Piece By Piece: Blackhawks 3 – Kings 2 (Hawks Lead Series 3-1)

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Chicago Blackhawks at Los Angeles KingsThe Kings were undefeated at home so far in the playoffs. The Kings were 22-0 when scoring first all season long. The Blackhawks were without their best defenseman (and possibly just their best overall player). The Blackhawks found themselves down a goal twice in the game. And none of it really mattered. After a simply dominant third period, the Blackhawks found themselves up 3-1 in the series and the games shift back to Chicago on Saturday night. It’s not over yet but the finals are clearly back in our sights as the Kings need to win 3 in a row to close this out… and yes, that includes two games on the road for LA, where they’ve been awful.

Bullets after the jump

And here we go.

  • Clearly, the biggest news from this game was the stellar third period for Chicago. After Kane finally found a way to get a goal (on a puck that was probably already heading across the line) late in the second to tie the game, the Blackhawks came out with their hair on fire in the second. They caught the Kings in a bad change and Oduya sprung Handzus across the line who set up Hossa for a brilliant one-timer just over a minute in and then they simply didn’t look back.Even with Sheldon Brookbank playing the #6 role, the defense was lights out. It’s now the Kings who are dealing with talks of them looking flat but it was the suffocating defense from Chicago that put this game away. The Kings only managed two shots on goal for the whole of the third period, even as they trailed for just about all of it.
  • Q decided once again to switch things around to see if he could get his top lines going and it seemed to work out pretty well. About halfway through the second we saw Daydream Nation reunited with Bickell on the wing and just as we suspected, the change did well for Kaner. The extra space created by Toews and Bicks allowed Kane to not only net his first goal since Game 3 against Scum but also let him tie his playoff high mark for SOG with 7.I don’t think we ever saw Kane mesh with Handzus so I would fully expect to see the lines remain the same on Saturday… though trying to figure out Q’s logic can sometimes be quite infuriating.
  • Brookbank looked pretty lost and was on the ice for both goals against from the Kings but that’s the sort of shit that happens when someone hasn’t played since April. No one expected him to come in a fully fill in for Keith so I’d actually give him fairly high-marks (or at least not horseshit low ones) just for not turning into a puddle of urine and sweat. As mentioned above, the Hawks defense was key to the game and that does include Brookbank… though he did only play 5 shifts after the first period. Still, good on him for filling in but I still can’t wait for Keith to get back. Rozsival really stepped it up – playing an ungodly amount of minutes. Hammer and Biscuit were also great.
  • How pretty was that goal from Hossa? You cannot place a one-timer better than that.
  • If Kaner hadn’t knocked in the loose puck, Bryan Bickell could very well be tied for the playoff goal lead. That would also have given him the same amount of goals in the playoffs as he had for the entire (shortened) regular season. Bickell’s motto for the playoffs is evidently “Fuck you. Pay me”. We had been thinking the Hawks had no chance of keeping Stalberg around next year, that still may be the case but Bicks is clearly making a name for himself.
  • Back to the defense real quick – A defenseman got the secondary assist in every goal for the Hawks. Pitching in like that is what makes this whole team dangerous.
  • Nothing ever happens on the 5-on-3.
  • The Kings had been phenomenal at home and then shat the bed. They’ve been awful on the road but there’s no chance they go down without a fight here on Saturday. I really don’t want to see this series head back out West. Finish it out sooner rather than later boys.
  • trois murs

    I feel like everyone hated the Hjalmarsson contract situation the past couple years, were just OK with Oduya until it was pointed out how great the hawks are since he joined the team, and frankly confused with Q’s decision to not play Roszival over Brookbank at points during the regular season.

    All three of these players are exceeding expectations this season and it feels fucking great.

    • putmeinthemadhouse

      never though hjammer was overpaid. seemed on par if not a little under what 2nd pairing dmen were getting.

      and anyone who thought brookbank was better than rozsival in the regular season was sniffing glue.

      • trois murs

        The situation with Wilsons offer sheet certainly gave Hjalmarsson more than he was likely going to get from the Hawks. I was fine with the amount the hawks paid for him, especially if you look at other 3mil range contracts in the league, but there were plenty of people expecting him to score 15 goals and get 30 assists a season after his contract because they didn’t understand hockey or defense or breathing without opening their mouth.

        edit: and the niemi butthurt certainly helped fan the flames of people upset with the contract.

        • laaarmer

          But we could have kept Brouwer or Niemi if this didn’t happen and most likely been better the last two seasons. How much better we can never know unless my worm hole device takes off.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            they did keep brouwer, but he spent that season picking over eukanuba in Qs dog house.

          • laaarmer

            He is not on the team. He was let go. He was not playing for The Hawks last night

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            well yea but tying that back to the hjammer deal doesnt make a whole ton of sense

          • laaarmer

            OK. Hjammer got more than he should have and Brouwers contract was up, and Bowman didn’t/couldn’t pay him. That is how it works, right?

          • laaarmer

            Likewise if you overpay for Bickell, Saad will be coming due, and while I don’t think he will be worth what he gets paid, Bowman will want to keep him so somebody else will lose out, like Morin, Pirri, those D guys, etc. You should not overpay for one guy as it effects all the others. I think that is how the GM thing is done.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            all depends, brouwer didnt seem to be in the teams plans, you’d have to convince me that was a loss that bowman wasnt planning. would they have been better with brouwer? who knows. doesn’t matter. brouwer leaving left space for frolik and i think he had a more positive net impact on the team (if not in offense).

            i dont see keeping bickell for a decent contract (if he isnt “overpaid”) will see anyone else lose out, stals is walking, 2c spot is still open as handzus is gone, bollands spot is still debateable. Sign a guy who earned it, let the others earn their spot as well.

          • Accipiter

            We got Danault for TBrouw, so we will have to wait and see how that works out.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            good point

          • Paul the Fossil

            Brouwer was an erratic disappointment to the Caps last season but much better this season. But then of course the exact same can be said about Hammer for the Hawks…it’s not clear to me right now than letting Brouwer go in order to keep Hammer, if we want to see the exchange that way, was a bad deal.

