Blackhawks Fall To Flyers In Prague

The Blackhawks started their 2019-20 season on the road – in Prague. Chicago “visited” the “host” Philadelphia Flyers for a season opening game in Europe.

Chicago’s new-look roster lined up this way to open the game:

Alex Nylander – Jonathan Toews – Patrick Kane
Alex DeBrincat – Dylan Strome – Andrew Shaw
Brandon Saad – David Kampf – Dominik Kubalik
Zack Smith – Ryan Carpenter – Drake Caggiula

Duncan Keith – Erik Gustafsson
Olli Maatta – Brent Seabrook
Slater Koekkoek – Dennis Gilbert

Corey Crawford got the start to begin the new year.

Travis Konecny gave Philadelphia a 1-0 lead at 6:24 into the first period. It was one of the new faces – Nylander – who tied the game 80 seconds later.

Kane picked up the assist on Nylander’s first goal for the Blackhawks.

At the end of 20 minutes the score was tied on the scoreboard but Philly had a 13-11 shot advantage.

The second period was dominated by the Flyers. Oskar Lindblom scored a power play goal at 6:28 and then Konecny scored a highlight reel goal at 18:04 to give the Flyers w 3-1 lead.

But the Hawks didn’t disappear despite being overwhelmingly outshot in the period. Kane set up DeBrincat for his first of the new year with 13 seconds left in the second period to cut the lead to one.

The goal came while the Blackhawks closed out a power play. Andrew Shaw took a crosschecking penalty but Claude Giroux bailed him out with a matching minor only 19 seconds later.

Philadelphia out-shot the Hawks 17-8 in the second period. If not for Crawford the Hawks could have been looking up at more than two when DeBrincat scored.

If that sounds painfully familiar to far too many games last season… it should.

Michael Raffl scored what would hold up as the game-winning goal at 9:48 into the third.

Kane scored his first of the season at 17:53 to get the Hawks back to within one but that would close the scoring.

Kane finished the game with three points. Gustafsson had two assists to lead the offense for Chicago.

The Flyers out-shot the Hawks 38-31 in the game. Crawford was good but faced too many shots (again, an issue the Hawks were trying to fix).

Toews won eight of 22 faceoffs in the game and was credited with three shots on net in a forward-high 21:41 on the ice. Strome won five of 11 at the dot. Carpenter won three of his six faceoffs and Kampf won four of 13.

Sean Couturier and Giroux dominated the Blackhawks at the dot. They won a combined 22 of 32 in the game.

Kane was credited with only two shots on net in 21:28 but led the team with his three points.

Kubalik, Carpenter and Gilbert led Chicago with four hits each. Kubalik was also credited with three shots on net in 13:59.

Maatta skated over 20 minutes in the game including a team-leading 3:25 on the penalty kill. He was not credited with a blocked shot in the game. Seabrook led the Hawks with three blocked shots in more than 19 minutes on the ice. Koekkoek skated only 13:43 but was the only Chicago skater to finish minus-two.

Former Blackhawks netminder Dominik Hasek dropped the ceremonial first pick.

128 thoughts on “Blackhawks Fall To Flyers In Prague

  1. Keith looked pretty bad on two of those goals. Also took a bad tripping penalty. I was impressed on how active Gilbert was in both the defensive and offensive zones. In my view, he’s a keeper.

  2. Kampf nice game – 30% faceoff pctg, on ice for the PK goal against, and solid in making Saad and Kubalik invisible.

    Meanwhile, Q was fired, he couldn’t stand Pirri, Pirri grew up, and is making $150k less than Kampf w Vegas when he was an unrestricted free agent last summer. Aside from him, most of the forwards in Rockford would be an improvement from Kampf.

    Good day.

  3. Dehaan and Murphy will certainly make a big upgrade defensively, Seabrook and Maatta looking like a good 3rd pair. Kubalik a solid 2 way game 3 shots 4 hits and a blocked shot in 14 mins. Strome showed a complete game he never showed before, the extra time this summer seems to be paying off.
    Fos a wash, Kampf started out o and 8 against mostly Courturier and Toews 6 and 3, switched them up and Kampf went 4 and 2 the rest of the way and Toews 2 and 11, so Philly just dominated there. Crawford played really well save for a bad goal, Kane is still Kane, all in all a win be better but nothing to hit panic button about.

  4. It’s just the first game of the campaign so I tried to take this game with a grain of salt.

    But,

    The Hawks looked disinterested in this opener. Perhaps still in vacation mode but they didn’t seem to have any urgency for long stretches of this game.

    Crow played well, made some nice saves but the 1st and 4th goal he would definitely like back.

    Gilbert, despite starting out really poorly with the giveaway that led to the first goal , played really well. I liked his defensive and offensive decisions throughout the game.

    Maata wasn’t bad in his debut. noticed some good back checking and jumping up to join the play.

    But overall there was no sustained pressure, lazy defensive clearing attempts, and a lacklustre effort. I thought they were outplayed a lot more than the SOG would suggest. Quality chances were definitely heavily favouring the Flyers.

    As others said, once Murphy and De Haan return, I’m hoping defensive zone play will pick up. And I’m sure the offense will click as the season goes on. But it was overall pretty ugly today.

  5. Agreed Ian no panic but I hope there are some line up changes for the next game

    Would like to see Dach in at 3C (if he’s healthy) and Kampf to 4th line with Smith a scratch and of course Murphy and de Haan in for KK and Gilbert (neither did much to impress IMO)

    Would like to see Lehner in as well – Crow was just ok and the 4th goal was definitely a softie – basically the difference in a one goal game

    The PK still sucks although with Murphy and De Haan hopefully activated that’ll help but the PHI guys managed to lose the Hawks coverage constantly and get off shots too often from the circles to the front of the net where the Hawks D let the PHI players roam unmolested

    Keith was pretty bad and Toews didn’t impress either – not a good look from the leadership group

    20 and 8 continue to impress but need a better C – hopefully Dach

    Good for Nylander – thought he did fine as did Strome, Kane, DCat, Seabs and Maatta

    Gus with 2 assists but still a train wreck defensively – I’m pretty sure Boqvist wouldn’t do any worse of a job defensively so when the time is right for a Gus trade I don’t think the Hawks will miss him

  6. Not an impressive effort for the opening game. What a lackadaisical bunch overall. How do you light a fire under these guys. I doubt it will be this coaching staff. Not that they should have to.

