Crawford, Blackhawks Bounce Penguins

After the Blackhawks opened their 2017-18 season with a 10-1 thumping of the Pittsburgh Penguins, most fans had Saturday night circled as a potential redemption game for the defending champs.

On the Penguins’ home ice in Pittsburgh, the Hawks stole headlines early on Saturday with the announcement of the 2019 Winter Classic, which will officially be played in South Bend between the Hawks and Boston Bruins.

In the first period, it got chippy quickly. Richard Panik and Kris Letang both went off at 6:16 for roughing each other. Letang served two minutes for delay of game soon after returning to the ice, and Matt Murray took a tripping penalty that was served by Conor Sheary.

While Sheary was serving the Murray penalty, the Hawks got on the board with Gustav Forsling’s second of the year.

Jonathan Toews and Alex DeBrincat picked up assists on the Forsling marker, extending DeBrincat’s point streak to four games.

At the end of one, the Blackhawks were 1-2 on the power play and out-shot the Penguins 12-9. Corey Crawford had a strong first period.

With 11:17 left in the second period, Evgeni Malkin made no effort to avoid Crawford as the Hawks netminder came out to play the puck. Malkin caught Crawford in the head with a knee and was sent to the box. Unfortunately, Crawford also had to leave the ice as the officials made the Hawks go to Anton Forsberg.

At that point in the game, Crawford had been terrific, stopping all 17 shots he had faced.

By the time the Hawks’ power play ended unsuccessfully, Crawford was back behind the Hawks bench waiting to return. And with 8:30 left in the second he finally got a whistle to come back in – but it was because of another injury.

Connor Murphy blocked a shot and wasn’t able to get back to his feet and needed assistance getting off the ice. Crawford replaced Forsberg.

A little more than three game minutes later, Murphy also returned to the Blackhawks bench after spending time with the trainers.

John Hayden served a couple minutes in the box late in the second but the Hawks successfully killed the penalty and took a 1-0 lead to the dressing room after 40 minutes.

The Penguins had a 24-22 shot advantage in the first two periods but Crawford was solid. Forsling led Chicago in ice time (16:21) in the first two periods, and was tied with Patrick Kane for the team lead with four shots on net as the third period began.

Bryan Rust gave the Hawks a power play early in the third that was wasted.

Less than one minute after the Rust penalty ended, Patrick Sharp was caught hooking and went to the box. With 20 seconds left on the Sharp penalty, Letang interfered with Artem Anisimov as a bad pass drifted toward center ice. Letang went back to the box, killing the Pens’ advantage and giving the Hawks 1:39 of a power play soon after Sharp left the box.

Matt Hunwick scored a short-handed goal during the Hawks’ power play to tie the game at one.

But the game would be tied for only 21 seconds, a pass missed Nick Schmaltz and bounced around the Pittsburgh net, finding Anisimov on the doorstep for the power play goal.

Anisimov continues to be red hot, scoring his ninth in his last ten games and tenth of the season. Schmaltz and Kane picked up the power play assists.

At 11:33 Jake Guentzel appeared to tie the game for Pittsburgh, but Olli Maatta clearly made contact with Crawford as the shot was being released. Coach Joel Quenneville challenged the play and a quick review found there was indeed interference. The goal was reversed and Chicago kept their 2-1 lead.

An indication of how much trust he has earned from his coach, DeBrincat was on the ice with two minutes left in a one-goal game in Pittsburgh.

Murray went to the bench for an extra attacker with 90 seconds left in regulation. Richard Panik iced the pick with 1:07 on the clock but Pittsburgh called a timeout, giving the Blackhawks a desperately needed breather.

With 17 seconds left in regulation Crawford made a huge save on a Phil Kessel shot into what appeared to be a wide open net to keep the game tied and the Blackhawks were able to hang on and win the game in regulation.

Crawford was superb in the third period. He finished the night with 35 saves.

Anisimov won six of 16 faceoffs with his one goal, four shots on net and two takeaways. Since moving back onto a line with Kane, Anisimov has been absolutely on fire.

Toews won 16 of 27 at the dot with his one assist and four shots on net in 19:24.

