Going Down In The Valley: Hawks at Yotes Preview, Pregame Thread, Snowbird Migration

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Turn it right around. That’s how this season is going to go. Any gleam from a win is going to be quickly washed away with the flow of another game right on its tail. So it is as the Hawks return to the Valley Of The Sun/Invisible Owner to face the Coyotes in their home opener tonight.

A lot of the narrative will be about a rematch of last year’s playoff series, Raffi Torres not playing and Marian Hossa playing, Mike Smith, Corey Crawford, etc. But with the urgency now spiced to taste in every game this year thanks to there being only 48 of them, no one should pay too much attention to it. It’s a game on the schedule you need to win, no more no less.

There are a couple lineup changes. Ray Emery will get the start. Phoenix is well-coached but low-skilled, so it’ll be interesting to see if they can get Razor moving side to side like they will assuredly be drilled in the pregame.

Secondly, with Daniel Carcillo injuring himself yesterday — though not while trying to end someone’s career so we’ll call it progress — Brandon Saad will slide in to the top line with Marian Hossa and Jonathan Toews. I’m considering this in the Q-Falling-Upwards category, as this should have been the look the moment they decided Saad was going to make the team out of practice last week. While Saad isn’t going to remind anyone of vintage Rick Tocchet tonight, he will make some plays and will physically make an impact. You couldn’t ask for a sweeter spot as a rookie than riding in the sidecar of the Tazer-Hosbollah motorcycle.

Phoenix kicked off their year last night in Dallas, and bit it 4-3 as Jaromir Jagr put up four points before he fades out of sight when it really matters. It’s a pretty familiar cast down there in Glendale, the only change on the blue line was Rozsival coming here and Zybnek Michalek heading back to the desert after Pittsburgh decided they didn’t want to play defense at all. Up front David Moss and Matthew Lombardi are in, and Ray Whitney is chewing mush with Jagr in Dallas and reminiscing about what it was like to live in a Hoover-ville.

Haven’t seen if Mike Smith will start again or if Jason Labarbera (McGilla…Gorilla…) will go. Will update in the comments.

You know the drill with a Dave Tippett team. They’re going to put the puck behind the Hawks defense and try and make them navigate through landmines and log traps and the like. They’ll jam the Hawks along the boards as they did all of last spring. Once again, and I go hoarse saying this, the Hawks can’t ignore the middle of the ice when trying to get out of their zone. Yes, it can be dangerous, but when the outside is so heavily plugged, there’s little choice.

If they can get break cleanly through the middle, then Phoenix can’t clog the neutral zone as well and the Hawks can get at this Yotes D with speed. And it’s not the quickest blue line either. This is where Saad’s greater speed on the forecheck could also shine through, and why Stalberg and Bickell should also be effective.

Ruined one party yesterday. Why not another?

  • farmer

    Karma from the cornfields…

  • DesertHawk

    Driving up in about an hour.

    • mightymikeD

      awesome.. have fun

      • DesertHawk

        That would be the plan. Hopefully my kid doesn’t go full demon on me, he refused to take a nap today :(

        • mightymikeD

          you should have made him watch a Nashville game from last season

          • Z-man19

            Heh

          • 2883

            Sleep inducing or torture? or both?

          • mightymikeD

            sooo…verrrrryy… sleeeep-induuucingzzzzzzz

  • barnum22

    loved the hanna barbarea reference 2-0 would be sweet coming home LETS GO HAWKS!!!!!!

  • 2883

    Lets go hawks!!

  • HawkVision

    I noticed they were using the middle of the ice A LOT more yesterday when breaking out, than in the past. I hope it continues.

  • Skags

    Let’s go Hawks!

  • krome

    They started well last night. That has to become a habit if the season is to go well.

  • Stockroom Snail

    Carcillo can’t seek revenge, so I’m betting on a Bollig or Shaw jewel tonight.

    • Guest

      Not that I want one.

    • justforkicks

      i hope you are wrong

      • Stockroom Snail

        Me too.

    • 10thMountainFire

      Torres isn’t playing so revenge isn’t an issue. ‘Revenge’ is winning the game after being bounced by these fucksticks last season.

