly did not work. I don't use the schedule as an excuse, because that's taking the lazy way out. The Hawks to me looked like a team that thought they were scrimmaging a beer league team. Their passing was pathetic, and they weren't moving their legs. The Avs finally took advantage of the Hawks lackluster performance, and increased their lead to 3-1. Late in the period, Scott Darling made a couple of nice saves to give the Hawks some energy heading into the second intermission down by two.

With some momentum building for them at the end of the second period, the Hawks took to the ice, looking to erase a two goal deficit. It took the offense some time to get going, but Scott Darling was there to make the saves when needed in the first half of the third period. Once we got to the midway point of the third, all hell broke loose. The Hawks exploded for three goals in thirty-four seconds to go from down two to up by one. Jonathan Toews added another to make four goals in four minutes to give the Hawks a 5-3 lead. With time winding down, Marcus Kruger added an empty netter from 130 feet away to give the Hawks five unanswered goals in the third period, for the 6-3 win over Colorado.

The Good
  • Patrick Kane opened the scoring for the Hawks just over four minutes into the game. That makeshift line of Panarin-Schmaltz-Kane is clicking on all cylinders. (See more below)
  • #RandomPatFoleyStats made a return in the first period. This time Foley pointed out TVR has been a +10 over his last seventeen games. Funny, I don't recall hearing stats like that said about Kempny before his ass was stapled to the press box before tonight.
  • Jonathan Toews had a night only a "lard ass, who has quit on the team" can have. Tonight he had two goals, one of which was the game changer.
  • Speaking of the Panarin-Schmaltz-Kane line, all three of them had had two point nights. The only knock on them is Schmaltz was 33% at the dot.
  • John Hayden had a two point night tonight, tallying two assists. Can't wait to see someone sporting a Hayden jersey in the near future.
  • For awhile it looked like Duncan Keith was the only Hawks player that wanted to shoot the puck or play for that matter. No matter how much hockey he plays the guy never looks tired. He's simply a machine.
  • For a change, the Hawks were stomped at the dot. It was only 51%-49% tonight.
  • #DickFuckingPanik reached the nineteen goal mark tonight with a third period goal. By all means continue to laugh at us for saying he would reach the twenty goal mark.
  • Scott Darling got the start in net. Not because Corey Crawford has a concussion that only one person claims to know about, but for the reason it was a back to back. Darling was shaky in the first period, but in the second period he regained the form we've come to expect from him. His sequence of saves towards the end of the second period started to shift the momentum in the Hawks favor. In the end he made twenty-two saves on the night.
The Bad
  • I have nothing against John Hayden, but the slobbering love fest from Pat Foley and Edzo has to stop. The gushing over his hits is what causes so many people to say hits are overrated and meaningless. Just let the kid play hockey.
  • Scott Darling had a bonehead play on Colorado's first goal. Instead of covering the loose puck, Darling swatted it towards the top of the crease, where Kempny couldn't control the bouncing puck, and Mikhail Grigorenko tied the game at one.
  • Colorado challenged Toews' first goal for offside. From the replay it clearly looked like Toews was indeed offside. However the officials ruled it was inconclusive when Richard Panik touched the puck, thus rendering the play onside. This is exactly what happened on the Parise/Coyle play against the Hawks in Minnesota. That night, since the call "went against" the Hawks, no one wanted to listen to the explanation. Hopefully after tonight, people will understand the rule a little clearer. Nevertheless, replay, and the challenge need to go away, and go away permanently because it sucks. Period.
The Ugly
  • Just how bad of a season has it been for the Avalanche? Tonight they started Jeremy Smith in net. This is eerily similar to the turn style the Hawks had in net in the mid 2000s. Basically its just plucking random guys from Gate's Sunday night league to play net, while skipping over Gate.
  • The first period only got worse for Darling and the defensive pairing of Seabrook and Kempny. Late in the first, Grigorenko split the defense and a lazy shot beat Scott Darling to put the Avs up 2-1. Not Darling's finest twenty minutes of play.
  • The second period was summed up nicely by Tracey Myers. It really really did feel like we were watching two teams on the penalty kill for the majority of the period.
  • Andrew Desjardins was a -2 and had 5:35 of ice time. Not to be outdone, Jordin Tootoo was also a -2 and had a team low 4:48 of ice time. Remind me again why Rasmussen isn't playing?
  • The Colorado Avalanche are fucking terrible. There's no other way to put it.


Blackhawks vs. St. Pats
2-1 OT Win Recap

"Mean Green Killing Machine"

by Patrick Norton

Coming off of two straight wins across the border aGAINst our neighbors to the north, the Blackhawks had the opportunity to sweep a Tim Horton’s filled road trip opposing the Toronto Snow Mexicans. The Leafs sported their green and white throwbacks while paying homage to the franchise’s former name: the Toronto St. Pats. The biggest downside about playing in another country is that you’ve got to sit through two anthems by some random broad who thinks she’s auditioning for Canada’s Got No Talent. With Minnesota playing against the good team from New York, picking up two points meant something significant to players in the Indian sweaters. And boy, they came out committed to picking those up.

The first period left much to be desired from the Hawks. Auston Matthews picked up his first goal in eight games, but that’s all the Leafs could scratch on the score sheet. Mitch Marner had a breakaway early in the period, but Crawford made an easy stop after Marner stick handled himself into trouble with the approaching Blackhawks brigade. It was a boring period with both teams looking sluggish out of the gate. Unfortunately, the lackluster first frame set the tone for the whole night. At the end of one, the Leafs led, 1-0.