On the blue line, Quenneville spread out the ice time relatively evenly once again.

  • Duncan Keith – 26:56
  • Gustav Forsling – 23:59
  • Jan Rutta – 22:39
  • Brent Seabrook – 16:42
  • Cody Franson – 16:24
  • Connor Murphy – 11:14

Rutta led the Hawks with three hits. Kane and Sharp were credited with a team-high five shots each. Keith and Seabrook led the way with three blocked shots each.

Sidney Crosby was limited to no points, two shots on net and won 13 of 27 at the dot in the loss.

81 thoughts on “Crawford, Blackhawks Bounce Penguins

  1. Forsling getting better and better.
    Murphy played excellent stay at home defense and refused to be intimidated.
    Schmaltz really starting to control the flow of the play at the NHL level. Impressive.

    Can someone tell me why Richard Panik cannot catch an NHL level pass ? He fumbles more perfect passes right on his tape than anyone I can remember.

    The Kane turnover in the final 30 seconds was killer. A perfect drop pass to Malkin who went the other way for what turned out to be a 6 on 3. Somewhere, Martin Erat is very proud because it sucked that bad. Beyond awful !

  2. Team played really good. 2-0 in this 7 of 10 against top 10 teams. We get threw this 7-3/6-3-1 and were looking good. Sails set and lots of wind coming. Lots and lots.

  3. Forslind and Dcat are getting more and more confortable …..good to see some kids getting on the score sheet….now let get something out from Schmaltz and Hartman..

  4. Hawks offense looking a little more comfortable with each other. Good to see. That will turn into more goals. Defense still giving up too many chances. BUT Crawford is playing like a $6mm goaltender. A fun game to watch.

    Malkin not only failed to try and avoid Crawford…..You could say he even leaned into him. Should be something more than 2 minutes

  5. Liked Forsling, AA and of course Crow-
    thought Toews looked like the player of old-he was dominate at times.
    Why is Sharp playing?? He better be taking some time off when they start playing multiple games a week.
    And on that late 2 on 1 he had Debrincat tapping his stick (where he scores many of his goals-he scored half his goals in junior-right hand shot one timer off the left post-he doesn’t miss. I guess when you haven’t a point since the start of the year you need to be selfish?

  6. Pitt fans twice booed a stoppage due to an injury. Then cheered as Crawford left the ice. Heard a dude yell at Murphy “get off the ice you bum”.

    Stay classy Pittsburgh.

  7. Crawford win no doubt but overall it looked like line chemistry is developing. Not sure Sharp is better than Hinosrroza – he shoots where other options could be better. B lines better but Franzen was brutal… After watching Malkin he should get an additional game or 2, that knee was intentional – fucking punk..

  8. Didn’t see game had a family committment but i’m happy again. Crawford oustanding again I guess but sounds like a pretty good overall game too.

  9. Very entertaining game to watch – should have been up 3-0 after first. Forsling’s future is very bright – you can see his confidence growing. Dodged some bullets with the Penguins PP – man they move the puck quickly.

  10. Malkin caught him with his thigh/hip. Don’t think more discipline was needed. But a penalty no doubt. Had he actually caught him with the knee itd be suspension worthy. It actually looked like he tried to tuck the knee in to avoid knee to head contact.

  11. Like others have said, it was an entertaining game. Someone also mentioned here a few days ago that Seabrook is playing less minutes, but looks more effective. Tonight was a good example of that. The Pens had a lot of chances in the third, but they were the desperate team. I also thought the Captain had a good game tonight.

  12. First 10 games……………..5 and 5.
    Second 10 games ………..6 and 4.

    The young guns are getting some confidence. With confidence comes productivity. With productivity come wins.

    Let’s see if we can skate with the best team in the NHL down in FLA.

    Go HAWKS!!!

  13. Tab, thanks for the heatmap. Hawks ended up with 1 more shot attempt…but only had more attempts once. In the first period. Went downhill in the 2nd and 3rd. One thing that does stand out is where the shot attempts were. Pitt lacked attempts in the slot . Hawks filled that area. Shots were down low for Pitt, or from the point.

    Based on a few studies, shots in the slot are saved roughly 80% of the time. Shots from the point are saved greater than 95% of the time.

