Crosby Exits Early, Penguins Still Top Blackhawks In Shootout

The buzz before the Blackhawks took on the Penguins in Pittsburgh was about Chicago sitting their two young guns, Adam Boqvist and Kirby Dach, because of their “plan for development.”

It felt like the Blackhawks and Penguins were waiting for the LSU-Alabama (college football) game to end before they started skating. The first period saw the two teams combine to put 15 shots on net and neither side sustained a great deal of pressure.

In the second period special teams came into play and the scoring followed.

Chicago started the second period short-handed with Patrick Kane in the box for 1:36. The Hawks were able to kill that penalty and soon after got an extended two-man advantage of their own. Jack Johnson went to the box and was joined by Brandon Tanev 26 seconds later.

The Blackhawks did a marvelous job of passing the puck in a circle during the power play(s) and failed to score. Somewhat surprisingly the Penguins burned their timeout during the two-man advantage.

Joel Quenneville used to say teams that don’t take advantage of a 5-on-3 are likely to lose. The Penguins could have pounced after a nice effort (albeit not a great look from the Hawks’ PP units) but it was Chicago that got on the board.

Dominik Kubalik scored 35 seconds after the power plays expired to give Chicago a 1-0 lead.

Slater Koekkoek, skating for Boqvist because “rest,” put the puck into Brandon Saad’s skates but Saad was still able to set up Kubalik on the doorstep.

Chicago got back on the board 1:38 later when Kane sniped home his sixth of the season.

Jake Guentzel took an Evgeni Malkin pass and finished a rush to cut the lead to 2-1 at 16:04. Koekkoek got danced by Malkin (many have over the years) and Alex Nylander didn’t appear to be terribly excited by the prospect of getting back to help on Guentzel.

That’s where the score would stay through the end of 40 minutes of play; the Blackhawks had a 21-19 shot advantage through two periods.

The Pens carried the action to begin the third period but Sidney Crosby left the Pens bench three minutes into the third.

Dylan Strome went to the box at 5:43 for tripping, opening the door for Pittsburgh’s power play to make an impact but there was still no sign of Crosby back on the bench. Chicago did a terrific job killing the two minutes.

The next goal came from Bryan Rust at 10:57 into the third. Rust was set up beautifully by John Marino on the backdoor for an easy finish. Malkin picked up his second assist on as many goals.

The third period ended with the score tied at two. Crosby never returned to the Pens’ bench after leaving early in the third period. Chicago had a 29-26 shot advantage after 60 minutes of hockey. The Penguins blocked another 14 shot attempts while the Hawks were credited with a dozen blocks.

But the game was not over.

Three minutes into overtime Kane, Jonathan Toews and Erik Gustafsson circled the zone for about 30 seconds and never put a shot on net. Pittsburgh fans were booing the Blackhawks for circling the wagons without any action.

The overtime period came and went. Chicago was credited with two shots in the extra five minutes while Pittsburgh was credited with five. Each side put 31 shots on net in 65 minutes of hockey.

The game would require a skills competition.

Guentzel beat Crawford to open the shootout; Toews was denied. Malkin was stoned by Crawford; Kane embarrassed Matt Murray with a quick release. Jared McCann rifled a shot past Crawford; Alex DeBrincat shot it wide and the Penguins emerged victorious.

Olli Maatta was honored with a welcome back video during the game. He was credited with five hits, second behind Zack Smith’s six on the Blackhawks in regulation. Toews was credited with one shot on net in regulation while Kane was credited with only two.

40 thoughts on “Crosby Exits Early, Penguins Still Top Blackhawks In Shootout

  1. Time to sit Toewes…..weak on the back check for Pittsburgh’S second goal….what was that on his shootout attempt. He has not looked right all year.

  2. Koekkoek atrocious. On the ice for both Pittsburgh goals. Also, what was he doing on the ice in the last minute of the game?

    It’s fair to say based upon being ahead 2-0 and controlling the game, then even up 2-1 and still pretty much controlling the game, Koekkoek cost the Hawks the game. However, it wasn’t Koekkoek’s decision to play, it was the Coach’s decision. Part of some “plan.”

    The coach cost the Hawks the game, a game which the Hawks played very well and hard. Bowman hired the coach. These are precious points the Hawks are losing. Bc of the coach. Bc of Bowman.

    Tx Bowman.