The second chapter kept with the downtempo style that the first brought. Trust me, I swear I was watching, but it was just empty hockey. Maybe smaller pads and bigger nets will help make the sport more exciting… *waits for Fatrick to awake from a non-existent slumber*. Anyways, back on the ranch, the Blackhawks finally broke through on Season Savior John Hayden’s first NHL goal off of a saucer pass from the ever-deteriorating Captain Jonathan Toews. Besides the excitement from the goal, that’s all the period brought. Heading into period number three, the Hawks had knotted up the score at one apiece.

The third was a whole lotta nothin’. Back-and-forth, but nothing worth noting. Both teams picked up a point and this one headed for extra hockey.

The fourth quarter followed suit with 95% of the extra frame proving to be as dull as the previous three. Luckily, before a shootout would decide the outcome, a two-on-one with Panarin feeding Hartman finished off the Leafs, green jerseys and all. Not only do the Blackhawks pick up two important points, but the Wild fail to keep steady behind Chicago with a 3-2 regulation loss to the Rags.

The Good

  • Let’s begin with the obvious: John Hayden had a pretty slick goal and received some mighty words of approval from Coach Wizzo after the game. Maybe he’s more than a “three games, scratch, and Black Ace” kinda guy.
  • The pass from Toews that lead to the goal wasn’t too shabby either. If you ask me, Hayden will always remember that the team captain assisted on his first career point.
  • Toronto’s St Pat’s uniforms were fantastic. I’m trying my best to snag myself one of those.
  • Hartman head faked, froze Frederick “Game Seven Loss” Andersen to seal the deal in OT. Not the typical OT demographic, but it certainly made Quenneville look pretty smart for trusting the kid.
  • Corey Crawford stopped a dandy twenty-five shots, including one in the OT period. He tallied an assist on Hartman’s OT clincher and forced another team to throw in an extra 3rd round pick when they trade for the six million dollar man this summer.
  • Ryan Hartman has sixteen goals this season. Some guy on the Canadiens named Shaw has ten. It seems we’re already forgetting about that loudmouth nuisance.
  • Sure, 3-on-3 isn’t real, but those two points Chicago picked up tonight count in full. That’s 97 for us and a measly 95 for Winlessota.
  • Not a bad night for the defense. Couple things, but I’ll mention that soon enough.
  • It's only been a week, but it has felt like five years since my last recap. Glad to be back.

The Bad

  • Corey Crawford just had a brain fart when Auston Matthews scored. That’s that. Other than that, great night for #50 in white.
  • Leafs were a much faster team than the Hawks. Doesn’t look like the Leafs will cause the Hawks trouble in a Cup Final, but it causes concern when there are teams with similar styles in the West playoff picture. Still won though…

The Ugly

  • Seabrook looked like he had lost a step early on, but his game recovered throughout the game. His lacking defense and random ass turnovers are going to cost this team a win unless he cleans that up. Simple as that.
  • Dear God, Martina WhateverHerLastNameWas butchered the anthems. Key change in the middle of O Canada? Get outta here.
  • This game was a boring Original Six match-up. Yes, it’s possible. Great job, NHL. Don’t know how it’s your fault, but give me some time; I’ll find a way.


Thursday, March 16, 2017

Blackhawks at Ottawa
2-1 Win Recap

"The Ides of March"

by Gatekeeper

The Blackhawks were on Ottawa, Thursday night, to continue their western Canada swing against the Senators following a big win versus the Canadiens in Montreal. The win, though, did not come without a price. The Blackhawks learned that they would be without center Artem Anisimov for three to four weeks with an ankle injury after falling awkwardly at the end of the first period Tuesday night. Luckily they are deep down the middle and had Nick Schmaltz to step in and contribute a nice assist to Artemi Panarin almost immediately. Another fresh face made his NHL debut against the Sens with John Hayden stepping in to show Blackhawks fans what his big frame could bring. While we should all keep our expectations low, having a young talented big body able to help out is never a bad situation to be in. For the Sens, they would be throwing Mike Condon to the wolves, with former Blackhawk and Park Ridge native Craig Anderson still tending to his ailing wife. Mike Condon was facing his friend Scott Darling on the other end, as both teach at the GGSU Legends camp here in Chicago during the summer. Another former Blackhawks player, Viktor Stalberg (ol stone hands himself), would be making his first appearance in a Sens uniform against the Hawks. Lucky them.

It looked like neither team was ready for "one of of those great 6:30 starts", because there were several icing and off-sides infractions in the opening 10 minutes that made it drag. Things picked up a little in the remaining half of the period, with the Blackhawks getting a slight edge in scoring chances even though the official shot counts were tied at 13. Joel Quenneville seemed like he was still getting his lines dialed in as well, sheltering Hayden a few times resulting in him only getting 2:07 over 5 shifts.

The middle period was certainly an extension of the sloppy play later in the first period. The sens even tried to hand the lead to the Blackhawks, but their goaltender had other ideas. That didn't stop the Blackhawks from throwing some sloppy play in of their own with some late careless penalties. When all was said and done the game was still scoreless after a full forty minutes. The Blackhawks led in shots on net 9-8 and held a one shot advantage for the game.

Nothing changed in the third period either, as far action went. Many mistakes both ways led to some decent chances and the Blackhawks finally drew first blood. The goal was on only their third shot of the period, but the damage was done. Unfortunately for the good guys the Senators tied the game just a couple of minutes later on the powerplay. Not to be outdone, the Blackhawks scored on a back-to-back powerplay with three minutes remaining, and thet was the little bit they needed to to get out of the Canadian Tire Center with two much needed points, to increase their lead on the Wild, after the Wild lost in regulation.

