Drunk Sex: Preds 2 – Hawks 3 (3OT – Hawks lead 3-1)

Box Score

Event Summary

War On Ice

Natural Stat Trick

A process made far longer and more laborious than usual that eventually reaches what usually is a satisfactory ending marred by the miles it took to get there that at that point both participants are just happy it’s over. But one side is much happier with the ending than the other. There’s last night for you.

I saw a lot of people saying that Game 1 was Nashville’s best punch and that the series was over because the Hawks only took a standing eight count and then won anyway. I wasn’t sure. The Preds had the first of three horrible 2nd periods that night, Rinne wasn’t very good, and they still almost got it. Last night/this morning felt like a better right hook that still didn’t connect. The Preds actually won the 2nd period for once, Rinne was much better than he’d been all series (though still not looking totally comfortable), they’d kept Kane quiet, and had a lead in the 3rd.

Now they’re faced with winning three in a row, which they’ve done once since February, including one here which they haven’t managed this season yet. Now you might consider whether they’re deflated or not. Let’s get to it all.


The Two Obs

-The Predators obviously looked at Game 3’s film, saw they weren’t quite as aggressive as they were in the first two games, and decided that even without Weber it was time to push it real good. They were everywhere last night, and I think I counted at least four separate occasions where both d-men jumped up on a rush before the puck had even gotten across the red line. Even without Weber that blue line can really move, in fact I don’t think I can name a more mobile defense in the league.

It was the same story in the Hawks zone, where the Preds turned up the forechecking pressure, and took advantage of what Fifth Feather pointed out after Game 3. The Hawks kept trying to reverse-pass their way out of pressure, but the Preds waited even longer to sink back in the neutral zone, always smelling yet another pass behind the net coming. It led to an at-times icky first 40 minutes. As the game wore on, somewhat due to the Preds being ahead, the Hawks were able to diffuse this more often with the stretch passes and high flips out of the zone we’ve only been calling for since Game 1. It wasn’t always perfect but it sure beat trying to make 12 tape-to-tapes just for the Hawks to get over their own blue line.

-I would like to not see Seth Jones anymore. And it’s still hilarious that Sakic and Roy thought they didn’t need him. Wonder what they think watching him now.

-Watching Joel Quenneville inch toward his optimum lineup in the playoffs every year is like watching the turtle races at Big Joe’s. You know he’s pointed the right way, and there’s a good chance he might get where he’s needed to but you don’t know if he’ll just stop and/or reverse course out of randomness/confusion/anger.

After two periods, and I’d like to think after Kane threatened Versteeg’s life in the dressing room at intermission, Q finally punted KRS-23 off the 2nd line and replaced him with Bickell. For the first two periods Kane and Richards were each -4 in Corsi. In the 3rd alone they were each +3. Not that Bickell is the hero we want, but he might be the hero we need. That line has been screaming out for someone to open a little space and at least occupy defenders at the net, which Bickell knows how to do. No coincidence the winner came from Bickell heading to the net, retrieving the puck, occupying a d-man, allowing Kane time to spin around the net to find Seabrook. This isn’t fucking rocket science, a sentence I’ve said no less than 873 times this series.

-Now, if we could just get Versteeg out for Teuvo we’d be there, because Sharp’s activity this series seriously needs to be complimented by someone who can consistently get him the puck as well as flipping him back to his better left side.

What is clear is that Andrew Shaw has no business there, as he’s highly effective on the 4th line and dragged Vermette and Sharp down when promoted.

-I feel like a team bigger than the Preds is going to make Scott Darling pay for the rebounds he leaves lying around, but maybe not if the Hawks are as concentrated as collapsing around him as they’ve been the past two games. At least they know what they have to do.

-I guess I’m not surprised that Timonen couldn’t manage more time last night, because that sure felt like his best game as a Hawk and by some margin (low bar, admittedly). He was active in the offensive zone and getting through the neutral zone, even getting up on some odd-mans. He wasn’t snowed under in the defensive zone. While Rozsival had himself a good game as well, felt like there was more to get from Kimmo. But as we know, it can take an eternity to get into the circle of trust.