    Shot quality is a factor. And the Hawks won that battle.

  14. When the Hawks pass well they play fast. When they play fast they play well. Like tonight. Very good execution tonight and a fun game to watch.

    The old saying is as long as you’re getting scoring chances it will eventually go in. Sharp has had some good scoring chances the last couple games so I’m a little less sure of the “sit Sharp” mantra that I agreed with a few days ago. Life Seabrook, he plays better with limited minutes and he played pretty well tonight (excluding the hooking penalty in the o-zone). He still skates pretty well and maybe a little more patience with him will yield dome results soon.

    We could be watching the growth of a pretty good d-man in Forsling. Nice.

  15. One thing people are failing to mention here is that the Toews line had a great game. True, they didn’t put the puck in the net but they were creating a lot of scoring opportunities and had a strong puck possession game. I think it is only a matter of time before this line starts being what we all thought it should be….

  16. Big Al-as I said 19 was his old self, and also 20 was better–this schedule favors 19 (probably 7 as well–and I’m not comparing them and their contribution)

    Toews will find it more difficult with 5 games in a week, because of his style of play. All players are impacted by that many games but big, slower guys like Seabrook and guys that do the dirty work like 19 in particular. Can Seabrook play 5 games in a week, even with limited minutes. My guess is we’ll see.

  17. We are missing Hossa big time ….its very difficult to replace a player Like Hossa…and its a big difference so far this year….i am sure Q would love to have him lately .
    And how about Anisimov …wow ..very hot in the last 8-10 games …the goal he scored was really nice and a few seconds before he was just in front of Murray…….
    The new players are adapting to the Hawks and to the new system .
    Love my Hawks

  18. There was 9 players on the ice tonight that we not playing last year for the Hawks …almost half the team … 1 Dcat ,2 Bauma,3 Wingel ,4 Murphy,5 Rutta 6 Forsling (38 games and half those game less then 8 minutes on the ice ….,7 Franson , 8 Hayden ( 12 games last year), 9 Forsberg ( on the ice for 2-3 min) .and i should also put 10 Sharp ..and 11 Saad ….and 12 .Schmaltz who played 16 games last year ….so its half the team ..and on Defense oufff ….just two Hawks from last year. So they need time to adjust

  19. Big Al/Noonan, good post. Thing is when you can field 36or16/67/19/81/2 you have the very best defensive group in hockey in how many yrs.

  20. Wow, was not expecting that at all. All 4 lines rolling. Winning board battles, puck possession, and the emergence of Forsling and Rutta on the back end. Complete game. Let’s see if it was an anomaly, or a team that’s starting to gel. On to Tampa.

  21. We have been playing better or good since the game we outplayed NAS and dint get win or tie in 9 of last 10. We just wernt getting the results or bounces we deserved.

    Not to mention that might be the first correct instant replay call since the Hoss 4 goal lead goal against ANA in game 7 2015. Now that’s an anomaly.

  22. Can’t help but wonder when roster is settled later on, we hear the talk of Schmaltz still being a center at some point he is back there again. We may see a lineup of Dcat, Toews and Panik, Saad Schmaltz and Kane, Hino , AA and Sikura. Hartman and Hayden together with Sharp maybe or 57, 67 or 17. Maybe even get a stronger faceoff guy with another callup or trade, maybe when/if Kempny or Murphy moved.

  23. Right Ernie… mistake …so we have 9 (11 instead of 12) player that where not on the team last year ..half the team .

  24. some excellent posts on the win vs pens and on how new and inexperienced many on this team are. hopefully the chemistry will continue to get better and better. crow is holding the fort while the kids mature. the PP is improving in direct proportion with increased net front presence and shots from the slot vs perimeter. the PK is radically better and more aggressive this year and we have the youth and speed to keep that going.

    agree that seabs is declining, but he is a real team leader off the ice and a good mentor for the younger kids which is important. I think he will do better with less ice time but how about this concept…in 2009 or 2010, Q came up with a very novel concept that turned out to be brilliant.

    take a huge courageous but slow D man with good hands and park him in front of opposing goalies crating all kinds of havoc and goals and victories. why not try seabs there on the second PP shift and see what happens?

    go hawks!!!