  3. Young guns (dach n’ doofusboqujst n’ kookoo) can return putting gum under their high school desks. These children should stay home and babysit their younger sisters.
    Now for tonites gem…Toews? Return the ‘C’ to the rightful owner whoever the hell that is…
    Oh, and wait ’till next year…

  4. Koekoek actually covering a player out in front of net on Rust goal. Matta way out along the boards covering someone not in a dangerous area. Rust wide open back door, which is not uncommon this year under this confusing defensive scheme. Also believe Koekoek with assist on kubalik goal.

  5. It was a decent effort with more urgency in the skating and actually winning some battles.Dont understand that lackadaisical half ass effort by NYLANDER on the 1st goal.That can not ever be tolerated and it was good to see him nailed to the bench for the rest of the night.The captain was not good and somebody please let me know what the hell he was doing on the shootout.They need a better overtime plan involving more players with some jump and speed.If the captain is too tired let him sit and watch.Assuming DACH will be in for NYLANDER and BOQVIST for KOOKOO tomorrow night.Would have been nice to get 2 points tonight.

  6. Bowman likes to accumulate — in hording fashion — 7/8/AHL D men. That’s what Koekoek is.

    His pass to Saad sucked. He misplayed the puck when he saw it was Malkin and tripped over himself; 2-0 game near end of 2nd period and coasting turns into one goal game. Etc…

    If Bowman doesn’t have a player like this on the roster, a numbskull like Colliton can’t dress him. Let alone play him regular shifts.

    Good evening.

  7. For as bad as we been in, half, the games. We played decent in this and should have won 2-1. This is 3? games now we were up 2-1 and for different things we didnt get win in reg, were like 1-0-2. Thats not right.

    Thats the diff between 8-6-1 and 5-7-3

  8. Bowman’s players apart from Toews, Kane, Keith, Seabs, Crow, Shaw, Saad… Coach’s scheme does not work in NHL especially when you have slow footed dmen like Da Haan and Maata who are still in their mid 20’s!!! Thx Bowman. No Evander Kane or Tom Wilson on this team (Ladd or Buff). Nylander and Kubalik replacing Sharp & Hossa? Too many flaws.
    By the way, how many NHL coaches behind the Flyers bench? 3…. How many with the Hawks…NONE.

  9. How is it possible to still not know how to spell Toews? He’s only been captain for a decade.

  10. Morrison, I’m not a fan of Crosby either but Pittsburgh honored some veterans at the game yesterday. One was a single mother that did 5 years in the army. She’s also going to school and didn’t have a car. Crosby learned this and gave her the car he won at the all star game.

  11. I wish a coach could through to this team, that to win games you need to score, to score you need to shoot the puck. The pp that never shoots, the globetrotter routine in ot that almost ended up in Pens goal, the Debrincat fiasco with 2 on 1 on ot etc. Whats wrong with players signed to big contracts shooting the puck and trying to score. Seems more like a clinic on how to avoid winning a hockey game.

  12. As Tab mentioned, Nylander did NOT hustle to get back on the goal by Guentzel. I saw had bad it was on the replay (surprised Eddie didn’t mention it) and then the camera switched to Colliton. You could tell he was really pissed. That goal could have possibly been stopped had 92 just done anything. We’ll see if he’s scratched tonight. That was a pretty bad effort.

    Not on this board, but elsewhere people are posting and seemingly about to commit suicide over not getting two points out of this one. They went on the road and competed hard. Pittsburgh did come back from a two goal deficit but it was not like a total breakdown of the Blackhawks. Glad to get a point out of this one. Hoping the compete level stays solid for tonight’s game against Toronto.

  13. Can’t fault the effort – the Hawks competed and had a a 50/50 chance to win that game – SOG were even as well which should usually mean points for the Hawks given their goaltending and CC was good again last night

    The problem is too often they can’t a third goal – they win that game if they can score a 3rd goal

    They had some chances too – I hope we see Dach back in (for Caggs or Smith) and being given more TOI than the last few games and Boquist back in as well for KK

    Christmas is coming – maybe Santa can bring Kampf a new pair of hands – his old ones don’t work – it’s a better line up IMO with 64 on the a line with 22 and either 15 or 91

  14. The Nylander situation is frustrating. All that skill, but with occasional terrible breakdowns. You always feel like another meltdown is coming and it apparently did last night. Will he play tonight?

    The rolling puck on KK was unfortunate on the play where Nylander did not contribute. Boqvist gave up a similar goal the other night and the blogs did not seem to go crazy like they have over KK.

