Brandon Saad, Blackhawks Dump Ducks

After an absolute dumpster fire of a game on Sunday evening, it was going to be interesting to see what kind of effort the Blackhawks brought to a Tuesday evening game against the visiting Anaheim Ducks.

Corey Crawford was back in net and the Hawks came out on the offensive end of the ice – something rarely seen in the final 40 minutes of Sunday’s loss. The Hawks out-shot the Ducks 16-6 in the opening 20 minutes, and a powerplay goal from Brandon Saad gave Chicago a 1-0 lead.

Rickard Rakell scored the only goal of the second period, leaving the score tied at one after 40 minutes. But after the Hawks allowed a stunning 33 shots on goal in the second period on Sunday, it was good to see them out-shoot the Ducks 12-11 in the middle period on Tuesday.

Crawford continued to play well between the pipes. All the Hawks needed was the offense to wake up.

It did precisely that seven minutes into the third period. Erik Gustafsson made a terrific play to find Patrick Kane in space and the Hawks’ superstar forward made a late night deposit.

Kane’s eighth of the year gave the Hawks a 2-1 lead.

It is worth noting here that Ryan Kesler is still a huge douchebag.

Just to keep things interesting, Marcus Kruger went to the box with 2:31 left in regulation while the Hawks were hanging onto a one-goal lead.

With 33.8 seconds left in the game, Saad and Jonathan Toews combined for a nice turnover and Saad was off to the races. Saad showed up to play just as he did on Sunday and scored his second goal of the night to put the nail in the coffin.

The Blackhawks have asked Saad for more and he’s answered the bell in the last two contests, showing that he’s ready to be a contributing factor in the Hawks’ offense and defense.

The final seconds ticked off the clock and Crawford picks up a home victory in regulation. He stopped 24 of 25 to earn the win – another strong sign that he’s back to elite form.

Luke Johnson, recalled on Tuesday before the game, won six of nine faceoffs and led the Hawks with five hits.

Toews won 10 of 22 faceoffs and Nick Schmaltz won half of his eight opportunities at the dot.

Saad was the story again, however. He led the Hawks with seven shots on net and skated 18:56 impactful minutes.

Gustafsson led Hawks defensemen with four shots on net and picked up the pretty assist on Kane’s goal.

Alex DeBrincat, Dominik Kahun and Brent Seabrook joined Gustafsson in having assists in the victory.

62 thoughts on “Brandon Saad, Blackhawks Dump Ducks

  1. Saad was outstanding in all aspects tonight. Great performance. Really liked the compete level of everyone.

    Go Blackhawks!

  2. Really happy for Saad! Now lets bring #8 back where he belongs which is at centre with Kane. I still think Saad should play with Toews and Debrincat. Leave Fortin with Schmalt and Kane. Fortin can forechech and dig that puck out. Scratching #64 is a head scratcher.

  3. Nice win-Crow really helps!

    Liked D-Cat sticking up for himself but when Getzlaf grabbed him from behind by the head it was 2 on 1 and nobody from the Hawks joined in-disappointing.

  4. Krugs gets tripped going to net, nothing.
    Krugs trips a guy along boards, called.
    Get the fuck out of here.

    Refs did excellent after 2nd period when players were going to locker room.

    15 grabbing helmet should be 10 min conduct/something, that crap got them their 1st goal. Garbage.
    Is there something wrong with Keester and Getzlaf, mentally.
    I mean do they have some kind of actual disability. If they do ok. Otherwise they got a lot shoes in their closets. Pretty ones.

  5. Saad has his edge back. Now he has to bring it every night hereinafter.

    Crawford kudos once again.

    Its amazing how the team functions much better when four lines are rolled out as opposed to when Martinsen dresses; if he is going to remain on the team (which is absurd), quite simple: just do NOT dress him for games.

    I don’t think Kampf has lasting power — he should be the 13th forward, not Martinsen — but he should dress ahead of Kunitz.

    The Hawks have potential, it’s a matter of eliminating the dead weight from the roster.

  6. Patience with the puck.

    Saader.

    That’s why you can always cut a tree down later, you cant put it back.