  25. What a good start the guys had in this game. They looked fast again and the passing was very crisp. Guys were catching pucks in stride. The team clearly came ready to play. As stated by many this was an entertaining game to watch for hockey fans. Whatever the reasons are, the Hawks match up well against the Pens.

    Sure Crow was great, especially in the 3rd, but he had much better d zone help than what we have been accustomed to seeing so far this season from the forwards coming back and the d men too. If this group commits to playing consistent team defense I believe this team will be pretty competitive as we move forward. The offensive firepower is there.

    Well pointed out by others imo is the reality of this team still getting used to the lineup changes that occurred in the off season. SB can’t plug and play replacements for Hoss and Hammer. Hawks starting to blend into a more cohesive unit though, and
    special team play is on the rise. PP could not get any worse with these guys. It has no where to go but up imo.

    I was worried Crow was completely KO’d by Malkin knee to the head. Yes it was a kind of a bang bang play, but Malkin made no attempt to avoid hard contact with Corey. Crawford could have been hurt badly. Bad head snap back on that one, and I think the league should have fined Malkin. Pens fans classless for booing. Can’t believe Franson didn’t at least give Malkin a serious face wash for that crap.

    Bolts can fly so Hawks need to be ready to roll out of the gate Wednesday and be ready to play a strong 2 way game. Apart from playing well in Tampa during Cup finals, they have not fared well in that arena since then. Hawks have beaten two good teams in a row so lets hope they can keep it up.

    RIP Malcolm.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  26. The Blackhawks are 1-1-1 against the Atlantic Div with 2 games in florida this week vs that div. They are also 1-1-1 vs Pacific div with 2 games during 6 games in 9 days next against that div. With a 6-2 record against Metropolitan div , doing really well there. But in their own div 2 and 4 with 3 games coming up in in 6 in 9 stretch. With only 3 in Dec & Jan and 2 in Feb against Central div ,means 10 games after March 1st are interdivisional games including last 5 of the season. So alot will decided down the stretch this year. Be a good after coasting to the finish last season showed that wasn’t a good way to go into playoffs.

  27. My struggle with this Hawks team is being patient with them becoming consistent. The players we lost, Hossa, Panarin, Hammer were all major impact players, and that was supposed to be tempered by some of the returning players having a familiarity with the way this team plays (Saad, Sharp…) But as many have stated above and in other posts, it’s hard to replace those players. The new guys were supposed to step in without a beat, and that has proven to again be rougher than we had hoped. Saad has had a generally successful return but the results have been uneven and inconsistent. Sharp has always been notoriously streaky in his play, so is this him being streaky or just old? It’s hard to look at his numbers and his age and not wonder if having a younger guy (Hino) could benefit the Hawks long term from those minutes. And I haven’t even talked about how many young players the Hawks have on this squad already. How quickly are the young players supposed to develop? This is my trouble, looking at all this, I still expect a team that has recently won 3 cups to play more consistently, but with all the changes and serious injection of youth I know I need to be more patient. When will the talent that is on this roster show it’s face on a night in and night out basis? That is what I am struggling with. I have faith that it will coalesce, but I am seriously impatient with it.

  28. Phil that’s the trend for the first few yrs after we win Stanley Cup against the team we beat we donot win or tie much of those ones. Same for PHI in 11 and 12/same for BOS in 14 and 15. We won the more important games though. Its worth the weight.

  29. Pararin and Saader are both below there normal goal/assist stats. Regardless like Phil 19/88 and 20 are going to break out getting normal stats again for them and tear it up for a stretch as well. That’s another to keep in mind as the younger guys get better and the upside that is going to make the team better as we go along.

  30. Miro the strange sch had a lot to do with it as well not just the players getting used to team system and league. Every player develops diff time chart. Ready when ready.

  31. A couple of years ago I was hoping that Hawks (and fans) would be patient and make Teuvo a priority-even remember saying he might be something at about 23, when he grows into his body and his game matures. It looks like that is happening and can just imagine him and Schmaltz together. (with a guy like Hayden?)