The Good
  • It took just over 48 minutes for the first goal to be scored and that goal was by the Blackhawks. Duncan Keith unleashed a one timer that Mike Condon couldn't control and the Sens defender tried to push it back into his goaltender. That effort, however, basically put the puck into his own net. That is exactly the type of goal you should expect from a game this sloppy.
  • I am hard on the powerplay, but it was pretty good all night. They got some quality chances and controlled the puck well. #DickFuckingPanik put the Blackhawks up 2-1 on the Hawks final powerplay of the night with 3:01 left in regulation.
  • Marian Hossa played his 1300th NHL game right where it all started, in the Canadian capital.
  • As much as it pains me to admit, Jordin Tootoo hasn't been a totally useless mammal. He has shown some decent hands and made a few skilled plays. That said, he played the least of all the Hawks forwards.
  • Nick Schmaltz continued to impress with a beautiful first period rush that saw him split three defenders and end up one-on-one with the Sens goaltender Condon.
  • With his 3rd period assist, Patrick Kane held on to his single point league lead in scoring.
  • Speaking of league leaders, Scott Darling increased his save percentage lead by saving 33 of 34

The Bad
  • John Hayden had a bit of the "yips" in his first NHL shift. He was running all over the ice trying to hit people a la Dan Carcillo. Dial it back a little, kid. Alot of games ahead of you.
  • Just a couple of minutes after the Blackhawks took the lead, a tired Blackhawks group ended up taking a penalty, and the Sens were able to solve Scott Darling, finally. If Richard Panik was able to get the puck out of the zone on the previous play, Brent Seabrook may not have taken that penalty. Small things matter in slopfest games.

The Ugly
  • It's not often that I'm calling for post whistle activities, but in the seconds period Scott Darling took some contact after making a save and no one did a thing. If you want your goalie to bail you out, protect him. Especially a goalie that is still probably nursing an injury.

The #Fatrick Stankus Fatsy Stats
  • The Blackhawks were just stomped up and down the rink at the faceoff dots. The final tally was 36% of their faceoffs won.
  • All the players you'd guess that would lead in Corsi for led the Blackhawks. Patrick Kane and Artemi Panarin actually led the team by double digits.
  • There were only a couple of Sens players that were negative Corsi, with the Sens leading in shots overall 34-28
  • The Blackhawks officially had TWENTY TWO giveaways.

The Lineblender
Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
Hayden - Toews - Panik
Panarin - Schmaltz - Kane
Hartman - Kero - Hossa
Desjardins - Kruger - Tootoo

Keith - Hjalmarsson
Oduya - Seabrook
Campbell - van Riemsdyk


Puckin Hostile Shoutcast
Episode 78

In this 78th Puckin Hostile Shoutcast (the Pavol Demitra episode) Gatekeeper, Fatrick, Norton and Jake Martin from BlackhawkUp.com discuss post trade deadline action.

The topics discussed include:
-Jonathan Quenneville is born - #FuckingGate
-The Vegas Golden Knights are finally in business
-The Arizona Coyotes, on the other hand, are barely in business
-The NHL GM meetings
-The stupid 5 year old Artemi Panarin video #GateTirade
-The Maxim Shalunov chronicles
-Scott Darling and Artem Anisimov injuries
-Wouter Peeters hits US soil with the Rockford Icehogs
-Blackhawks sign Matthew Highmore, John Hayden, Anthony Louis, and Luc Snuggerud
-Hawks played some games vs the Islanders, Predators, Ducks, Redwings, Wild and Canadiens
-And of course, as always, an abundance of extremely inappropriate references and jokes in incredibly bad taste

You can find the episode on iTunes by following this link: iTunes

Get the Shoutcast directly though Soundcloud here:

For all your custom jersey needs visit Black and Tan Sports at:

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Blackhawks at Canadiens 4-2 Win Recap

"And It Ain't So Bad" 

by Patrick Stankus

With the dog days of the regular season for a playoff bound team fully upon us, the Blackhawks traveled north of the border on Tuesday night to take on the Montreal Canadiens. The Hawks were coming off a big win at home on Sunday against the division leading Minnesota Wild. With both teams in action, there was a possibility the Hawks could leapfrog the Wild with a win and a Wild loss tonight. Prior to the game, the Hawks got some good news from the injury department, as Scott Darling was cleared to return..... to the bench. Anyway, lets get this Eastern Canada trip underway.

The first few minutes of the game was nothing more than two teams getting their legs under them, with a couple of chances here and there. Thankfully the pace of the game picked up as the period went on, otherwise we were all going to fall asleep. While the Habs peppered the Hawks net, all the Hawks could do on the offensive side was throw four shots at Carey Price. Despite only registering four shots, it was the Hawks who found themselves on top at the end of the period. Unfortunately, it all wasn't positive for the Hawks. As time wound down, Artem Anisimov had his leg rolled up on, and left the game.

In the second period, the Hawks looked much better. For much of the period, it was end to end action at a brisk pace. It was much more enjoyable than the opening twenty minutes. The Hawks did try to make it interesting. During the middle stage of the period, the Hawks managed to kill off two penalties to keep the Canadiens off the scoreboard. Between the Canadiens' power plays, the Hawks did manage to increase their lead to two, thanks to a goal by Johnny Oduya. Down the stretch, the Canadiens had a few great chances, but Corey Crawford was unbelievable, and the Hawks went to the intermission up by two.

With a two goal lead in their pocket, the Hawks wasted little time in adding to their lead in the third period. Artemi Panarin scored forty-seven seconds into the period to give the Hawks a 3-0 lead, and basically put themselves on cruise control. That cruise control style of play came back to bite them in the ass, as the Canadiens scored two goals in under four minutes to cut the Hawks lead to 3-2. Luckily the Hawks finally woke up, with Toews adding an empty net goal to seal the deal, and the Hawks escaped from Montreal with a 4-2 win. Next up for the Hawks is a trip to Canada's capital, Ottawa, to take on the Senators.

