Corey Crawford, Hawks Drop Panthers In Shootout

The Blackhawks returned to the United Center after their Circus Trip with the best record in the Western Conference (still), but it was the visiting Florida Panthers who were making headlines over the last couple days around the NHL.

Tom Rowe made his debut as the head coach of the Panthers after Florida unceremoniously fired Gerard Gallant. So even renewing friendship with former Panther Brian Campbell wasn’t top-of-mind for the crew on Tuesday night.

Chicago was without captain Jonathan Toews, who is reportedly dealing with a back issue that “isn’t serious” according to Chris Kuc at the Chicago Tribune. Jordin Tootoo was in the lineup in place of Andrew Desjardins, and Michal Rozsival played in place of Michal Kempny.

The ice at the United Center appeared to leave a lot to be desired; the puck was bouncing for both teams and the Hawks had a lot of trouble completing passes and handling the puck early. But Richard Panik – who had been a ghost for weeks in the box score – scored his seventh of the season with 2:10 left in the first period to give Chicago a 1-0 lead.

The goal is Panik’s first since Oct. 22, a stretch of 17 games. He opened the regular season with six goals in six games before disappearing for five weeks.

Florida out-shot the Hawks 13-8 in the first period and both goaltenders were sharp. Corey Crawford made a few terrific saves to maintain the tie game early, and to keep his team in front after Panik’s goal.

Neither team did any damage in the second period, but the surprising part of the stat sheet was the Hawks’ performance at the dot. Chicago won 22 of 50 in the first two periods including Vinnie Hinostroza losing all five of his draws in the opening 40 minutes. Artem Anisimov won 10 of 21 to lead the Hawks, and every other Chicago skater was over 50 percent at the dot entering the final period.

Each team fully killed a penalty in the second period, and Niklas Hjalmarsson went to the box with 52 seconds left in the period. When the third period began, Jaromir Jagr took advantage of the Hawks being without Hjalmarsson and Brent Seabrook being stung by a shot and tied the game. Jagr’s power play marker came 35 seconds into the third.

It’s worth noting that nine (9!) players on the current Panthers roster weren’t yet born when Jagr faced the Blackhawks as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1992 Stanley Cup Final.

Seabrook went to the room following the score to receive attention after the Jonathan Marchessault shot hurt him, leaving the the Hawks with five defensemen for about six minutes. Seabrook did return to the bench with a little under 14 minutes left in regulation.

With eight minutes left in the third, Jakub Kindl hooked Anisimov and Chicago got a chance to match Florida’s power play goal after a terrible “advantage” in the second period.

Unfortunately, early in the power play a Duncan Keith shot hit Anisimov on the inside of his right skate and he struggled to get to the bench when Florida cleared the puck. He eventually went to the room after the Hawks’ power play ended in failure (again). Rookie Nick Schmaltz replaced Anisimov with Patrick Kane and Artemi Panarin.

The Hawks’ Triple H line of Hossa-Hinostroza-Hartman was very good throughout the game again, and has continued to play well in the absence of Toews. In regulation, they were easily the Hawks’ best possession line, posting the best Corsi For percentages on the team (Hinostroza and Hossa led the way, both finishing the third period above 63 percent).

At 19:40 into the third, Kane was sent off for high sticking to complicate the beginning of overtime.

Crawford stopped 34 of 35 in regulation, while Roberto Luongo stopped 29 of 30 to match Crawford’s stellar play. But Florida got to start the extra five minutes 4-on-3 with the dynamic Kane in the penalty box.

The Hawks killed the penalty and Kane came right out of the box to a potential shot opportunity cut off by a bouncing puck. There wasn’t a stoppage until there were 62 seconds left in the overtime period, meaning the two teams skated 4-on-4 for more than two full minutes. The Panthers got a great scoring chance just before the horn to end overtime, but Crawford made another spectacular save to send the contest to a shootout. Crawford made four saves in overtime.

In the skills competition, Panarin devastated Luongo and then Panik ended the game with a second shootout goal for the Hawks.

Panik finished leading the Hawks with five shots on goal and four hits. Dennis Rasmussen had another strong game, finishing tied for the team lead with two takeaways in more than 15 minutes of ice time. Chicago won 39 of 74 faceoffs without Toews on the night.

The Blackhawks are now 9-1-2 at home this season, where they’ll host the Devils on Thursday night.