  32. @ NOONAN96

    I’m glad you brought up Teuvo. I recently added him on my fantasy hockey team. It’s a shame the Hawks weren’t able to see the upside that Tuevo has had since day one. Another misstep from poor cap management over the years

  33. NHL player of the week this week! Talk about a great move from Ron Francis, he takes on Bickell contract for 11 games and then gets Tuevo as a sweetener. Even better for the Canes Tuevo took a bridge deal this offseason for 2 yr @ 2.8 million what a deal!

  34. Let’s not forget Teuvo would have been exposed to Vegas in expansion. Let’s also not forget the Canes were shopping him before signing him to an extension.

  35. I saw Teuvo in Lake Placid and talked to Bowman about him that summer of 13 and he had lots of and only good things to say about the king of the road guy.

  36. That’s why I said he should have been a priority-if he was he wouldn’t have been exposed to the exp. draft or if he was there might have been a deal in place to protect him-
    there was a wide range of thoughts about his future-all the way from get rid of the bum to he should be a part of their current and future plans (I was in the later)—and I realize that cap issues were very real at the time.

  37. So Bettman supposedly said that NHL revenues are up to the point where the Cap could be $80M+ next season. I’ll believe it when I see it.

  38. Malkin truly in an instant went out of his way to not pull away, but rather outwardly offer his thigh at Crawford’s head at high speed. We all saw it, it was what it was from a HOF Russian. Crow went up to him before the next period and got in his face. A hardly-unexpected classless maneuver, complimented by the classless local cheering. Crow won the last laugh, which was ultimately satisfying. Was screaming live at the TV before Franson lovingly grab-assed Malkin behind the goal…11 should have been benched by Q for his woeful lack of response. Must be getting crotchety in my old age.

  39. LBS8844-sometimes you need a response for sh$t done towards your goalie, and this probably was the case-
    but you said it was satisfying for Crow-if Franson gets an extra 2 minutes for roughing or whatever, and Pitt gets the powerplay—with a cold goaltender in net and they score=perhaps the game goes the other way. Crow would be pissed beyond belief.
    Hockey players have long memories-hopefully one day t is addressed.

  40. Nobody ever said Teuvo was bad at the hockeys. But ignoring that he was going to be a Vegas Golden Knight for nothing or get traded away at some point is just ignorant to reality. The Blackhawks couldn’t protect Panarin/Saad AND Teuvo, so one of them was gone via expansion draft. Does it suck to have Teuvo playing well somewhere else? Yup. Was it inevitable? Yup. Wish him the best and get over it… at least he isn’t in the West

  41. I read somewhere that would be the high end for the cap not sure what the range is. At 75 now and always goes up 2-3 no matter who says what at any point. Means prob going to be 78-80/82 based on rev from games 0-20.

  42. We may finally be realizing some of the spread of new tv deals here, which only helps teams like the Blackhawks who are at the high end of the cap already. Stomaching Seabrook’s contract becomes significantly easier if the cap goes up $10M over the next 3-4 years than if we keep inching up at $2M per year

  43. Who was that guy on there team that hit Tazer up high and sort of left a skate off ice. That game prob is the last time we lost to them. People said it was clean enough and this one wasn’t as clean. They donot deserve to get beat by us times in a row since that Tazer high hit they deserve to be pounded by someone and knocked the fuck out. Penalty fight suspension doesn’t do justice. Winning is more important and then pounding them is next.

  44. Mo a 4 to 5 m increase in cap makes being a big player in FA all the more realistic next summer. Don’t remember who delivered the hit you are asking about.

  45. I am really happy Teuvo is playing well. We knew the kid had offensive talent, but cap and expansion issues as well as Teuvo becoming a ghost whenever there was physical contact around left him expendable. He simply shied away from contact and on a small NHL ice surface he just wasn’t adapting to the physical play. I was a big supporter of Teravainen too, but that 2015-2016 season especially in the front round against St Louis sealed his fate.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  46. I’m a Teuvo fan too and glad to see him having success but as pointed out the reality is he wouldn’t still be a Blackhawk. Just like had they signed Kevin Hayes he would have been a cap casualty too. Making business decisions that not everybody agrees with is just business.

