Brent Seabrook, Blackhawks Blow Past Avalanche

Seabrook handshakes

Led by strong defensive play and a game-winning goal from Brent Seabrook, the Blackhawks went into Denver and handled their business against the sliding Avalanche on Saturday night.

The Hawks had to overcome a mediocre start, but had enough to finish the game’s opening 20 minutes with the game tied at two goals. Nathan MacKinnon scored 6:56 into the game, but that lead lasted only 31 seconds. Brandon Saad, who lost his beard over the Christmas break, scored his eighth of the season to bring the game even.

Erik Johnson scored less than 90 seconds after Saad’s goal, however, putting the Avs up 2-1. The lead would last longer than seven minutes this time until Patrick Kane scored his 17th of the season to tie the game.

Corey Crawford allowed two goals against only six shots in the opening period, but shut it down from there. Once the Hawks took the lead in the second, Crawford was solid.

Chicago had two power play opportunities in the first period and they were both ugly (to put it mildly). But when they came back for a third advantage in the second period, they were able to generate more quality looks and Seabrook got a shot past Calvin Pickard for his seventh of the season and the eventual game-winner.

Patrick Sharp, celebrating his 33rd birthday on Saturday, scored a power play goal in the third period. He recorded a hat trick on his birthday against Colorado last year, and recorded his sixth of the 2014-15 season this year.

In the middle of the third period, the Hawks were forced to kill a 5-on-3 as Johnny Oduya went to the box for hooking and was joined by Niklas Hjalmarsson 80 seconds later. The Blackhawks were able to successfully kill the 40 second two-man advantage and the remaining power play, and Colorado was not able to generate many good opportunities after those power plays concluded.

Kane added an empty net goal for his second of the night and 18th of the season. Matt Duchene gave him a whack between the legs as the goal horn sounded, and the teams came together for a conversation in the corner. It was a frustrating night for Duchene, who was caught from behind by Seabrook on a would-be breakaway and was in the box when Sharp scored his power play goal in the third.

After Duchene lost his composure, the Avs lost the game.

Kane (two goals, one assist) and Jonathan Toews (two assists) finished with multi-point evenings. Marian Hossa, Duncan Keith, David Rundblad, Ben Smith and Kris Versteeg picked up assists in the victory as well, while Crawford finished the night with 23 saves.

For Chicago, Kane now has three 3-point games in his last five contests, and has 16 points (eight goals, eight assists) in 12 games in December.

Smith won six of ten faceoffs and led the team with three hits, while Hjalmarsson was credited with a team-leading four blocked shots.

Daniel Carcillo skated only ten shifts (7:16) and Bryan Bickell got on the ice for only 14 (8:35), the lowest ice time totals among Hawks forwards. Tim Erixon (12 shifts, 7:37) was the low man on the blue line.

The Hawks will finish the calendar year at home against Nashville on Monday.

Kane COL

16 thoughts on “Brent Seabrook, Blackhawks Blow Past Avalanche

  1. Great bounce back for the Blackhawks. Thats a long trip and a long day by the time they get back to Chicago. Got a bit concerned for Crawford after the quick 2 goals but he settled in nicely like he always does. Seabrooks goal was a thing of beauty. 2 huge games coming up with Nashville in a battle for first and then the Classic! Going to be outstanding viewing and competition.

  2. Excellent 2nd and 3rd periods.

    The power play looked super, precise passing and 2 goals.

    I loved nordstrom’s game, very hard on the puck, plays really hard every shift.

    On the back end hammer and oduya were excellent, Seabrook was stellar and I will say this about Rundblad, I counted at least 6 really really good tape to tape passes out of the defensive zone. Once he has the puck on his forehand and has a look up ice he’s completely fine.

    Good won when you think about the fact that these guys were at a funeral on 12/26 , then at the airport for wheels up on 12/27. That’s a very short Christmas break.

  3. I agree with the MM, Craig, and Morrison comments…and like Q said, “…after the first ten minutes”.

    I didn’t know that Duchene was such a dickhead.

    …get ready for Monday.

  4. Sweet victory all things considered and especially after the scrambly first 10 minutes.

    Eddzo has been singing Seabrook’s praises lately and I agree with him – Seabs has been playing at a very high level on both sides of the puck.

    Nashville keeps winning – hopefully that stops Monday.

    Go Hawks ! ! ! !

  5. I like that Q put Kane out there at the end to pad his stats and really make the avs sit on it.

    Congrats to Patrick Roy for ruining Duchene and Landeskog.

    Oh and apparently Brent Seabrook remembered how to play hockey so that is neato.

  6. Lines in Practice Sunday

    20/19/81
    23/91/88
    10/16/28
    29/65/13

    I really like the Move of 16 w/ 10… has shown some recent chemistry… Hope Q gives it a full game or two…

    The REAL question- is can the Shaw line step up and really be a “checking” line?
    And it’s official- Shaw and Bickell are 4th liners (and they should be)-just hope they can check a Top line from time to time.

  7. JS- I agree and 29 trying to make no look backhand passes leaving our zone vs. Forecheck!!!

    But it really does appear that Q is trying to Make the Kruger/Smith line a “legit” scoring line buy inserting 10…

    I would much rather see Shaw on wing!!! On either 3rd/4th lines…

  8. The first three lines look solid to me. The fourth line is a mess. I see very little scoring coming from the line and have very little confidence in their defensive prowess. I wonder if Q will have confidence in them come the playoffs or will we be running 3 lines again.

  9. Brent Seabrook might had one of his best game as a Hawk. I know alot of us have been down on Seabrook from time to time and yes he does make mistakes in his own end, not to mention the occasional bonehead play but overall the guy is a top pair defensive player if not a top pair a top 4 guy that a team can win with. The defensive play he made on Douchebag on that potential breakaway was textbook.

    Speaking of Shaw I am really starting to wonder how valuable he is moving forward. Have we seen the best of Shaw because he’s been nonexistent recently. Hossa is another guy too but Hossa is a HOF player so he has earned the benefit of doubt.

    Joakim Nordstrom continues to show that he is an up and coming NHL player. At the end of the day thats exactly what the Hawks needs are bottom guys that can be counted on He has good work ethic and a strong hockey sense and IQ. Hopefully he can start putting some pucks in the net on the big club.

  10. When 10 was injured for 4 wks the 29-65-13 line played well and we rolled 4 lines. What difference does it makes if ‘people’ are calling it a 4th line. To me Krugs line is always the 4th (unless he with 10and81/88).

    I think Q is trying guys with diff. combos on bottom6. When Sharpy came back with 29-65-10 and got Bicks going better. Wants to see how 10 does with Smitty and Krugs against the other teams top lines. Sharpy is a good at defensive to (and that would be like the 36-16-67 line again but w more off.).

    We have 4 really good lines/going to play all 4 lines in playoffs.

  11. 16 36 24 you mean? Dunno that Kooga and Smith compare very well to Ladd and Bolland. But in terms of a purely defensive line with a big scoring threat down one side then yea it could work in that regard.

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