Digging Through My Old Muscles, Looking For A Clue: Hawks at Kings Game 3 Preview/Pregame Thread/Keepy Uppy

Hawk Wrestler vs. King Jerry Lawler

FACEOFF: 7pm Central

TV/RADIO: NBC for Yanks, CBC for hosers, 87.7 FM

WALKING IN L.A.: The Royal Half, Jewels From the Crown

So for the first time this postseason, the Hawks find themselves even after just two games, having lost for the first time at Fort Kickass on Madison. To regain the lead, the Hawks will have to do something they haven’t done since in San Jose in 2010. That’s win their first game on the road in a series. That’s right, it’s been that long.

For the Hawks, in yet another decision that’s beyond logic, Andrew Shaw will return but he’ll remove Peter Regin from the lineup. Because the Hawks don’t want to exploit the advantage in speed they have over the Kings’ defense, just keep it where it is. Shaw will slot in on the 3rd line between Versteeg and Saad apparently, and Versteeg can breathe a sigh of relief it isn’t his useless ass vaulted into the pressbox.

Don’t think there will be any other lineup changes for either side. If there is one it’ll be Brookbank in for Rozsival.

So what to watch for? With last change at home, Darryl Sutter will have the option of getting Anze Kopitar away from Jonathan Toews. The problem for Sutter is he may not have another center or line that can handle Toews and Hossa, and may still opt for that matchup. If he doesn’t, the Hawks don’t have another center that can handle Kopitar, so it could be a balancing act. And try not to swallow your tongue if Kopitar gets out there against Handzus, though it’s going to be a challenge.

The Hawks yesterday talked about simplifying their game, or playing a “a good road game.” They did actually manage this in Game 3 against Minnesota, though that was against a Wild team that was also sitting back for 40 minutes. When they turned it on, the Hawks were caught unawares. They don’t have to worry about the Kings trapping tonight, I wouldn’t think. In fact, they’ll probably coming out firing, so support in the defensive zone will be paramount and none of the following the map to the home of the stars that Versteeg and Sharp engaged in in the 2nd period of Game 2 that let the Kings back in.

Quick through the neutral zone. Straight lines. Get the puck behind the slow Kings defense that aren’t named “Drew Doughty” and win those races. Or if it’s open, beat them to the outside. The Hawks have only done this in spurts this series, but when they have Greene, Mitchell, Voynov haven’t really had any answers.

For the Kings, I’m not sure they have a Plan B so you know what’s coming. They’ll look to forecheck, forecheck, forecheck and take advantage of the matchups they will get. They have a much bigger counter punch these days than they did last year, so stupidity and silliness in the neutral zone will be swiftly punished.

And for fuck’s sake stay out of the box. This is a real power play across from the Hawks now, and lunacy will also see sentencing on the scoreboard.

The hope is that Shaw and Saad can combine as they have only in an off-and-on fashion to make up for Versteeg and get a cycle going. It won’t be long before Ben Smith is required between Kane and Sharp, due to Sharp being off and Handzus being nothing more than kindling on the road and facing any of Carter, Kopitar, or Stoll.

Looks like Toews, Hossa, Keith, Seabrook, Hjalmarsson, Oduya and especially Corey Crawford are going to have to do the heavy lifting. Speaking of Crow, we’ve remarked how he bounces back from a rough one. After Game 2 against St. Louis he pitched a shutout in Game 3. After Game 4 against Minnesota he only gave up one. The difference here is those bounce-backs were at home, and this one is not. But I would still count on a pretty big game from him.

Then again, this was the point last year where Jonathan Quick had his “one game,” so it probably is going to be a squeaker tonight.

Cinch it up and hunker down. This one will not be fun.

  • wanker751

    I will never understand Q… i wish someone would ask him the reasons for his decisions but we know that will never happen…

    • Bannerman

      I’ve been thinking about the rationale for playing Bollig. It comes down to the misinterpreted “deterrent factor”. Many have noted that Bollig doesn’t deter anybody from doing anything but that’s a little misleading. Guys like Brown are always going to line people up for big hits because that’s all they do. Actual hockey players sometimes make questionable hits. Perhaps they don’t knowing that Bollig will pay them back later. We’d have no way of knowing if that’s actually happening. My quess is that Q thinks that it is and therefore he needs Bollig out there.

      • wanker751

        Oh I agree about that..that is what he thinks… But it is 100% wrong and we have evidence to prove it.. it did not stop Orpik on Toews or Torres on Hossa (with Bollig on the ice!)

        I would rather have those actual hockey players you speak of…

        • ballyb11

          100% wrong?

          • Bob Lanz

            Go worry abut something

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        The questioning of Q over Bollig is warranted, but I don’t think Q is playing him as a deterrent. I think Q likes what he brings to the table (especially when viewed relative to his other options). Now, what Bollig brings to the table–that seems up for debate, and it’s a fair one. But I doubt Q thinks having Bollig skate for 7/8 minutes makes the Kings play any differently than they otherwise would.

    • HossasPierogi

      It’s nothing but playground ‘I’ll take the big guy over small guy’ arrested development behavior I’m afraid. I know this.

  • Bannerman

    I’m not going to watch this game. Crow rebounds but the Hawks lose 2-0 after the Kings seal the game with an EN goal. The Hawks outplay the Kings but lose anyway ’cause game 2. Everyone then freaks out.

    Hawks win the series in 6, which was the plan all along.

    • DJ

      Winning one in LA — even if we have to sweat things out by winning Game 4 — puts us back on schedule. But screw that; I want a win tonight.