The Good
  • Patrick Kane opened the scoring in the first period, after a great set up by Artem Anisimov. The assist by Anisimov gave him a new career high in points at forty-five. Scary part is, there's still 3 1/2 weeks left in the regular season.
  • Johnny Oduya tallied his first goal in his second stint with the Hawks after one timing a loose puck from the point. I've seen Oduya make this play before (when it comes to one timing a puck from the left point towards the net), except A LOT more was on the line, and it wasn't him who scored.
  • With Anisimov injured, #DickSchmaltz took his place on the #AK72Line, and was excellent. He set up Panarin's goal in the third period with a nifty pass from along the boards, and Panarin did the rest.
  • The final will say he gave up two goals, but Corey Crawford was outstanding tonight. He made several spectacular saves. In the end he made forty saves en route to the win and remains unbeaten in regulation against Montreal in his career.
  • Who didn't enjoy Tanner Kero laying out Andrew Shaw?
  • TVR played a team low 14:52 for all you TVR haters. Not to be outdone though, Michal Kempny's ass was in the press box again, so I win.
  • Patrick Kane had himself a night. Not only did he have three points, but he also moved ahead in the league lead in scoring. Although as I am writing this, Connor McClavicle and Edmonton are still playing tonight, so it could change. Regardless, I'm sure Kane being in the scoring lead will get some committed bloggers upset. Isn't it McAwesome?
The Bad
  • I love the heart of Ryan Hartman, but son you're going to get yourself killed laying out in front of a Shea Weber slap shot. Put that one in the memory bank next time you think that will be a good idea.
  • Speaking of Shea Weber's slap shot, let's ask Corey Crawford's mask how it feels. In the second period, Crawford's mask was the victim of a Weber bomb that knocked him on his ass. 
  • For the most part, the Hawks looked pretty good tonight, except for some sloppy play in the second period. During that stretch, they took two penalties, but did manage to kill both of them off. They were also guilty of taking their foot off the gas late in the third period, and the Canadiens managed to score two goals in under four minutes to make it interesting.
  • CSN decided to put Adam Burish on during the intermissions, and post game tonight. Actually, he was a lot better than Jamal Mayers. Maybe this is like #DickSchmaltz. Baby steps into a bigger role with the team. Or it could just be because Burish is broke and will work for food.
The Ugly
  • For reasons unknown, Pat Foley decided to say Corey Crawford is better goalie than Carey Price. His basis? Crawford has two Jennings Trophies to Price's one, and Crawford's two Stanley Cups to Price's zero. Jesus Christ, shut the hell up Pat. If we're going to judge players based on championships, then Colin Fraser is an all time great.
  • What the hell were the Canadiens thinking on Kane's goal. Its like Moses' parted the Habs defenders to give Kane all the time and space he wanted.
  • Remember when I said the Hawks got good news from the injury department before the game? Well that was the kiss of death, as Artem Anisimov went down with a lower body injury at the end of the first period. Anisimov had to be helped off the ice, and as Captain Obvious would say, it didn't look good. (Update) - Post game Quenneville said it wasn't as bad as originally feared, and Anisimov will be re-evaluated in a few days.
  • Anisimov missing the last two periods of the game probably didn't help, but the Hawks were crushed at the dot 39%-61%. WOOF.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Wild
4-2 Win Recap

"Back From The Dead"

by Patrick Norton

After Dr. Steve Konroyd projected the Blackhawks to take the division lead against Minnesota during the pregame report on Friday, the Blackhawks set out to make the doctor’s orders impossible. Dropping their last two games, a win against their rivals from the north had the possibility to springboard a nice run to cap off the regular season. Both teams were rested and healthy (except Martin Hanzal), so this was the ultimate match-up of who was the stronger team...in the regular season. Let’s get to the second round of the playoffs, already.

The first period started with a bang. A minute in, a deflection from a Minnesota defenseman from a Panarin pass found Kane in the slot. Kane doesn’t miss from the slot and Devan Dubnyk can’t save anything from the slot. Hot start for a team that usually produces a hot garbage start. Just a few minutes later, Panarin caught a pass from Kane and rifled another shot from the heart of the offensive zone and put the Hawks up by two. Then, in typical first period form, Chicago went back into their shell. Dubnyk was replaced five minutes in by Darcy Kuemper and momentum began to shift. Defense no longer stepping up and no offensive pressure allowed for the Wild to find their game. Offensive pressure paired with a horrendous clear-attempt turnover from yours truly, Brent Seabrook led to a gritty garbage goal off the stick of Eric Staal. Greaaaat. Can’t wait to hear about Staal’s growth with Minnesota for the rest of the game. After a late period penalty kill, the first came to a close. Momentum was back even, but the Hawks still held the tangible statistic on the scoreboard. Hawks held a 2-1 lead traveling into the second.

The second period started with lots of Wild pressure, but the tides quickly turned. Tootoo drew a penalty, but it never came into fruition. Kruger picked up the loose puck on the delayed penalty and shipped a one timer over to van Riemsdyk. TVR put it behind Kuemper and the Blackhawks had a two goal lead again. Then, it was pure mayhem. The final six minutes of the game provided end-to-end action. Relentless opportunities, but Crawford and Kuemper kept everything out of the twine. At the end of the second, the Hawks increased their lead for the third, 3-1.

