Brandon Saad, Blackhawks Hammer Wild

Circle Saturday night’s loss to the Minnesota Wild at the United Center as a potential wake-up call for the 2013-14 Blackhawks.

On Monday night, the Hawks exacted some sweet revenge with a dominant 5-1 victory in Minnesota. Finally, the Blackhawks produced a dominant, 60-minute victory.

Brandon Saad had himself a game to remember the day after his 21st birthday, making the highlight reel pass to Patrick Kane less than three minutes into the third period and then scoring a sensation goal of his own just under six minutes later to blow the game wide open.

The new-look second line of Saad, Kane and Brandon Pirri worked out pretty well. All three players had a two-point night, with Pirri registering two assists while Saad and Kane had a goal and an assist each. Pirri won only five of 15 faceoffs, but played well between the two experienced stars.

Chicago also mixed up the top line on Monday night, and saw dividends there as well. Patrick Sharp finally put the puck in the net off a gorgeous play behind the net by Marian Hossa to open the scoring in the first period. Jonathan Toews had a strong night with an assist and winning nine of 15 faceoffs.

Sheldon Brookbank led the team with four hits and scored the game-winning goal in the second period, his first of the season.

After a rough night in the box score on Saturday night, Corey Crawford bounced back with a strong performance. He stopped 29 of 30 Minnesota shots to earn the victory.

The Hawks’ penalty kill was perfect in three short-handed opportunities, thanks in large part to the performance of recently-signed forward Brad Mills. Mills skated 2:08 on PK duty in the game and won four of seven faceoffs in the game, but looked very comfortable next to Marcus Kruger in a primary penalty killing role.

Nick Leddy scored the Hawks’ third goal of the night, a missile on the power play.

The Hawks come home to face the Senators at the United Center on Tuesday night.

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35 Responses to Brandon Saad, Blackhawks Hammer Wild

  1. JS says:

    I know it’s one game… and sample size… but I’m pretty happy with Q trying Pirri out at 2C. I thought he was better at the dot than 5/15, kind of surprised to see it that bad. Also hard to say how they were defensively since they were never in their own zone with the puck.

    Nick Leddy is really good at hockey and he deserves more ice time. It’s a shame he has 4 Olympians in front of him. That kid got a lot stronger in the off season and it’s mind boggling to think he’s only 22.

    Can we all take a breather on calling for Hawks to make trades because they are doomed?

  2. Cam says:

    The game we were waiting for… 2nd line looked great. Crawford was great. Thoroughly enjoyable 60 minutes of hockey.

  3. Reg Dunlop says:

    I think this was the best “complete” game of the year, so far. Saad, Leddy and Pirri are looking better and more comfortable on the ice. Saad is becoming a force and other teams are going to be forced to find a way to defend him, which means more room for 19, 88, 10 and 81.

    Brad Mills may just be that “scrap heap” find that every team looks for but can never find. He’s never been a big offensive player, but he does all the little things well. He plays the body very well, he has some wheels, he thinks defense first and he can win face offs. #51 looks good on the ice.

    Alot of people on this blog hate Sheldon Brookbank, but he is needed on this team. He is an average defenseman, but he was the first player to shove a glove in the face of the Wild player who went after Saad. Teams need players like #17. He is very unappreciated by the fans, but he is loved in the locker room.

    I do not think the Hawks will trade Rosi or Zeus. Their leadership is invalueable getting through an 82 game season and it is necessary in the playoffs. They are BOTH still healing up from the Stanley Cup playoffs and they will be needed down the road.
    But the mix of youth, experience and leadership the we have on this team is far superior than any team in the NHL.

    I really like this team!!

  4. Tim G says:

    Rufus… Leddy’s limitations still apparent? I think his only limitation is being on the 3rd line.

    I think Campbell is a very fair comparison. In Campbells last year in Chicago, he had 27 points in about 65 games. last year Leddy had 18 in about 45 (which would equate out to about 25 in 65 games). Campbell +27, Leddy +15… again more games for campbell to pad numbers. This Year, Leddy- 12 games, 1G, 5A, +5, 3PP points, 16 shots, 16Min/Gm. Campbell- 12 games, 0G, 5A, +4, 2PP points, 10 Shots, 25 Min/gm. Very Safe to say Leddy is a poor man’s Campbell.