  7. Much better effort tonight but it was against a slower team that couldn’t out-quick us to pucks the way Tampa did. Better effort by the Hawks but they had more time and space in the d-zone than they did against Tampa.

    Really nice to see Saad play they way he needs to for the second game in a row. Use his size/speed and play like he won’t be denied. He needs to continue to play balls to wall and if he does maybe that Panrin trade won’t seem so lopsided after all.

    Head scratcher for me regarding Kampf out and Johnson in. I would take Kampf ten times out of ten versus Johnson. The Fortin-Johnson-Schmaltz line had maybe one good shift and one shift where Johnson takes another o-zone penalty. Hopefully Q puts Kampf back in to center Fortin and Schmaltz next game and then actually gives that line more than the 12 shifts and less than 10 minutes of ice time they got tonight.

    And speaking of penalties – Kruger with 2 more penalties tonight, after taking 2 in the Tampa game. That needs to stop or he needs to sit.

  8. They should have games on blu ray to buy/stream from the past.
    Would love to watch game 7 right now, with Tazer scoring goals to get us ahead, with a rare correct instant replay call when Hoss scores and Blackhawks are up 4-0.
    Every game, of significance should be available by blu ray/stream like that.

  9. I agree Morrison!!!! Actually I loved seeing the Canadian broadcast; they did a great job interviewing the stars; I remember them interviewing Toews before game 7; “If you don’t like playing in these types of games you have no business here.” What a fantastic quote that I’m paraphrasing from the captain.

  10. yes, Johnson ahead of Kampf? And now the Nick Schmaltz Coach Q doghouse begins? This truly is bothersome. Q needs to realize dropping a player down a line when the team was winning cups is no big deal but doing it when you have a very week bottom six destroys Schmaltz’s confidence. Look how happy Saad was tonight. Look how dejected Schmaltz was in comparison? #8 is the most talented centre they have drafted since Toews. Let him shine! Anisimov is not a 2nd line centre.

  11. Kudos to Tab and Mudturtle ……..

    Kesler douchebag. Check. Really needs a punch in the face. Needed many in Vancouver. Needs many more in Anaheim.

    Perry weasel. Check. Probably spending his rehab time watching game films of opponents trying to figure out when each guy is best available to get speared around the net.

    And I’ll add that Getzlaf is more than a punk by association. Running his yap after the period. What? Upset that DeBrincat decided to stand up for himself with (yet another) goon Manson?

    Go Blackhawks!

  12. Kampf will likely be back in against faster, skilled teams like Oilers twice next week, type games. Johnson a little grittier style for playing Ducks heavy style.
    Schmaltz will be back in top 6 soon, a matter of time. Would say Kahun’s leash getting shorter, he isn’t shooting, blocking shots or just engaged in the play enough.

  13. Crow sits out for 300 days, future career in doubt, plays no exhibition games and no minor league games then returns with 3 straight outstanding efforts. How is this not a major story? Because Crow is Crow and never gets the props he deserves. I, for one, was very skeptical of the chances of his return to top form and am very happy to be proven wrong.

    I only saw part of the game last night but it appeared the forwards were much more involved defensively.

  14. Nice bounce back game indeed. Can use more like that as the team looked much more committed at both ends of the ice. Hawks skated 3 periods with motivation, which certainly was encouraging, especially with our man Crow back between the pipes. How can anyone not root for Corey Crawford after what he went through. Both Crow and Gibson were very good last night.

    The Ducks roster is still slotted with dirtbags. I always crack up watching Kessler skate by opposing players with this feint of intention, like he is THINKING of slamming someone. Talk about a pseudo tough guy! Getzlaf isn’t far behind. Then there is Richie, and oh yes the rat Perry. Manson is a tough customer, but he would look great in Hawks uniform. Ducks are a team I can NEVER root for.

    Speaking of Manson, his “are you kidding me”scuffle with DeBrincat had me going yea! and oh no! at the same time. I give The Cat high marks for courage and stupidity with that matchup. Yikes. It was entertaining as the jawboning continued to the box and while they were both sectioned off. Great stuff. Seemd to fire up the Hawks. BTW, kids, don’t try this at home…

    While Brandon Saad had been skating around like a lost soul the first few weeks of the season, he is finally finding his form, with some much improved efforts the past 3 games. He looks quicker and more confident with the puck, and is playing a more natural game. Tells us the poor guy has been a head case and just needs to get his confidence back, which there plenty out there last night. Hawks need him to be an impact player game in game out.