            As for Niemi, he did come into his own this season after being up-and-down for the Sharks over the previous two. If he sustains the level and consistency he’s now found then he’s a genuine keeper as a starting goalie…but then wouldn’t we say the same now about Crawford?

          • zacked

            Nah, laarmer is right. You can’t pay a guy more than he is objectively worse, because there’s a limited pool to draw from. This is the problem with a hard cap, it forces you to judge players value in terms of their contract. For example, Soupy is a good player, but he’s not worth his contract, so he is a net negative. If he has a deal commensurate with his ability, they’d have kept him, or would have gotten much more back than another negative contract in return for trading him.

          • lizmcneill

            Saad has 2 years left on his rookie contract, he’s definitely worth that and hopefully by the time it’s up the organisation should have more of an idea how he’s going to work out.

          • ‘hawks58

            They could have kept Brouwer through 11-12 if he was in the organization’s plans. His salary was well under $3 million and the Hawks had nearly $4 million in cap space.

        • ChicagoNativeSon

          I’m trying to reconcile this statement with your statement immediately prior:

          Both Hammer and Oduya were overpaid – especially as you look at what other teams are doing. Hammer got the coin due to the offer sheet and then spent a year and a half not earning it. I was a doubter…because he regressed after the payday.

          Less than an hour later…
          I was fine with the amount the hawks paid for him, especially if you look at other 3mil range contracts in the league, but there were plenty of people expecting [more] because they didn’t understand hockey or defense or breathing without opening their mouth.

          Hello Regan, this is Father Merrin. I’d like to speak to trois murs.

          • guest

            wait that first one was “black JEM,” in response to trois murs kicking off the conversation by saying “All three of these players are exceeding expectations this season and it feels fucking great.”

          • ChicagoNativeSon

            Oh, ok “guest.” Cough, cough.

            No, look at putmeinthemadhouse’s reply “never though hjammer was overpaid” in response to YOUR original, now edited, comment.

            Weak sauce, but whatever.

          • trois murs

            CNS is still drunk from last night? You got me mixed up with someone replying to me.

          • ChicagoNativeSon

            Really? Pretty ridiculous move on your part to edit your original comment which bashed Hjammer and Oduya as “overpaid” (which begot cliff’s sarcastic reply) to one now praising them for “overachieving.”

            Asshole move on your part sir. But why would I expect less?

          • trois murs

            I thought I was missing some weird situational joke at first since I haven’t posted in every single thread lately.

    • cliffkoroll

      Oh yes. Just now it’s Bolland, but over the years, the villagers here have roasted several players on a spit. Hammer and Bickell were the go-to guys last season.

      We like our people.

      • laaarmer

        Buff. Hossa post shoulder surgery. Catfish. Walker. Best of all Brouwer.

      • neo1978

        You forgot Keith.

        • Accipiter

          And Seabrook.

          • lizmcneill

            And Kane.

    • cliffkoroll

      Also, congratulations to you, recipient of the coveted “Game 4 WCF wrap Chief Slacker Award”!

    • Black JEM

      Both Hammer and Oduya were overpaid – especially as you look at what other teams are doing. Hammer got the coin due to the offer sheet and then spent a year and a half not earning it. But he came on better as the season went on last year and has been really good this year – maybe our best D from start of the season to end. I was a doubter – not because we lost Niemi, but because he regressed after the payday.

      Oduya is overpaid. He is at 3.38 for the next two years – years where he will be part of a 5/6 pairing. At the end of next year we will be wondering how we get rid of his salary for 14/15.
      But he was good last night – after some struggles in recent games. He stepped it up and produced when it mattered most. Got to give him props for that.

      • putmeinthemadhouse

        you dont pay a player based on their so-called line #, you pay them based on their performance…oduya has been more than admirable and I think his contract is totally fair.

        • Waylon

          I agree – and when you consider that the contracts for middling FA D – Men were insanely overpriced last summer, he looks to be more than fairly priced.

        • Black JEM

          Based on a salary cap league you have no choice but to think that way. If not by at least the end of next year we would expect Leddy to pass him on the depth chart. 3.38 for a 3rd line D is a problem.Perhaps we had no other options – and I iwll accept that.

          Hopefully after next year the cap will go back up and it won’t matter. But I would love to have another 500-750K for this summer. I am not suggesting Oduya has no reason for the salary – I do remember the signings of Dmen. But he is overpaid in a salary cap world.

      • zacked

        Oduya is only overpaid because the cap went down. That was a fair deal in the environment it was signed, arguably even a discount for CHI.

      • chichicagochi

        Oh boy the Hammer under-performing myth again.

      • Why

        Chicago spends a lot of money on defencemen. In a related story, Chicago has really good defencemen.

        I said related, though. It’s still possible to try that strategy and be Vancouver.

        • Waylon

          but they like their peeps.

      • trois murs

        Where is oduya at a 5/6 D pairing? Him and Hjalmarsson have been outstanding in all but a handful of games this season

  • http://www.polyptych.bandcamp.com/ Samuroth

    Nice Slayer title for a Slayer day win.

    • corbant

      m/_ _m/

  • TKHO

    Regarding the 5-on-3 comment, I can’t remember another 5-on-3 power play they’ve had this season where they didn’t convert. It might have happened, but they’ve generally been successful in those circumstances. Prior to this year, however, I remember some pretty pathetic displays with the 2-man advantage.

    • Gabble Ratchet

      Let’s all just remember that the failure of this 5-on-3 didn’t result in a loss so we can slay the old wives’ tale that these decide the outcome of the game.

    • eyemon

      Ruthlessly efficient during the regular season- 4 out of 5 in only 2:55 of 5 on 3. Last night looked nothing like what we saw during the season- brutal.

  • zacked

    Not having opposite handed point men out for the 5v3 is inexcusable. The lack of crossing over on the PP in general has been a sore point with me all year, and that was just pathetic.

    • Paul the Fossil

      I don’t normally bitch about the PP because in actual NHL play success at it doesn’t have much relevance to winning the Cup. But that said…to call a timeout and spend it diagramming things up for a one-minute 5-on-3 and then fail to generate even a single _shot_ during that minute?? Completely ridiculous.

      How a coaching staff which has done such a brilliant job with one special team can be so clueless about the other is a mystery.