    Leddy looks like a very good offensive D-man for any 2nd D pairing… And like JS said… HE’S ONLY 22! hes only going to get better. Campbell has a 11 years of experience on Leddy, so of course Campbell is “better”… but where will Leddy be in a year, 2 years, 5 years…

    and what more can we say about Saad. He is a man… I think i need a new Jersey this holiday season…

  5. wall says:

    Mills is running around like Ben Eager w/ a Brain!!!

    Pirri did look faster and played harder – perhaps everyone fears 88 so much that gives 37 a little space… But as JS stated – the 2nd line was not tested on D by Wild…
    It will be interesting to see that 2nd line vs. other teams w/ 2 0r 3 quality lines.

    Liked Q’s confidence in 4th line- they all play really smart- albeit not flashy… all have speed… 52/16/51 are very responsible, good IQ players.

    Best part of the nite was that Hawks broke out of there own end better than any game I can remember this year.

    Hoping Crow gets the call Tues. nite!

  6. Steve says:

    Just want to comment on Pirri. The shift Saad and kane teamed up, I was yelling at the TV in their own zone. 37 floated back and then floated to the corner. he totally 100% sucks at D. A lot of people post about it “want to”. he doesn’t want to. he has an intangible that is to not make an effort. I was like wow I want to remember this shift and post about it. He then floats back to the slot where a D man blocks the shot and it bounces to him. He makes a pass to Saad and the rest is highlight reel stuff. But funny how that shift we score a goal but it is the perfect example of how bad 37 is D wise. he never seems to want the puck like his life depended on it. Ever.

    Anyway, above avg O instincts and D/D+ for his D zone work effort. I don’t know how he can keep playing if his coverage and will to back check is non-existent.

    Anyway, Saad keeps coming along.

  7. ebonyraptor says:

    Don’t give up any goals on the PK – check.
    Score on the PP – check.
    Crawford have a bounce back game – check.
    Sharp score a goal – check.
    Pirri play 2C – check.
    Saad get on the score sheet – check.
    Score more than 3 goals – check.
    Don’t give up a 2 goal lead in the 3rd period – check.
    Win in regulation by more than one goal – check.

    More of that please.

  8. Travis says:

    Our 4th line is fantastic. Nobody makes glaring mistakes. Q ought to feel comfortable putting them out for 10-12 minutes per night. That takes a huge load off the top lines, and adds up over 82 games. Especially in an Olympic year.

    People have smeared Bollig, but he is a solid, serviceable, team-oriented 4th liner. He skates just fine, reasonable on the boards, can find the open man, defensively responsible, crashes the net like a maniac, and has an above-average shot. He and Kruger have shown pretty good chemistry, they could both have a few more greasy goals from crashing the crease as consistently as they do.

    Kruger’s reputation speaks for itself. Glad that he’s not getting trucked on a regular basis anymore. He’s much better at hockey when he’s vertical. And not concussed.

    Mills has been noticeable, particularly on the PK. Clanged the iron tonight. Small sample size, but certainly deserves more looks.

    Only knock is that they took penalties, but that’s not a recurring theme this year so far.

    Very, very happy with 4th line efforts.

  9. Phil says:

    Finally, a game where we could sit back in the 3rd period and relax. It appeared to be a total team effort. D men scoring helped open things up. Forwards for the most part looked committed to coming back and helping on defense. Corey was there to make the saves when necessary. This was an excellent bounce back game following Saturday nights low point of the young season. The Hawks put together a 60 minute effort and the Wild never looked dangerous in the 3rd. This is the first time we have put a team away emphatically after so many games where that extra goal would have rolled many teams over. Clearly our best 3rd period by a wide margin.

    Brandon Saad had a monster game. His increased lower body strength makes him very difficult to knock off the puck putting him in the same class with Hossa and Toews. His speed has increased and as well as his awareness of where people are on the ice. His willingness to commit a strong effort to the defensive side of the game is admirable. This kid should be on the USA Olympic side and playing with Kaner. It is really fun watching Sadd develop his game.

    This was maybe the second keeper we have faced this year that did not have a great game. The other game I can remember was against the Caps when Holtby wasn’t very good. My point here is that unless opposing keepers are playing above average, we will start racking up some high scoring games. If the Hawks stay committed to playing team defense we will see some lopsided wins.

    I liked the lines last night. It is a key ingredient that the Hawks roll 4 good lines as this will break the backs of many teams that can’t compete that way. I am also impressed with what Mills has brought the past few games. He could be the guy that plays the role that Fro did so well last year. A real puck hound. I reserve judgement on Pirri. Good that he is getting points, but he cannot be a defensive liability if playing with Kane. That side of Pirri’s game must improve if he is to stick on the 2nd line. Steve’s comments about Pirri’s tendencies are on the mark from what I can see. He is a work in progress and it might be a little early to label the guy.