  7. Tough overseas trip – neither team looked particularly good. Let’s see how the first 10 games go. We definitely need Murphy and DeHaan to get back. My one fear is having to rely too heavily on Keith. One of the greatest to ever wear the sweater but he is no longer a #1 defenseman who can play huge minutes.

  8. Maybe put Saad back up with 19 and 88 and Nylander with Kubalik and hopefully Dach

    Maybe win a few more FOs and board battles the latter being a major concern

  9. Wrap if Dach is used at center, i hope they use him with 88 & 92 instead of Toews there, to try and recreate the Panarin Kane type line with him instead. Let Toews go back to his type role before last year with Saad. His offense will suffer again quite likely but be a stronger lineup. Then still have Strome line to add alot offense too.

  10. Wrap, if there’s a Gus trade. That probably means they’re out of the playoffs. If they’re out of the playoffs, why call up and burn the ELC on Boqvist.

  11. Rusty you could be right but it all depends on the return for Gus – if at the TDL there’s a team offering a really nice package for Gus (whether there in the playoffs or not) I think Stan would roll the dice that Boquist could handle Gus’s role and not worry about burning a year of his ELC

    If they’re in the playoff hunt the return would heave to be very good – if they’re mostly out of the playoff picture then they might take a lesser offer

  12. Ian – you might be on the something there with 77 between 92 and 88 and 19 with 20

    Wasn’t very impressed with top 6 today

    Hopefully Dach gets into the next game so we can debate his actual performance instead of speculating

  13. I am thinking, hoping is not good enough, that not having as many games as every other team in league, I think, is a blessing. Like the first 12 games in 2013. A sch design ed to screw us backfires on the league sch makers.

    We wernt as good as we should be or are in the preseason games and this one game and can prob expect for the fist 5 or so games with that much gap in between games.

    By not playing 10 games when every other team in league does, we have the oppertunity to get going. Play 5 more games, when were playing. We play 10 games now with other teams games played we might be 5-5.

    We are Way better then this, even for first 5 or so games.

    Starting with game 6 and on, move your ass.

  14. lot of focus on the faceoffs, but the passes and board battles were awful too. I will say kampf was the only player who played the boards well. Gilbert was better than I was expecting both defensively and offensively. a fluke goal was the difference here. can only improve, but I agree there needs to be more focus and desire to win

  15. Can we stop playing these stupid exhibition style games…..
    0-4 Winter Classic
    1-1 Stadium Series
    0-1 Global Series

    I’m holding my comments about the defense, penalty kill, Colliton’s team Defense plan and the veterans taking another nap until we’ve seen the first 10 games. Hossa looked like he is enjoying retirement :).

  16. Thats what I said earlier before game and before training camp. I would like to see a playoff style lines.

    For the D group a 6 7 could be a good looking 3rd pair. Spread those min good. Stay fresh.

    20 19 65
    12 17 8
    92 77 88
    91/15 22 64

    2 56
    44 5
    6 7

  17. No need to panic boys and girls. And definitely no need for negativity and Bowman bashing and saying the same shit over and over and over again – you know who you are. They looked like a team with great potential – to me – and one that will need time to gel together. With Murphy and De Haan both healthy and back in the lineup, things will get better. Expectations are the enemy right now because no one here has any idea how good this team can be. Or how bad. After a dozen or so games, we’ll have more intel and a better sample size.

  18. The thing that would concern me if Dach is with Kane and Nylander. Strome would be with Debrincat… Not a ton of defensive prowess on those 2 lines.

  19. Tony true enough, Mo like those lines but may take a bit of evolving to get there. Smith playing hurt today, think he’ll be an asset when healthy, another guy who we likely see play different roles during the game. Think about it, healthy scratched Perlini in favor of Smith not a 100%. Makes you wonder just how long Perlini’s time is for this team.

  20. Just cutting to the chase … if the Hawks goaltending isn’t better than what Crawford did today – it’s going to be a long season and we’ll be in the draft lottery with a shot at Lafreniere. A save percentage of .895 simply isn’t good enough.

    Murphy and deHaan are better than Koekkoek and Gilbert – hopefully they’re ready to play sooner than later. The only d-man I can’t recall making at least one bad play today was Maatta – the other 5 all had moments of badness. Kudos to Gilbert though for a nice hip check … almost forgot those were still part of the game. It was nice to finally see a Hawks player execute an effective hip check.

  21. The first period was good…then the Flyers came out the second with more urgency. The Hawks had no answer for it, and their coach did not adjust anything in the third to get things going. Not a promising start, but it is only game one. Hopefully, they can get things together during their extended home stand.

  22. NO SHIOTS by Strome???
    Only 12 minutes and change for SAAD??? Does Shaw deserve more ice times then Saad? Cagg had about the same amount as Saad?
    How can this Coach defend Saad’s status on this team.
    To sustain some zone time you need physical play and 92,17, 12, 88, 64, 8 don’ty have it!!!
    To not dress an NHL player like Perlini is rubbish.
    64, JC pet is an AHLer at best…. period. And certainly DACH needs to play 3rd line center.
    Shaw is a 4th line player on a playoff team…Nice character guy who can move up in the lineup but this team still has the same problem, not enough grit up front to sustain pressure which would incxrease puck possesion, and decrease shots on net. Because, we all know if you can’t play physical when you cycle on offence how do you break up plays in your own end.
    20 19 88
    12 17 11
    92 77 8
    91 22 65

  23. Crow made some good saves to, so we let up too many ‘good’ shot of the total shots. They might just be a team that doesnt panic shot. Sometimes 30 shots are better then 50 and scew %.