    • TheFullAmonte

      So you’re not going to watch this game because the Hawks might lose? Thanks for the support

  • spotlight312

    The Accountant just had a new baby yesterday so he’s doubtful. Just have to count on Rozy to get the job done in LA.

    • YoAdrienne

      His brother’s wife had a baby yesterday. His wife had theirs’ two days ago. Duncan Keith played the same day his wife gave birth. I don’t see Moonpie staying behind in Chicago because of that. If Rozie plays tonight, it’s because that was the plan in the first place.

      • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

        Let’s have him pull a Sharpie. That guy is a baby-making scoring machine (no double entendre intended).

        • YoAdrienne

          That would be great. I’m still waiting for Hammer to pull a Sharpie, or has he? His kid has been here for a couple of weeks now.

          • 2883

            he has scored a goal recently I thought…

          • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

            I believe 3 As, but no G. So, maybe that’s like in-vitro fertilization.

  • birdhead

    It’s been much harder to get myself super pumped for this game but HOCKEY. I’M PUMPED. One way or another it’s going to be the offseason soon enough.

    • 2883

      What do you do in the off-season?

      • birdhead

        Knit more, read more, watch more television. Keep my house cleaner, get more work done. The offseason is winter here so it’s not like I can spend more time outside, sigh. If there was a local ice rink I’d go to NZIHL games but there isn’t so I usually only catch a couple when I go on holiday.

    • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

      I’m finding it hard to get jazzed as well. I don’t suppose you have a 3-day weekend down under like us in the states. I believe Canada has Victoria Day around now (can’t remember the day this year), but I don’t know if that’s a Canuck-ian or Commonwealth thing.

      • birdhead

        No, we don’t, although actually I think England has a Bank Holiday this weekend too – possibly a queen’s birthday thing (QB weekend is in June in NZ, which I’ve always thought was dumb, because it’s specifically in May/June in the Northern hemisphere so they get good summer weather, whereas June is the beginning of winter here.)

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        I’m SO juiced! I hate the feeling of being down in a series, even early, even when I’m completely confident.

        (Canada had its holiday Monday this past week.)

        • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

          I just switched over to watch Iron Man and it’s at the part where he breaks out of the prison camp with the first-gen suit (oh, yeah, spoiler alert). So, that’s getting me a little more fired up! If nothing else, I always think of the Robot Chicken parody segment, which is hilarious, so there’s that.

  • PugzHawk

    Man, can’t someone just go Tonya Harding on Bollig so Q doesn’t even have the option?

    • 60MinutesBaby60

      Maybe this is a cry for help but I just pictured Bollig in Tanya Harding’s light blue figure skating outfit.
      #Should_I_Sign_Myself_Into_the_Nearest_PsychWard_STAT?

  • GypsyDanger86

    Hoping for the best, preparing for the worst. Would feel a lot better if I believed that Q was icing the lineup that gave the best chance to win, but what can you do.

    GO HAWKS!

  • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

    Does anybody have word on the pre-game line-ups? I’m not a twitterer, so not sure the easiest way to get the news.

    • GypsyDanger86

      29-19-81, 10-26-88, 20-65-23, 52-16-28.

      Last known.

      • Jim

        Sharp, Handzus, Kane

        WTF?

        Would be nice to see some production out of that line. Kane usually scores his goals when he’s out on the ice later in the game with Toews.

  • ballyb11

    Gonna be the best game for the Hawks in the last 14.

    • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

      Most important game of the season!

    • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

      They have it in ‘em, that’s for sure. I’m anticipating a tight, close game.

  • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

    Just pulled up Tracey Myers twitter feed (https://twitter.com/TramyersCSN, if you care) to see if there’s anything new. Apparently, Slash is singing the national anthem. Not sure how I feel about that, but it sure ain’t no Jimmy C.

    • GypsyDanger86

      Wait, Slash is SINGING or PLAYING the national anthem?

      I admit I haven’t kept up with Slash’s career in the last few years, but last I knew, his singing skills and guitar playing skills were at opposite ends of the spectrum.

      • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

        She just said it was very Jimi-like. Maybe that means a psychedelic guitar solo. Could be interesting.

        • Jeff Lebowski

          :::drops acid:::

          • 60MinutesBaby60

            LOL

          • 2883

            Did you do that to get thru the national anthem or the hockey game?

          • Jeff Lebowski

            Both

            I mean… Everything and nothing. I can see our passion in the wind.

            Hosssa

            Hosssssssa

          • Arctic Ice

            Ot, but your comment made me think of Doc Ellis chucking that no hitter while trippin’

        • 2883

          I at first read, very Jim like and was confused. After re-reading, I’m not sure anything could top that rendition, it was more emotional than this rendition could ever possibly be

  • 60MinutesBaby60

    I will not let myself think negative … but I am scared shitless.
    #GameFaceON

  • PE-TER RE-GIN

    #freeRegin

    If the ‘Hawks come out tonight like they did the first 38 Wednesday, I’ll feel very good about this game. Just forgo anything like those last 22 minutes…

    LET’S GO ‘HAWKS!

  • YoAdrienne

    Hello, MUTE button! Take Dustin Brown’s “mythical dragon” slaying and stick it where the sun don’t shine, NBC guys.

  • beefman73

    I just hope the Hawks have all the energy and a hunger and we will be fine. GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

  • 2883

    It’s just about gametime.

    • CozBullsFan

      #s

  • Bruno_the_Blackhawk_Cat

    Not sure on posting 1PT etiquette, but here it is:

    http://thecommittedindian.com/hawks-kings-game-3-1st-period-thread/#comments

  • thepuckstopshere

    Slash sure the hell inspired me!