      • Korab22

        I believe the broadcast team (Pang?) called Jamie Kompon “brilliant”. I’m sure that seemed a bit odd to both Hawks and Kings fans.

        • trois murs

          Maybe Pang thought Kompon was acting as a double agent since the Hawks nabbed him from the Kings.

      • krome

        Indeed…how do you understand the penalty kill so well and remain so totally clueless about how a power play ought to work?
        Brillinat tactitian? Well, compared to Milbury and Maguire maybe. But then again a Beagle is brighter than them

        • Paul the Fossil

          “how do you understand the penalty kill so well and remain so totally clueless about how a power play ought to work?” That’s a good way of putting it. Why wouldn’t you just say, “what sort of power play is hardest for us to deal with? Let’s try that for a while.”

          • Why

            Not saying the point isn’t good, but the truth is no power play has really given them trouble yet.

      • ChicagoNativeSon

        Apparently this coaching staff is an authority on preventing special teams goals.

        They’re doing an excellent job.

        • Z-man19

          Yes, well it would be nice if they allowed OUR PP to score on occasion

  • Stone Cutter

    I thought Crow was fighting it a bit at times last night. Really nice to see Oduya, Rozy and the rest lock it down in front of him.

    • Waylon

      At times he was shaky, but that poke – check/reverse – stick maneuver to deny Dick Head his break away goal was absolutely his best save of the series so far. It came at a critical juncture during the game, I think they would’ve gone up two goals at that point.

      • Stone Cutter

        you are absolutely right. The difference in his game this year seems to be his ability to forget the soft ones and press on. Did it against the Wild and Wings already. Lotta confidence in him. Love it.

  • guest

    Comments on post’s picture:

    1) Stalberg’s beard is starting to get real, hopefully this leads to more decent chances for the guy

    2) The FroKrug PK-bro moment captured in this photo is beautiful

    • guest

      Krulik? Froger (sounds too close to kruger’s existing nickname frogger though)? Maybe we should call them Brooklyn, since it was apparently first chartered in 1667 (a few other boring things happened too, but “pope clement IX” doesn’t seem appropriate http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1667 ). I dunno. I think the pairing definitely deserves a joint nickname, though.

    • ballyb11

      Ya think Saad likes winning?

      • Accipiter

        He was letting everyone know that the field goal was good.

  • laaarmer

    I notice no mention of Saad.

    • Z-man19

      Saad played

    • High and Wide

      He was amazing, especially in the last couple periods! I thought he was going to at least set up a scoring play at some point for sure.

      • laaarmer

        How would he set up a play, when he turns it over nearly 100% of the time?

        • High and Wide

          I do remember a shift that sounds very much like what you are talking about, but I also remember others where he was solely responsible for keeping it in LA’s end and setting up some good looks. I certainly could have missed something (packing for a move during stoppages) but he seemed to be the best on that line (Shaw was good in the 1st I thought). YMMV.

          I sorted 7+ years of tax-related receipts yesterday so it’s possible I hallucinated a completely different game than the one that aired. At least the Hawks won in real life too.

  • putmeinthemadhouse

    So realistically, what kind of contract is bickell looking at and whats the possibility of him taking a hometown discount? He mentioned before that he really enjoys it in chicago and would like to stay.

    • laaarmer

      If someone offered you $3,600,000 to go to NYI, would you take $2,500,000 to stay here?

      You are talking about a million dollars a season to a guy who is making $600,000 this season.
      I’m sure he likes it here.

      • putmeinthemadhouse

        many players have taken discounts to stay with a club

        • Paul the Fossil

          A fair number I think, though I dunno about a discount as large as a third of the higher offer.

          Though the unique circumstances of this offseason (a hard cap which is coming down by several million per team) kind of throws precedent out the window I would think.

          • neo1978

            The cap is going down. And there is the possibility that many of these Hossa like contracts will be bought out. IMO, free agency is going to be nuts this offseason.

        • cliffkoroll

          Including Bryan Bickell, who signed a three-year minimum wage contract in order to ensure he wouldn’t be caught up in 2010 Rockford I-pass salary cap madness.

          Guy bet on himself and it’s coming up big. I hope he stays, but he deserves whatever he gets.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            was that really a hometown discount though? he hadnt proven much up to that point.

          • cliffkoroll

            The analogy isn’t perfect, but he did choose less money than he prolly could have gotten to play in Chicago rather than risk being consigned to Rockford. OK, Rockford is worse than most NHL destinations but…

          • Waylon

            true, but the Hawks also gambled on him, waited much more patiently than most other clubs for him to develop into the player he is currently. Not that Bickell should take any of that into consideration, but my naive side hopes he will.

          • krome

            Bickell’s agent was a fucking genius to have him sign that last deal. He essentially guaranteed that Bick would stay up, and in that time he really solidified himself as a legit NHLer.
            Des anyone else sense that Bick has worked big time on his skating? I used to percieve him as fairly clumsy (sort of like Jimmy Hayes now), but he has gotten to where he looks good (he’ll never be fleet or graceful…but he doesn’t really need to be if he is stablely mobile)

          • Preacher

            The only negative I see with Bicks is that he can’t puckhandle at ALL! But then, he usually gets rid of that lethal wrist shot of his so the puck isn’t with him very long.

          • Z-man19

            He doesn’t play PK or PP, based on his performance around the net in these playoffs begs the question why he isn’t on the PP

          • Preacher

            Because Shaw is way bigger and stronger than Bicks so Shaw is out there instead. (Just goes along with our coaches’ stellar PP acumen.)

          • chichicagochi

            Bickell has great hands, don’t know what you’re smoking.

          • Preacher

            Actually, Bickel is pretty bad in traffic. He usually loses the puck along the boards if pressured. Stals, Tazer, Kane of course–even Frolik are able to reverse course multiple times with a guy on their back and maintain possession. Bicks regularly loses it in those situations. He’s good at receiving a pass and shooting quick. But carrying the puck is not his strength.

          • Accipiter

            And it only weighs 5 1/2 ounces.

          • Why

            Yep, he’s not a rec leaguer but a lot of the skill things he does, he does well “for a big guy.”