    Not saying thats why, sometimes teams are like that.

    Thinking once the team gets used to the system enough and has success with it, then we will see more hits then we have seen in yrs.

    Blackhawks flying around like we did in 2009. It seemed like we were not engaged.

  24. Watched Vegas / Sharks tonight, no way Hawks can muster any offensive puck possession with those two big, physical and fast skating teams. Teams that give up 25 shots or less win games because offensively, they have the puck and sustain pressure in the offensve zone which the HAWKS have not been able to do since 2016. Again, I love 65 and 91 but these guys are 4th line players. Bowman needs to stop with the “this is the new NHL talk”. Of course you need skill but size matters… DCAT and KANE ok…but then you need HOSSA, LADD, BUFF , Bickell , type players to add toughness /skill combined. Watched James Neil play with Oilers and he would have given us +20 goals, thoughness and skill level rather than sign a back up for 5million? Maybe DaHaan will help but they will still give up 40 shots to teams like Washington, Boston, Sharks, Vegas , Islanders, Flyers, Jets, Preds, Blues….
    1st line – 11 19 88
    2nd line – 20 77 92
    3rd line – 12 17 8
    4th line – 15 22 65
    Extra 91, 64 or AHL

  25. I was at the game last night. I can say with certainty there were waaaay more Hawks fans attending than Flyers, but really us Hawks fans had little to cheer about. It really seemed as though the Hawks were kind of going through the motions through much of the game. Crow while very good much of the game, gave up two softies from my seat angle. Gilbert turnover terrible resulting in a goal, but as noted earler he did get better as the game progressed. Duncan Keith looked really bad on two others. Seabrooke is even slower than last year. Hawks seemed lost yet again in their own end. Some desperation late down 2 was the best Hawks looked entire game from an urgency standpoint. They put guys to the net, but we can’t win with guys such as Toews and Shaw the only ones doing it when they are down by 2.

    Perhaps this team needs time playing together, but really they seem thin talent wise compared to what I saw the Flyers bring. While one game does make a season, how does this group pass Preds, Blues and Avs in our division alone? Early run of home games will be telling.

    Czech hockey fans impressed me. Tap Staropramen beer was I think around $2.00?? UC $12. O2 Arena seating comfort not comparable to UC, but sight-lines to the ice very good. Place was SRO packed. Typical nonsensical NHL crap music between whistles way to loud. Pity they did not use an organ more. Oh well, it has been fun in Prague. This city has really stepped up compared to back the way it was when I was here in the mid 80’s(Communist bleak) and early 90’s(finding their way).

    Lets Go Hawks!

  26. Wow…1 game played and all the negative comment ,
    Like i said a few weeks ago the guys need time to adjust to the system and the teammate , just remember that more then 45% of the team where with other team last year at this time. ( thats a lot )
    I really think it will take a minimum of 15 games to start getting result .more likely 20-25 games( yes its 25% of the season )
    Hawks need to built a solid fondation first. Colliton and the rest of the staff are on mission …Make the Playoff this year . JC has a plan and they need need time to execute their plan .
    Gus is probably one of the most Dangerous dman in Nhl on PP ..i would not be surprise to see him get more then 75 pts this year. When Gus is on the ice the other team knows how dangerous he is offencevely.( on defence its another story ?)
    My wish , for Dach , is to send him to junior after a few games with the big team .
    Boqvist ..in Rockford for most of the year with a few games with the Hawks
    HOPE Highmore play games with the Hawks because he is plying with intensity and he is a really focus on the job .we need those kind of warrior.
    My 2 cents ?

  27. I have a feeling the relationship between Brandon Saad and Coach Colliton is going to be very rocky. Saad wants to play with Toews or Kane. No doubt his pride is hurt that he is relegated to the third line with two very inexperienced line mates.

  28. Saad getting 6m a year to play hockey, a team game. His play disgresses because his coach wants to use him in what he sees the best way to help the team. Saad gets his feelings hurt and should only play with superstars on his line. Sorry but did you notice some of the linemates 88 and 19 have had, did you ever hear them blame them for their struggles. Look at who Keith and Seabrook were paired with over last few years, come on suck it up buttercup and do what’s asked.

  29. Well the division prob has 5 of top 10 teams in it but yea sure.

    I think thats because we made that many good moves and finally have a full roste after 2 yrs of transition. We were very good the 2nd 40 games and the roster is much better then those 40 games. Then we have a go through he motions preseason and not look that good then. Then this. Then you just feel this way.

    So its what your saying its going to take more time then 5-10 games, and I always thought it takes every team the first 5 or so games to get up to speed anyways.

    I think your right, need way more then 10 to really judge or go by. Then we could be looking at an even better 2nd 40 then last yr and need a good ga,es 20-40 to make playoffs though. This time we have a full roster so once we start, playing, like STL we have the roster just have to ‘play’.

  30. Saader should also realize that were pretty close to having 9 top 6 players kind of lines once Dach is ready. Then the 3rd line will be like a top line and prob have 88 on it because of the 12 17 thing. I think 8 is going to be good and Kurachev can get here soon. We have 9 of those kind of players. Yea they might not all be 1st line kind of top 6 players, they should be 6 2nd line quality players in the top 9.

    Then were loaded again. Need to ‘play’ engage. Need to learn how to walk in the team system before we can run.

  31. I also don’t understand JC’s utilization of Saad – last year JC seemed to praise Saad quite often so I think he likes his game but have to agree that Saad’s TOI of 12:45 vs Flyers is what too low for what he brings to the team which is already something the team doesn’t have enough of – ability to win pucks back, on the boards, get to the net, play defence

    For a few shifts yesterday 20 was bumped up with 19 and 88 so maybe there will be a re-think of Saad’s deployment by JC – have to hope so

    Unfortunately his ice time yesterday is reflective of a traditional 3rd line player whereas last year despite being on the 3rd line most of the time Saad’s TOI was about 4th highest amongst FWs which is where it should be – don’t understand what JC is doing with Saad so far this year

    Kampf’s TOI was higher than Saad’s yesterday – in fact Saad’s TOI was the lowest of FWs in the top 9 – why? I hope this isn’t personal.