  47. Ah, don’t burst our bubble Tab yeah still need some roster movement before it can happen, but not out of the question.

  48. I’m not buying that Tuevo couldn’t have been retained. McPhee worked a deal with the Islanders, if the Hawks wanted Tuevo he would still be here, however, management has always been too focused on what he isn’t instead of what he is and that is a 23 yr old top 6 NHL forward with excellent vision and passing skills.

    Came across a great article on the old man from deadspin that I wanted to share;

    https://deadspin.com/in-unloving-memory-of-hawkvision-a-low-point-in-sports-1820556383

  49. Moving Hossa’s salary would definitely be huge step toward being able to sign Tavares if they chose to pursue him.
    But with 2 sets if back to back games in 7 days coming up next week I would think trying to use 67, 6 and 82 to keep fresh legs in lineup. Maybe 6 for 11 one half of them and 82 for 7 on the other or vice veesa instead of the 7D again. On 2nd night of the back to backs a 3rd line of 40, 38 , 12 with 17, 67, 57 on the 4th. Keeping the lineup younger and more energy rather than a tired looking ladt half of 2nd game.

  50. Let’s be honest the only way Tavares plays here is if 88 or 19 don’t. Personally, at this stage, I’d swap out our JT for theirs. Kane I’d rather keep.

  51. Why couldn’t Tavares be signed. They are sitting now at roughly 68m for 15 salaries and overages next year. With AA at 4.55m moveable in off season plus Murphy 3.85m and Panik 2.8m, thats 11.2m in moveable contracts. If Hossa’s doctors are telling him not play anymore and his 5.275m is moved thats 16.475m plus a 4 to 5 jump in cap rather than the 7m reported it could go up thats 20 to 21.5m that could realistic7ly be used to make a Tavares signing a reality.

  52. We absolutely can fit 91 in and if cap goes up more then 2 or 3 it wont involve trading and caphit of around 4.5 more like 2. Why not have 19 88 and 91 if we want and 91 wants to play here. Would have to trade 81 caphit. It more like keep 81 caphit or add 91 with little movement.

  53. If Hossa is done (he is)… And you want to sign 91. 15 probably has to go. Would a team take on 81’s salary and 15?

    I dont think you can go 19, 91, and 15 down the middle and make the dollars work. And still have anything but ELC’s to fill out around them.

    Would Rutta take 3.5?
    Are Hayden and Hartman worthy of more than 1.75? The answer is probably, but the only leverage those 2 have is an offer sheet. Josh Anderson is probably a pretty reasonable comp for both and he got 3 years at 1.85 per…but had to hold out to get it

  54. As I said if Hossa’s moved then with 88, 20, 8, 12, 38, 40, Hino & Sikura on wings a
    Panik becomes very expendable and would be sought after. Keeping AA would be doable. Highmore or Dauphin or another center from Rockford should be ready next year for 4th line duty. If Rutta is resigned Murphy could be shopped for a cheaper replacement if he doesn’t show improvement. Lots of options

  55. No need to argue as we can make it work (keeping the core) and we have lots of options. Good situation to be in.

  56. re SSHM’s comment about Teuvo not being retained – it was him or Panarin. If the Hawks had 2 guys of that caliber laying around, it would have cost a helluva lot more than TvR to keep Vegas from sniping one of them… and we’d still be on the hook for Kruger’s $3M per. Florida lost Jonathan Marchessault (who scored 30 last year) because they couldn’t protect everyone.

  57. re: Tavares – love the player. Would take him in a second. But he’s going to probably get a cap hit equal to/greater than 19 & 88 on the open market & even trading away Anisimov’s contract makes that really, really hard to fit

  58. I think Tavarea could work next year ok but my sticking point is your in the same boat again when it comes to resigning Schmaltz, Debrincat, Forsling and maybe Sikura when they need resigning. But certainly be a nice lineup.

  59. Tab, Panarin was exempt as he didn’t meet the pro experience level. But I agree with what you’re saying. At the time Teuvo was a soft player with skill, that couldn’t figure out the North American game. Does a few good weeks negate the previous 3 years? I was there for his first game against Dallas and remember him in warmups. Everyone else was going through their usual routine. Teuvo just stood at the blue line in awe of everything. He played that way for 3 years.