48 thoughts on “Corey Crawford, Hawks Drop Panthers In Shootout

  1. Even though they got more chances should have been a 1-0 SO, bullshit penalty. That’s why they play the games. Sch makers know what they are Trying to do (like that 10 of 12 on the road BS and others). You just made us stronger, bitches.

  2. Hawks lucky to get out of this one with two points…slow and sloppy tonight. Nonetheless, let’s take them and move on. Go Hawks!

  3. Kempny healthy scratch again motte less than 8 and half mintues forsling under 11 minutes schmaltz at just over 11 about where he has been lately, 38 and 48 may have found their niche but looks like the honeymoon is ending for some of the rookies

  4. Any one remember me saying something not quite right …? Mr. Toews has a little more going on that a slight upper body thing . The boy ain,t right . Hawks gotta get that p.p. working ,.,soon ,.,Who is coaching special teams for the hawks .? Kitch ?
    We should have won this outright . Florida is a team that is spinning out of control ,and we should have spanked them . The 10 million dollar man needs to be i.r. or long term i .r . Open up some cap space and move on .

  5. Hawkhead Something not quite right one point behind habs for first overall what do you want wake and enjoy the ride

  6. Special teams clown show on display again tonight. I think we’re back to where we were a few years when the running joke was to suggest the Hawks decline the penalty. The PP is considered successful if they don’t give up a shortie. And now we’re back to Keith deciding he’s the guy that should take the shot on the PP which is asinine when there are 4 other guys on the ice who would be a better option to shoot the puck – regardless who the other 4 guys are – pick 4, any 4.

    But Crawford stood on his head and the Hawks pick up 2 points … so there’s that, which is nice.

    On a positive note, the little spitfire from Erie had a 5 point night with a hattie and a couple apples. On the season – 23 games, 26 goals, 25 assists.

  7. Those are GREAT numbers from ERIE . Bring it on .

    Did ya see what the Habs did last year ,.,.,That is not a team i want to be compared to ,.,.ever . So Ian ,.,go back to sleep .

  8. It was important to get Panik off the November schneid. He made a nice move to get the goal in reg. time and the winning shot in the SO. So Panik not only scored, but was more active in board battles too. That guy needs to play physically aggressive every game. He is strong and can punish opposing d men during puck battles. Since the Hawks are a small team in general, Panik needs to bring the body more.

    First games back from road trips are often a struggle and that was the case last night. Both goalies though were really good, especially Crow yet again.

    Lets us all hope Anisimov didn’t break a bone in his foot after taking a shot to the inside of the skate. He went off in a lot of pain. To lose Toews is bad enough but to lose 2 top centers would be hard to overcome. We need those guys healthy.

    Hawks are finding ways to win games like this even though they appear to be offensively challenged. Too often they are trying to make the extra fancy pass instead of taking shots that are there. Once again say thank you for the two points.

    Considering that Fla. had just fired their coach the Panthers played a strong defensive game last night.

    Yes, the quality of the ice surface sucked last night.

    Great to be back at the UC and watching hockey in person instead of on TV. Was Konroyd even worse than normal for the Sat. LA game on WGN or what? Between periods stuff was painful to watch too. Eddie O looked like he wanted no part of being there.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  9. RasMOOSEn- getting some love here… What!!!

    Hoff – must be rolling in his grave.

    Hawkhead- I agree on Toews… something seemed off… and the play/way he got hurt??? seemed like a “nothing” type play/hit… really lost his balance on a “love-tap” hit and fell with his arm kind of behind him… seems like that hit/play- would have never caused him to fall earlier in his career??? Is it a physical issue like Bickell/Montador??? or is it a Mental issue… older/more comfortable- less engaged/less constant focus???

    Triple H line is playing so well-
    When Toews comes back- who does Q play with him??? simple anser is drop Hartman down and skate 48/19/81- but I wouldn’t mind Q spreading the wealth even more and maybe

    64/19/14 or 8/19/64

  10. I was thinking the same linemates for Toews too Wall. I thought that the Hartman, Hinostroza, and Hossa line was excellent. Those two rookies were buzzing with him and they seemed to show a confidence that I thought was lacking at the beginning of the season.