    I’ve said it before but Saad should also be on PP2 instead of one of 2 or 7 or maybe both – maybe just keep 56 out there for the whole PP it’s what he does best

  32. Another thing I think were behind the legaue on is dump ins and that kind of style. Because we were the dynasty team of this 20+ yrs we playe they way we wanted to and that was the possession game and the style we did for more then 10 yrs. So the whole team is used to that not this bring the competition closer style that other teams play.

    Now were doing a different system and different style then we have for that long. So were not as good at it yet. really only 40 games playing that way. I think thats why other teams look good and do better with the dump ins then us and some how know how to angle off the boards just right. Where were dumping in and other team just gets puck easily.

    We need to play this way for a bigger sample size because the whole league has 10 yrs on us with that kind of stuff.

  33. Yea I noticed Saader taking the puck off of their players when they had the puck a few times. Didnt see the others doing that.

  34. Jeeze guys the game wasn’t that bad….

    Gilbert’s mistake was one goal
    A bad bounce from Kookoo another and
    A bad play by crow on the wrap around.
    Take some of those away and it’s a different picture all together.

    Nylander and Kane are the same style player and should be separated.

    Gustafson and Keith should be separated to balance the defense and kookoo and Gilbert should have never been paired together.

    I think Dach will make the team so in that light I think you can either move Saad up with Toews and Kane or stick with Caggula up there.

    Kampf to the fourth line wing

  35. Hull65, I think if you were GM, the Hawks would look like the Bears’ offensive line and the coach would be Bob Pulford. Without a complete 1st or 2nd defensive pairing, with nearly half the roster being new, with playing their first game in Europe, there’s very little to takeaway from this game. I’d give it until the end of the first home-stand before drawing many conclusions.

    On the plus side of things, Maatta is a good player. Crow will get better…we know this. Kane remains transcendent. D’Cat is just going to score goals, a bunch of them. Nylander…hmmmm….need to see more, but, Ok.

    Much needs to improve including the coaching. I think we’ll see significant improvement over the homestand.

  36. Hull is clearly blinded by his own anti front office bias. He hates Colliton solely because Stan hired him. What he either fails to recognize or perhaps ignore is that Saad was relegated to the 3rd line last year with Quenneville. Before Schmaltz was traded for Strome and they had Anisimov Saad was playing on the 3rd line. But that doesn’t fit the narrative

  37. Mo think your right, building toward 3 high skilked lines, just doesn’t happen at once. Kampf’s role at 3c is a transitional one vs being filling a future void, Kubalik there because they had a bit of chemistry in Czech league to try and spark that line bit. Lines will evolve as year goes on.

    Saad’s role whether it’s with Toews or Kampf it seems is to matchup and shutdown opposing teams top scoring line, strength of his game. If Dach sticks that’s one more body closer to that goal. Shaw and Cagguila ultimately should be as energy guys on 4th line who during the game can take shifts and bring energy to other lines to give them a jump. There is a few candidates in Rfd that could be a top 9 player if they show what’s needed down there, so be changes coming as year goes on.

  38. I’m tired of these international games for North American sports teams. I’d say the same thing if the Blackhawks would have won. The Bears play in London on Sunday.
    Geez.

  39. Yea trying to, see it, before it happens naturally. Might be better to wait for it.

    I just want a 3rd line 20 65 77 thats got two way head to head written all over it.

  40. Mo, Kubalik likes to find room in slot area and use the one timer, looks like something that would fit well with Kane eventually. If Dach is ready and used at center, that gives Kane the right handed shot work with possibly, just thinking of combos. Kubalik plays a responsible defensive game too, take some load off Dach there, fos questionable though.

  41. Saad was on the top line with Toews and Kane in the ’15 cup run. In Columbus, he played with Ryan Johansen and Nick Foligno – two better players than where he is now. He put up his best points while in Columbus. He is a strong two-way player, but his skill cannot be undermined nor ignored.

  42. Not sure why everyone is putting Dach on the roster, other than practice, we haven’t seen him play against NHL men…..you all need to pump your brakes on this. Personally, send him back to the WHL, Get him top minutes and another year to improve. Other than that, the Hawks played ok, that’s about it. Toews was destroyed on faceoffs, Kookoo should be waived, and JC needs to develop new O lines before the next game…..and hopefully De Hann and Murphy are back….keep Gilbert up too.

  43. Trip don’t think his skill is being ignored, good players find a way, bottom line. Putting him on another line should only be done if it upgrades the other line, not to pad his stats.

  44. Thats why I like Saader on 3rd or top line, the way we did in 13 14 15. Head to head top line or 3rd line like a 20 65 77 line.

    The difference now is the 12 17 line. in 09 10 13 14 15 Sharpy wasnt married to 88 we could roll with any combination of 10 88, 19 88, 19 81, 10 81. Now with the 12 17 thing which is a good thing, it makes that difference to 19 and 88.

    Theres where we go back to 20 being the guy who can go to top line when we need to hold down, a Marchand like Shawzer did at the end of game 3 saying do not do anything or your going to get it, and he disappeared dirty wise rest of series. We had 20 go with 19 81 to equalize their top line, which was most of their scoring in playoffs. Then they had not much after that. We have a better roster then BOS and turned the corner and didnt look back.

    So I like to have that 20 doing that. Then release the 29 19 88 line when time is right.

  45. Let’s have some patience. We don’t need to rearrange the deck chairs after one game – at least let’s wait until the ship starts sinking.

    I like Saad and Kubalik together and hopefully Dach centers that line soon. Then let’s see if Saad’s talent is being wasted on the so-called 3rd line.

    Where does Perlini fit into the lineup because at some point he’s going to get a chance to play. The obvious answer is with Cat and Strome because he played with them during that couple weeks when he played well … course, he was also playing with them all those other weeks when he didn’t play well, so … ?