      • Stockroom Snail

        I think that way. You think that way. Some guys on the Hawks no do the good thinking sometimes.

        • 10thMountainFire

          Bollig: ‘Riding a bike is different than skating in a game.’

  • justforkicks

    Lets go Hawks!! And go to hell Coyotes!!! Hoping to see Rozsival tonight as well and for 10-36 play like we know they can!

  • Joe Banks

    Let’s kick their ass.

  • Toews still makes funny faces!

    Fuck Raffi Torres anyways, I still hope he gets his face pummled tonight regardless and Hossa puts an Ovechtrick straight up their arses!

    • 2883

      and fuck raffi torres to you too lol

    • 10thMountainFire

      Every time Panda scores tonight, Torres should be required (witnessed by a minimum of three players) to punch himself in the mouth.

      • derlemke

        I vote for a kick to the balls.

        • Accipiter

          A tough feat to accomplish by yourself. I second that motion.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Thirded. Seeing Torres kicked in the junk would rank up there with the 2005 World Series Championship and 2010 Stanley Cup as among the best sports moments of my life.

        • Z-man19

          Is it possible to kick yourself in the balls?

          • 2883

            I’ve done it, it sucks

          • Z-man19

            I’m not sure I want to know how you did that. We are talking a kick right?

  • http://www.facebook.com/craig.kowalski.90 Craig Kowalski

    Fuck em up Hawks.
    Fuck Phoenix.
    Fuck Raffi Torres!!!

  • 10thMountainFire

    Go Hawks and fuck Raffi Torres.

  • Accipiter

    Hi. Where is HIBLD ?!

    • Z-man19

      That’s the $64,000 question isn’t it? Where is HIBLD? Someone should make a game out of it.

      • flavius

        Shit…..I didn’t know there was a reward involved

        • Z-man19

          Just don’t come to me for it if you find the answer

  • 2883

    Hi where’s Bob Ledonne?

  • BigCSouthside

    Interested to see Ray in net. 3 more hours

    • 10thMountainFire

      Given’s Crow’s difficulty (at least late in games) with these douchenozzles last season, Emery could be a bonus against them tonight.

      • Z-man19

        Positive thinking, I like it

        • 10thMountainFire

          Then let’s just whup some ass tonight.

          • Z-man19

            I want it to be such a big lead that Bollig leads the team in TOI

          • 10thMountainFire

            Wow. I have no idea how to respond to that. That would be like John Scott leading the team in SOG.

  • Red Black and Copper

    Car Bomb is done for an entire month, at least…. I hope Saad has his shit together and makes a difference tonight.

    • 10thMountainFire

      I’d like to see Pirri or Morin come up to take the spot… but I imagine Hayes may be the man called up.

      • http://www.facebook.com/jimmy.cook.5621 Jimmy Cook

        there was talk of the org not wanting to push Hayes’ ELC. I think he has like 6 games left…

        • girlphoenix

          Hayes is too old for that. He’s already in the 2nd year of his contract.

          • http://www.facebook.com/jimmy.cook.5621 Jimmy Cook

            well thats what I get for reading the wrong blogs

        • Accipiter

          He is too old for that rule.

          • 10thMountainFire

            You keep your liver-spotted hands off of my mother you geriatric fuck!

          • Accipiter

            Nah, that’s how I talk. Look at this door, it’s fresh.

      • girlphoenix

        After last night’s game. I don’t think Rockford can spare anyone to come up with all the suspensions that are upcoming.

        • Red Black and Copper

          saw the highlights of that brawl… 13 ejections and 230 penalty minutes!

          • Toews still makes funny faces!

            I would say, please tell me they were playing Chicago. But I know the Wolves were playing HOU because my sisters posted pics of my niece and nephew at that game.

          • Red Black and Copper

            They played scum jr….

        • 10thMountainFire

          Yes, I saw that. Prison time for about half of the roster.

    • Toews still makes funny faces!