    I can only hope we see Crow back between the pipes tonight. We get 4 days off after the game against the Sens. Let’s keep this train rolling. I liked what I saw last night and believe there will be more games like this around the corner.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  10. Mike says:

    ER, that just about covers it. Oh, BTW SAAD IS A BEAST and has another year on his EL contract. I am so happy to see Q stay with the same roster 2 games in a row. Like I said yesterday, I am ok with Q shuffling lines as long as he keeps a roster in tact for a few straight games.

    I am not a huge Brookbank fan but I prefer him over Rosy at the moment. Personally, I would like to see Smith instead of Mills.

    The most notable thing I saw was that Q was patient. He rolled lines even after the Wild tied the game. He kept his top 10 players fresher. Toews was still a bit high at 21 minutes but every player had 10 minutes or better. Yes I know spreading time is easier when leading.

  11. JS says:

    Toews time is always going to be a little high because of his PK and PP time. You take away special teams and he’s closer to 15 minutes.

    Wall- Do you think Q was trying to “shield” that second line by going 1-4-2-3? I also noticed that on the majority of their shifts, 2-7 were the defensemen. But in the same breath, he also gave them a couple defensive zone starts when the game was still close.

    I’ve been very impressed with Mills in these two games… that means he’s going to crash down to earth soon, right? He’s old with barely any NHL experience… that must mean he is awful at hockey… right? Either way, a guy like that will push as hard as he can every game and dive in front of the hardest of slap shots because he wants to stay in the NHL.

    I kind of like the level of nasty on the bottom two lines. They are going to pester teams and that third line actually has the ability to score.

  12. wall says:

    Steve- perhaps Q’s strategy for the 2nd line will be to skate them like a 4th line… 10-12 minutes… (Kane will get 4-8 minutes xtra on PP and after PK’s when Q “loads” a line…) and this way 37 will be “limited from playing vs. good offense”… now for this to work- the “Real” 4th line must be effective/responsible… last nite they were both!

  13. Tim G says:

    Not to change the topic off last nights game, and im sure we will have the olympic roster conversation later… but Just a thought. How fun would it be to watch 20/88 with a guy like Pavalski on the US team. I think that would be a nice fit.

  14. Peter says:

    Tim G. I like it. I think the US is loaded, but if guys like Sharp typically don’t even get Olympic camp invites (I know it’s different this year) Canada is just tough to beat. The Russians will either play great or be awful. I see no in between for them.

  15. wall says:

    JS- good pickup on 2-7 being matched w/ them.

    And I had exact same thought on Mills… he is skating like he is on Heisenberg’s Blue stuff… CAN he keep it up??? If he can- that 4th line will be a nightmare to play against!

    I will add- Mills actually looks like HE might score!!!

    If he plays 2 more games like this… I could see Q letting 51 skate a shift or two w/ 1st line for giggles!

  16. Sr. Brad says:

    Excellent game of team defence by the Hawks…as we discussed yesterday, the offence will come, it will always find a way with this much talent, but Team Defence cannot be turned on and turned off…this is all Q had to do to “turn” things back around…CC responded well, and I hope he gets the start tonight versus OTT.

    Leddy showed that he can play, and he needs a consistent partner that isn’t a handicap…Brookbank played his best game as a Hawk, even though it wasn’t a lot of minutes…this is a good sign, thus far this year, Brookbank has been a decent NHL DMan and that’s a big plus for this team…I think we forget that Q was one of the best stay at home DMen in NHL history and is a tremendous teacher…I think he has continued to do a wonderful job teaching our DMen how to be successful in this system we run.

    Pirri was good, and yet if he is going to skate with Kane, he needs to be more focused and “tighter” defensively…part of why some of you commented on his “floating” is that he has specific responsibilities as a Defensive zone centre under Q…Q asks his centres to get to a spot in the slot and then read and react…what you are seeing with Pirri, is the “delay” factor in the reading and reacting…every game he gets as the 2nd line Centre, he will get better at this…and he is NOT shy of the puck, at all, Pirri is great with the puck…right now he’s nervous and he’s simply trying to feed the best playmaker in the NHL in Kane…overall, Brandon did very well, and will continue to improve if left in this situation…

    Mills was great, and as ER, Wall, Tim, Mike, Phil all said that 4th line is key to our overall success…when we roll 4 lines, we win hockey games, its that simple…Mills right now wins out over Smith, Nordstrom or Hayes because he CAN WIN F/Os, is very physical, is responsible defensively, and can kill penalties…in fact, you know for sure that Mills will stick if he continues to win F/Os because that is a real problem for this hockey team.