-While much will be made of Keith’s 46 minutes, in reality it’s not even half the game which would have had him somewhere around the 28 minute mark over 60 minutes, which is more than reasonable for him.

I have no idea what we’ll get from the Hawks Thursday. For the Q era they generally have not missed when they have a chance to end a season. The only non-Game 7 loss in an elimination game was in ’10 to Vancouver, which was quickly corrected. But this team this year has specialized in doing just enough, and might feel with the margin of error of a home game on Saturday if they don’t get it done tomorrow, they might not come out with the usual lightning bolts out of their collective arse. But this Weber and Fisher-less opponent is basically asking to be put out of its misery.



  • meme gene okerlund

    I had game 4 in the pool for the first patented Fels Drunk Sex Metaphor

  • “I would like to not see Seth Jones anymore. And it’s still hilarious that Sakic and Roy thought they didn’t need him. Wonder what they think watching him now.”

    Roy still thinks the same thing–he’s an idiot, you know.

    • AF_Cheddarhead

      Idiots maybe but MacKinnon sure looks like a #1 center and those aren’t easy to find either. The Avalanche need defense but choosing Mackinnon was a complete mistake.

      Better question Barkov and Drouin over Jones?

      • Fair enough…MacKinnon is awesome. I just like taking potshots at Roy any time the opportunity presents itself.

        • AF_Cheddarhead

          But he’s such an easy target, take them at Sakic the golden boy instead. Sent to you from deep in Avalanche territory.

    • DJ

      I was hoping Jones would make the trip to Sochi. Considering the behind-the-scenes story (where Stan Bowman was a vociferous advocate for Saad, only to be outvoted by the nitwits Poile and Bylsma), I’m not surprised they whiffed on Jones, too.

    • HawkIPA

      The fact that we’ll probably have to deal with Seth Jones for the next decade is a bit terrifying.

  • rhodes

    Isn’t this what happened last year with Bickel? He started the playoffs on the 3rd line where he was relatively unnoticeable—other than skating around trying to run Blues players into the seats. At some point either toward the end of the 1st series or beginning of the next, he was moved to the 2nd line with Kane. He became a different player (as is apt to happen because KANE). Thus was born “playoff Bickel.”

    Anyway, that’s my recollection. Wonder if we are about to see a repeat.

    • Jane Doe

      And, don’t forget, Q still has Kane-Shaw-Saad in his back pocket…………/sarcasm

    • Jim

      He’s the biggest forward, and he has hands and a mean wrister. He need to plant himself in front of the goalie and let the skill guys around him work. And pick up any spare change. Why is this so difficult?

      • JJNDadTo4

        And a BIG body he’s not afraid to throw around…. esp., it seems, in big playoff games.

  • Q4Hockey

    How about some love for Vermy eh? Finally breaking the ice, and seemed to play with some more confidence after that goal.

  • Cluster_Puck

    I’m just preparing myself for Q to sit #11 for Carbomb next game.

    • I get the bit, but I do fear seeing #42 again should the Hawks take Thursday night off. #11 has been fun to watch the last couple of games.

      • rhodes

        If Q wants to rotate through 11-13-42 at the 4th line wing position, this isn’t going to bother me too much (although 13 and 65 on the same line sounds like too much stoopid). But yeah, 11 has looked the best of the three lately.

        • HawkIPA

          If 86 remains in the pressbox, I’ll start to get bothered.

          • rhodes

            I’ll second that. I’m assuming we are going to see 86 in place of 23 very soon, but if that doesn’t happen….

          • Jim

            Seems like Q wants to make it sporting. He knows he can win with the core alone. But it is too boring to steamroll 4 dominating lines, so he has to tinker with the spare parts.

          • I prefer to say he’s providing value add….

    • HawkIPA

      I’m pretty sure Desjardins brought the “more” Q looks for last game. He drove the pace for the 4th line, and had a few great chances, including a robbery by Rinne. I’d be more worried about scratching Versteeg for Carcillo or Nordstrom to bring more “defensive responsibility” and “grit” to the lineup while TT eats popcorn upstairs.

    • Jim

      #11 is getting pucks and flinging them at the net. That is good.

  • Brain Sprain

    Versteeg sucks

  • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

    Take care of the puck. Stay out of the box. Get to the net.
    The rest will almost take care of itself.