      I Love you avatar, looks familiar for some reason! lol

      • Red Black and Copper

        Gotta keep the awesome ones!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/coachgottlieb Sheldon Gottlieb

    Who own da Chiefs…Owns…Owns

  • Z-man19

    No Smith or Torres tonight so the best we can hope for is utter humiliation. Score goals early and often. Or just win

  • BigCSouthside

    GOD FUCKING DAMMIT WHY IS IT NOT GAMETIME

    • Joe Banks

      Drink!

    • 10thMountainFire

      Because of al-Qaeda.

      • BigCSouthside

        fuckers

        • 10thMountainFire

          I think that has been said of them, yes.

  • mightymikeD

    meanwhile, in Glendale, the excitement builds..

    http://www.allhabs.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Empty-arena.jpg

    • mightymikeD

      i really have to work out how to post pictars properly on this site

      • girlphoenix

        i think no matter what, pics will show up as just a thumbnail preview

        • Guest

          [img][url=http://www.flickr.com/photos/mightymiked/8297830581/][img]http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8364/8297830581_3074240ab9.jpg[/img][/url][/img]

          • mightymikeD

            bugger. bbcode don’t work neither.. oh well. back to SCH with me then..

  • http://www.facebook.com/jimmy.cook.5621 Jimmy Cook

    has the news about Emery in tonight broken on here yet?http://blogs.suntimes.com/blackhawks/2013/01/blackhawks_carcillo_out_a_mont.html

    • 10thMountainFire

      Yes, but thank you for confirming… good link.

  • BigCSouthside

    Molson Canadian to start the drinking

    • 10thMountainFire

      I am merely putting back Killian’s this evening.

      • BigCSouthside

        Im switching to Yeungling. Envy me

        • 10thMountainFire

          Envying, time now. In cadence.

          • BigCSouthside

            Getting drunk, watching my pitbull try valiantly to catch his tail for the pregame. Stupid little bastard

          • 10thMountainFire

            Does he usually succeed or fail before a Hawks win? Answer carefully. This is important.

          • BigCSouthside

            Hmm, dont have a large enough sample size. Will have to track this

          • 10thMountainFire

            SITREP following the game?

          • BigCSouthside

            Well he got his tail, so lets hope that means win.

          • 10thMountainFire

            He wins, we win.

        • Z-man19

          I’ll have a Yeungling as well

          • 10thMountainFire

            OH, I see. So you won’t be ‘slumming’ with 10thMF tonight. Great. You guys are great.

          • mightymikeD

            time for another cuppa for me.. partaay!

          • 10thMountainFire

            Killian’s?

          • mightymikeD

            tea….

          • 10thMountainFire

            Again… expect a SITREP after the game as to the efficiency of drinking tea before Hawks games in correlation with success and wins.

          • mightymikeD

            wilco

          • Z-man19

            Since when is Killians slumming it? If it were Naty Light I’d understand.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Or Milwaukee’s Beast.

          • Z-man19

            Falls City, that stuff is pure piss

          • 10thMountainFire

            Well, I’d pluck down a few nickels and get a case but I already have Killian’s. You understand, right?

          • Z-man19

            Indeed

  • 10thMountainFire

    Do we have any early contenders for naming the Hossa-Toews-Saad line?

    • BigCSouthside

      Captain Saad Panda. Not very creative

      • Z-man19

        Have 3 more and try again

        • 10thMountainFire

          I snorted out beer when I read this.

          • Z-man19

            You saved the spilled beer right?

          • 10thMountainFire

            I licked it up. What do I look like? A commie?

          • Z-man19

            Pure American

          • 10thMountainFire

            ‘Merica.

          • Toews still makes funny faces!

            FUCK YEAH!

        • BigCSouthside

          Yeah, I need alcohol for creativity

          • Z-man19

            It enhances my creativity, sometimes to my own demise but sacrifices must be made

          • 10thMountainFire

            I always think so, too… but other people claim I’m somehow ‘impaired’ and can’t properly judge my own artistic creations.

          • BigCSouthside

            Same, I started writing what I want my doctoral thesis to be on after 6 beers

          • Z-man19

            So you are going to A. Cure cancer B. Solve cold fusion and free electricity for all C. Clone a case of Yuengling so you never run out D. All of the above

          • 10thMountainFire

            How do you think Neil DeGrasse Tyson got to be so badass?