    Also, Keith/Seabrook had a bounce back game…they have been anything but stellar thus far this season, but both played with a sense of being PO’ed and it translated well…right now, we look very good on the 1st, 3rd and 4th lines (if Kruger stays there), and if the 2nd line can continue this level of play with Pirri, then we have nothing to worry about…Brookbank is settling in nicely next to Leddy…Hammer and Oduya have played at All Star levels, and Keith/Seabrook are, well, Keith/Seabrook.

    We will see what happens with Khabby when he gets another chance, because Raanta has been lights out in Rockford and is showing that he is ready to give the Hawks the best 1-2 goalie punch in the league…all we have to do now is keep rolling those 4 lines and continue to get better at winning F/O’s…

    Great posts everyone!

  17. Sr. Brad says:

    This is from Q after the game…all we have to do is play Team Defence (and win F/Os)…

    “Pirri is good, he had that line [going] tonight,” Quenneville said. “It’s a dangerous line and we’ll see how it evolves and it goes, but certainly, offensively, you don’t have to worry about them making plays and scoring goals.”

    And this…

    “In all zones, in all areas, we didn’t play like we did the other day,” Quenneville said. “I thought we were very loose in our last couple, three games and I thought the approach today was good and the consistency was what we were looking for in our team game. I thought we may have had the most consistent game we’ve had.”

  18. Morrison says:

    Saader. Beauty playing.

  19. JS says:

    I wonder if Rufus intentionally disappears for a while after he says something dumb and then it backfires.

  20. Mike says:

    I will stick to my question about Mills. I love the fact he is playing well and hope he continues. But I have a tough time understanding his longer term role on the team. The Hawks skated 5 centers last night with Mills and Kruger splitting faceoffs. Is Mills going to move to wing or are the Hawks gonna push Shaw or Kruger to a wing? If Pirri can not stick at 2C is Mills get a shot?

    Look, I am not bashing the guy. But what is the objective? Can a guy who is already 30, started the 2012-13 season in the ECHL and has played in only 35 NHL games be your answer to anything? Particularly with so many young forwards in the system…….very interesting how this will turn out. Tell me I am crazy, I can take it!

  21. JS says:

    Mike, I think he just offers a different skill set than a lot of the kids in the system. He’s quick, physical, and been around long enough to have good instincts on the ice. He can win faceoffs at a decent clip, and was strong on the PK. Basically all the Hawks need is a 4th liner that can be responsible defensively. They didn’t think the kids in the system were ready for that.

    I also don’t expect him to stick for the reasons you mentioned. A 30 year old with 35 games of NHL experience wasn’t playing in the NHL for a reason… we just have to wait to find out what that reason is.

  22. JS says:

    Also, Mills was playing a pivot last night where he would take faceoffs on his strong hand and then move to wing for defense/offense. Q has been doing that a lot to try to improve overall faceoff percentages.

  23. Peter says:

    I haven’t been able to see Mills play yet, but it sounds like he does exactly what a 4th liner does. The Blackhawks overall team can sometimes take players who don’t work well elsewhere and allow them to have success because they get to use their strengths (i.e. Madden at the end of his career, Ryan Johnson, Campoli to a lesser extent). Using Johnson as an example specifically, he wasn’t a great player, but arguably the 2nd best center in 2010-2011 (I know…). He could win f/o’s, play the PK and was defensively responsible…sounds similar to Mills. I’m sure Mills might come crashing back to Earth, but if he doesn’t he sounds like exactly what we need .

  24. Reg Dunlop says:

    Mills is an excellent “pro” hockey player. That’s why he is still in the minors. They want him to teach the kids how to play the game “the right way”. He isn’t consistent enough on a score sheet to have in the NHL for extended periods of time. But what he does is use his experience and grit to spark a team for awhile. It could be a week, a month or an entire season.

    I said this before, sometimes a team will find a guy on the “scrap heap” and use him for a short period of time. He must have really good defensive skills because Q would never put him on the ice if he just skated like any of the kids on the Edmonton Oilers. He knows his role and is more than willing to accept it.

