CHI FLA

Luongo, Panthers Shutout Blackhawks

For the second time in as many nights, the Blackhawks offense was silent in Florida.

The Hawks scored less than one minute into Thursday night’s game against Tampa and were shutout by Roberto Luongo and the Florida Panthers on Friday night.

Scott Darling got the call in net and had a rough first period; two of the three goals he allowed in the first period were soft. The final goal of the opening 20 minutes, which came with 2.1 seconds left in the period, was brutal. But Darling was far from being the only player to blame for a lackluster performance.

Chicago was flat from the opening puck drop and never caught up with Florida’s speed. The Panthers pounced all over the Hawks early and they showed no signs that a comeback was in the cards after the third goal was scored.

The lowest ice time recipient in the game for Chicago was forward Andrew Shaw, who took an errant clearing attempt to the head while sitting on the bench during the first period. Shaw only skated 7:56 and was minus-one with two hits and two penalty minutes.

Darling allowed four goals against 32 shots. He was much better in the final 40 minutes, stopping 17 of 18 after the ugly first period. Luongo wasn’t tested much but made a few big saves when he needed to; Florida’s netminder made 27 saves in the victory.

Jonathan Toews skated only 14:05 but led the team with four shots on net. He was also credited with two takeaways and won eight of 14 faceoffs. Six different Blackhawks picked up two hits in the box score and Brent Seabrook led the way with three blocked shots.

Rob Scuderi skated 10 full minutes more than he did on Thursday night, but a nauseating turnover less than three minutes into the second period led to Aaron Ekblad’s tenth goal of the season.

Jiri Sekac made his Chicago debut and was minus-one in 11:19 on the ice.

Richard Panik found his alarm clock and returned to the lineup. He finished minus-one in 12:15 in the loss.

At least the Hawks’ penalty kill was good, stopping all three Panthers power plays.

The Hawks had better bring more to the rink on Sunday when the Blues visit the United Center than they did for either game in Florida.

35 thoughts on “Luongo, Panthers Shutout Blackhawks

  1. Panthers played a smart game. Knowing we played last night and, at the end of a tough scheduling sequence, they pounced all over us early fast and furious. By the time Darling got his bearings straight we were too tired and too far behind as a team. It’s going to be rough heading back to the UC against the Blues whose play as of late is not too shabby. I worry about injuries at times like this especially against those skunks.

  2. Ugly game. 12 games in 20 days is a little tough.

    Let’s rest up for St. Louis and start another streak.

  3. Want to win the last game before break so we have a good taste in our mouths. Win or tie in next one would be nice. Even though sch is as tough as there is (14/24) we have to manufacture a win or tie in one/or two of these two games. We earned every bit of +12, we need to come out of this at the break +10/+11.

  4. SILVER LINING: maybe Stan and Q say, “hey, maybe that long winning streak was against weaker teams, and now that we’ve played a few contenders and have looked average, we see that we need to make a few more moves to improve.”

    Remember–we got over the hump and won it last year with trade deadline acquisitions. Perhaps the same is needed this year. Maybe an infusion of speed?

    Morrison: all last season, after each loss, you said “lion in the savannah.” Do you believe that now, with this group, or do you think we need another boost to get us over the top?

    I say we go for broke. Cups are rare and precious. Let’s make another move or two to bulk up and put ourselves in position again.

    PEDAL TO THE FLOOR, EH?

  5. Sasquatch Darling let in a few ultra soft goals for a guy weighting in at 235 pounds it’s not a good thing and it took a tired Hawks team out of it quickly. Hawks will coast into the all star break and now begins the “erratic play” NO HAWKS WONT LOSE ON PURPOSE or NOT TRY, but they will begin to rest Crow, to selectively PUSH, during the 12 game run, ALL 4 LINES PLAYED HARD, so now they know what they got! This TEAM as I have said has to PLAY GREAT AS A TEAM, All four lines! No one player Even Kane can carry them when 3 and 4 line have an off night! All four lines show up or else Hawks are beatable ( like all teams ) SO IT TAKES A BIG EFFORT and effort burns calories, get ya injured, gets ya exhausted, sleep is an issue with NO REST IN THE PLAYOFFS. . . conditioning is the key! Crow will need a rest, and I do not Trust Sasquatch Darling long term.

    Last night, Another Exhibit A where SPEED kills again not to be confused with Quickness! Panthers and Bolts get up and down 200 feet with acceleration, quick yes but, speed they accelerate around our d-men along the boards and wings with ease! They accelerate that 100 feet not just 10 feet, a big difference! Panthers are so BIG and Bulky on Defense and really just “pinned a smaller” team the Hawks to the boards and waited, then simply took the puck! Their Defense was better than expected, they have the size and reach to sort of let the Hawks Skate themselves Silly and not get a shot to net, brilliant work, they don’t chase, Hawks need ya to chase, no chase HAWKS WEAKNESS! Last night even old man Jagr even able to SKATE with PANARIN AND KANE!