            Doesn’t change the fact that he’s got a wicked a shot, a nasty attitude a solid overall attitude.

          • 1benmenno

            And Keenan.

          • guest

            That was one of the big stories after the lockout, Bickell’s coach over on the team he played on in Europe apparently did nothing but work on his skating nonstop, and it showed immediately when the season started.

      • Black JEM

        2.5 for 5 years (or an increasing number over the life of the contract) – over 3 for 3 years. I do think someone will float a $4M number – hope it is someone he doesn’t want to play for.
        The 2.5 for 5 might cost you a restricted movement clause.

      • ballyb11

        3.6 v 2.5, name 5 players in professional sports who have don that.

        • laaarmer

          Are you talking to me? Bahcuz, I think we are saying the same thing.

          • ballyb11

            Aaah.

          • Accipiter

            Haaa.

          • laaarmer

            /Costanza’d

      • jackattack

        In my little capgeek simulation that I posted yesterday I had him at 2.75 mil. I think that’s probably close to the limit we’d pay for him.

      • Bullitt315

        Without getting too detailed that 3.6 million Contract in New York is only 385k more per year after taxes than a 2.5 Million dollar contract in Chicago (Extremely simplified).

        • Preacher

          I think the lowering salary cap is going to keep things a bit more under control than we might have seen otherwise. As great as he’s been, I just don’t think Bicks will be offered more than 3 million from any team unless they’re swimming in cap space. And teams that ARE swimming in cap space usually have a LOT of spaces to fill. And aren’t that good.

          • chichicagochi

            He’ll get an offer over 4

          • Waylon

            quiet, you. You’re harshing my mellow.

          • Why

            Yep, something weird will have to happen to keep Bickell. This next contract will likely be for far more than he’s made his entire career.

          • lizmcneill

            I was listening to the Backhand Shelf podcast and they were all “Bickell’s gonna get PAID, some foolish GM will think he can sustain a 25% shooting % and throw silly money at him” and “Bolland doesn’t look like he wants to be in Chicago any more, does he?” Uncle Dale’s name was invoked in both cases….

          • Why

            Meh. Bolland’s getting no ice time and other guys are playing better. But he’s playing a feisty game while he’s out there.

            I’ll be honest, I haven’t heard the podcast and am just going by these comments.

            With Bickell, I’d be more worried about general regression. He’s not really quick for a first liner and he’s never going to create a ton of chances. However, if you get to the front of the net, shoot hard with a quick release, stay difficult to move and play with solid teammates, you’re probably going to have a solid shooting percentage. Not 25%, but solid. I’d expect Bickell to be a 20-30 a year goal scorer on a team like Edmonton.

          • Accipiter

            I enjoyed their view of the Campbell shot block/break leg very much. The BHS podcasts are usually pretty entertaining.

          • lizmcneill

            Great to be able to listen to/read someone that knows about hockey, and nice that the Hawks are featuring so much at the minute.

        • laaarmer

          Meet Mr. Einstein.

    • trois murs

      Realistically he has 8 goals and 1 assist(which should really be 9 goals zero assists). Insane for a playoff, but an incredible outlier judging from his ~25% shooting. I can see him getting a host of offers at ~2-2.5mil from rational GMs, and then a few meathead GMs thinking he is blossoming into the next Cam Neely offering 3-4mil. With the cap coming down no one offers much above that and expects to retain their job, but then again you never know with GMs in the league. The biggest factor in this is likely what length offers he can obtain, as his agent will know that the likelihood of this post-season performance maintaining itself over the next 2-3 seasons is low.

      This is all assuming he doesn’t score like 5 goals in the cup finals.

      • Steve S

        10 mil over 5 years ?

  • Steve S

    Hey blondie in the second row…pick me out a winner

    • cliffkoroll

      heh

    • laaarmer

      Oyster season is officially open.

  • RVWW

    Has anybody seen David Bolland?

    • Gabble Ratchet

      Dustin Penner saw him.

      • Shooter

        ZING!

      • RVWW

        You mean Donuts Penner?

        • Country_Bumpkin

          Penner’s an asshat. In the locker room interviews he was just a turd.

          • Waylon

            if he’s not suspended for that flying elbow then the league better start handing out IOU’s to the Hawks for basically anything they do if they advance to the Finals. His hit on Seabrook was also nasty as hell – screw them and their style of play.

            and I won’t even mention Brown’s acting job last night – he was falling down faster than Burrows out there – and he got that ticky – tacky shit call at a critical moment in the game.

          • Preacher

            Yeah, for as “tough” and “gritty” as the Kings are, they sure do everything they can to sell a call. And then throw an elbow.
            Oh, and Mike Keenan.

          • Waylon

            and Hossa’s check that sent an LA D – Man head over heels is typical pansy – ass crap from a Slovak who’s concussed.

    • TheRealBBOX

      On the milk carton when I was getting my cereal this morning.

    • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

      I saw him whacking some guy in the elbow with his head.

      Goon

  • Country_Bumpkin

    Kompon has the look of, “thank God we won, cause my PP sucks horseballs”.

    • corbant

      I was having dry heaves when the announcers on TV said he’s a “brilliant tactician”.

      • BigCSouthside

        I wanted to send a tweet about it to NBC Sports: “Hi guys. So, welcome to watching the NHL. Apparently youve missed it, but our Power Play sucks harder than Jenna Jameson.”

        • putmeinthemadhouse

          but he was so brilliant that he was canned from a team after they won the cup.

          misunderstood, under-appreciated genius, ill tell ya what.

          • Joe Banks

            I thought he was canned and THEN they won the cup.

          • lizmcneill

            There’s still time for us to do that, right?

        • Jim

          Jenna sucks nice and soft

      • pompoon

        I almost didn’t believe it when I heard it. Yes, a brilliant tactician guided a unit with Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, and Marian Hossa to one of the worst PPs in the playoffs.

        • High and Wide

          I didn’t think the PP could get worse … until I saw it without Duncs. Nightmare fuel.

          • lizmcneill

            The 2nd unit never had Duncs (that I remember) and it looked better than that debacle (sometimes).

            I just do not get it. How can it be so bad? Is their confidence shot, are they also muttering, ‘oh $&%*, clownshoes’ as they go out?

