Boy, there’s a lot to get to here, so let’s just jump into the bullets, shall we?
-Let’s get to the most pressing issue. Why the fuck can’t the United Center spell, “Lightning?” It has a fucking T you dummards!
Ok, now that’s out of the way…
-Where to start? We’ve spent some time bemoaning the Hawks habit of sitting on leads, or doing their best to blow them, or straight up blowing them. It didn’t feel like that tonight, and I recognize how stupid that sentence sounds now. But the Hawks weren’t under siege until a Rozsival penalty, where both Toews and Saad went to block a shot and didn’t. Then it’s just a one goal game and all it takes is a puck squirting out of a board battle and one shot.
The Hawks did manage 13 3rd period shots. They pressed, they forechecked. Where they got themselves in trouble was straight up declining two 3rd period power plays that could have ended it. Instead of stepping on the throat, the Hawks played with their food. That was a problem last year and has been this year, where the Hawks just use a 3rd period PP with a lead to run the clock instead of cutting the jugular. They should stop that.
-I don’t want to devolve into Canuck fan-style bellyaching and caterwauling, but if Jannik Hansen’s suspension is any less than what Duncan Keith got, the NHL will have proved to be…..well, the NHL. Which is why I expect that to be exactly what happens. But I sure can’t spot the difference in the “hits.”
-I will point out however, the contrast between Quenneville’s measured comments after this game tonight and Alain Vingeault’s verbal menstruation after last spring’s with Keith’s hit. Now you know why this team has all the mental fragility of a suburban teenage girl.
-The Canucks are a very good team. There’s an even better one within there if it wasn’t buried in petulant and irresponsible bullshit that the Canucks have drowned themselves in before. As soon as the Hawks took the lead, Bieksa was running around looking for decapitations. The complaints to the ref got more frequent. The niggling crap became more obvious. I guess they can argue it worked, as they tied the game. But it’ll tie the noose once again around their necks in the spring, and it’s a lesson they just refuse to learn.
-Yeah, I know, tying goal. Bieksa remains a liability because his brain runs out of his ear far too easily. But he’ll avoid the scrutiny when it all goes balls-up for them again that will be aimed at the goaltending because….I don’t know, he’s a good Canadian boy who’s a good quote.
-Dan Hamhuis….I almost can’t say the name without laughing now.
-On to good stuff. Hossa’s second goal was a monumental effort, but it stemmed from Saad outworking Burrows and Bieksa to open up the space. Saad has hit something of a wall the past few games, but it was good to see him still make something happen.
-Sadly, I genuinely fear that it may be a long time before we see something like that from Hossa again.
-Patrick Sharp and Patrick Kane had a combined 11 shots. Dave Bolland won 13 of his 23 draws. Raise your hand if you think these two facts are linked.
-I’m told Zack Kassian played.
-While this streak hasn’t been a completely dominant one at all times, the Hawks poise with the puck in their own zone continues to grow. Yeah, sometimes it’s even too much. But I’d rather the Hawks err on that side than the panicky one, because it’s creating so much offense for them.
-If Emery doesn’t let this weak one in in the 1st, would Vancouver have scored the rest of the game? I wonder.
-If you need something to get excited about, I suppose the 2nd period where the Hawks completely rolled the second best team in the West without Seabrook would be a start.
16 is better than 15. There’s still stuff to be sorted out. But the Hawks get to work on those without having it cost them points already. Bow’s ahout that?