    God bless a guy like him who never gave up his dream of playing in the NHL and has paid his dues over and over in the minors. I hope we keep using him and he keeps playing hard and consistent minutes.

  25. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    I could give a rat’s ass about those of you who complain about my assessments. I’ll be at the game tonight and will have several players under my microscope. Thoughts…

    1. I’m not a big Leddy fan. Haven’t been for awhile. I have NEVER questioned his inherent talent level and gifts. But he doesn’t have a future in Chicago. By this time next year the odds are greater than 50% that he is wearing another uniform. That’s not an indictment at all…in fact, I expect Stan to get a great return for Leddy.

    2. I’m not a Pirri fan. Never have been. And I have ALWAYS questioned his talent level for this league. Last night? My goodness, he doesn’t play defense folks. And if you think that is sustainable on a line pairing with Patrick Kane once we start the grind of Western Conference hockey, well then I don’t know what to say. It won’t work. Pirri sucks. Nice kid who I am sure sends his Grandma a bouquet of flowers on her birthday but who has no business on this roster on a longer-term basis.

    3. Mills is going to fit. He’s grindy and he does the energy player / dirty work role as capably as his limited skill set shall allow him. He is better fit than Smith. He is better hockey player than Smith. And yes, Smith sucks at this level. He’s the cute little pet of some fans…my wife and teenage daughter suggest it has something to do with his boyish good looks. Regardless, Mills >>> Smith. Score yet another one for Stanley.

    4. Bollig has carved out a role. All of his critics (which I have never been) can go pound sand up their ass at this point, because Bollig is a physical presence on the ice and can actually do things in both the offensive and defensive zones. He isn’t fancy, and he sure has a shitload of limitations…but the laugh last is with him.

  26. Tab Bamford says:

    What I love about Rufus is he throws the uber-talented and productive players under the bus but hosts a parade for the grinders. 22-year-old Nick Leddy doesn’t have a future in Chicago… but 30-year-old Brad Mills does.

    I will say this: wholeheartedly agree that Brandon Bollig has done a really nice job of being a functional hockey player that isn’t a liability this year. Sure, he leads the team in PIM… but there haven’t been stupid, wreckless plays or worthless fights this season.

  27. mhawk says:

    Rufus – the attacks on some of these players are laughable
    1>you don’t trade a 22 yr. old defenseman with Leddy’s skills especially when your top pair will soon both be over 30. Clendening will get here too, don’t worry
    2>why does Pirri have to be the second coming of Malkin to get some credit? Watch Mike Ribero – same player, not fast, good hands, soft on contact, lethal on offense. A pt a game player. Scorers are not easy to find.
    3>it’s clear that the first person to star on the PK gets the job – whether that’s Mills, Smith, Nordstrom, etc. Otherwise they’re gone.
    4>Bollig fits the Eager, Fraser, play against St. Louis role – he will play a few games then sit a few games then play a few. Nothing ever changes for Q on that 4th line

  28. wall says:

    Rufus- luv the passion… agree w/ #3 and #4… also – I am not a big Pirri fan… I see the same problems that you see… BUT he doesn’t suck, AND he deserves the chance to fail (which like you – I think he will not work on Q’s team- skating/D wise average to below).

    But he has earned a chance to play/fail on that 2nd line- cuz 26 is old, and we don’t have any one else to put there! The kids in Rock did not do anything special like Saad did in pre-season to suggest they were ready!!! ( except for TT- but TT declared himself not ready!!! oh by the way he scored 1g,1a today!)

    Mills is skating like Robby Benson on Black Beauties in “One on One”- Hope that buzz doesn’t wear off!!! His hair is on fire!!!!

  29. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    Brandon Pirri? So here is what we have….a guy who shows glimpses of being decent in the faceoff circle….BUT, a guy who is not a great skater and shockingly slow and a guy who is going to be a liability on defense. So tell me again how a player of that description will EVER fit longer-term on a line with Patrick Kane? Sure, I guess he can flip lines. But which line?!? The 4th line needs to be the Grindy McGrindy work your ass off line, and he HARDLY fits the description for that sort of duty. The 3rd line is the maniacal two-way workaholic line, whether it is Saad or Bickell at LW. So how on earth does Pirri ever usurp what Shaw / Kruger would bring to that line?!?
    So in summary, either Pirri becomes a servicable 2nd line Center or he has no role on this team. It is what it is. Again, if you want to label it personal attack of Pirri, then be that narrow minded.