    I see Jiri Sekac up on the Number One line very shortly, maybe even Sunday vs Blues! 100 reasons why Sekac would not move up, but he will, (IMO) His speed is open the ice up for Toews and Hoss. ( hoss looks exhausted) Shawzy will add PUNCH to the third or fourth line and give HAWKS some Stability in the bottom six.

    DENNIS RASMUSSEN the MOOSE is playing better, his game has picked up about 25% or so. I’m certain he got a lecture and I am certain he can and will respond played hard last night. Panik played well too . . .

    go hawks

  6. Obviously Hawks Trades after the all star break are coming. But who for what? Hawks beat a few very very good teams during this streak and some average teams but they played so well with 4 lines every night again not physically possible for too long..

    Hawks need to be playing Great in April, they don’t need to be first, or second they just need to get in “healthy” even with the team we have, NO ONE and i mean NO ONE will want to face them in the first or last rounds.

    Go hawks

  7. Hawks have played more games than anyone. They’ve played 12% more games to date than the sharks. Panthers won 12 in a row and lost their next 4. Another blog wrote they were exhausted and
    limping to the all star break. They just won 12 in a row! We are a volatile bunch!

    It’s not the Hawks are slower. When they can’t pass the puck they fail. That’s got nothing to do with being fast. We see games where it seems they threw every players stick in a barrel and picked one, nothing seems to go right. It happened in Nashville in the first round and we saw how that ended up. Relax, loosen up that grip, and play their game. They’ll be fine.

  8. Mike the Mook,

    Your caps take away from your text. In the future you will find yourself a more readable author if you remove the ‘caps lock’ button from your keyboard. Appreciate your passion, just trying to help.

  9. Yep, Darling was not good. Neither was anyone else in a Hawks uniform.

    The Hawks couldn’t match the energy level of Tampa or Florida and both teams dominated throughout the entire 60 minutes. The only difference between the two games was the goalie play for the Hawks.

    Were the Hawks low on energy because of the heavy schedule? Maybe. Probably.

    Which means the question of whether the Hawks, as currently constructed, are one of the 2 or 3 top teams in the league or something less. I maintained all through the 12 game winning streak that the competition was for the most part bottom half of the league teams and therefore beating them was not proof positive that the Hawks were the best team in the West. Likewise, losing to Tampa and Florida is not proof positive that they’re not either. Teams don’t play at maximum energy and effectiveness all 82 games. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the Hawks drop the last 2 games before the all star break either – if they’re “leg weary” tired then they may not fully re-energize until after the 7-day all star game layoff.

    We’ll have to wait until after the all star break to assess where the are because then no team will have the “tired” excuse – not the Hawk not their opponents.

    I’m still very optimistic.

  10. The biggest weakness on this team is top line left wing. I like Shaw’s passion and grit but he is not a top 6 talent. He is a lousy passer and fumbles the puck consistently. He is a possesion killer. MTM may be right, give Sekac a chance on 1st line lw and see what happens. He probably will not work either but at least they can try. Drouin has elite offensive talent and I think Q and the staff can maximize that talent. Trade Dano and our first round pick for Drouin and we may have elite talent at top line lw. I would rather see TT on the top line lw than 65.

  11. Hawks looked tired. 14 games in 23 days has taken its toll on them. The schedule makers are not friends of the Hawks. We have played 51 games and much of the NHL has only played 45-47 games. That kind of discrepancy should not happen. Every team in the NBA except 2 has played 43-45 games. NHL schedulers are in need of improvement.

  12. Agree w 1961 re Shaw. Bowman can figure out how the math works re salary cap, Ladd is an upcoming free agent, get him here like Vermette last yr w the sole intention of winning Stanley Cup. Ladd to Hawks = parade #4.

    Back up slightly cheaper (but motivated for sure) would be Doan who has never won Cup; however Arz is hanging in there.

    We ll see, the West is weaker this yr than last, the Cup is there for the Hawks’ taking w one aggressive move like this. Welcome back for a few mos Lafd.

  13. Mook/Ernie, good posts. Flatl, I believe so and still want to add a FW and Defenseman for moar depth. We have the top core in hockey and when we have a full roster we have a chance to do something special. Find a way to get these trades/deadline players.

  14. Iceman – Do you think the west is weaker or just more competitive? I don’t know if the western teams are beating up on the eastern teams.

    I think I saw on HockeyBuzz that the Hawks have $4+ million in cap space. Is that correct?

  15. Campbell is by far more competitive (then east), even with that division not as good as last yr.

    Not sure where cap space is with recent moves but we had 4.2m (with 20 on 23 man) before so I am sure its around that area.

    I like Laddy.

  16. Two bad games in a row. I had no idea Garbutt meant that much to this team….( here’s to MTM’s use of the cap lock key)….NOT.

    Glad to see them stumble a little. As Flatliner’s post mentions, we still have opportunity areas and need some tweaks of the roster. I doubt Bowman would have sat on this roster, but the stumble assures he will do what he can to improve it. Hope he can do some more magic.