          • BigCSouthside

            Advanced neuro-diagnostic methodology. Maybe I’ll clone the beer too.

          • 10thMountainFire

            You typed that perfectly. There’s no way you’re drinking.

          • BigCSouthside

            I’m a professional, son

          • 10thMountainFire

            I am not going to hide the fact that I am impressed. In fact, I may just go ahead and nominate you for a Congressional Medal of Awesome. With theft-deterrent device.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Fuckin amateur.

      • Accipiter

        Serious Saad Panda.

        • 10thMountainFire

          Holy shit. We have a winner.

          • mightymikeD

            seconded

          • 10thMountainFire

            Accipiter must be drinking and isn’t wearing pants. That’s a genius at work right there.

          • Accipiter

            I’m in my underwear drinking Laphroaig’s.

          • Z-man19

            And tea bagging 10MF’s drum set

          • 10thMountainFire

            I knew it!

          • Accipiter

            Get out of my face, or I’m gonna roundhouse your ass!

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’m gonna fill a pillow case with bars of soap… and beat the shit out of you with it.

          • Accipiter

            Hold on. We’re not going on the boat, Derek’s selling the house, we have to go to therapy?

            WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED ?

          • 10thMountainFire

            Are you high? It’s Shark Week!

          • Accipiter

            You can have some dope parties on this lawn.

          • 10thMountainFire

            I’m burying you!

          • Accipiter

            How is that even a skill ?

          • Accipiter

            Can I humbly get a what what ?

    • Z-man19

      God, Jesus and The Prodigal Son

    • Toews still makes funny faces!

      Tic-Tac-Toe

  • Toews still makes funny faces!

    Do we get to see the Desert Rat tonight or is he still in his hole?

    • 10thMountainFire

      He’s still relegated to throwing his own feces in the monkey house.

      • Toews still makes funny faces!

        You say that it is a bad thing. Isn’t that what everybody does in their spare time or….um……………….nevermind I said anything okay, just forget it!

        • Z-man19

          Hey asshole, what’s the temp out there? going to be a balmy 12 back here on the mainland

          • Toews still makes funny faces!

            It is cool enough I’m wearing a Hawks Sweatshirt with my shorts and sandals.

          • Toews still makes funny faces!

            Hawaii is a nice place to visit, I would rather be on the mainland though. Bored to fucking death out here!

          • Z-man19

            I’d recommend staying a few more days while the mainland experiences a mini ice age

          • Toews still makes funny faces!

            I still have 33 months left here (not that I am counting!)

          • 10thMountainFire

            Pearl is awesome for history, though. I loved Joint Base Pearl-Hickem.

          • 10thMountainFire

            What ^ he said.

          • 10thMountainFire

            You son of a bitch.

          • Accipiter

            I remember the first and last time my Mom called me that.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Also, I like a lot of fresh fruit around… and chocolate chips in my pancakes. Write it down so you don’t forget.

          • 10thMountainFire

            My buddy just texted me from a beach on North Shore… said waves were huge swells and the weather was… ‘Hawaiian’.

        • 10thMountainFire

          Every man needs a hobby…

    • QCBlackhawk

      Torres? He still has 7 games to go from what the official site is telling me.

      • Toews still makes funny faces!

        Was referring to our Rat. Torres is a douchenozzle-terd licking-short bus riding Fuck, not a rat!

        • QCBlackhawk

          Had me confused, by putting Desert in front of it :p
          Also, why is my name not red?

          Edit: aaaaaaand now it is.

        • Joe Banks

          You don’t want to insult the rats!

          • 10thMountainFire

            Or turd-lickers.

  • BigCSouthside

    Why the fuck is this comment thing trying to set up auto replies, its fucking up my computer

    • QCBlackhawk

      Ya got me. I’m still trying to figure out how this whole CI account/Disqus account mixing shit works?

    • Toews still makes funny faces!

      Do not think Disqus was designed to be a fluent as we are trying to use it.