    Leddy? Well….reading is fundamental. I will say this again…he isn’t a longer-term fit on this club. Clendening will be a better version of the good traits of Leddy and a better fit. Leddy is destined to be traded…perhaps as soon as the trade deadline this season. But that doesn’t mean he isn’t talented for Christ sake ! He’s not long for Chicago, and I for one am fine with that. Just don’t trade him to one of the Western Conference powers, unless some club gives us a crapload in return (which they just might). Odds of Leddy being with the Blackhawks next season? I put at less than 50%. If some of you are that insecure where you conclude that I’m making a personal attack on Leddy and his hockey acumen, then I can’t help you. The fact is that great hockey teams frequently trade away good hockey players….Leddy shall fall into that category because he really isn’t a wondrous fit. He’s not going to replace Keith or Oduya in their identified roles on this club. Rather he either is a wondrous 3rd pairing lead skater or he is playing in another city. Not rocket science.

    Now I’m hoping in the car and headed to the UC. 90 minutes of slogging thru rush hour on the Kennedy I imagine and I’d like to get a quick bite to eat so I can enjoy the game. P.S. Ottawa poses a few matchup issues that will be interesting. I don’t think the Hawks will take the Sens lightily…lets just put it that way.

  30. RyanDale says:

    What a difference a day, or 2, make. I really like home and homes. Gives an exrta edge to the games, not playoff intensity, but still fun. Thought we played a really sound road game and set and kept the pace to our advantage. So simple to say but at time hard to execute. If 10/19/81 skate the rest of the season together that would be fine with me. I just know 10 is gonna get hot as a pistol soon. He’s just that way. PKill came around away from home, good sign since Minny is pretty tuff on PP at home. My gosh I don’t know how they can run Suter any more ragged than they do currently.

    Just a few thoughts a numbers over the 2 games, not often you see us outhit someone by a 2-1 margin as in the Loss. PP was 20% over 2games while PK was combined 1/8 so trending upward there but note Ottawa very good PP on raod but avg overall. I hate to even bring up faceoffs but Shaw had a real tuff go vs Minny going 1/6 at home and just 3-12 at Minny. Mills has helped in that area though not taking alot of the just yet. Pirri just 1/8 in the Ozone in the win last night. Buy Minny is a decent team at the dot so losing a few to Koivu, Brodzniak is gonna happen. But we’ve got to get better in the Ozone on PP for sure including f/o. Great to see 50 come back really strong in the win

    Ottawa should be an interesting match. They are disciplined most times when it comes to penalties, their PK is very solid esp of late. Their PP while terrible at home at 6% is great on the road at 28per. So lets stay out of the box tonight at all costs just in case! Sens give up about 37 spg so lets hoe we can top that number and hope more than a few go in. Spezza has 7g in just 10games and only 28shots. He and Karlsson combine -9

    Really looking forward to seeing the Sens in town, just hop the www feed is a good one tonight!!

  31. RyanDale says:

    and Leddy does not suck. He carried the dmen on his back for a while last season

  32. JS says:

    What does Johnny Oduya do better than Nick Leddy? Further, you’d prefer keeping a 32 year old defenseman versus a 22 year old defensemen? Alright…

    Clendening is going to do good stuff in the NHL, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for him and Leddy.

    And on Pirri… the kid is 22 years old, why do you think he can’t improve on defense? Has Kane gotten better at defense since coming into the league? Has Toews? Has Saad? Has EVERYONE that plays for Q? To think he is now what he will be when he is 25 is just silly. Martin St Louis didn’t really figure it out until he was 27.

    Point is, Pirri has natural skills and instincts that should turn him into a good hockey player. He is 22 years old and needs the proper coaching and experience to make him a solid two way hockey player. It doesn’t happen overnight.

  33. Morrison says:

    Teuvo

    2 pts in first 9 games
    8 pts in last 5 games

  34. Cam says:

    Bulin sieve

  35. wall says:

    JS- 37 deserves chance cuz no one else is there ready…
    but 37 can only improve so much D wise- cuz he is an average skater… and you can’t teach speed!!! TT is a “weak” board guy too!!! But his speed allows him to Dart around and steal/stick pucks away…

    Hayes- worked on his skating all summer (and his straight line speed is ok- but still awkward agility/transition and that is why he has trouble sticking w/ Hawks)… they both could play for another team and score 20 g’s… but will never be good D/checking forwards! -IMO

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