    Schmaltz still seems to be a work in progress. He has the talent, vision, and hands, but the game still seems to be going a little too fast for him. He reminds me of a more physical Teravainen when Teuvo first got called up. He showed a lot of promise and skill, but didn’t seem quite ready yet. Also, I believe that Teuvo bounced around the line-up like Schmaltz has been. I don’t mind his bouncing around at this point because it is better to find out in the first quarter of the season that Schmaltz cannot play a top-six role, or bottom-six role, etc., rather than finding out in the last quarter that he just can’t do it. I think the bottom-six is the better role for him now because he has enough skill to make someone pay if he gets open ice or a good chance.

    Also, the Hawks PP looked dreadful last night. It was trainwreck and tough to watch. I thought the Florida was going to score a shorthanded goal on it.

  11. Something hasn’t been right with Toews since the start of last season. His game has fallen off. It just has. Maybe the high mileage over 9 plus grueling seasons is taking a toll. He’s the Captain of the Hawks and already a legend who will see his number hanging from the rafters someday. But his game the past year plus is not in line with a $10.5 M salary cap hit. The Hawks need to solve for this….maybe Toews needs a sabbatical, or maybe he’s dealing some physical deterioration that needs to be addressed. I hope his NHL career hasn’t already peaked and is on the downside. Now granted, he is still a top flight player, but I worry about Toews. It’s the elephant in the room that nobody in the media really seems to want to talk about.

    Motte and Schmaltz are struggling. But given that there are no better options really, to include do at Rockford, I see Quenneville maintaining patience for now. I bit surprised Kempny has been sitting, but I trust the coaching staff on how they are trying to ease him into the NHL. I like Kempny. And I really like Forsling.

    Hawks are being helped right now by two vagabound journeyman types in Panik and Rasmussen getting the job done. Both have stepped up.

    Likewise, Hartman has stepped up and even Hinostraza. Though I admit to not being a fan at all of Hino…he’s a poor man’s imitation of Ben Smith and we really need to have an upgrade overtake his roster spot at some point.

    MVP of this team is once again Crawford. Hands down.

  12. Poor man’s Ben Smith? You’re out of your damn mind boy! Smith never had the vision, hands, creativity or speed of Hino. It’s like saying Hino is a poor man’s mcDavid

  13. RTF points to Toews not having a great season last year. Not only Toews last season, but other Hawks had similar issues which clearly related to bodies being overworked without enough rejuvenating rest that is essential to all elite athletes. Toews and other core Hawks players finally had some off time this summer. Not what they wanted, but surely the time their bodies needed. Seabrook has come back a better player as has Hossa to name a few. The Hawks as a team had no gas left in the tank when playoffs came around last year. Despite long term fatigue issues they took the Blues to a 7th game they could have won, and that was a worn out Hawks team.

    Toews has never had back issues. Perhaps he got slightly twisted up along the boards. He has skated well and with power in his stride to start this year. I do not see a player in decline. Toews usually starts off the season a bit slow, and then he gains momentum. I see a glass half full with the Cpt. His value to the team is immense.
    Lets hope he is back soon.

    Otherwise, good points RTF.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  14. RTF- agree with everything- except Hino… Hino is way faster and better vision than Smith…

    Re: Toews- reading other places… it is his back??? dunno… also- someone implied that His back has been giving him trouble for some time this year.. I have watched and slow mo’d the fall/injury of 19 a few times… as i stated earlier… seemed like a “nothing hit” that should have never caused him to fall – so the idea of 19 having a back issue for sometime this year… seems really plausible… cuz once again- the “fall/ lite hit ” should have never knocked him down in first place unless he was leaning the wrong way or sleeping… but a back spasm/ locked back- could explain why he appeared to not be able to spin off of that lite contact.

    All speculation right now… but would explain some things to me.

  15. So now the gooftard Wall thinks he’s a doctor with his “diagnosis” of Toews injury.

    In addition to your non stop blathering about anything and everything, including your ludicrous suggestion of Dahlstrom (Rockford) being a potential Seabrook replacement, you’re now a self proclaimed back expert. The only part of a back you’re an expert on is below the back between the crack due to your infatuation with Fabbri and all your other dreamboats you gush over.

    Go look back on the Winnipeg game thread when the poster Jax so perfectly took you to the woodshed. Read, rinse, and repeat …

    Your new Delta Tau name should be Filibuster – you never shut up. You win the Overparticipation Trophy because … you never shut up. You’re like Bleeding Heart Ernie minus the welding helmet (and goof name).

    Do the world a favor Wall … accept you’re a babbling clown and shut the fuck up.