    For those talking about Drouin, I believe the kid is a whiner. On Hockey Central they were saying this is the second time in his young career he sat out refusing to play. He is doing it in the AHL and they said he did it in the Juniors also. Don’t know enough about the kid or the situations, but that sends a red flag up for me. He does not sound like a team player to me.

    Unlike prior years, I believe the biggest hurdle to winning the cup this year will be out of the East….Washington.

    Go Stanbo!!!!
    Go Hawks…love beating the Blues and making them doubt themselves.

  17. Booman- Yes, Drouin does have a negative reputation. That is why he is available. He is also very gifted offensively. I have confidence that Q, Toews and company can turn him around. If he gets his head on straight the sky is the limit for the guy. I think it is a gamble worth taking. I like your Ladd idea Iceman. I am not a cap geek but I think the large bonus Panarin will get might tie Stan’s hands to a degree.

  18. Winnipeg is in disarray and sinking fast. They lost again @ home tonight. Their GM used to work for Hawks and is close w/ Bowman. There’s going to be a fire sale, 1st round pick and a couple top Rockford guys will bring Ladd home thru the parade.

  19. Mudturtle, its half right. General manager had a better breakdown. Theirs end of season cap. Cap space now. And projected deadline space. They’re projecting the Hawks to have 4.5 in deadline space. But that by no means does that mean they’re 4.5 mil below the ceiling. It means they can pick up a player or players that had a salary of 4.5 mil to start the year. Since the salary is prorated the final 20 or so games. They pay the player on a per game basis. Can add like 54k a game for the final 20 games or so.

  20. Dano and a first is too much for a kid content on staying in Montreal. Dano straight up…maybe. Drouin would bring offense, however. He’s yet to develop his 200 foot game which is something this team demands. Well with one lone exception, but you can only have one of those guys. I’d also be interested in Mike Hoffman if the Senators continue to flounder.

  21. Hawks 1961-

    It’s not necessarily the bonus money that’s an issue when it comes to Panarin. It’s the issue with the cap probably not increasing much due to the Canadian dollar. Any overage due to bonus money is put on to next years cap. Essentially lowering the Hawks ceiling.

    Now, if the Hawks can unload Bickell that certainly would help that. Remember, Seabrook has a slight raise. I think Shaw has earned an extension as well. Kruger is probably gone with the emergence of Danault. Maybe you can package Kruger’s rights with Bickell and get a 7th.

    In any event, Stan could say fuck it I’ll deal with it next year and make a move if he thinks that’s what it’ll take.

  22. Ernie-why would Ottawa get rid of one of their best young players (over achieving in a sinkhole) ? Hoffman’s real good-

  23. There’s been rumors of a trade. I don’t know why they would other than Ottawa is a budget team and they seem skeptical Hoffman can continue at this pace.

  24. There is no doubt Ernie that Drouin would be a high risk / high reward guy. He refused to report to Tampa’s AHL affiliate so it looks like he wants out of the Tampa organization which may force Yzerman’s hand. He was an overall #3 pick so I doubt they would give him up for just Dano. He would be a potential long term solution at left wing top line. I am not a big fan of giving up first round draft picks for rentals but of course last year the Hawks may not have won the Cup without Vermette.

  25. Yoda, thank you for the comment, at times it think no one reads this stuff, so I often use caps or lame quotes to make a point. In the future i will do my best to assume it is being read and give the reader the benefit of the doubt.

    side bar > Also on Garbutt he is a good solid 3 or 4 th line winger, period. Never assumed he’d score 20 goals, but his consistent effort, speed and nose for the corners is a value on the 3 and 4th lines. Garbutt brought it every night great on back check and has a great shot also, alway on target ( unlike tvr ) and always provides wide rebounds but Hawks don’t play that style.

    hey no caps

    go hawks ( still no caps)

  26. I still like Dano in our system but it’s too late in the season.

    But the Hawks are not trading next month for draft picks. They need help, a live body with stick and scoring skills . . . Shane Doan would be the skill set they need, and Doan would be the type of veteran who has notwon a cup that would bring energy and effort to the quest. That is the “type” they are looking for.

    Sadly Shane Doan ain’t going anywhere . . . Ladd would not help the casue. Buff yes . . . Hawks Need an impact player maybe even someone who can play on top line!

  27. Just want to say again . . . look for Jiri Sekac with Toews and Hossa tonight vs. Blues, Sometime tonight I think Q insert Sekac just to see what happens. . ..Yes, many reasons this wont happen but a few reasons it should. Shawzy is much more valuable on the 3-4 line. He can lead a line, on the top line he is support.

    But Shawzy is playing very well and has not played his way out of the job

    go hawks

  28. Calgary has played 6 less games than the hawks. That’s the equivalent of almost two weeks. What a huge advantage for the teams that have played less games. More rest and practice days. Because the schedule has been so uneven against the hawks to this point those two losses to good rested teams in Florida mean nothing On top of that the hawks also had some new players in the lineup. Go hawks

  29. Good call MtM….Sekac a healthy scratch. Toews got the morning skatr off and Sekac took his spot but was going to be a scratch

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