    Does Lehner get the next start or does Colliton give Crawford a mulligan on that first game and start him in the second game?

    With Toews’ faceoff percentage (36%) is below the faceoff percentage of the entire team (38%) – it’s most likely a one off that we will not see again anytime soon … hopefully.

  46. This all makes sense except for with this sch playing 5 games when every other team plays 10 games. Your always getting up to speed in the first 5 or so games, when its a normal sch and again we do not get a normal sch. I say F it and do the lines now because what ever we do the sch is garbage like that, spread out way to thin, way to much in between games.

    Do it now the lines. Your not building shht chemistry wise when were getting up to speed and its not panicking or not giving it time. Its the gap in between games that is another factor. So no need to not do lines different now. Its doing what ever works for these 5 and then the next 5 games after that that will get us out of here with a 5-5 record. We cant start 2-8 because we stay with same lines to developed chemistry.

    Develop chemistry when we have a normal sch and a normal amount of days inbetween games. Which is not these first 5-10 games.

    The guy who said 15-25 games is the thing to go by, is right, I think.

  47. Very possible Saad plays with 12 and 17, if the coaches feel he can add something to that line now or later on. Don’t imagine anything cut in stone yet, too early to close doors yet.
    I’m interested to see when they give Dach a few games, how Colliton wants to use him and how ready he looks or not. They stressed he is getting a real opportunity to make team not just a showcase, so see what happens.

  48. Ian – reading the tea leaves I’d say Dach plays vs SJ but that’s just speculation on my part

    They want him to play and I’m guessing he’ll be ready by then

    I think we’re all anxious to see if Dach can help them win games this year or not

  49. It was disgusting how similar this was to the BS we endured the last 2 years. Nothing has changed. Defense was poor. Passengers up front. Lackadaisical play at times, Crow asked to make too many big saves.

  50. I’m willing to call this a mulligan. Travel over to Europe, practice and play a game in Germany. Travel to Prague, practice, play and do all sorts of ridiculous publicity appearances.
    I watched hockey all night tonight(Saturday) and most if not all of these teams are flying. Instead the Hawks had to deal with another gimmick.

    San Jose on Thursday. Winnipeg on Saturday. No excuses not to be ready and sharp.

  51. Saad with 12 and 17 is possible but both DCat and Strome think left-right and Saad is one of the only strong north-south players on the team. Does he compliment or screw up that chemistry? 20 is too good to waste, that is for sure.

  52. I don’t know, is it just me, but why do I struggle with the physicality of this team? They’re just not strong enough.
    Seabrook and Keith’s game seem to be regressing. As for Seabrook’s game, he has no desire to be physical. It’s almost like he’s playing out the string. To me, Keith pairing with Gustaffson is bad for Keith.
    As for the Dach talk, it sounds like he is going to save us from this wretched state we’re in. How many games has he played with his teammates? Plus he’s only 18. Send him back to juniors and let him grow up a little more before sending him out to play with the big boys.
    As for Seabrook again, he should be getting 12 minutes or less of ice time, not Saad.

  53. From the great Scott Powers. Here’s what a scout said about Saad.

    “I struggle with Saad. He has all the skill and is a tremendous skater. He should be playing with Toews. He should be a star player. At some point, you have to prove that. I don’t think he does that all the time. At some point, it’s on the player to show that.”

  54. I hope Colliton isn’t as reactionary as some of the fans are after only one game. There will be changes made to the lineup as deHaan, Murphy and Dach are cleared to play, but I don’t think it’s productive to try a new lineup after every game that doesn’t go well. Sometimes patience is called for.

  55. Ebony, on a positive note, I agree that DeHaan and Murphy will make the back end better. Also like Maata – seems to be aggressive, not shy out there.

  56. I hope f Maatta and Seabrook continue to be paired together, they become one of top shot blocking pairs in the league. We know their mobility is limited, but both have ability to block alot of shots, can limit the shot on goal numbers and dangerous scoring opportunities by doing so.
    Rusty a very true quote.

  57. Playball this is a pretty soft team, and I agree an upgrade here would go a long way-but finding the right kind of sandpaper is a challenge. (or seems to be with this management)

  58. ER, sure not want to do that on a regular basis but we pretty much had those line in the 7 scrimmages and this game so thats enough games to see. I wouldnt when were playing, I would when we play like that. Mulligan is the right way to look at it because of all the extra hoopla ontop of the normal hoopla from vacationing like that.

    The team is ‘playing’ then sure keep lines basically same regularly.

  59. For hits physical stuff I would give that patience. The new guys are prob getting used to team system style other stuff so once they settle in I think we see good clean hits and that kind of play from most or all of the new guys. Pretty much every guy we got this summer is that kind of player and at game 30 roster adjustments with 11 91 and 17 has size.

    Want it to come together in first 5 games but it looks like its going to take that normal 20 games in before we start flying.

  60. Agreed and i’ll say again no need to panic button but it’s early and changes will happen this time of year too. We’re assuming 5 and 44 are paired together, though never had everyone healthy to know for sure that’s what is coming or not. Will he keep other pairs together, Maatta abd Seabrook look better than i thought, in a very small only. Maybe Keith who worked good with Murphy in past play together and Dehaan lines up with Gus, which has good points to it.
    Dach apparently getting ice time, how that happens has an impact on lines and as EB noted what’s Perlini place on the roster, or will he be moved. Just hope majority can say the right decisions were made at the end of the year.

  61. Shouldn’t be too much longer until they finally fire Bowman. His track record, especially with the draft, is atrocious.