  16. Toews hasn’t been the same for a season plus. I get the “exhaustion” argument to some degree, but what I have seen (or not seen) out of Toews is a player that simply isn’t the same. It does happen in this game. The physical burden of playing intense hockey does wear the body and mind down. Is Toews aging well? That’s what I openly worry about. And I think Bowman and Quenneville must have the same concern. He is the face of the franchise and one of the primary reasons behind 3 Stanley Cups and a truly great era of hockey in this town. It would be a shame if his role needs to diminish some at only the age of 28. But he wouldn’t be the first star caliber player who saw a downturn to his performance in late 20’s.

  17. Whats with these damn pers0nal attacks and insults posts whoever you are you must be a poor hurting soul to enjoy that. Opinions are encouraged however these kind of posts are not

  18. The part with 19 I agree with is that his game is hurting his long term ability to be elite-
    both his role and his style impact him greatly–can he get back to where he was a couple of years ago, time will tell? 10.5 creates expectations, but his great play, hard work and leadership got him that money, and it was deserved. (…and 3 Cups)
    Hino has surprised me with the combination of above average speed and pretty good hands–wasn’t sure about the later.
    No doubt that Crow has allowed us to be in first place. Right on your excellency.
    By the way the titles make we wonder if it is RTF??

  19. Welcome back Mr. Rufus.

    Toews’ play not commensurate w/ $10.5M cap hit? Ok, all things considered, you actually made a coherent point (1/100). That being said, I’ll take Toews for the remainder of his contract at that cap hit than Kruger @ $3.1M this yr and the following two yrs. Kruger’s PK and faceoffs have improved, he is playing better those aspects since Toews got hurt; sense of urgency, we’ll take it. Glad to see it.

    Yet, his offense remains dormant at best. One goal in 25% of the season, that doesn’t project out very well for the entire yr.; last yr, one goal in 50% of the season that he played. Vermette didn’t sign w/ the Hawks b/c of Q, facts are facts. He is the #1 faceoff man in the NHL, that was invaluable during the Cup run as well. He was a $ player when it counted. At $1.75M a yr, he is a better value than Kruger.

    Crawford’s play has been outstanding, kudos. He is a warrior as far as his craft goes.

  20. If Toews is worn out at this point of the season then why the hell did he play in that stupid tourney before the season? I agree with Rufus, Toews is not the same player and it’s time to find out why. The play he got hurt on was nothing at least the replay did not show anything and here he is out 3 games. Hawks need him to be that $10 million player they signed.

  21. From the the Toews hit it looked like he was kinda slew footed. Knee to the back of the leg. I’ve fallen in a similar fashion and had back spasms from it. So it makes sense.

    As far as Toews declining because of wear…I’ve thought that as well and it would really suck if a Dustin Brown like fall from grace occurs.

  22. Toews issues are related to his love life. There is a woman in it now and that is a distraction to his commitment to the game. The game is not important as it was several years ago.

  23. There could be some truth to the back spasms or something of that nature with Toews but please enough with the he’s done foolishness. The guy is 28. What has kopitar or Bergeron done this season are we righting them off as well. Let the man heal and take whatever time he needs so he is ready in the season half of the season and playoffs. The Hawks are holding there own right now.

    Big thanks to Crow for being so fantastic and so underrated.

  24. Remember crosbyat 28yrs. old left off the all star game last year because he was having an off year we all know the rest of the story

  25. Wall has been a terrific contributor to this site for a long time. And he’s alwYs been a good sport about the criticism fools sometimes throw his way. I for one appreciate the mans insight and astute commentary, and know that this board would be weaker without him.

  26. Per 19: no one knows what the deal is with his play and health. I believe he should take a long, 2-3 month injury timeout and come back strong for the playoffs.

  27. Ernie- yes there was some skate to skate contact ( I didn’t think intentional) but I still think Toews showed some distress in that he couldn’t “fight the fall”… kind of like when/if you have a stiff neck you have to slowly turn the entire body – where you normally just turn your head.

    San Jose game where he left… I think 19 only took 1 shift in 1st 5 minutes in 3rd- and that is prior to that fall… that seems odd in a game where they are down 2 goals?

  28. “Wall is a Doctor” or Hoff- thanks for the Laugh!!!

    Some really funny stuff- best since “butterfly on acid”

  29. Toews game saw a marked fall off in the 2015-16 season. And that trend has continued through the one quarter mark of the 2016-17 season. My goodness, I didn’t say he no longer is a good player and is to be written off. Not dealing here in extremes. But the bottom line is that Toews just isn’t the same two-way impact player that he was. And yes, it’s concerning. It DOES happen to NHL star caliber players…high mileage stars who hit their late 20’s and their play and impact erodes.