    • Jim

      Collapse the D around the goalie. Most goals take place in decreasing concentric circles around the cage.

  • Hags

    I’m optimistic about Q switching out Versteeg and Teravainen. I don’t think there’s a deeper spot in the dog house than the one Bryan Bickell occupied, and for Q to make that switch says volumes to me about what he thought of Versteeg’s play.

    It may not happen Thursday, but i think we are close to the following four lines:


    • rhodes

      When Versteeg got moved to the 4th line last night and Bickel put in his place on the 2nd, I was thinking that we might be watching Versteeg’s last game in a Hawks jersey. Maybe an overreaction, but I would not be surprised at all to see him sit on Thursday in place of 86. And if that works out well, I don’t see 23 getting back in.

      • Hags

        That thought crossed my mind as well. You just never know with Q ultimately though, but we are getting closer no doubt.

    • Jim

      Hags, that is it. +10

      Do that and the Hawks will be coming at them in waves.

      Now for the D pairings….

      • Hags

        Ideally, i would have loved to see Rozie launched into the sun months ago, but alas, that’s not happening. I’ll give him credit, last night was as good as he’s been all season. If that’s the Rozsival we get the rest of the way, I guess i can deal with it. If you scale back his minutes by a little bit, and increase Timonen’s a little bit, while maintaining the way they played last night, i think they can survive.

        • It’d be great if we could get multiple goal leads and finish these damn games on time so that we can avoid the 40+ min for the likes of Keith. Even though I have no doubt he’s like the energizer bunny I don’t think we want to see too many more of those types of games with the Blues/Wild and most likely Anaheim on deck.

  • fromheretoinfirmary

    He’ll get it back, but I thought that Kane looked very un-kane like this game. Missing passes, losing the puck, and missing the net a few times. Again, not worried at all, but its clear to me he’s still shaking off some rust.

    • ZigZags82

      Better to shake it off and explode tomorrow or in the possible next series and beyond. A storm is coming…

    • Guest

      I’ve been noticing more players than just Kane lose the puck, but you’re right. I’m not so sure it’s the players as much as it is the quality of the ice. There’s been plenty of plays where the puck won’t settle down and jumping a lot.

    • Jim

      A rusty Kane is still their best offensive player. Without Kane, Hawks lose this series going away, and are down 3-1 instead of up 3-1. First unit power play is not awful with Kane, seen the second unit? They can’t even get a zone entry unless they dump it. And when you absolutely, positively, must have a goal? Kane needs to be in there.

  • Jane Doe

    “I guess I’m not surprised that Timonen couldn’t manage more time last night”

    How about giving the guy some PP time? That’s one way. I know, I know, it’s tough to imagine NOT having Versteeg AND Richards both on the PP at the same time, but it might be possible. Shit, just give him a couple more offensive zone starts. He seems to be more comfortable in the offensive zone, his anticipation has been great and kept the puck in the Preds zone many times with some timely pinches and he doesn’t have a propensity for waiting until the defender is right on top of him to shoot the puck like, well, pretty much any other Hawk who gets the puck up top with no defender within 15 feet.

    I know it’s the playoffs, but there has to be more than 12 minutes of ice time for KT in a game that goes over 100 minutes.

    • Bobby Otter

      Amen. If he can run the Flyers PP, pretty sure he can run the Hawks PP.

      • Sopel the catfish

        Why would we want somebody who was part of a PP that finished the season tied for second in goals scored?

        • ZigZags82

          Technically he wasn’t part of the Flyers PP this season. Still good though

          • Sopel the catfish

            Yup yup, with NHL switching over all their stats to playoffs only it was annoying enough to track down where the Flyers finished this year, I wasn’t going to try and find them last year (that’s for actual stat people to do)

  • Lord Crapulus

    I saw Vermette take faceoffs. It made me happy in my pants.

  • Slightly off-topic with regards to the recap but definitely worth the watch, regarding Montador and Carcillo

    • RWCrum

      I have been reading this thread to see if this was posted. This clip is a must see for any hockey fan. It certainly sheds an entirely new light on Daniel Carcillo. The guy’s got some real life sack. I think if the NHLPA is smart they involve him in a program to help shepherd players through their out of hockey transition.