          • High and Wide

            You’re right, but the 1st unit spent some time looking even worse than normal, which, again, does not seem like it should be possible.

          • lizmcneill

            Well, they didn’t score a shortie I guess…could have been worse still.

        • Z-man19

          almost have to be brilliant to accomplish that

        • Waylon

          I don’t understand whey they don’t employ other team’s successful tactics, like the Sharks. I know, different players and skills, but I think their set piece on PP is an “Umbrella” look, which seems to work for them. Hell, why not give it at least a look at this point?

          • lizmcneill

            Haven’t they tried an umbrella at some point? (it’s hard to tell because i generally cover my eyes at that point. The PK otoh, I am blase about, so much better than last year)

          • Waylon

            I have no idea, quite honestly – mostly because they never look like they have any kind of a set – up after they gain entry into the zone, which usually doesn’t happen anyway.

          • lizmcneill

            Maybe that’s Kompon’s cunning plan – they can’t set up a PK to counteract a strategy they can’t recognise! Auuuughghgh.

          • Waylon

            did you just use a “Blackadder” reference? That’s all kinds of awesome.

      • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

        even my wife laughed at that.

    • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

      Credit where do to the coaches, the PK is awesome.
      Our PP wouldn’t scare a good high school team.

      • krome

        Speak for yourself. My PP has terrified many a high schooler

  • Paul the Fossil

    Helluva performance all the way around. Thank goodness they put Keenan back behind the bench, can you imagine how this bunch of pansies might be doing with some other guy as coach?

    • BigCSouthside

      If Keenan was in charge of the powerplay, he’d bench every single person on the PP units and go out and do it himself, and we’d be at 100%

  • SAMCRO Outlaw

    Patrick Kane hello, nice to see you again. As has been hashed over here many times putting him with 19-29 & 81 with 26-10 makes a ton of sense. It not only improves Kane’s ice space and ability to do his thing, I think it improves the overall defense for both lines. While 29(20)-19-81 is very good defensively. 10-26-88 is average & 10-36-88 is bad. Moving Hoss onto that line changes that line into one that can be given the responsibility of checking the other teams top line, while still being a legit scoring line & let the Dream Nation run all over either the 2nd line or if the Hawks 3rd line can handle the other teams 2nd line Q get can do a fair amount of bum hunting and create mismatches by dropping them on the Kings 3rd line.

    On the bullet for Brookbank – I agree give the guy credit, he was thrown into a weird spot & played OK. If Crow gets a handle on either of those loose pucks no one would have payed much attention to him. He was serviceable at least, so good on him.

  • BigCSouthside

    I just wish Hossa would do more. Invisible these playoffs

    • putmeinthemadhouse

      typical hossa.

      • steeg of their own

        Lazy bastard.

        • Accipiter

          Enigmatic laziness.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            fuckin’ slovaks.

          • Steve S

            Perhaps Chuck Gowdie and the Eye Team should put together a hard hitting pice of why Slovaks are afraid of a hitting other hockey players.

      • BigCSouthside

        Skating across the line with all that space when he could have been hitting somebody. What a fuckstick

    • Waylon

      he’s still concussed, obviously.

      • BigCSouthside

        No excuse. He’s a wuss. What he needs is more toughness

        • Z-man19

          bigger balls

          • Preacher

            And Mike Keenan.

          • Z-man19

            Yes, use Keenan’s balls to hit people with, I love solutions

          • BigCSouthside

            to hit people with

          • Accipiter

            That is a lethal teabag.

      • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

        Every time he has the puck, the crowd holds up Raffe Torres masks.

        • Preacher

          Really? Didn’t know that. Pretty classless. (Or hilarious if you have THAT kind of humor.)

          • Waylon

            I did read that they were holding up pics of Kaner’s mom when he had the puck – the commenter thought that was classless, but I kind of like it, to be honest.

          • BigCSouthside

            That shit probably motivates him

          • Preacher

            Some scary female Scum fan started that, I think. She was pretty proud of herself. It was posted on one of the Kings’ blogs before this series started.

        • Ingmar Bergman

          One of the saddest and more horrific hits I ever saw was the hit Torres delivered on Hossa. I like Hossa as a person (not as a player), but what Torres did to him was just plain evil. He could have killed him.

    • RVWW

      Somewhere off in the Michigan wilderness, a lonely Red Wings fan is booing Hossa.

      • Ingmar Bergman

        Actually a lot of Red Wings fans are booing Hossa after he jolted from Detroit to take big money in Chicago. They still boo him constantly at the Joe. He kinda got greedy there.

        • Accipiter

          No, no he didn’t.

        • Why

          Marian Hossa: helping Chicago win games and making Red Wings fans feel shitty since 2009. Both of those are good things.

        • Hawkeytalk

          you mean he accepted a contract he was offered? How novel.

        • Paul the Fossil

          Really? You think? You don’t suppose RVWW’s post might have been referencing those blindingly-obvious facts do you?

    • Beastoftheeast81

      Hossa is so worthless, I mean God. How could we have signed this guy over Marty Havlat? Last night was another mirage, simply luck, Quick had a hang nail which prevented him from stopping that one. He needs to go back to Slovakia, raise another two or three mountain goats and buy a speedboat.

      Hope he can bring it in game 5 on the 4th line.

      • Ingmar Bergman

        You know, at the time, I was crushed to see Marty go. It came down to Hoss and Havlet there. I’m glad you see the light! :)

        • Beastoftheeast81

          Hossa is my favorite player on the Blackhawks. He is the most complete player on the Blackhawks and he can be the most dynamic even as one of the elder statesman on this team. With the exception of this shortened season he has played on this roster with no center for almost his entire tenure with the Hawks. Q has used in in every role possible, including on a Hawks PP that has zero coaching and no point man for four seasons. He is a dominant monster on the PK. He can deliver a hit when necessary but chooses not to due to the injuries he has suffered over the years. I’d rather have him on the ice poke checking passing and scoring than delivering monster hits that puts him in the scratched box.