      • BigCSouthside

        So when we score and everyone goes “HOSSA!” at the same time, does Disqus just shit its pants and drool on itself then sit in the fetal position in the shower shaking?

        • Z-man19

          Not quite but it gets a little squirmy

        • 10thMountainFire

          No. It gets suspended for 25 games and posts a chorus of ‘Fuck Raffi Torres’.

    • BigCSouthside

      also why the hell isnt it posting comments in real time?

      • Z-man19

        It lags a few minutes behind, I’m getting used to it

      • 10thMountainFire

        Because of the Taliban.

  • justforkicks

    here’s hoping the oilers kill the canucks tonight too.

    • Accipiter

      The Oilers could be playing hockey that is really fun to watch in the coming years.

      • QCBlackhawk

        Amazing what 15 first round picks can do

        • 10thMountainFire

          They’re like the Detroit Lions except not from a shitty city and with a good history of successful championship wins.

          • Accipiter

            It’s like Speed 2, except on a bus.

      • 10thMountainFire

        Wow. If you had typed that sentence just two years ago the humiliation you would encounter could overwhelm your self-confidence permanently.

        • Accipiter

          I’m very resilient.

    • pompoon

      Does anyone else find it kind of fucked up that AV declared Cory Schneider as the official starting goalie for the Canucks before the season, then starts Luongo in the *second* game of that season? The fan reaction must be hilarious, but that seems harsh on Schneider….

      • 10thMountainFire

        Not entirely surprising given that they’re playing back-to-backs like we are.

        • pompoon

          That does make sense, I guess most of the teams playing back-to-backs seem to be using the backup for today’s game. Maybe I just enjoy the schadenfreude too much.

          • 10thMountainFire

            Back-up goaltenders may be of increased importance this season… which in my opinion puts the Hawks in a position of advantage.

          • Accipiter

            because we have two ??

          • 10thMountainFire

            I see what you did there.

      • Accipiter

        AV says it was the plan all along (where have I heard that before). There is no way CS is tired after 1 game and needs a break.

  • Z-man19

    One hour to puck drop, time to put the kids to bed

    • 10thMountainFire

      Look, you can do whatever you want but I’m not going to bed.

  • BigCSouthside

    Had a moment today, when I realized Im a spineless fuck. I wanted to boycott the NHL because of the lockout. Been watching pretty much non stop. I suck

    • 10thMountainFire

      I have refused to pretend I have what it takes to stick it to the NHL. I’m just going to enjoy the season.

      And yes, this is the history of me with ex-girlfriends.

      • Z-man19

        I get the NHL, concerned about the gf’s

        • 10thMountainFire

          Me, too.

    • CR64

      I tried as well but I woke up to myself ordering Center Ice. It happens.

    • pompoon

      As I followed every game either online or on the radio today, the only thing that made me feel less guilty is that I won’t be buying a ticket or merch this year. It’s the small victories.

      • Accipiter

        That is how I am looking at it.

  • Hi, I’m Bob LeDonne

    Hi, I’m Bob LeDonne.

    • pierzynskirules

      hi, bob

    • Accipiter

      Bob.

    • 10thMountainFire

      Well now it’s game time.

    • flavius

      Somebody was here looking for you a few minutes ago…..hi bob

    • Z-man19

      Robert, good to have you here today

    • BigCSouthside

      Well, I guess we can start now

    • ahnfire

      hello Bob

  • happyhuman

    Harbaugh Bowl! Woo!

    • pierzynskirules

      meh

  • ahnfire

    “@MarkLazerus: #Coyotes motto appears to be “We Are One.” More like “We Are a Few Thousand” right now. Game starts in 10 minutes. Where is everyone?”

    I like this new beat reporter.

  • mightymikeD

    whoo! let’s get this done!

  • Z-man19

    I’ve missed Pat

    • ahnfire

      lucky. I get whoever is announcing via NBCSN

      • Z-man19

        Same schmuck that did our game yesterday, plus Engblom, I’ll take Pat and Eddie

  • ahnfire
  • CR64

    Is it sad that I missed the dulcet tones of Pat Foley???