    The whole “woman in his life” angle? Well yeah, I’ve thought about that too and I think its legitimate to consider. A younger Toews was Captain Serious and seemed to eat, sleep and drink hockey. Now he seems to be basking in the good life (as he certainly should) and becoming more well rounded. Vacation trips to Europe and Asia with a beautiful woman on his arm. I don’t begrudge him any of that. Maybe we had it so good for his first 8 years because he was unique in his singular focus on hockey and mega-intensity….which played a significant role in the excellence of this club and resulted in 3 Stanley Cups.

  30. I believe you guys are beating a dead horse with this Toews speculation. There is no doubt 19 did not have the giddyup last year we were accustomed to. Do not dismiss the cumulative fatigue issues so readily as it related to the 2015-2016 season. We are 1/4 through the present season. Let’s let this play out. It can be that the concerns are real as far as Toews having his best seasons behind him. Remember also whom Toews played with last year and his linemates this year. Line blender anyone? Opposing teams can more easily defend star players when the supporting cast is not as strong.

    I think The Cpt. comes back strong, but only time will tell.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  31. Last year toews put 28 goals and 63 points aboutu average for his career during a year where hossa had marked decline in production and a revolving door at lwing he maintained an elite 2way level of play and was named to allstar team without question.He was a big reason we took the blues to the brink in the playoffs when team was out of gas. Also he was a shoo in for team canada at wcoh in september where he was one of the top players in an elites elite tournament so just kinda wondering where this long term drop off in his play is

  32. Phil- with all respect- 19 and 88 when paired in past … Magic- regardless of who they played with… This year my eyes have seen a regression when ??/19/88 have skated together… I can buy that a little w/ current LW versus LW of past years… but seems to be big drop – imo… and I can’t put it All on current LW’s

  33. While the angst on Taser is certainly justified, I think the more troubling issue for the Hawks is the decline of Duncan Keith (particularly since the beginning of last year) Here’s his CF%
    13-14 56.6%
    14-15 55.8%
    15-16 52.2%
    16-17 51.3%
    For all you Corsi haters, in 13-14, Keith generated 355 more shots than he gave up when on the ice. This year it’s a +20.
    Without Keith’s ability to drive possession, the Hawks spend too much time in their own end. He’s visibly a half step slower and much less likely to dip in and out of trouble to keep the play moving forward. A 33 yr old slowing defenseman, (although solid) has slowed the Hawks overall.
    Also DK, to my eyes anyway, has made more poor passes and shots than I can remember in past years.

  34. Point well taken Wall. I think the sample size for this season though is still small. The Hawks have so many new forwards the line blender has been rolling. The Anisimov line has been the one constant when we have Panarin, Anisimov and Kane together. Clearly “the team” needs to generate more offense/quality chances collectively.

    I don’t believe any of us would have expected the Hawks to be where they are in the division/conference standing given the group they started the season with. Watching all of these games, I have often thought how did they manage to win or grab a point? Only a few games can we say that we watched a full 60 minute strong effort. Crow and Darling have been phenomenal which has been the difference between wining and losing.

    This remains a team in transition. Some of the core guys need to be consistently better offensively. They know it, and have come through in the past. BTW good points about Keith HAWKFACTS. Let’s see where we are at mid season….things could be worse. At least the young guys are showing real progress.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  35. Wall, in that San Jose game Toews last shift was 8:43 into the second period. Going back a little earlier. He skated a 38 second shift ending at 16:53 in the 1st. Then skated a 37 second shift to close out the first period. He came out to start the second and had a 4 second shift. He had 2 more shifts after that. The first was 36 seconds that ended at 25:46. And then a 32 second shift that ended at 28:43.

    The fall happened at 28:16. The skate kicked him out but the stick of Pavelski also caught him up high. But that 4 second shift to start the second…thats interesting.

    https://twitter.com/johndietzdh/status/801655792646688768

  36. Ian I would agree with that in regards to that 4 second shift. But how often do we see Toews not take a shift for 5 minutes? He’s usually out there every two and a half minutes. So he missed a shift after a 4 second shift to start a period. It could have been an equipment issue. The timing is just curious.

    http://www.nhl.com/stats/shiftcharts?id=2016020299

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