          He is a wing, otherwise he’d be up for the damn selke ever season. He is a slovakian God, the brauny man of Europe, the beast of the East, and a proud member of Hawkytown. I’ve never seen such utter disrespect for a future HOF and one of the best players to take the ice for this franchise over the past 30 years.

          Just mind boggling….

    • Why

      Hossa’s another one of those guys that makes me rethink what I know about hockey. He’s been invisible in the cycle game throughout the last two rounds (usually a strength) and likes to take the long, lazy swipe at the puck and make a looping turn when he misses (watch him on the forecheck).

      On a two-on-one with the game tied though, there’s no one else I’d rather have taking that shot.

      • Waylon

        Hossa is valuable primarily for what the casual fan doesn’t see – he is the rare two – way player who really does all of the little things that can affect a game in a dramatic way. For example, on one rush up the ice yesterday he encountered a King’s D – Man at his blue line, and absolutely crushed him like a bug on a windshield. You could hear the crowd let out a gasp, that’s how awesome a hit it was. But things like that don’t show up on your TV screen or the stat sheet, so meatheads everywhere act like he’s invisible.

        • Why

          Even casual fans noticed the big hit. I’m just not convinced those types of hits are Hossa’s default setting. He’s primarily a poke checker. A very good, very smart, very strong poke checker.

          I love it when he makes plays that prove me wrong though.

          • Accipiter

            81 and 19 have huge ‘take away’ numbers. They get the puck back without having to lay people out, smart players those two.

          • Why

            From what I can see though, they’re doing it in different ways. Toews accomplishes more of it with the body and Hossa does it more with the stick. Toews usually starts with a little bump to knock you off balance and then uses the stick after. Hossa’s initial contact is usually stick to stick or stick to puck.

      • Ingmar Bergman

        Good points about Hossa, but again I think it’s because of his personality and demeanor. What may come across as lazy is him just not wanting to mix it up.

        I couldn’t believe that forecheck he made last night. That was even more shocking than his goal that he scored. It was like witnessing Mother Theresa commit a violent act … you can’t believe what you saw out there.

        • laaarmer

          Do you know that one of the toop 5 defenseman to ever play hockey rarely ever “hit” anybody. However, when he wanted to take the puck from you he did. Lidstrom. Remember him? He was pretty fucking good.
          Hossa is just like him only he’s a forward. If you know anything about hockey, and I mean anything, you cannot deny that when Hossa is on the ice, no matter who he is playing, he is the 1st or 2nd best player on that ice.

    • Ingmar Bergman

      I totally agree, but I’d hate to say it as I’ve given up hope. I don’t understand why these comment threads always center around him because he doesn’t matter anymore on the ice. Why do you guys keep talking about him? This has to be the most puzzling aspect about this site.

      I reviewed Hossa’s playoff career last night, again. The guy only had one good playoff year and that was with the Pitt Pens in 2008. Somehow, he managed to score 12 goals in 20 games (he recorded 14 assists also). What’s more astonishing about these tally’s is that (if I remember correctly) he did little in the Stanley Cup finals that year against Scum.

      Prior to that and after that “landmark” year he has been an utter failure at playoff hockey. It saddens me to even write about it, believe me.

      The main reason why Hossa pulls these disappearing acts and is “Invisible These Playoffs” is because Hoss is a genuinely nice guy. Too nice. Too soft spoken. Too polite. Too much of a gentleman.

      To excel and be a weapon in the playoffs you have to have a chip on your shoulder and something of a “mean streak.” Even Toews has it (albeit once every 7 or 10 games). Hossa is just too much of a nice guy and that is his downfall and unfortunately our liability in these crucial playoff games.

      • ahnfire

        ….sometimes I wonder if your eyes work.

        Hossa has 7 goals, 7 assists in 16 games, and is a +7 thus far. He is one of the hardest working players on the ice and if you haven’t seen him in this playoffs it’s because you’re not watching. If you don’t think Hossa has a “mean streak”, you didn’t see him flatten Clifford yesterday.

        I don’t think you understand the meaning of the word “liability”.

        • lizmcneill

          Maybe he’s just posting from an alternate universe?

      • ahnfire

        Ingmar, I’d like your reasoning on why he’s sucked in *THIS YEAR’S* playoffs when everything points to the opposite. Using 2007-8 stats to justify your opinion of what Hossa is like in 2013 is a bit weak.

      • Bob Lanz

        I said once I will say it again SHUT UP!. its ok to be a novice and not fully understand the game. Hossa is one of the best players on the ice every night. Scoring is only one component of the game, important but not the only factor in rating a player. who would you replace him with? He is a top 3 forward on any team in the NHL… now its your turn go away for the rest of the playoffs…. become invisible moron

      • Paul the Fossil

        In a development which will come as a shock to absolutely no one, you do not remember correctly: in the 6-game 2008 Finals Hossa had 3 goals and 3 assists.

        “Prior to that and after that “landmark” year he has been an utter failure at playoff hockey.” BZZZT, guess again. In 146 career NHL playoff games, Hossa is plus-21 with 111 points. In 2003 he had 16 points in 18 playoff games. This season he is tied for the Hawks’ lead in playoff points with 14 so far in 16 games.

        You are an idiot who makes up repetitive nonsense. Go away.

  • Preacher

    The Hawks have to finish their business with LA, but how do the Bruins compare to the Kings? The Kings and Penguins were the two teams I feared the most for this year’s playoffs. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised with how well the Hawks have handled the Kings’ “style” of play (apparently, “lots of elbows and an insanely good goalie” is their main strategy). Are the Bruins more of the same? More skilled? What do you think?
    And Mike Keenan.

    • BigCSouthside

      Bruins are faster up front, more scoring depth.

      • putmeinthemadhouse

        bruins are a tougher matchup than the kings for sure.

        buuuutt…lets not talk about this until its set in stone.

        • BigCSouthside

          agreed
          I was answering more as just a strict comparison of LA and Boston, not as a hypothetical for the Hawks

      • Z-man19

        I’d say last year’s Kings are comparable to this year’s Bruins

        • Why

          Very comparable.

    • Waylon

      I’m not sure how they’d handle a guy like Lucic when he’s rolling, he really mashes D – Men along the boards. Peverly is also a problem, I think the Rat could handle Marchand for the most part, if he’s playing up to speed (finally). I do believe they could get behind Lurch in the BOS end as well.