  62. With regards to Bowman , it’s not whether you like him or not,you have to go with the facts. He gets credit for winning two Stanley cups , then he has to take the blame when things go bad. He brought in his coach etc , so it’s his team and if they don’t make the playoffs again this year there are no more excuses. This was the path he chose , if it doesn’t work he should be fired

  63. Hey Wrap, facts are facts my man. Look over his drafting aptitude. I could have done better with a dart board.

  64. Jim, this isn’t meant as a defense of Stan’s drafting record – it’s meant as a defense of factual data.

    Have you looked at the facts regarding the success rate of players not drafted in the top half of the 1st round, because until the 2018 and 2019 drafts Stan hasn’t had a pick in the top half of the 1st round. Since Stan took over as GM – here are the first draft picks he’s had, (his first draft was 2010) – 24 (K.Hayes), 18 (McNeill), 18 (Teravainen), 30 (Hartman), 20 (Schmaltz), 54 (Knott), 39 (DeBrincat), 29 (Jokiharju), 8 (Boqvist), and 3 (Dach). Out of the 10 drafts Stan has had – 5 are regular NHL players, 3 are pending and 2 are busts with really only McNeill being a bust because Knott was selected in the back half of the 2nd round.

    I think the facts show Stan’s drafting isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be.

  65. Boy we need more games- this banter is wearing thin! I really like hearing from those who see the games live- your perspective on how the Hawks stack up- offensively, defensively, PK & PP is helpful to get an appreciation of whether the roster is stronger than last year? Weaker? Or just too early to tell.
    Live games allows you to see direct comparisons- speed, skill, systems play and overall tenacity, physicality and passion… to hear that the team didn’t look to really be in it vs the Flyers doesn’t bode well for our playoff chances!!

  66. Remember 2 years ago in the season opener, a 10-1 win over defending cup champs, didn’t mean much, neither should losing opener this year.

  67. Jim – Stan has a good drafting record (look back in this thread for a nice breakdown on picks beyond the first round by Rusty Shackleford I believe in response to your intial post – I’m guessing you didn’t read it)

    If you want to build an arguement that Stan should be fired if the team sucks this year – fine – I might even agree with you – but Stan should not be fired based on his drafting record which is actually quite good especially considering how low his first draft pick was in many of the years he’s been GM

  68. Doesn’t fit the narrative ER. Also, I know you were talking about first picks. But Danault was a first round pick, just not the first one that draft year with McNeil going ahead.

    I’ll go through each teams draft success during the Bowman era one of these days based on games played and number of picks. It still won’t quiet the bias.

  69. I am not talking about his draft record. Hockey is very results oriented. If you don’t produce your gone. Let this year play out and hopefully it’s a good year and everyone is happy. If not he should be fired. That will be 5 years of poor outcomes and it’s not acceptable. He has total control of the team so he should be responsible.

  70. Not sure about that. Good starts, we had last yr 6-2-2 then we sucked big time and went like 3-16 for a stretch. If were not Way better then last two yrs (before the 2nd 40 games last yr) with a full roster and adding 5 very good players, then we have problems. I do not bet, I would have us as the 2 or 3 seed, plaing to how good we really are.

    Hardest division by far and depends on other teams records in division any team could easily be 1 or 4/5 seed. Can see it being close like that. Theres going to be a team in this division, that would be a 2 or 3 seed in every other division in hockey not make playoffs. We paid our dues last two yrs I think its not us.

  71. Not to make too big a sample size. I would look at games 6-20 and when we have 5 and 44 playing every game, full roster. To go by for the team.

    Still do not know how to play defense or new system then sure break out the whip.

  72. Dach was full participation today… Because of when he was hurt he was unable to get any chemistry with any linemates. They didn’t practice a ton in Europe so that makes it tough as well. Theyre going to take their time with him as they don’t want to burn regular season games on his contract and treat them like preseason games. The current team doesn’t have the luxury of babysitting a kid and waiting for him to get acclimated. And you don’t want to waste games and burn the first year off an ELC needlessly. We’re all anxious to see him play. But patience is a virtue.

  73. Jordy the Bowman and Colliton both said he was cleared medically to play. They want to get him game ready so they can make a clear decision on whether he is ready to stay or send him back to juniors.

  74. Arnt guys usually about 2 wks from playing when they start practicing again. I give it to the 5th to the 19th area before he plays.

  75. I know they were talking about how the Rangers don’t want their 5 day break now. I’m assuming this break has nothing to do with the Hawks week off?

  76. Noonan they have a about a 10 day allstar/time off combined break end of January. About mid November they catch up to all the division teams in games played, some a little earlier, from this week.

  77. Not saying xfile territory. They, say they make sch the same for every team a nd theres weird scetions at some point for every team. OKaaaay?

    I would imagine, they, make it more difficult on purpose for the teams that require more unavailable dates due to rink money making events. Which is where I think every team should be required to sch those, extra, events after the basketball and hockey sch are made. If you want to be apart of the league you have to abide. Then you can sch events for the rink.

    You know there are refs who deliberately won ref a fair game to certain teams and ever will. So prob the same for sch makers. People will say your crazy there is no such thing but we know these refs. Game 7 with DET that we won two times. That wasnt just a bad call. Someone would have gotten killed over that call.

    This 5 day break is another thing to use for and against certain teams, to their liking. No one can tell me the 15-25 instant replays we had from 2009-2015 wernt biased by a landslide. The Hoss 4-0 goal was so shocked that.

    People can think what they want, we have to play the sch we get so. What impresses me about the sch makers is they seem to do so well in giving us a bunch of longer beaks right next to a break anyways and then a bunch of games in not that many days. They do both.

    Really good example is how well we did with a normal sch last yr in the 2nd 40 games. It wasnt just who we were playing. It was the layout.

    I would bet there about 5 teams that get a luxurious sch every yr and about 5 that get screwed like us. Try to screw. Be interesting to see since 2005? salary cap era. Most will say its the same for everyone it evens out over time. No it doesnt we have had some kind of crap every yr it seems. I remember back in 2013 or 2014 we had like way more back to back then every other team. Well in a group of 4-5 teams that did.

    5 try to screw, 5 try to help. Like the ARI and NJ shit in 2012. ‘It was good for the league’ memo.