    Murray had DeBrincat’s number last night. He was “cheating” knowing that the pass was coming. That has always been the concern is that everybody knows it is coming. Sometimes you can’t stop it anyway. Same situation with Ovi in Washington.

    I am glad the Pens fans were booing the Hawks in OT. I was booing them from my couch as well.

    Here we go again, but Toews was marginal last night.

    For the most part, last night was a good effort from a mediocre team. We micro-analyze every goal against, but you can’t cry too hard over giving up two. Posters on blogs post as if every game should be a shut-out and every goal against is reason to bench the whole team. Crow was excellent last night. Prior to the start of the shoot-out, when Eddie was praising Crow as being excellent in shoot-outs, you knew the announcer’s curse was in place.

    It has been addressed a lot, but a shoot-out win should not have the same point total as a regulation win. How’s this? 3 points for a regulation win, 2.5 for an OT win and 2 for a shoot-out win.

  15. Indian, it is boardeline close for the season, for making the playiffs and being able to win against top teams in playoffs. After a shitty preseason and first 10 games, we are finally getting a little consistancy and we have won or tied 4 of 5. So even with those crazy no show games, we are getting better, a little at a time here.

    Think the adjustment to style we were playing and playing now has made a difference in a good way. Now like everybody says do it again. Sure, but lets keep putting these mini streaks together with a crazy no show in it, like we just did 4 of 5. Go from there. Keep getting better.

    In terms of the things you guys are talking about, yea what the heck is going on with some things. PK and now PP are good, so keep trying to get act together. Still could make playoffs, if we get to 10-10 area and then play like we did last yr.

  16. Should always be what it was before 2 pts win 1 tie and no 3 on 3 or shootouts, just 4 on 4 for 5 min and then both teams get 1 pt. Theres an extra free point that really no team should get, if no one scores on the 4 on 4 and there shouldnt ever be a shootout, that could just injure a goalie and has no place in the hockey.

    Maybe Christmas present is for realignment of points for this when they do expansion fixed team, Otherwise its prob the same for awhile. Which means though it could happen at expansion since thye know they cant change anything for awhile after that.

  17. I though we would be very good this yr, after the 2nd 40 games last yr and getting used to the system. But we wernt doing the whole system and we were trying to these first 10 games, with preseason and that many days OFF between games for practices. League, knew?, we needed to practice this, right?

    The players we got in summer are good. 40 22 44 can stay, they wont be afraid unless we play like we did first 10 games the whole 82. So we have a nice group and need to tweak roster at draft and summer. While the young wave comes in.

    So yea prob the 21 and 22 seasons are going to be when were really back. Thought we would be good this yr though. Salary cap stuff will work just fine.

  18. Hull65, Kubalik scores again and you still think he sucks…. doesn’t make sense….anyway, I will take Nylander over Dach thus far in their careers, Dach spends more time skating in circles, losing board battles and ends up laying on the ice after being man handled.

  19. Wrap it seems Toews 2g 51.3 fo%,
    Strome 3g 33% fo, Kampf 3g 50.3 fo%,
    Carpenter 0g 51.4 fo%. All must need a set hands for Christmas too.

    Have tonights game and next 3 until first quarter of season. Then if Murphy returns hopefully can help in the next 18 games in 35 days until Christmas after that. 4 back to backs, 10 division games, Avs 4 times, Blues and Stars twice, Jets and Wild once. Road trips Ariz and Vegas, plus east to Boston and NJ. Other home games against Ariz, Bolts, Panthers and Canes. Could be season making turn around stretch if there is going to be one.

  20. What can you say about Nylander on that goal? First, he didn’t read the play properly and rather than cutting across the ice to pick up the trailer he followed the path of the puck carrier. Second, he coasted back and let the shooter beat him into position (maybe the shooter would have got their first regardless, but Nylander had to challenge him for that space). Third, he made not last ditch effort at all (again it might not have mattered, but the whole sequence was totally lethargic). He even turned away from the shooter after he released it, so if there had been a rebound Nylander was heading away from the goal. Just a bad effort on all levels.

  21. I think we’ll get Leafs back up goalie tonight – gotta take advantage rather than make him look like a Vezina candidate which too often seems to happen

    @Ian – I hear ya about Kampf having a better season than others relative to his skill level but last night he had a couple of in tight chances that probably should have been goals even on Toews ice-cold stick

  22. The inability to hold a lead has been a chronic problem for quite a while. At 2-1 we looked very tentative, more scared to lose than trying to win.