    Gus with another highlight reel assist. Just needs to be a consistently better D man. I thought team defense was structurally better last night. I mean it couldn’t really have been any worse than the Sunday shit show we witnessed the other night. If they can get that fixed this team can be competitive, even though. Bottom line is hawks D men are not physical players.

    Season ticket holders in my section largely absent last night at the UC and more than a few empty seats.

    Carry this positive momentum into the Rags game tomorrow.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  15. Have to say the improved special team play is noticeable on both pp and pk. First pp goal Tampa allowed this season, so not just the opponents, upward trend seems real. They have a west trip end of next week, then 4 day break and then from Nov. 8th until Christmas break they have a brutal 24 games that probably will decide if playoffs are a possibility or not.

  16. Crawford misses all that time and returns in top form – wow, what a bonus.
    Saad turn around – another bonus? Very nice V.

  17. Best effort of the Season so far. It’s games like this that give me hope for a playoff spot this Spring.

  18. Didn’t realize that many teams/players are against him.
    Kessler is dipshit.
    Would think Perry is more cheap shot/dirty player.
    Would have thought someone in league give these guys a real dirty hit and knock them out, for all the cheap shots they have done. Yet there still in the league.

    Talk of department of piece shit. Is that what that was created for.

    Bieska, hahaha. Now he’s just funny.

  19. @Richard and @Phil YESSSSSSS best clip ever.

    The only guy I hate on the same level as Kesler is that face-licker Marchand.
    And I don’t buy it that Getzlaf is just guilty by association….All that chirping last night between periods, I *almost” wanted Hayden to jump the boards and clock him right that second. But Hayds showed restraint.

    Damn Twatwaffles.

  20. Coyotes waive Mario Kempe, fast physical player who could be a good bottom 6 guy. He has a $700,000 caphit and ufa.

  21. Well Stefanie, speaking of a bunch of Twatwaffles how about the Canucklehead teams from 2008-2013? In all my decades of following NHL hockey and as a lifelong Hawks fan those Nucks teams were responsible for more douchebaggery than any group I can remember. Some Flyers teams came close…

    Lest we forget:

    Bieksa
    Burrows
    Kesler
    Torres
    Glass
    Kassian
    Hansen
    The Sisters
    Bobby Lou

    cough,cough

    Lets Go Hawks!

  22. @Phil you are not incorrect! although I must admit I have a soft spot for Bobby Lou. His twitter got me hooked.
    Add Pronger, Marchand, Reaves and Khadri to the list. That pretty much covers it. :)

  23. Torres was on Phil’s list as he started his nasty reign in that core of Canucks. But yes, I agree with all of you that Torres will always be the leader of the douchebag parade.
    And now don’t forget Malkin for his cheap shot to Crow’s head last December.

  24. As others mentioned I think Schmaltz will find his way back to the top 6 but right now he’s getting the Saad treatment from Q and that seems to have paid off for Saad

    Schmaltz hasn’t been engaged to the extent he needs to be as Saad was last night – determined not to be denied – when Schmaltz shows some more compete he’ll be reinstated to the top 6

    I agree Ian then Kahun may be next to step down – his best fit may end up as 3rd line

    If and when Sikura comes up and keeping Fortin in top 9 we should have 3 potential scoring lines – even last night having some threat on the 3rd line in Schmaltz and Fortin made a big difference

  25. Admittedly I’m probably jumping the gun a little bit here – but is it time to re-evaluate our expectations for the 2018/19 season? Coming into this season I think most Hawks fans expectations were somewhere between the Hawks being a draft lottery team and a playoff bubble team. But those expectations were influenced by a number of concerns that we couldn’t know the outcome until we saw the team play. The most notable of those concerns where Crawford and Toews – if both Crawford and Toews didn’t rebound and be at least close to what they used to be the expectations of the team being in the draft lottery were well founded. There were a number of other concerns that in the aggregate would determine the team success too, obviously, but if Crawford wasn’t Crawford and Toews wasn’t Toews those lesser concerns wouldn’t matter.