  78. I know it is early but the same old same old seems to be dominating. Porous defense, guaranteed easy goal per game against by Crawford even though he played well – you can count on one gimmie from him every game, No perfection there. Bad habits all around. WTF! Were we again fed a bowl of fake hype all summer long? There is time to get it together. I just hope we are not fed any more excuses. Thank goodness there is Kane! Hell we might be looking at another top draft pick again this year. Soon to be Oilers of the league.

  79. For the record when I mentioned those things, they happened when we were one of the two best teams on 5 of 7 yrs and the off yrs as well. Happened whether we were top team or not a good team because of no depth and salary cap.

  80. Morrison, every team submits a list of days their arena is available. That’s where the schedule makers start. There’s no more circus trip so that helps.

  81. Mo don’t think there is much opportunity to manipulate a schedule. As mentioned teams submit dates their arenas are available and everything inputted into a computer program designed to put it all together. Any schedule improvement reccommendations are agreed on at Gms meetings and passed for next years schedule.

    Right now i’m hoping for a team with alot of chemistry, with night in, night out, solid, strong efforts. If that happens most things will work out.

  82. Video replay, instead if making sure of the right call, seems to be implemented in such a way that there is more controversy with refs, alot of needless delays too. Did they intend to blow the whistle before puck goes in, hate that one. Is the stick above shoulder, is from this angle but not from this one. Goalie interference or not, etc, nobody sees everything the same, just makes a circus out there and adds zero to the game as far as i’m concerned.

  83. 14 goals against in 3 games for Florida. Sounds like they need some really great Dmen. Hey Q – we have two of your favorite players up here. Come and get them!! Seabrook and Keith for a bag of USED pucks. But you get the entire salary for each player too.

    It can only make our goalies better.

    Safest place to play hockey against the Hawks – the 10 feet immediately in front of our defensive net. It’s just you and our goalie. Oh, and maybe a peck on the back of your legs from a stick.

    It must be the schedule causing our defensive issues already. Yeah, that’s it. The schedule.

    Reading this blog is turning into American politics. Conspiracy theories everywhere.

  84. Sure I am not worried about sch or complaining just seems too much of a coincidence,

    The circus trip I thought was fair for how the games were spread. There was 3 in 4 nights but 6 total in 14 days always, so it was done right.

    I guess what I meant was I think every team should not be allowed to summit a list. The sch is done, fairly, by computer and then teams can rent the arena out. I know it wont ever happen just thats what I think. Same for no 1 game playoffs in baseball or 1 2 seeds get a free round and have big advantage of other team getting beat up before they even play a game. Just too much.

    What you said about playing good and coming together as a team then were fine no matter what seed we are this yr. Its prep for season 21 and on. I think were good this yr, even though preseason and Europe game we didnt look good.

  85. Good thing that were experienced veterans ourselves and we know its usually around 15-20 games in to know what you really got. Like Hoss says that.

    With half of the 23man different, and full roster, its just a matter of time.

    We waited 2 transition yrs, we can wait 15 games. Summer was exciting starting with lottery draft picks. Then preseason was a dud and europe, game wise.

    That europe trip can do good like circus trip, except we have 6 games to come together not this one hit wonder game.

  86. Mo far sooner see a little frustration about schedule and reffing than constant trash we read about the people responsible for the 3 cup dynasty we were lucky enough to enjoy.

  87. Well, spending $$$ on a backup like Lehner instead of a big time winger and playoff performer like James Neil (scored 4 goals last night) would have given us a huge upgrade on left wing with TOEWS. Thus, our top 6 would have seen SAAD and NEIL on the left side….Better than Nylander, Cagg, Kubalik, Shaw?

  88. Neal had a good game so that automatically equates to Stan had a bad off season. The same Neal who had 7 goals last season and was traded straight up for Lucic who had all of 6 goals last season. But, no matter – Stan’s an idiot.

    Got it.

  89. Garn: if by early, you mean it’s just game 1 of 82, right? Then, yeah, it’s too freakin’ early to step out onto that ledge on which you’re standing.

    Hull65: you sound like the Willie Nelson tune, To All the Girls (I’ve loved before.) Now we’re going to slash and burn Stan for all his moves, non-moves and non-non-moves. For players we’ve loved and forsaken, from afar? I suggest you get a resume in front of Rocky Wirtz, ‘cause you have all the answers.

    Me? I’m cautiously optimistic, even after 1 game. A lot of parts still need to reveal themselves including JC, perhaps most of all.

  90. Speaking of ledges … let’s not go sprinting to the nearest ledge if things don’t go well tomorrow. The Hawks are not going into the game against SJ under the best of circumstances. First, the Hawks will be playing after a long layoff which usually doesn’t work out well, Second, their opponent is desperate after opening the season with 4 straight losses, plus one of their long time favorite sons (Marleau) is returning to the team which should give them an emotional boost. And lastly, the Hawks don’t have a full lineup.

    Hopefully the Hawks can win, but if not, crawl back in off the ledge and wait a few games before jumping.

  91. In tomorrow’s game I be looking for intensity. If they go through the motions again and just try to poke check as they skate by, it will be a long yr. It’s how they play the game that is important to me.

  92. All well and good to be patient and if the Hawks don’t win vs the Sharks it’s not the end of the season but if they continue to bumble around in the D zone and play without urgency or commitment then I think there’s ample reason to be concerned

    The sample size is all of last year, plus that pre-season debacle vs WSH where most of the regulars were in the line up and then the Flyers – haven’t seen any progression so far this year

    I know that Murphy and de Haan are a factor but they are not responsible for the lack of compete we’ve seen or the blatant defensive miscues or questionable goaltending

    I’m not on the ledge but I don’t like the way this is trending – another stinker vs SJ and IMO they will have established a bad pattern but if they can bring it in all areas consistently from game to game I believe the results will take care of themselves – the talent I think is there

  93. FYI for those comparing Nylander , Joki trade. Joki is playing with Buffalo on the 3rd pairing averaging 17 minutes per game for those who care

  94. I was going to say, how may goals did Neel score last yr when he was a bad contract. The players style sure, we need a guy, who plays to his size.