  • RVWW

    League will take a look, right?

    http://i.imgur.com/05uv1rj.gif

    • corbant

      Hockey play.

    • BigCSouthside

      Nope. ‘Hockey play”

    • neo1978

      League only looks at major and Game misconduct level plays. 2 minute elbowing minors even when they aren’t called aren’t reviewed.

      • putmeinthemadhouse

        according to that behind the scenes video that the league put out, thats not true. they apparently are constantly reviewing plays and taking closer looks at plays even as the game is going on.

        • neo1978

          What I said is what happens after that. The league “looked” at that play but aren’t going to go to the review stage. So I should have said review instead of look.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            ah semantics, how i loathe thee.

      • cliffkoroll

        Raffi Torres wasn’t even penalized for his hit on Hossa.

        Not that I think Frosty Tips should be suspended for this.

        • Accipiter

          Penner is Frosty Tips ?

          • cliffkoroll

            Yeah, him either.

            Fucker.

        • neo1978

          OK, for the record, any play that the game video statistician views questionable is captured and sent to the league office. Those plays are ALL looked at by the DoPS. This is true whether the game ref called a penalty or not.

          Now, only plays that should have been called majors or above get a scheduled call by the league. And then only when the play is viewed as potentially requiring additional punishment.

          So who knows with the DoPS but most likely if Keith was given a major and GM instead of a double minor, he probably wouldn’t have gotten an additional call.

          A play that was missed but only viewed as a minor penalty will NOT get a scheduled review. So the DoPS obviously view the elbow incident as at most a 2 minute minor. They don’t view it as deliberate and they don’t view it as a hit to the head.

  • BigCSouthside

    I was kind of baffled last night at the lack of urgency from LA in the 3rd. down 2-1 in the WCF, playing to tie it instead of being in a 2 game hole. Hossa scored very early to go ahead so there is almost an entire period left, and the hawks best playoff player is off the ice because he used his stick to rearrange one of your best player’s face. You are in your own building where you apparently are the shit, and will have to go back to Chicago where you got horse-dicked twice. How in the fuck does your team only manage two fucking shots?

    • neo1978

      uh, Richards isn’t playing and Kopitar is hurt (and a shell of the guy from the last two seasons). That lets the Hawks top D-pair concentrate on Carter.

      • BigCSouthside

        So those two guys being out leads to not putting shots on net in the 3rd period of a game that could REALLY help?

        • Preacher

          Maybe if the Kings had Mike Keenan….
          Boy, then you’d see some urgency!

          • BigCSouthside

            Mike Keenan would have personally put 30 shots on goal in the third…from the bench…with his mind

      • Why

        Fuck has Carter been a beast. I was worried about Doughty, Kopitar and Richards coming into the series. I didn’t realize Carter was that fast. IIRC he flew by Leddy twice last night.

        Still though, give the boys some credit. Effective breakouts can leave even the most “urgent” of efforts look completely ineffective.

      • 1benmenno

        Williams seems dangerous, at times.

        • Z-man19

          Venus?

          • 1benmenno

            Robin.

          • Z-man19

            Buck

          • 1benmenno

            Buckbacon. And Keenan>Hossa

          • Z-man19

            1980 Keenan?

  • Preacher

    Last year, we all enjoyed the Kings’ snarky/hilarious Tweets (especially with regard to the Nucks) during the playoffs. Haven’t heard much about them this year. Where are they now?

    • RVWW

      TheRoyalHalf crew is pretty funny. Would recommend checking theirs out.

    • ahnfire

      I think part of it is that they were masters at responding to the crazy Nucks fans that would tweet at them. Perhaps the Hawks fans tweeting them haven’t been as absurd enough to be worth trolling?

      • 1benmenno

        Doesn’t Bergman have a twitter account?

  • krome

    I’ve liked Hammer from the start – he was obviously one with the potential to become exactly what he is now – a solid defensive D guy (albeit with little offensive upside). I agree that he had a rough couple seasons, but this year he has looked quite good again, and he’s been lights out in the playoffs

  • Preacher

    When was the picture above taken? At what point in the game? Because while everyone seems to be celebrating, Q almost looks mad about something.
    (Maybe he’s channeling his inner Mike Keenan.)

  • Accipiter
    • Why

      Grr. Corsi.

      I can nitpick at the article. The argument isn’t that baseball can be perfectly encapsulated by statistics, the argument is that the game of baseball is easier to boil down to numbers than hockey and that hockey stats are problematic at best.

      But still well written and worth a read.

      • Waylon

        True dat – for instance, Hammer’s CORSI for yesterday’s game is in negative territory, I believe. No way does that reflect the kind of game he had.

        • DesertHawk

          Corsi is a reflection of possession, not the game as a whole. It says that in the article.

          • Why

            Gotta watch the terms. No one’s ever shown a correlation between possession and Corsi (although I’d agree that it probably matches up). It’s “meaningful possession” or offensive zone time that defenders of the stat will usually use for correlation.

            Still though, this was a step in the right direction:

            “Corsi isn’t WAR. Corsi isn’t the ultimate number that basement-dwelling hockey observers have isolated as the definitive statistic that determines the quality of a player or a team.”

          • laaarmer

            Dick Corsi

  • Paul the Fossil

    “There were more shots here than the Kings could muster in the third period.”

    http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/watch-fight-break-stands-behind-jonathan-quick-game-053248059.html

  • pompoon

    On a note unrelated to last night’s game, Captain went and got some adorkable photos taken again:

    http://www.thefourthperiod.com/photos/toews/index.html

    • Paul the Fossil

      Thousands of 20something women across Chicagoland just told their boyfriends that they want to go to a steakhouse tonight.

    • steeg of their own

      Is it bad that this photoshoot reminds me of the show Hannibal? Like, there’s blood on Toews’s apron and I wonder if it’s the blood of his enemies.

      • Z-man19

        So you think he’s cutting up someone’s liver? Backes perhaps?

        • 1benmenno

          Backes-bacon?
          /sorry

          • Z-man19

            Backes ribs?

          • Accipiter

            Backes-stabber.