    He was the unfortunate cost of doing business. Due to John McDonough’s mandate to sign Bryan Bickell at any cost.

    Had they known Hossa’s condition could have prevented him from playing…perhaps they could have gotten an exemption on having to protect him. Had they known about Bickells condition, Teuvo may have been here, and place 29 on LTIR. Had Bickell not had the ailment, that contract probably looks a lot better (I still would have let him walk). The optics of requesting an exemption due to Hossa’s condition would look worse as far as circumvention are concerned.

    Protected- 81,19,88,15,38,14

    Teravainen has 10 points in his last 4 games. Which means he had 9 points in the first 15 games. Which is just slightly above previous 2 years ppg average. A regression is inevitable. But let’s lose our damn mind over 4 games. The only guy I’ve seen all of a sudden “get it”…and continue that high level is Ryan Johansen. Johansen’s numbers aren’t that good. 2 goals so far…perhaps that leg is hampering him? Maybe just unlucky.

  60. On Hinostroza. I am wondering if Stan, Joel & company are a bit put off by his outspoken, I deserve to be in the NHL attitude.

    No doubt he has speed and is off to an excellent start in Rockford. Scott Powers wrote about it today in the Athletic that he is playing with an F— you attitude.

    Granted he using his unhappiness/anger as motivation but you wonder after 20 games, if Hawks management is saying, you don’t tell us when you are ready or should get called up, we will tell you.

    Not sure, just a hunch.

  61. Craig – I don’t think the attitude is playing into the situation. Getting lots of minutes in the AHL will only help his development. I would be surprised if he doesn’t get some games with the Hawks by the end of December.

    Regarding Hossa, has anyone heard of a scenario where he actually returns?

  62. I speculated that he could return in the playoffs as there’s no cap and it’s pretty short. Guys that have had the gunk have said it comes back in about 2 weeks. I think that’s highly unlikely and would probably just piss off the league to the point they wouldn’t allow a second go around when it comes to the inevitable LTIR discussion. They got out of purgatory. Don’t tempt it.

  63. Ms he is on seadon ending ltir so this year is done but Bowmans commenrs were he is being looked at year to year.
    The Blackhawks have been fairly clean of injuries this year, except for Schmaltz a couple if games early. I think this has delayed Hinos return to the NHL, no reason to recall anybody yet but that will change.

  64. It’s highly unlikely that Hossa ever plays again because unless something changes, the allergy that sidelined him this season will sideline him next season too. Plus he will have been out of hockey for a year and it would be near impossible for a player in his later 30’s to come back after not playing for a year.

    But having said that, if anyone could do it Hossa probably could. Amazing athlete and always in tip top shape. Plus, if the Cap goes up as predicted, the Hawks would have plenty of Cap space to cover his $5.2M cap hit.

  65. Craig: I wouldn’t put it past Bowman/hierarchy to let Hinostroza play in Rockford all year — absent injury. If they thought that highly of him, A) Bowman wouldn’t have signed Bouma and/or Wingels; B) they would have waived (i.e. meaning sent to minors, no one will claim them) one of them by now to bring Hinostroza up; or C) they wouldn’t have signed Sharp either.

    Not to bring up a dead horse, but when Stalberg and Morin threw their hissy fits, they were shown the door. Speaking of Stalberg, he is tearing up whatever league he is in, he can still skate like the wind as well; he was a top 9 forward for Ottawa playoffs last year and killed penalties as well. Further, Ben Smith is leading Toronto’s minor league team in scoring. Not that either will happen, but I would much rather have Stalberg and Smith playing with Hayden then Bouma & WIngels. Ben Smith can’t do any worse taking faceoffs than Wingels (or anyone else other than Toews for that matter), and Stalberg would win a skating race v. Bouma even by spotting him the blue line as a head start. And Stalberg actually has an offensive skillset.

    Lastly, for those who may be wondering, I have had a couple glasses of wine, but ask yourselves (personality conflicts w/ Q aside) who are the better two players and would add more to the Hawks’ team as currently constituted, Bowman’s summer free agent signings or Stalberg & Smith?