  • TitanTransistor

    If that’s what we can expect from Rozsival and Timonen moving forward, then I feel significantly better about this team’s chances moving forward.

    Hopefully it’s not a random one-off.

    • HawkIPA

      Rozsival was his 2013 self, and he wasn’t bad in Game 3 either. More please.

    • ZigZags82

      Rozi’s been more and more consistent

      • Jim

        He’s been appearing in the offense also. Versteeg may have replaced him as numero uno whipping boy.

    • To Saad be the glory

      My jokes about “playoff Rozsival” lately might actually have some merit after the last two games

    • Guest

      But how can better play from Rosival and Timonen beat the Preds superior coaching and team that you mentioned a few times earlier this series??

      • TitanTransistor


        I’m sorry, this team is missing their #1D and best 2-way center, is it not? Perhaps we should take Keith and Toews out of the lineup and see how genius Q fares? Or maybe injuries helped turn the tide? Obviously you would never consider this, it would go against your mindless fanboy logic center.

        Speaking of genius Q, lets praise him for having taken 3.5 games to make the adjustments a hockey neophyte could be heard begging for from the first period of game 1.

        Your apologism. It is delightful. Please continue to stop by, I find your ignorance so very, very amusing.

        • Guest

          I find your apologism of every opponent the Hawks have even more amusing.

          • TitanTransistor

            It begs for attention like an untrained dog at the table begging for scraps.

          • Guest

            Wouldn’t a team with superior coaching and players find a way to win without their missing players?

  • Bobby Otter

    Amen to Seth Jones. Do not wanna have to face that guy for the next decade plus. Ugh.

    LOL: “Watching Joel Quenneville inch toward his optimum lineup in the playoffs every year is like watching the turtle races at Big Joe’s. You know he’s pointed the right way, and there’s a good chance he might get where he’s needed to but you don’t know if he’ll just stop and/or reverse course out of randomness/confusion/anger.”

  • Oldfarthawkfan

    Kaner trying to lift Seabs like he was the Stanley Cup was hilarious.

    • Sopel the catfish

      The photo is an accurate display of their relative sizes, Kane just barely makes it up past the stripes at the waist.

    • It is a rather unfortunate perspective that the picture provides us.

  • CoolTalk

    Does anyone have an original thought? So much group think.

    Playoff Bickell has 3 SOG in 4 games. The line move was made more to a size imbalance than anything and Laviolette countered by swapping Jarnkrok and Cullen on their 2nd line with Neal and Wilson. In fact, Jarno got caught down low in the middle of ice watching Kaner dance around Jones on the game winner instead of pressing toward Seabs up high.

    As for the thought that Bickell created some kind of possession magic, the ENTIRE team (other than Shaw) was a net positive CDiff in th 3rd period.

    The big difference in the game was the 4th line which absolutely dominated possession in game 3 but not so much last night. I think that’s why #65 ended up moving to pair with #10 and #80 and #23 with #16 and #11. That helped both lines and really gave us far superior balance and depth through the OT sessions.

    Of course, I’m wrong…it’s simply about finding the ‘optimal lines’ and hell be damned about matchups. Nonsense.

    • rhodes

      It’s an interesting observation. What’s the purpose of stating it as though you’ve been persecuted for thinking it?

    • Cool talk.

    • Say what again

      I didn’t think Bickell (he of the giant B-52 circles he makes) would see much ice after the idiotic penalty. And I don’t think he did in the first. If he goes straight to the net and just stands there I’ll be happy.

      • TitanTransistor

        That penality was a BS call. Bickell did nothing wrong. He didn’t hold, he didn’t hook, he was just stronger than the other guy and used his size to get to the puck. That’s what we’ve all been WANTING him to do, right?

        Just another case of the refs in this series being terrible.

    • Go Hawks!

      Not sure what you’re saying differently here?

      Bickell ended up fitting better on the 2nd line where there are possession players, but no “power forward” type player to get into the corners, or in front of the net, and the 4th line could’ve used a little more possession type player, so the switches were made and it all worked out.

      If Lavi was “forced” to make a change based on Q’s, then that would signify a better, dare I say, more “optimal” set of lines?