  23. HULL and I have been saying for a long time that we do not have a physical net presence on the front or back end. Year-after-year we get out-muscled badly. Bowman gave a away a lot to get undersized Shaw with a history of concussions, thinking he will give us some front-of-the-net toughness.

    All of us knew up front that Maatta and de Haan came to the Hawks with reduced skills from numerous injuries. D-men shipped out were substandard players. This made the Joki trade very risky. With an aging Keith and Seabs and Murphy injured, the Hawks are in bad shape on D and are forced to play KK and Gus until Boq and whoever else will slowly make the team.

    Our goalies will be seeing a lot of pucks all season long. Can they hold up?

  24. O6: agree re the defense and, in particular, the Joki trade. If you think about it, Joki would actually have been our #1 defender on the right side this year. Blame for that trade should go to JC as well. He had him playing on the left side. He threw him in the dog house. Right on cue the management apologists chimed in that because JC didn’t like him, he was expendable. Reality is that for a 19/20 year old Joki did really well in his first year, but unfortunately Stan and JC were there to make a mess of it.

  25. And just to add, Ian Mitchell may or may not pan out but I would take Joki over him seven days a week.

  26. Jordy agree, brought that up at the time right after Colliton was hired, the way Jokiharju was being treated was irresponsible, have seen no reason to change my mind since.
    Nylander healthy scratched wouldn’t hurt him any not likely.

    Wrap maybe so but noticed 20, 64 and 8 back together for a shift and that line created a goal also. Hard to please some people i guess.

  27. Original6 is talking about no net front presence, but Shaw and Strome have been there consistently. Kane does not score on that wrister the other night without Strome in front.

    Gus was good last night, although he is probably a time bomb, like Nylander. The thing about Gus is that last year, he scored a lot of goals on shots that are similar to shots he has taken this year. The difference is that last year they were going in and you figured that mean reversion was going to occur at some point. We have now reached that point.

  28. @Jordy – I don’t have your crystal ball so I don’t know how good Mitchell will be in the NHL or if Joki will be better or not

    I will interested to find out once they both have an NHL season or two under their belts

  29. @donutwizard, my friend. Last time I checked the United States was a free country to script our thoughts in blogs. Stupid to you or not, I feel it’s time to select a new captain!
    19 is displaying no more leadership than Colliton.
    As far as the children, K.Duck and Bogusquist, send them to Rockford.
    No time for training in the pros when it’s time for a winner in Chicago.
    Thanks @donutwizard…

  30. Ian, yea when yuo look at it, besides our problems to work on and system to learn. How can you play
    2 in 11 days
    2 in 7 days
    5 in 7 days
    5 days off
    6 in 9 days
    You cant consistently

    Combine those and you have
    4 in 18 days to start season, then
    11 in 16 days (with 5 off in middle), then
    *now we finally have a normal 18 in 35 days you pointed on.

  31. Like you said, the scetion to 82 games to play a normal sch and get into a normal flow is the, next 18 games in 35 days, you stated.

    That is the part of the season we have a chance to play, in rhythm. Everything before that is stop and go, sprint and sleep for 2 wks, sprint. You know what I mean.

    This is the part I want to see what we got. if we cant be a 25-15 team, having enough time to gel and into new system, with a normal sch. Then yes we might suck but I do not by that until I see that then. Thats the time to turn the corner and not look back.

  32. Have nothing on Nylander, but have liked Buckaroo the whole time and other Horsemen. Vlassic takes his place in the stables so still have total amount now need to be ready and become good players once established.

  33. Who knows, lets say the Horsemen become a # 2, 3, 4, 5 and another 3 or 4 with Vlassic.

    Having 44 and 6 are # 3-5 we can get away with trading from strength, just need to mkae sure we get a # 2, 3, 5 from other Horsemen and then its the same as keeping every Defensemen we drafted. Think its the we keep on trading first thing that people do not like most about it.

    Anyways like to Buckaroo, Nylander and other Horsemen become good players and then it really doesnt matter who we kept or different position like Nylanders.

  34. Moondog, you can say it. Just be prepared to back it up and called out for your stupid thoughts. Was he bad? Sure. But not nearly to the level of scratch and find a new captain. As far as the shootout is concerned, he was clearly looking for something and Murray shut the door and he got in too tight. It happens.

    “It’s better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than open it and remove all doubt”

  35. Captain Obvious Line of the Year-
    Toronto feed and their announcer-
    “you have to wonder why Jeremy Culliton didn’t put Kane, Debrincat and Strome together Day One”

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