The thir… ohp! Mikael Granlund unassisted past Crawford less than a minute into the third and it’s a one goal game again. Then Jonas Brodin cleared the puck over the boards and the increasing momentum came to a two minute halt. Some late PP pressure wasn’t enough for the Blackhawks and the extra man advantage was wasted. Once again, some more end-to-end play had both teams striving for a whistle, but nothing would do it. Crawford and Kuemper stayed strong and a whistle finally blew with just over eleven minutes remaining in the third. The Wild began to attack ferociously, but Crow held his own. Then a Keith pass to a springing Hossa resulted in a breakaway half-slapper. A lucky break for the Hawks and just like that, it was a two goal lead with just over five minutes remaining. Then, what a late period choke by the Wild. Desjardins drew a tripping minor with two minutes remaining and the Hawks just toyed with Minnesota playing keep away. Another penalty resulted in a 5-on-3 and that’s all she wrote. Hawks pull out the victory, 4-2. Crawford stole the show with forty-two saves on forty-four Wild shots. Now within a point of the Wild, the Hawks are close to striking.

The Good

  • Kane’s goal had an element of luck on how it set up, but the shot was skill. He returns to the thirty goal category for the second straight season. To verify this fact, I searched his career stats and was reminded he scored FORTY-SIX goals last season. Dear God.
  • Kane’s set up of Panarin’s goal was no luck. Another lightning pass and Panarin buried the puck. That duo is a thing of beauty.
  • A solid penalty kill handed the Blackhawks back some of the momentum they had lost earlier. That’s a great way to finish of a period.
  • TVR kept jumping into the play and it finally paid off. Two goals in two games. 
  • Corey Crawford had another insane performance. Sure, the offense scored four goals, but this was a goalie victory. But we should’ve traded him, right?
  • Andrew Desjardins had another solid day on the fourth line! Good for him.
  • The final two minutes were hysterical. The Hawks just held the puck for the final 2:08. The Wild touched the puck once! And that resulted in a whistle to call a delayed penalty. Awesome. It was Chicago showing Minnesota who their daddy is.

The Bad

  • Mike Milbury and Keith Jones called for a physical matchup. Physical and Blackhawks in the same sentence? Suuuure.
  • When the Hawks score early, they tend to develop a shell around their play. They hardly capitalize off early momentum. They scored two quick goals, but quickly gave another one back.
  • It looked like Nick Schmaltz was taking a breather on the shift while Granlund scored. His head was still in the locker room and had a crucial turnover. Not coincidentally, Andrew Desjardins took the next shift with Toews and Panik. Schmaltz didn’t return to the line until past the halfway mark of the frame.
  • The offense wasn't great, but got it done when it mattered. Four goals on twenty-two shots is a good and bad thing. We'll take the victory and move on.

The Ugly

  • Seabrook turned over a clearing-attempt and then was caught standing still in front of Crawford, leading to Staal’s first period goal. It’s becoming “Rinse. Wash. Repeat.” with him.
  • Not the right way to start the third period with a two goal lead. Man, sometimes you just want to scream “WAKE UP” after intermissions.

Another fun game for the Hawks. What did the two previous losses have in common? I didn’t recap them. Hmm… Anyways, yesterday was Gate’s birthday, so head over to Twitter and wish the old man a good one… he may not have too many left. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

Blackhawks at Detroit
4-2 Loss Recap

"Stabbing the Drama"

by Gatekeeper

No rest for the wicked, with the Blackhawks, Friday night. After a disappointing loss to the Ducks the previous night, they hopped a plane for a quick jaunt over to Detoilet and a tilt with the awful Redwings. It's only fitting that the Wings would wave goodbye to their legendary arena with a whimper and the end of their 25 season playoff streak. While the fat lady hasn't belted out her tune just yet, she's on deck and warming up in the vestibule.

(Let's hope a crack website doesn't google that in 5 years and make it #FakeNews for 30 seconds)

Anyhow, the Blackhawks were on a "3 games in 4 days" section of the schedule, after just having two 4+ day breaks in the last couple of weeks. After both breaks they came away with losses, their only two since January. Let it be said that they didn't play especially bad in either of those games either. They are, in fact, playing very well. With a little bit of a hiccup against the Ducks, this "should be" just what the doctor ordered.

The Blackhawks and Wings played a pretty even first period that seemed like it might end scoreless, but they combined for three goals in the final five minutes of the period. The Blackhawks opened the scoring in fairly easy fashion, but the Wings scored two in the final two and a half minutes to take a one goal lead into the second. The shots in the first period were 10 to 6 in favor of the Wing.

Action wasn't much different in the second period, especially for the Blackhawks. They were still stuck at 9 shots on net halfway through the game, which was a pretty solid indicator of what they did or didn't accomplish, but they were able to salvage some momentum with a very late goal of their own. The Blackhawks actually wound up leading the period with 11 shots to the Redwings' 10.

Not even the magic Quenneville line blender could save the Blackhawks, and the Wings padded their lead with a late third period goal. Quenneville also pulled his goalie with 3:44 left, but that was quickly negated by a penalty. Once again, not the most action packed period. We saw much more action in the previous night's shutout. If they put in an effort like this Sunday against the Wild the #HostileCurse will be alive and well.

The Good
  • Five minutes into the first period, and the Redwings were staring into the face of the "Blues Brothers", Patrick Kane and Artemi Panarin. They weaved back and forth in the neutral zone and Kane set the plate with a beautiful backhand saucer right in Panarin's wheelhouse. There isn't much doubt when the racist Ruskie* unleashes that one timer. Party time.

    *note heavy sarcasm
  • The Blackhawks matched the Wings late first period goal with a late second period goal of their own. Of all people, it was Trevor van Riemsdyk. Forgive me if a long, half assed shot through a screen doesn't exactly light my fire. Might as well have been #Fatrick out there farting the puck at the net.
  • Joel Quenneville rested Nik Hjalmarsson and Johnny Oduya, which was a good idea. Keep them fresh for the playoffs.
  • I love the Wings young kids and Andreas Athanasiou might be my favorite of them all. His speed is just absolutely blinding, and this is with fastest skater record holder Dylan Larkin on the same team. I'd love to see him on the Blackhawks.