  95. AURORA, yea even though I really didnt like anything I read about preseason scrimmages and what I saw in game 1 of 82. I feel and think same that were going to be good this yr and have a good playoffs with one or two or three teams. Putting us in better position for season 21 and on.

    I wouldnt worry about this season, even starting 5-5. Its when were up to speed have most or full roster ready and up to speed, then if we continue to do 5-5 every 10 then I get pissed in the wrong way.

  96. Let’s play along with a James Neal trade. He wasn’t a free agent. What would a trade look like? At the time he had 4 years and 5.75m remaining. They had 3 right shot defenseman in Harmonic, Brodie, and Anderson. They weren’t going to add salary in Seabrook. Doesn’t seem like a fit.

    Saad for Neal? You’d give Stan hell
    Anisimov for Neal? Ditto

    So I pointlessly ask… What would a realistic James Neal to Chicago trade look like? Acknowledging he had 4 years and 5.75 per remaining after scoring 19 points in 63 games.

  97. I am not saying I would have traded for Neal. I was just pointing out that he is playing with McDavid who I think is the best player in the league. Naturally he is going to benefit from playing with him . Both his and Lucic contract were bad ones due to the term of the contract.

  98. EB – agree with most of your post except the part that San Jose will be pumped up by the return of a 40 year old Marleau. If we can’t overcome that then it is going to be a long year.

    Rusty – really appreciate your fact and logic based comments. Breath of fresh air.

  99. Interested to see when Dach is activated if any bonus money added to team caphit or if past pount where performance bonus are above the 7.5% of ceiling by some not earnable by then. My feeling is Dach decision is pretty much made that he is staying unless he really doesn’t impress.

  100. Yea think same Dach is staying we already knew unless hes terrible for some reason. Even if he looks green at first or for a bit, think hes going to be ready by game 20 or so, then thats why already knew. Ready or close enough to ready then hes here to stay. Which means he is good enough to help team win now at 18.5?

    Dach and BoQ being settled in and starting to get established for the 2nd 40 games.

  101. I think Bowman indicated he is going to give Dach every chance to make the team. Hopefully the injury doesn’t linger and they can get a sense if he can thrive in the NHL this season or be better served in juniors.

    Not sure what the process or criteria will be to determine Dach’s immediate future. I am kind of torn on what the Hawks should do. On the one hand, I want him to be ready to play 3C, because Kampf just doesn’t look like he is the answer. On the other hand, I wouldn’t want to stunt his development by bringing him along if he would be better suited playing one more year in Juniors. I hope the Hawks do what is best for his long term development and not the short term interests of the team this season…

  102. I dont think the decision on Dach has been made yet. He was injured. So like Quenneville, he was unable to be reassigned while injured. Being injured before training camp, this is essentially his training camp. His preseason games will come via practice. They are in no rush to put him on the NHL roster for his pre-season games, Not when they are limited both by the numbers of games they have to make a decision as well as the number of games they can waste with him getting up to speed.

    Unless he absolutely floors you, send him back. Get stronger, quicker, and work on draws. At this point, I think he’s a forward more than a center.

    With that said, I know someone with tickets to Saturday that asked me to go. If he plays, ill be going.

  103. Amen Miroslav. I also think it depends whether theyre ok having him turn into a wing or are dead set on him being a center. Does him playing NHL games as an 18 yr old on wing help or hurt him becoming an NHL center? I legitimately dont know that answer as it’s probably different for each prospect.

  104. Had the Hawks signed Neil to the 5 year contract that he got, it would not have made this team a cup contender with the current blue line. And why sign a 32 year old forward to a five year contract if you are not able to win the cup now? Isn’t part of the problem that the Hawks have long term contracts tied up to aging players who are starting to decline? How does signing another one cure that problem?

    If the Hawks were serious about extending the Cup window right now they would have tried to find a way to make the blue line elite in the short term. Since Joki was clearly not in the Hawks long term plans, maybe package Jokiharyu with someone like Gustafson to try and trade for a guy like Trouba. Maybe the Hawks could not afford to extend him long term, (his 7 year 8 mil cap hit contract is a little steep…) but doing something LIKE that, would have done more to improve this team in the short term than signing an aging forward like Neil.

    Would that put the Hawks in the Cup conversation again? I don’t know, but the blue line would be a lot better…

  105. Dach participated in prospects camp, trained all summer, played in traverse city, tournament and was back practicing since quite awhile now,so conditioning not an issue at all, chemistry with linemates comes with playing not sitting. Just feels like they are waiting for the right time to play him. Seems like they really want him to be part of the roster, so lead to believe in theirs minds they pretty much know what they are going to do with him.

  106. You don’t think a concussion restarts all that? We don’t know how much practice they got in Europe

  107. Of course none us know how the Hawks feel about Dach at the moment but since we’re playing the guessing game my guess is they haven’t made any decision and will do a sincere evaluation of what’s best for the organization after a certain number of NHL games played

    I think they want him to be ready to stay in the NHL but I also think they’ll be clear eyed about the decision and not keep him in CHI if he’s better served back in junior

    He has to play first and then I think we’ll all know after just a few games

  108. Rusty in this instance i don’t believe it does, since he was back on the ice before they left for Europe, so not like he sat for an extended period.

  109. Colliton had said they didn’t practice much while in Europe.

    But you bring up a good point on bonuses. If they recall Dach they’re over the 7.5% cap bonus limit. So are they might be waiting on Nylander or Kubalik before they add Dach

  110. Gene Honda not in regular season form. “Blackhawks goal his first of the season scored by number 8….Olli Maatta”

    Kubalik has a shot…and uses the body. I like it.

  111. Rusty – probably right re: waiting to see especially about Nylander before activating Dach

    After tonight you’d have to think there’s a good chance we see Dach in for Nylander very soon maybe by Saturday which if it happens I think means that Nylander would be headed to the Rock – perhaps they give him one more game?

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