    Well, so far Crawford and Toews look to be back to at least close to what we expected from them a few years ago. Should that change the calculus of our expectations? If yes, does that mean the Hawks may need to be buyers at the TDL rather bystanders or even sellers? Obviously there are a lot of games to be played before the TDL and the picture could change dramatically by then, but what seemed like utter nonsense to even consider just a couple weeks ago doesn’t seem quite so today.

  26. My bad. Need an edit. Autocorrect got me when I tried to say Gudas. And missed Torres on Phil’s list. Carcillo was pretty up there, and ironically he’s become a safety advocate due in part from Steve Montador’s death. Zac Rinaldo,Matt Cooke are the other 2 I can think of. But those Canuck teams win just by the sheer quantity of jackwagons.

  27. I think the jury is still out. Anaheim is dealing with injuries and has a hot goalie. If it weren’t for the goalie they’d be in trouble.

    If Saad plays the way he has the last 2 games, that’s a good start. I’m skeptical. The secondary scoring and the bottom 3 defensively are issues. Connor Murphy helps, but I don’t think that’s enough.

    Schmaltz is in a funk. Played better last night. But had a few bad ones prior

  28. EB how they weather the schedule through November and December is going to tell alot about whether they are playoff team or not. Don’t expect anything major to come or go there. I’d say getting a good return on Gus could be the biggest move, if that were to happen.

  29. I’m not planning the parade. Even if Crawford and Toews play at a high level all season long it isn’t going to transform them into a Cup contender. It would take a lot of other things to go extremely well for them to climb their way into the Cup conversation. My thought was more along the lines of raising expectations to that of a solid playoff team and if that’s the trajectory when the TDL roles around – then maybe the Hawks consider adding at the TDL which goes against the premise of not trading future assets for success this season.

  30. Still not thinking that way for this season.
    Though after seeing the first 5 games, 3-0-2, with 3 of 5 against top 5 and 10 teams and with a back up goalie, the young guys are good enough to get us closer to a full roster, full not deep. To be able to play. Young guys get better as we go along.

    The sch. Ian is talking about is the tuffest stretch in the 82 games. The 2nd 40 games are easier sch./based on not playing as many top 5 and 10 teams. Where we might not look that good record wise at 40 games and can have a big 2nd 40 based on sch. So that even tuff to say at 40 games.

    I think its one of those spots we could add during games 15-40 and if were not doing good at deadline, do what we could/would do anyways if we wernt yet.

    No one knew, but no one could say that 28 would be good and playing the 1st 40 games, 50 when comes back will be 100% and 19 is back to 100% to.

    What matters to me the most, because threst was eventually going to happen at some point anyways. Is that Crow and Tazer are back/100% and that is fucking huge for the yrs were deep for the 4th Cup. I wasn’t sure about that until this mth.

    What a fucking relief, after the last yr and a half.
    We knew we were going to be deep again, we wernt sure on those things and prob a lot people didn’t have the faith.

  31. Let’s see how the health of the key players unfolds-this isn’t a deep team and they need the breaks–And-
    “As the CROW flies”, the Hawks go.

    I wonder if Forsling is physically stronger than last year?
    Edjsell 2 goals tonight

  32. Yea, I think were good just not deep yet/obviously. We fill in/load up and get deep then were talking. Doesn’t mean we can win a playoff series/its just tuff to do so because we would play a top 3 team- round 1 and 2/NAS and WIN. Not even BOS or TOR would have to do that.

    I like where were at, where were going.
    Deepness is coming, it doesn’t happen overnight.

  33. @ebonyraptor..i was thinking about that too..could the Hawks be buyers at the trade deadline or at the very least, not sellers..i don’t think the Hawks will be buyers only for the fact that the last three players to make a significant impact on this team have been recent draft picks(debrincat, schmaltz, and Henri J on the blueline)..each were first round picks or in the cat’s case, the first pick the Hawks had that year..so I just don’t see them trading high picks (first or second rounders) at the deadline especially since we’re more than one piece away imo..I look at a team like Nashville and I see the minutes that their top four defensemen play, and I don’t see how the Hawks could sustain enough puck possession and thus win close games over a seven game series with the blue line we have..i still feel that this team is three quality defensemen away from going deep into the playoffs again..I do, however, think that they may still be sellers at the trade deadline no matter where they are in the standings since I believe Bowman would like to continue to rebuild through the draft..so whether it’s Anisimov or a combination of him and others, I wouldn’t be suprised if the Hawks try to grab another first rounder or a couple of second rounders at the trade deadline..