    Thank you.

  66. Morrison…can you please, before you post, run your writing through some kind of interpretation software, so that the rest of us can deduce what you’re saying? Thanks! Go Hawks!

  67. Iceman, you are not the only one who has consumed wine tonight…
    To answer your question…i take the guys we have now. Smith in minors. Likely concussed. Victor s a one trick poney…just saw speed. Wingels getting the job done but would bring Hino up instead of Bouma

  68. Iceman-4th lines are a luxury item and the two names-Bouma and Wingels have held up their end of the bargain as they bring their best each night.
    I’d like to see an upgrade in top 9 (which will allow a trickle down improvement if you want)–

    What is Hartman?, and where does he end up–is he a really good 4th line player or a top 6? Seems lost since first couple of games.
    Does Hayden deserve better minutes?
    Sharp-good enough to be top 9? I think he won’t improve. (4 points in 20 games and minus 9-really?
    Schmaltz-winger or center?
    Keeping 88 interested–chemistry with someone?
    D-Cat–does he play top 6? Getting use to NHL speed but a possible gem.
    Rockford call up ? Hino or Highmore
    Mid season addition/trade to improve top 9?
    The top three lines need to become settled and better (consistently) and if this happens the 4th line will be better than fine

  69. EB agree with speculation Hossa may not return but Bowman said doctors treating him year to year and I guess the door is not completely closed on it happening.

  70. Bowman has to say that to give the league the illusion its not circumvention. The league made up a rule to hurt the Hawks and they found their way around it. I don’t think theyre making this up. But you can see why many think it looks that way. All of a sudden he’s only making a million and suddenly he can’t play. Looks better if they publicly say he could come back.

    Hawks have the max roster right now. They obviously dont like something in Hinostroza’s game…or they like the fit other players have. His skillset is top 6. He’s not a 4th line guy. So that leaves 3rd line duty as the Hawks have a solid alternating top 6. 20,19,8,12,15,88,14. Right there they have 7 guys for 6 spots.

    You’re not going to embarass a vet like Sharp and place him on waivers, despite his play. Remember Anisimov 2 weeks ago? So you have 10, 38, and 40 as a 3rd. Theres simply no place for Hinostroza. He’s not a 4th line player. They wont sub out a Bouma or Wingels for him. You want to waive Kero for Hinostroza? Fine. He still doesnt see the ice until there’s an injury. The Schmaltz injury wasn’t predicted to be long enough for an IR stint. Minimum of 7 days. They said from the beginning Hinostroza gets the first recall…as soon as there’s an injury.

    Schmaltz is a wing. He’s more effective there. They try him at center out of necessity, and hope…but hes a wing. Schmaltz is better on the right. Debrincat on the left. Panik is very streaky and plays a heavy game. But how many heavy players do you need on the top line.

    20-19-8
    12-15-88
    10-38-40
    17-57-14

    38, 8, and 40 arent really centers, but Hinostroza isn’t really either. Although theyre trying to make him better. You already have 10 players rotating in the top 9. You can’t do to Sharp what theyre doing to Kero. Not after he took less. Give him a night off once in a while. But not outright waive him.

    Side note: Someone had mentioned putting Seabrook in front of the net on the PP…Ottawa practiced that with Phaneuf the other day. Parking him in front of the net.

  71. The Blackhawks agreed with the recapture rule to apply to existing contracts at the last minute to get a collective agreement signed. Bettman works for the owners and Hossa case investigated and approved, it is legitimate so no illusion needed. I do agree with speculation that he doesn’t return but we don’t know for sure its a done deal.

  72. Wingels and Bouma are both absolutely NHL nobodies, replacement level players they are just guys. Either can be sent down and nobody would miss them or likely claim them. Hino might be one of those guys that’s too good for the AHL and not good enough for the NHL remember TJ Brennen anyone?

    That being said I would much rather have Hino here then RFD. Just like I prefer to have Tanner Kero centering a 3rd or 4th line. There is no conceivable reason that Sharp and Hino can’t split time on the ice and press box. Kempny should just be moved if they aren’t planning on using him which is ashame.

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