      As for Lavi’s change leading directly to the gwg, there’s a lot of conjecture in that statement. With kane and richards cycling on the half boards it would be very easy to make sure neither of them break loose, and let the guy sitting at the top of the blueline have a little space.

      tl;dr Everyone’s saying the same thing, shuffling produced positive results across multiple lines

    • TitanTransistor

      “As for the thought that Bickell created some kind of possession magic, the ENTIRE team (other than Shaw) was a net positive CDiff in th 3rd period.”

      Yes. After the 2nd line and 3rd line were getting torched through the first 2 periods.

      This change, of course, was the result of the Blackhawks re-energized ‘WILL TO WIN’ and not the line-up swaps that were made.

      Or you know, just magical coincidence.

      Getting Versteeg off the 2nd line was paramount. He has been objectively terrible for months. The three of them together were a horrific liability every time they hit the ice.

      Bickell is as good a choice for that LW spot as any, as long as the 20-19-81 line goes untouched.

      • Harshboy

        Swap Pretty boy Versteeg for TT and we’re golden. Would love to see Rundblad for Rosi but Rosi has been solid last 2 games. Q is trending in the right direction. The biggest worry is Minnesota. That team is dialed in and will be one hell of a shit storm to go through.

        • Jim

          Tarasenko lit up Minnesota yesterday, and chased Dubnyk.

          Q better get his chit wired tight before facing either one of those teams if he wants another WCF. No more press box games with his best players.

          • HawkIPA

            The Hawks have shown over the years that it doesn’t really matter how tough the opposing goalie is. Rask, Quick, Rinne, Luongo, Miller, all have been beaten. The lone exception was Mike Smith, but he had the good fortune of avoiding Hossa for most of that series. If we get Minnesota, the Hawks will be able to solve Dubnyk. The big questions are whether Rozi and Kimmo will be able to withstand Minnesota’s attack, whether Q will be quick enough with adjustments to ensure that the Hawks aren’t hemmed in their own zone, and whether the Hawks are icing their best possible lineup.

          • HawkIPA

            The same goes for the rest of the Nash series, and St. Louis as well.

  • WrapperDelight

    “This isn’t fucking rocket science, a sentence I’ve said no less than 873 times this series.”

    Calm down there, honey. If you had any other talent besides Monday morning QB’ing, perhaps you would be doing something with your life that remotely approached what Q is doing. You obviously have no idea what it takes to lead an NHL team deep into the playoffs if you think it’s the easiest fucking thing in the world.

    Suggest you read Teddy Roosevelt’s “Man in the Arena” speech. You’re the critic he talks about.

    If you are this much of a whiny little bitch during a win, you must be a real treat after a loss.

    • Sopel the catfish

      How many times have you been banned? Did the triumvirate reject an article you sent them?

      • WrapperDelight

        Troll harder dipshit.

    • rhodes

      eh, I’ll give it a C-. Troll harder next time.

    • TitanTransistor

      This is some of the weakest trolling I’ve ever seen.

      • rhodes

        Well, to be fair, I’ve seen weaker. It’s grammatically correct and the author took the time to run everything through a spell checker, so, hat tip there. But, the statement, “who are you to criticize an NHL coach,”—at a sport fan blog, no less—is so tired. And the insults are uncreative and not nearly as inflammatory as they could be.

        • TitanTransistor

          Dude, if you haven’t coached in the NHL, you’re not allowed to criticize NHL coaches.

          Just like if you’ve never been President of the United States, you’re not allowed to critique the decisions of the POTUS.

          That’s totally how the world works. Totally.

      • Guest

        Eh, I’m not sure. Yours is pretty weak too.

        • TitanTransistor

          It begs for attention like an untrained dog begging for scraps at the table.

          Both of them.

          • Guest


        • To Saad be the glory

          You accuse TT of being a troll,yet this is coming from someone who comments as a guest all the time,mmmmk.

    • HossasPierogi

      Lighten up, Francis. And go away.