  34. For next season Entwistle should make the roster somewhere. He could be in mix for a power forward role in top 9 maybe even top 6 or shutdown 4th line centre at least. Soderlund and Kurashev could bolster bottom 6, Kurashev another potential centre.
    Through in a top 9 fa forward in the mix maybe with Sikura, Kruger a possibility for no. 4 centre if they choose to resign him and good possibilities for upgrading the forwards.
    Boqvist and Mitchell looking ready to be on blueline. With the way Crawford returned no reason to believe if stays healthy he won’t be Crawford and Nalimov may likely get his chance as backup to show what can do, potential is definitrly there to be a contender again.

  35. Good post 7.

    We were 17-11 with Crow and last yr rosters.
    This yrs roster is better.
    Were 5-2 basically with Crow and that’s essentially same as 17-11.
    Last yr without a NHL goalie, after 17-11 we went 18-29 I think with last yrs roster.
    This yrs roster is better.
    Were not going 18-29, with Crow and with this yrs roster.
    So any dreams of another top10 high pick were not, were closer to getting deep again.

    7, I think same we do whats best for mid and long term add to wave at deadline.

  36. Hawks v Rangers tonight should be a good game. These two teams have played close competitive hockey in recent years that have been exciting to watch. Looking forward to being at the UC tonight.

    Remember everyone, don’t get to up or down with this Hawks team. Likely there will be plenty of good and bad with this group. More good perhaps now that Corey is back and on form. Hopefully team defense continues along the sample of what we saw against the Ducks and they can cut down on giving up so many quality scoring opportunities.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  37. I think any move would be a somewhat lateral one. Say a Schmaltz for Nylander. The problem is Nylander wants too much. But that’s the type of move in expect.

  38. Noonan Cotillion had high praise for Forsling, winning the puck in battles, strong stick play and saying his gap play was key to his defense.

  39. Nice to hear about Forsling as well as Sikura scoring again

    Obviously it’s way early to really be serious about TDL but if the Hawks are still in the playoff hunt at the TDL I could see a small move for an expiring contract

    I highly doubt they would make a big move involving a top prospect or pick this TDL – they’re not there yet. Maybe with another year of growth after this one and a summer UFA signing (got my eye on Duschene) and a significant D add as well as Boquist they could be back in contention and then the 2020 TDL is more impactful

  40. I’d move 8 and others for Nylander. Worth paying Nylander imo. Not sure how the money would work out, but Schmaltz is probably going to get overpaid by SB. Sweeten the pot with some other kids/vets we have too in the system. Nylander would be a huge prize for the present and future and worth the $$.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  41. The insiders around Toronto seem to think Nylander signs with the Leafs in the next 2 to 4 days-either a bridge or longer term for 7 million/per, taking him up to about 28 years of age.
    (and I think either contract would be tradable to other teams in the future if it does happen)

  42. Wrap the way I look at defence is Keith and Seabrook are still part of top 4 next year. Jokiharju has shown he’s top 4 and if Boqvist on roster he’ll be playing top 4 minutes. Think Gus showing he can play top 4 minutes makes sense for a trade as his value be higher than if he has his minutes cut. Don’t see both on roster.

    Murphy would be solid Dzone start pair guy and Mitchell may good enough defensively too handle that role with him.

    Phil if Leafs move Nylander which is not a sure thing yet. Be surprising if they don’t use him to bring a high end dman back to fill a void there. If they sign him other young forwards like Josh Lievo or others likely be moved.

  43. I like Schmaltz and others. Not everyone will be here in a yr and a half when were deep so do what we have to do.
    We paid all our dues at once/salary cap.
    Build from within/draft and make good moves.

  44. Can’t see the Leafs trading Willie Nye the wrist shot guy just yet

    After he’s signed, in a year or two perhaps, but not this year

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