The Bad
  • Just a couple of moments after TVR took an extended rest for acting like he knew how to fight, the Redwings tied the game. A long shot from Xavier Ouellet escaped Crawford after Patrick Kane and Michael Rozsival couldn't be bothered to properly clear the puck out of their own zone. Let it be noted that Rozsival was out there with Brian Campbell because van Riemsdyk was in the locker room serving his instigation penalty. Oh right, the puck actually clipped Rozsival on the way in, changing direction enough to get by Crawford.
  • The Wings took a 2 goal lead with just under five minutes remaining in the second period on another bad Blackhawks turnover. Kane turned the puck over at the Wings blue line and Brian Campbell lost his man. Campbell's man, Tatar, picked up a deflected puck to Corey Crawford's left, and chipped it by Crawford.
  • Pat and Eddie were harping on Tomas Jurco's invisible play before the game. While it's certainly annoying, they aren't wrong. If you don't show Quenneville something impressive quick, you're put on the "pay no mind" list. He ended up with a team low 8:13 which will, most likely, earn him a Sunday matinee healthy scratch.

The Ugly
  • With under a minute remaining, EIGHT SECONDS TO BE EXACT, in the first period the Wings' Athanasiou trailed a 4-on-3 rush and was able to sneak a shot past Corey Crawford after Brian Campbell got stuck deep in the Wings zone. Artemi Panarin actually made a nice play to try and tie up Tomas Tatar but Tatar was able to fight through to feed Nick Jensen who dropped the puck to Athanasiou, who changed the angle, and scored. Quenneville then blew his timeout by attempting to challenge the goal, claiming it was offsides. It wasn't.
  • The Wings took their 2 goal lead back with 5 minutes remaining in regulation. Patrick Kane turned the puck over at the half boards to Henrik Zetterberg who fed Tomas Tatar for his second goal of the night and 17th of the season. Kane had a rough night, overall.
  • Both teams were brutal on the powerplay, going a combined 0-5.
  • These stupid replays are out of hand. Why are they giving teams so long to examine replays before they are officially charged their challenge? The whole point of this challenge system is that it's basically left to chance, or a gamble. If they didn't want it to play out like that, then don't penalize teams their time-out if they challenge wrong.
  • Trevor van Riemsdyk apparently decided he was a fighter in this contest, jumping Justin Abdelkader after Abdelkader laid a big hit on Brian Campbell. This play was where the Redwings turned the momentum around and scored two straight goals late at the end of the first period. Did I mention that van Riemsdyk took an instigation penalty and sat in the box until there were seven minutes remaining in the second period? Swell.
  • Pat Foley and these stupid stats he spews out, "Michael Kempny has been a plus 2 in the last seven games he's played". Could you rattle off a more generic and pointless stat line? That is that really best you can come up with?

The #Fatrick Stankus Fatsy Stats
  • The Hawks were just absolutely slayed at the faceoff dots, winning only 40%
  • Speaking of van Riemsdyk, he was a team worst -15 Corsi overall.
  • Brian Campbell and the #AK72 line were all -3. Brutal!!

The Lineblender
Left Wing - Center - Right Wing
Schmaltz - Toews - Panik
Panarin - Anisimov - Kane
Jurco - Kruger - Hossa
Hartman - Kero - Desjardins

Keith - Seabrook
Campbell - van Riemsdyk
Kempny - Rozsival


Blackhawks vs. Ducks 1-0 Loss Recap

"Let The Sun Never Blind Your Eyes"
by Patrick Stankus

After their second bye week in less than a month, okay maybe not an official bye, the Blackhawks returned to the ice Thursday night to face the Anaheim Ducks. The five day layoff was so long, it felt like it was five years, considering how things from five years ago surfaced due to the boredom amongst some fans. Coming into tonight's game, the Blackhawks were riding a seven game winning streak, that allowed them to catch the division leading Minnesota Wild. The long layoff between games wasn't the only potential doom facing the Blackhawks tonight. With Gate in attendance for the game, the #PuckinHostileCurse was staring the Blackhawks right in the face. Well, since Gate was at the game, Mr. Slurpee still in his powerless igloo, and Norton curled up in a ball in the corner crying over Kansas' loss this afternoon, you are all treated to a #FatCap for this one. Let's see if I actually remember how to write this things.

Any worries of a potential letdown by the Hawks following the extended break were put to rest early. The Hawks came out firing on all cylinders. They simply dominated the pace of the game, and kept the play in the Ducks end throughout the period. In the period, the Hawks had the benefit of two power plays, and tallied nineteen shots total. Despite the good start, the Hawks couldn't find the back of the net in the first period, and after twenty minutes the game was scoreless. Aside from the scoring chances by the Hawks, the highlight of the period was Ryan Getzlaf taking a page out of Ryan Kesler's book and fighting a guy who wasn't ready to fight. Nothing says "Mr. Tough Guy" like that.

In the second period, much of the story remained the same. The Hawks dominated stretches of play and clowned the Ducks defense. Even with the dominating play, you could sense the frustration was starting to set in. Late in the period, Marian Hossa hit the post, and while Tanner Kero started to celebrate, the Ducks came back the other way. Just like the hockey gods drew it up, the Ducks scored on the ensuing play, off the stick of Ebola Perry. Basically to sum up the second period for the Hawks, they threw everything but the kitchen sink at Jonathan Bernier, but couldn't get one past.

Facing a one goal deficit to start the third period, the Hawks once again came out of the intermission flying. They peppered the Ducks net with twelve shots, but once again, Jonathan Bernier had the answer to all of them. Late in the period, Edzo tried to fire up the meatballs by suggesting Bernier threw his stick across the crease to make a save on Panarin, but it was a stretch to say the least. Despite a flurry of chances in the waning minutes, the Hawks couldn't find the equalizer and were defeated by the Ducks 1-0. Next up for the Hawks is a quick turnaround, as they head to Joe Louis Arena for one final time to take on the Red Wings on Friday night.