    • Oldfarthawkfan

      I thought the reason for a blogger to start a blog is to be able to voice and publish an opinion. I love reading the writing here, and the observations. Believe me, I do not agree with 100% of what is written, or posted, nor do I think they expect everyone to be. But the writers do get me to think. If I wanted a recap of the who, what when and where, I can read the fishwraps, or some of the other bloggers, but I will say here is where I get an idea of what the bloggers and other posters are observing and thinking, and have an opportunity to agree or disagree. The writers never said leading a team deep into the playoffs is easy, and if you ask them who else besides Q should lead this team, they might come up with at most 3 to 5 names (which I think everyone on this blog would come up with the same names, so you would call that group think). They never said he was a bad coach (well except for a couple of posters on here). Doesn’t every team in every sport break down film not only of the opponent but of their own team to see what needs to be fixed. Well that is somewhat what this blog does. Here is what happened, here is what worked, here is what didn’t work, and this is how it should be fixed. How would you recap the game? We Came, We Saw, We Conquered? I bet that would get a lot of page hits.

    • Jim

      Have you read my posts? Clearly, Rocky Wirtz needs to get on the phone with me stat, and set me up as coach for the second round, or to close this one out.


      • WrapperDelight

        The butthurt is strong in you.

    • Dan Treadwell

      STFU. Just go away.

  • rhodes

    So, here are some of Darling’s playoff numbers to date compared to the other playoff goalies in action (src: war-on-ice). I mercifully excluded a handful of goalies with low TOI (read: Crawford). Pretty impressive. There has to be a course correction coming, right?

    • rhodes

      …by the way, that’s at evens. If you include all situations, he’s still on top in sv%.

    • TitanTransistor

      That is impressive.

      Do they explain how they qualify ‘high danger’? I assume it’s distance more than anything, but considering how many goals in this series have been point shots, then it might not be the greatest measure…

      • rhodes

        High danger = Shots from the “home plate” area.

        • TitanTransistor

          Yeah, so distance mostly.

          It just seems that the goalies in this series are having more trouble with point shots through traffic than they are wide-open shots from the slot.

          Wish there was a way to account for that in ‘danger’… not to mention the skill of the player actually releasing the shot.

          Some day. Advanced stats just keep getting better as time goes on.

          • rhodes

            I remember Darling making a comment after game 3 that the defense did a good job of keeping the Nashville shooters outside (I think was the term he used). Implication being that he was able to see their shots well.

            I was kind of surprised by the shots-faced-per-60 number being so high. On the surface this would appear to reflect poorly on the Hawks defense. But, if you look at the total number of high-quality saves Darling has had to make in comparison to other goalies, he is in the middle of the pack. So, to me, this indicates that the Hawks, while giving up a lot of total shots, are managing to keep them mostly low/med percentage shots.

            This kind of lines up with the eye-test for me. In game 3 especially, it didn’t seem like Darling was working too hard to make his saves. Game 1 was a different matter.

          • Jim

            Seems like if you collapse the D around the cage, you take your chances everywhere else. If the goalie is positioned, he’ll stop most of them. A few will get through because of a screen, or because they just happen to thread the needle.


            Seabrook’s shot last night was a little of both, screen and seeing eye shot. Plus it was a knuckler that went in on edge. And to Renne’s blocker, which has been shown to be his weakness.

            They wrote extensively about Crow’s glove, what about Renne’s stick side?

          • I don’t know that Rinne has ever had a reputation as having issues on the stick/blocker side. Rather, his glove hand is known to be fantastic…Hawks have been good at staying away from his glove side when possible.

          • rhodes

            This. It’s more his glove is strong, so shoot somewhere else.

          • rhodes

            Collapsing around the cage might keep more shots from coming from that area, but it would likely increase the total number of shots (albeit lower percentage) because this strategy seems less conducive to clearing the zone. So, pick your poison, I guess.

          • TitanTransistor

            Yeah, I think it’s more an indictment of their possession and shot-suppression than their defense as far as limiting good scoring opportunities and limiting 2nd and 3rd chances.

        • rhodes

          Sorry. That’s not right. Here’s the description from the site itself.

    • rhodes

      …also by the way, Eddie Lack. HA!

    • SuperHawk27

      There will be if the Hawks stop going to triple over time. The SV% is really good, but the Hawks are one of the stingiest D’s in the league so i don’t think there is much to correct in that area.