Blackhawks Lose Home Finale

The Blackhawks hosted the St. Louis Blues in their home finale on Friday night. Certainly the schedule makers in the league office thought this game would be more meaningful for both teams than it was when the puck dropped.

After a stirring pregame ceremony honoring Stan Mikita and a nice ovation for Patrick Sharp in what appears to be his final game in the Indian head, a game started that meant everything to the Blues and… a game check to the Blackhawks.

Patrik Berglund scored the only goal in the first period. And nothing happened in the second. After 40 minutes, the Hawks were down 1-0 and had been out-shot 19-12.

Eight minutes into the third, Erik Gustafsson joined the rush and fired home his fifth of the season to tie the game.

Patrick Kane and Nick Schmaltz picked up assists on the Gustafsson goal.

Just as Hawks fans were joking that the Hawks were going to crush the Blues’ playoff hopes, St. Louis took the lead again. Berglund scored his second of the night 16 seconds after the Gustafsson goal.

Jaden Schwartz padded the lead four minutes later, making the score 3-1.

Chicago just wasn’t generating many scoring chances in the third, even though there were clearly emotions on the ice and the bench when a nice video tribute to Patrick Sharp was played.

With 3:30 left, a couple Blues players took their usual cheap shots at Kane, who wasn’t pleased. There was a group hug and a commercial break. Again, very little emotion from the Blackhawks about the game that was taking place. Kane and Alex Pietrangelo sat for a couple minutes because of their discussion, and the Hawks pulled JF Berube with three minutes left in regulation for a 5-on-4 empty net scenario.

Chasing two with Kane in the box, the Hawks predictably struggled to generate much offense; they weren’t doing much with 88 on the ice on Friday evening.

Chicago’s net stayed empty when Kane and Pietrangelo left their respective boxes with 90 seconds left in regulation. The Hawks called their timeout to draw something up. Sure, why not.

Artem Anisimov came out with Kane, Sharp, Alex DeBrincat, Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith and Berglund completed the hat trick when a bouncing puck found the net.

The clock wound down and the Hawks successfully maintained their position in the top ten in the upcoming draft lottery.

Andreas Martinsen was physical once again, leading a light-hitting night from the Blackhawks; he more than half of the hits credited to the home team.

David Kampf did a nice job at the dot again, winning more than half of his faceoffs. Victor Ejdsell struggled, however. Schmaltz started the game between Kane and Sharp and played well again without Jonathan Toews in the lineup.

16 thoughts on “Blackhawks Lose Home Finale

  1. Started out with Mikita tribute and ended with a salute to Sharp, special night 2 legends, well done.

  2. I sure hope this was Sharp’s last game w the Hawks, otherwise what a false love fest.

    That being said, Sharp was awesome w the Hawks, I recall him in his first or second yr w Hawks beating the pulp out of someone in a fight at UC (game during the holidays) and wondered, wow this new guy actually seems to care. This stands out as my personal favorite Sharp moment of his career.

    He is far better spoken than his buddy Burish, he can replace him on TV. I give Burish credit for scamming (legit) millions from Dallas & San Jose without any legit basis. Good for him.

  3. Iceman, I strongly disagree regarding Burish. I think Burish is the best in-studio analyst the Hawks have had since … I don’t remember when – a long time.

  4. Nice tributes to Stosh and Sharpie.

    As for the game – what a cluster freakin clunker. Good thing there’s one more game to play because I would hate to have this game be the one I have to suck on for 6 months until they play again.

    Passing. When they suck at passing they really suck at passing. They don’t even look like NHL players out there. Unless it’s a one-man rush all the way up the ice, the play is going to get F’d up because somewhere in the play a bad pass is either going to kill the timing of the play of end up being a turnover. We could probably count on one hand the times there was flawless passing resulting in a shot on goal.

    Just brutal. They should be embarrassed. Hopefully their passing is a whole lot better tomorrow against the Jets. I don’t care if they win tomorrow, in fact I prefer they lose … but please look like NHL caliber players out there so we can end this season without the foul taste in our mouth left by a game like tonight.

  5. Draft pick positioning watch:

    Currently in 8th position. If they lose in regulation tomorrow they are assured of at least 8th. If they pick up no points and Edmonton picks up a point, the Hawks would have the 7th draft position. If the Hawks pick up a point or two against the Jets, they could drop back into the 9th or 10th spot depending what the Islanders, Rangers and Oilers do. So, best case is 7th and worse case is 10th.

    Lose Hawks lose.

  6. @ ER agreed about the passing – I started counting completed passes in a row at one point and they would have frequent stretches where it was one pass only before turning the puck over

    A lot of that is that too many of the D men can’t play defense – can’t win the puck in the corner, can’t tie up an opposing player, don’t know where to be, can’t make a quick decision or a quick pass coming out of the zone to send a forward off on a rush with some speed consequently the forwards are easy pickings at the opponents blue line. I know it’s not all the D men’s fault but that’s where the most work needs to be done

    All they can really do well is pass D to D – I’m looking at you 82, 56, 44 and 55

    Next year 82, 55 I don’t think will be on the NHL roster, probably 56 will return in his rover role and 44 if he’s not traded might be 7th D

    This current CHI D is no doubt one of the league’s worst – possibly the worst

  7. Bowman putting a ton of faith in Crawford’s return next year. I would still explore a deal with Carolina about Scott Darling with Carolina retaining a chunk of salary.
    The Hawks need a much better insurance plan next year in the event their starting Quarterback, Er rather, starting goalie can’t be relied upon.