The Good
  • Corey Crawford was outstanding tonight. He made twenty-five saves in the loss. More impressive was his ability to stay sharp after the Hawks held the Ducks to two shots in the first period.
  • Despite being terrible at the dot, Jonathan Toews had a pretty solid night. He led the Hawks with six shots on net.
  • Johnny Oduya returned to the Hawks tonight, and its not shocking the defense as a whole had a solid night. They limited the Ducks to twenty-six shots, and blocked sixteen shots as a unit. I'll take that. 
  • Speaking of the defense, its not surprising they had a good night while Michal Kempny sat his ass up in the press box...... where he belongs.

The Bad
  • Ryan Getzlaf jumped #DickPanik and attempted to fight him in the first period. Knowing Panik, he probably told Mr. Baldy that Pearl Jam sucked and that's what set him off.
  • Late in the second period, the Hawks thought they had taken the lead, but Marian Hossa's shot hit the post. As the Hawks were busy acting like they scored, Anaheim came back the other way and scored. Ah, yes, I love when you stop playing in the middle of a play.
  • Jordin Tootoo's continued attempt to show off any fancy hockey skills near the net, warranted no more ice time for himself. Tonight he had a team low 7:22.
  • Forty-three shots, and no goals for the Hawks tonight. A frustrating night at its finest.
The Ugly
  • Its too bad Gate was at the game tonight and didn't here Pat Foley rave about how TVR has been a +9 over his last few games.
  • The Blackhawks simply dominated play in the first period and ended up with nineteen shots on net. Despite those nineteen shots, and two power plays, at the end of the period, the Hawks were left with nothing to show for it.
  • During the intermission, our favorite analysis #DrKonroyd decided to shit on Tomas Jurco saying he needed to "prove himself" and "show a little more." Perhaps Steve forgot Jurco is coming off an injury, and still adapting to a new system. I'll cut him a little slack. Its not like the Hawks gave up the farm for Jurco.
  • The Hawks got crushed at the dot tonight, 59% to 41%. Noticeably bad was Jonathan Toews at 37%.
  • Its bad enough that the Hawks lost to the Ducks, but its even worse than that disease carrying fleabag Corey Perry had to score the loan goal of the game.
  • Oh Ryan Kesler, somethings never change apparently.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Comrade Circus Maximus
and Russian Roulette

Now that the trade deadline is over, we have hit this hit this purgatory period otherwise known as March. While the Blackhawks seem to be playing every other day, minus this current 4 day mini bye week, there are certainly going to be more manufactured stories coming your way. Websites need clicks, right?

That said, there have been a few non-tabloid variety based subjects on the table and I'd like to address one of them:

I would normally start this off with "Maxim Shalunov will disappoint you all", and that will be coming once he is formally signed, but I'd like to offer some insight on the Russian Maximus. Scott Powers from The Athletic Chicago has been hot on this take for a few months. Yesterday he reported that Shalunov would not be able to get out of his KHL deal, which meant he isn't defecting to the NHL just yet. I'm not even getting into the wackiness of his agent, either.

Anyhow, first of all, Max Shalunov was not just going to waltz into the Blackhawks lineup and suddenly become Artemi Panarin 2.0. Bottom line. Shalunov is just not that kind of player, and honestly, who really is? How many times can you honestly say that Joel Quenneville has taken a brand new unfamiliar player, who has never played with the current Blackhawks players, given them a fair shake and regularly thrown them in the lineup? Especially late in the season. Rarely, at most. Shalunov would come over, play a couple of games, and then Quenneville would throw him on the bottom 6 healthy scratch carousel. He is not going to take time from any of the top 8-9 players. Without much effort whatsoever, he has already dropped to the Tomas Jurco level of the depth chart, and because he is a right wing, you already have Patrick Kane, Marian Hossa and Richard Panik ahead of him. I have seen him take draws, but even if he could play center with regularity, who is he pushing down the depth chart, there? The Blackhawks are pretty stacked with centers.

Also, often overlooked but needing to be addressed, as well, is that Shalunov already spent an entire season playing in North America in 2013-14, and he could not even keep up at the AHL level (0 points in 20 AHL games). Shalunov was then sent to the Toledo Walleye, who were the ECHL affiliate of the Blackhawks at the time. There, he was too talented for the ECHL, and put up 34 points in 43 games, but bolted to the KHL that summer. Now, he was only 21, dealing with ice size adjustments as well as culture changes. I'll give him that much.

This may seem like I'm trashing Max Shalunov, but I assure you, I'm not. He is now 24, and a big wing at 6'3" 212 lbs. It is no secret that he can quite clearly score, based on his KHL numbers. Watching him play reminds me of a "less hitty" Richard Panik. If the Blackhawks can get Panik type production (35-40 points) out of Shalunov, he is a wonderful and affordable weapon to have at your disposal. As with most players, I just want fans to have realistic expectations of what they are getting. Players like Artemi Panarin aren't the rule, they are the rare exception to the rule. Best case scenario, Stan Bowman is able to work something out this summer to get him into camp in September. Here are some recent highlights of his play in the KHL to give you more of an idea of what this kid has to offer:


Saturday, March 4, 2017

Blackhawks vs. Predators
5-3 Win Recap

"Locked In"

By Patrick Norton

Tonight’s tango with the Nashville Predators wasn’t going to be easy. Riddled with injuries, traveling overnight after playing yesterday, and forcing the goaltender to string together two games, the excuses were in place in the event of a loss. Anisimov returned to the second line after missing last night’s victory against the New York Islanders, but Nick Schmaltz remained sidelined for both ends of the back-to-back. In an attempt to keep the six game win streak and seven game road win streak alive, Quenneville rode with Crow and kept Jeff “Glove Of” Glass far, far away from the ice.