  • Z-man19

    My friends, it has come to my attention, via our wonderful mod Ahn, that today is the one year anniversary of the death of Badgerdano. Cheers to you Badger. RIP fine sir.

    • Nineteen88

      This should be green.

      :’(

      • DesertHawk

        Badgerdano’d

    • Waylon

      I’d like to think he’s cheering them on for the Cup right now.

    • bizarrohairhelmet

      ALL THE BOATS

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

      Good and worthwhile PSA.

    • Preacher

      Wow, a year already? Still remember how it dawned on me that this insignificant blog bunch was in fact a really great little community. RIP, good man, RIP.

      • Z-man19

        The Badger, Cliff and Laaarmer Afternoon Show was damn good entertainment. Better than any radio program

        • Hawkeytalk

          I wasted quite a bit of work time reading that show. mornings were also pretty good. miss him. he’d have been enjoying this.

    • steeg of their own

      Upboat this post.

      • Accipiter

        I don’t see what’s so great about it, but okay.

        • ahnfire

          steeg gets badgerdano’d, and you get a upboat for the badgerdano-ing.

        • 1benmenno

          Well done, sir!

  • Beastoftheeast81

    I know everyone likes to play with the sacs of Keith and Seabrook. Honestly, the best DEFENSE MEN of these 2013 playoffs and pretty much the best defender throughout the regular season was #4. I know Keith has gone back to the Duncs of years old the past 8 games but Hjammer has been the man since the first horn sounded. Last year or the year before, not so much. But this year the kid has come into his own and earned the contract (Finally) that he signed.

    • Beastoftheeast81

      In respect to #7. Yes, he’s had two HUGE goals and still has a piss missile of a shot when he uses it, but he’s been a globbering bash of unmanly turnover poo in our own zone this entire series and for much of the scum series. I hope he’s hurt…..because if not…..oohh geez is he bad.

      • Why

        These are the arguments ones I’ve got to watch. To me, Keith has been all over the ice and has been far and away the most impressive Blackhawk.

        That doesn’t change the fact that everything in your post about Hjalmarsson is correct. He’s been great and is earning every penny.

        • Beastoftheeast81

          There is no question Keith has been the best overall defensemen the last 8 games. I think the best defender the Hawks have behind Corey has been #4 though. His passing has been fantastic and he’s not playing hot potato with the puck. He absolutely does not have Keith’s speed which is Duncs greatest asset but Dunc’s does still have the occasional crap his pants exchange behind the boards when trying to get away from the large neanderthals LA sends crashing in. The PP last night without Duncs looked horrific (Imagine that) and even from a guy like myself who’s been calling for Leddy on the point all dang year…

          I missed Duncs…missed him horribly. Welcome back for game five my favorite toothless ginger!

          Lastly, can we fire Kompon after the season? Maybe LA can take him back?

          • lizmcneill

            Maybe he would like the tropical climate of Florida? It’s not like he could really make the Panthers any worse….

  • bizarrohairhelmet

    Panger calling Kompon brilliant is like Ingmar calling an argument “well-reasoned”.

  • Paul the Fossil
    • DesertHawk

      The Sharp/Handzus hug, is a great picture.

  • Why

    Fair is fair. I’ve got to give the writers of this site and commentators credit for the Bickell-Kane-Toews prediction.

  • Accipiter
  • Accipiter

    Hossa needs to do more.

    Chicago forward Marian Hossa has scored seven goals this postseason, a League-high six of which have given his team the lead (his other tally was a game-tying goal). Twenty-two of Hossa’s 43 career playoff goals (51.2%) have been go-ahead scores. That is the highest percentage among active players with 40 or more postseason goals and the fourth-highest rate in NHL history (also 40-goal minimum). The top three players in that regard are Stephane Richer (54.7%), Dale Hunter (52.4%) and Mike Modano(51.7%).

    • JRF

      So he’s basically one of the clutchiest clutches to ever be clutch? Nah, playoff choker.

      • Accipiter

        His clutch is slipping.

        • Z-man19

          2002 was better clutch Hossa

          • Preacher

            And he wasn’t coached by Mike Keenan so he can’t be that good.

          • Waylon

            just another concussed Slavik fark – arse. BTW, loved his reaction after his goal – just a half – pinwheel of his left arm, like no big effin’ deal.

          • Accipiter

            Watching that goal again and Sharp makes a great little pick play on Richardson at the Hawks blue line, making the Kings line change even worse than it already was allowing 27 to feed 26 to 81 and in.

          • Why

            Were you watching TSN too? How the fuck are they defending Doughty there? Bad change by Regehr but Doughty got caught napping.

          • Accipiter

            They usually have great analysis, but I was just watching the third period again.

  • mightymikeD

    Some mention of Badger in this thread.. I wrote this on CtA today.. http://cheertheanthem.com/2013/06/07/wish-you-were-here-buddy/

    • Z-man19

      It’s good stuff, go check it out

    • DesertHawk

      Still jerked a tear. Weird to think how much the loss of someone I never met impacted me and apparently still does.

    • VanDorp’sMullet

      I didn’t know him, but this is a nice tribute MMD. I’m sorry we didn’t get to trade bad jokes and sorry for your loss and all those who did know him.

    • robondacob

      that was great. I was just a lowly lurker back then, but I always laughed when I saw a greened “this needs to be rec’d” post. He was one of the reasons why SCH was such a great place, and a huge factor in my progression from a casual hockey viewer to an avid/insane Hawks fan. Reading all of the nice things everyone says about him makes me sad I never had the pleasure to meet him.

    • laaarmer

      I will drink some Point in his honor, if they still make it and I can get it. Otherwise, it will be Miller LIte.

      Nice write up.

    • Bob Lanz

      Thanx MMD I am a huge fan of your work at CTA and obviously love CI and all the amazing knowledgeable committed hawk fans here. I never got a chance to read his posts but can only imagine how wonderful he was. For all those who were lucky enough to be around then my heart goes out to you on your loss and I am truly jealous of the opportunity you all had to get to know him and share your love of our hawks with him…. may the hockey gods grant him center ice seats on the glass for the run at the 2012 cup

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

      Goodness.

  • Accipiter