    Secondly is Connor Murphy a #3 or 4 defenseman? Because if not, $4 Million is too much for 15 minutes a night. Keep in mind it’s still Q who dictates the minutes.

    Third, Anisimov. Is he still the big Center that Stan had coveted ? If not, can they make a hockey trade and get back a defenseman of equal value ?

    Fourth, Did anyone else notice that McDonough said yesterday to Scott Powers the goal next year is to make the playoffs, then hope to go on a run after that and hope that special teams come through and we get a few bounces. Wow. Somebody has clearly informed him that we need binoculars to even see the Stanley Cup. Pretty amazing coming from MCDs mouth.

  8. This game means little to the Jets, other than momentum (and possible home ice against teams in West)-so the Hawks probably win and drop a couple of spots in the draft-it would be fitting this year.

  9. ER- RE: passing all year… starts with Bad D/ beakouts… and they lack speed to fetch puck and have time to make cleaner passes (looking at you Seabs/Murphy)…

    when the D get Hemmed in… they lack size/composure (looking at you Gus/Oesterle) to get clean passes out…

    Sikura- has actually excelled in small sample size- of making clean/Quick 2nd pass out of zone…

    If Hawks had more “trustable/reliable” D guys… I could see lot’s of potential of pairing a Sikura w/ Kane or other speed burner on RW… leading to some nice “fastbreaks/ odd-mans ” in Hawks favor.

    But as mentioned- Hawks are 2-3 guys short on backend (with Current lack of top 4 D)… and Could Use one more Burner as RW (miss Hoss) or a stud Center…

    Dominik Kahun– gonna help??? supposed to be fast/Smart/ Good hands- time will tell… of course SB needs to sign him 1st… but Rumors are there

    Toews – muscle and Hands – have seemed to really drop last few years

  10. There not going to win. They already replaced there sticks behind the bench with golf clubs. In fact they shouldnt even play the so called elite players for fear of dumb injuries! Play 3 lines of kids. And swallow the pathetic season ! This was 3 years in the making and GM is the reason. Joke on how u don’t realize talent level was on decline but yet he continued to bring in x players sucking up crucial develop minutes of young players that could develop! Also not picking his head up noticing other teams making moves to next level. Bowman had his shot. Grade F. Shame this organization gave this guy yet another year to trade away young talent ! Anyone he does draft will be 2-3 years away. They use to be a team players would die to be on. Now they are on caliber of Arizona buffalo colo vanc calg. We are not a city of just making playoffs is exceptable. This was a premier org that had so many piks from trades and then given away for bandaid players. This GM can’t balance cap with contracts HE gave out without looking ahead on how many guys it takes to win a cup. And it’s not 6 guys ! Starts with 4 mil to bickell & a NO trade. Followed by draft piks to Jets for Ladd and Daly trade to pitt. This GM has a resume of stupidity from that point ! You can’t get players when u don’t have cap room. So u would think u develop kids by giving them a spot on team ! Relieved this is last game and hope it’s a blow out to realize that there team needs a true backup ! And not darling ! There’s your starting point

  11. I just hope Hawk fans arent holding their breath waiting for Bomo and Mcdont to turn things around. Even if we had a a good gm like Cheveldayoff or Tallon running the club, starting from scratch will take years not months to turn this into a playoff threat, it takes a special skill to see a player, and what they will become , like Patrick Sharp

  12. Slammer, the shit particles from the shit storm, created by the shit show this year are taking you into the shit abyss.

  13. Wall completely agree about Sikura. He is already one of the most reliable forwards ( dare I say players even) in getting the puck out of the zone. He is quick and shifty like Debrincat but doesn’t try as many dangerous plays. Now yes Sikura had a bit of trouble trying some ill-advised cross ice passes against Wpg in the final game but up til then had been almost flawless in getting the puck out be it chipping it out of zone on boards against bigger guys or flipping it out when pressured or putting it on the tape of his center or far winger even with clean crisp passing. I think he will learn quickly which passes he can and can’t make in the NHL and was likely used to getting away with a few riskier ones in college the last couple years. I expect big things and noticed he can do the fake one side and skate around the high zone in the other direction same as Kane and Schmaltz do so that’s now 3 guys that can make opponents dizzy and put d-men way out of position in the offensive zone. Like the potential of that for the next couple years. Expecting to see more from Edjsell next year. Looked like he played his first two games on instinct but played tentative the last couple and wasn’t nearly as effective. Maybe he was focused on learning hawks system or got a tweaked injury or something don’t know but I think we’ll be happy with him long term and maybe as soon as middle of next year. Want to see Sikura on PP asap. He can have Sharpies spot. Thanks Sharpie for all the memories!

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