In typical Blackhawks fashion, the first period did not provide the start Chicago hoped for. A Michal Rozsival penalty aided the soaring shot total for Nashville and halfway through the opener, the Predators led the shot column, 10-1… but they didn’t lead the game. Jordin Tootoo fought Cody McLeod at center ice venturing to spark the Blackhawks. Later in the frame, Anthony Bitetto high-sticked Tootoo leading to Chicago’s first powerplay. While Filip Forsberg did a dandy job killing off the first thirty seconds, a quick regroup and a pass from Seabrook gave Patrick Kane an opening near the left circle. Kane ripped it past rookie goaltender Juuse Saros for the PPG. Heading into the second, the Hawks trailed in shots, 14-11, but led in the goal column, 1-0.

The Blackhawks seemingly removed their head from behinds to begin the second period. Out of the gate, the Blackhawks came out shooting. Saros held his crease well, though. The best efforts of Kane and Anisimov to double the lead were unsuccessful. Instead, it was Jordin F***ing Tootoo who shipped the puck into the back of the net for the Blackhawks’ second goal of the night. The two goal lead only lasted a measly minute-thirty as Viktor Arvidsson put on past Crawford to bring the Preds within one. After a few minutes of back-and-forth skating, Jonathan Toews tallied seconds into a powerplay on a rebound with Panik shielding Saros. But once again, we can’t have nice things and a Seabrook defensive blunder paired with a lack of hustle allowed Jarnkrok to score the second goal of the period for the Preds. After a one goal first, four combined tallies made for an exciting, but mighty frustrating second period of hockey. Luckily, the Blackhawks escaped to the second intermission with a lead, 3-2. Unfortunately, it could’ve been 3-1 or even 3-0. No bueno.

The third period started with a resounding Crawford chant. Doesn't get much more Nashville than that. Each team got their fair share of opportunities throughout the first few minutes of the period, but nobody could get anything through. Finally, Arvidsson had Crawford down early and tied it up from a horrible angle. Cue the Crawford chants after the soft, soft goal. It seemed inevitable after the defense seemingly went into a shell, but the style of goal had absolutely nothing to do with the defense. Crawford just went down too early, simple as that. Then, a whole lot of nothing. Finally with sixty-five seconds remaining, Brian Campbell jumped into the play and rifled a shot past Saros. Kane added an empty-netter for his second of the night and twenty-ninth of the season and that's all she wrote. Hawks win, 5-3. "Crawford" this, you dumbass Nashville fans

The Good

  • Corey Crawford was phenomenal. It’s not easy playing both games on a back-to-back, but Crow made it look easy. The first period was a true test for #50, but he stood on his head and stopped everything. Hat tip to the man with thirty-two saves.
  • Patrick Kane saved a powerplay quickly sliding downhill. The Blackhawks’ point leader ripped a wrister from the left circle and gave the Blackhawks the first period lead.
  • It pains me to say this, but Michal Rozsival actually had a decent game. Even the penalty that he committed was a weak call. Uncle Rozsival can put the candy bar down, no need to panic.
  • No, I’m not sucking up to Gate for a raise, but #KempGod played a few solid shifts. Couldn’t complain about him. And I really haven’t been able to for quite awhile, either.
  • The fourth line doesn’t get a whole heck of a lot of ice time, but when they skated together tonight, they held great sustained pressure in the offensive zone.
  • TOOTOO, #22, born on 2/2! He scored! The ol’ son of a bitch did it! Drinks (of water) on me!
  • Traffic in front. It’s what always seems to work. This time on the second powerplay, Toews’ goal. That trade value just keeps climbing.
  • Brian Campbell jumps into the play and good things happen. Good on ya!
  • The Bread Man to Kane is beautiful. Even if it's just an empty-netter, it's still magnificent.

The Bad

  • Corey Crawford was tested early and often. The defense played very lackadaisical for the first ten minutes of the night. No days off, boys.
  • The Blackhawks had a lot of trouble clearing their end, which led to far too many unnecessary opportunities and chances for the Preds.
  • After Tootoo tallied his first goal of the season, the Blackhawks couldn’t wait to give it right back. Can we please just have a comfortable lead? Anybody?
  • Wash. Rinse. Repeat. Seabrook standing still. 14 seconds after Toews’ second period goal, Calle Jarnkrok brings it back within one. Tighten up. Jeez.
  • Crawford wasn't receiving great help from his defense, but Arvidsson's second tally was soft and inexcusable for the netminder. Sad!
  • Don't you just love it when there's that one guy who never ceases banging the boards. Quick fact about those types of people: The boards are the only thing they've ever banged.

The Ugly

  • Oh, Sweet Eddie-O, please don’t go. Intermissions aren’t getting better. I’d rather listen to Eddie Vedder.
  • TVR got absolutely ROCKED by Cody McLeod (which eventually led to the Tootoo/McLeod fight), so yeah, it was clean and a hockey hit, but it was ugly. I laughed, though…
  • Predators fans insist on chanting Crawford for no damn reason. How stupid must they all be? Chant “defense” if you want to scream who gave up that first Preds goal.
  • I'd be willing to bet that Rozsival with a backwards ankle could beat TVR in a forty yard dash. He's so slow, it's unbearable to watch.

I’d like to send a quick shoutout to recap reader and shoutcast listener, Beth Sweeney and her son Ryan. Ryan dropped the puck at the Icehogs game tonight for Autism Awareness Night in Rock Vegas. Follow Beth (@beth_sweeney4) on Twitter to see the photo.

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