Patrick Sharp, Corey Crawford Lead Blackhawks Past Canes

Patrick Sharp scored the Blackhawks’ first goal in regulation and the shootout winner, and Corey Crawford made a number of huge saves late in the third period as the Blackhawks earned a hard-fought two points in Carolina on Tuesday night.

Sharp opened the scoring at 7:56 with his first goal of the season. The goal was the 200th of his NHL career, 190 of which have come wearing a Blackhawks’ sweater. He is now seven goals behind Troy Murray for 18th in franchise history, and six points away from 400 with the Blackhawks.

Marian Hossa followed suit with his second goal of the season; the other was an empty net goal. Hossa’s goal came moments after an Eric Staal penalty expired, and was credited as an even strength score. The Hawks were officially o-3 on the power play in the game.

Chicago dominated the first period, out-shooting Carolina 15-5 and taking a two-goal lead to the dressing rooms. However, the Hawks were out-shot 14-8 in a second period that saw them short-handed twice, and Carolina had a number of good scoring opportunities.

In the third, Alex Semin got the Canes on the board at 3:54. Ron Hainsey tied the game with a long shot that got through Crawford, but Chicago’s netminder was without his stick and was screened well by… Michal Rozsival.

Rozsival didn’t have a very good night. He spent four minutes in the penalty box and 13:27 on the ice, and was frequently out of position.

Bryan Bickell also had a less-than-stellar night, putting only one shot on net in 22 shifts and 17:31 on the ice. He also took an incredibly lazy hooking penalty with 2:30 left in overtime that could have easily cost the Blackhawks a second point.

But, thanks to Crawford, the night ended with the second point.

Crawford faced 34 shots in the game, 29 coming in the final 45 minutes. He was forced to make a couple tough saves at the end of regulation, and made a number of key saves during the overtime penalty kill. In the shootout, he stopped all three Carolina shooters to preserve the victory.

For the season, Crawford improved to 3-1-1 with a .917 save percentage.

Brandon Bollig had another steady game in a fourth line role. Although he only skated 13 shifts and 9:14, Bollig led the Hawks with six hits and was also credited with a blocked shot.

Niklas Halmarsson skated 26:00 and led the team with seven blocked shots. His partner on the blue line, Johnny Oduya, led the team with 26:05 on the ice and was also credited with to blocked shots.

The Hawks top defensive pair had another strong performance as well. Duncan Keith was incredibly active, putting four shots on net and blocking two Carolina shots. He had an ugly turnover in the final moment of regulation, but Crawford bailed him out. Meanwhile, Brent Seabrook was credited with five blocked shots, three hits and two takeaways.

After disappointing performances in the first three games of the season, the Blackhawks have now killed all nine penalties they have faced in their last three games.

Another area of concern for the Hawks this season as been in faceoffs, and the numbers on Tuesday night were intriguing. Michal Handzus skated only 14:34 but led the team in faceoffs taken (22). He won 12 of his 22 draws; the only other Hawks player to win more than half of his faceoffs was Sharp, who won three of five. Jonathan Toews won only six of 21 faceoffs, and Andrew Shaw won only three of 13 in the game.

Shaw, Handzus and Brandon Saad were credited with assists in the game.

 

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29 Responses to Patrick Sharp, Corey Crawford Lead Blackhawks Past Canes

  1. RyanDale says:

    Those f/o numbers for 19 and 65 are pretty brutal. Thankfully Zus did well. CC was very good and Sharp is sure to take off on a tear now that he’s cashed in during reg and ot. Keith has been doing a great job of getting pucks on net and his game overall is pretty stellar. His miscue tonight has not been the norm to date as far as turnovers go.. Hossa gettin better too. Just cant play with a lead for chit. But 2 points on the road is all you can ask for. Tons of blocked shots tonight too, along with pk being 4-4. Good road effort setting an early tone and lead after 1

  2. EbonyRaptor says:

    Another Cardiac Kids victory. After Sharp and Hossa got off the schnide early in the game, it looked like maybe the Hawks were going to be over their aversion to scoring more than barely enough goals to win. But, in keeping with the theme this season, the Hawks gave up third period goals and had to squeek out a win by the hair on their chinny chin chin.

    Sharp, Hossa and for the most part the 3rd line of Saad, Shaw and Nordstrom/Kruger played pretty well. Toews played below his standards. Kane played too cutesy too often. Bickell was a ghost. Handzus with a great pass to spring Sharp for his goal, but then was too slow to cover in the d-zone and let his man (Semin) score point blank on CC. Bollig got 6 hits so he’s in the + column. Nordstrom and Kruger with bad turnovers, with Nordstrom’s resulting in the tying goal. Smith was meh. Roszival was terrible. Leddy got eaten alive on the boards. The rest of the D was pretty good and CC was outstanding.

    Some stuff to like and some stuff to not like. I hope they can score more than 2 or 3 goals against the Blues Thursday. San Jose certainly didn’t have any problem puting the puck into the Blues’ net tonight. They had three PP goals though and it’s highy doubtful the Hawks will be able to muster one PP goal against them – much less three.

    But 9 points out of a possible 12 ain’t bad and that’s the bottom line.

  3. Tim G says:

    Saad played like a man last night. If he plays like this, he is going to replace Bicks on the top line. He was all over the Hurricans on the Forecheck. Im starting to get antsy about going to the Lightning game next week. Cant wait to see #20 in person.

  4. JS says:

    Thankfully Lapierre should be suspended on Thursday so they won’t have to worry about him breaking someone’s neck.

    I actually think Leddy has been really strong so far this season, he’s just getting screwed over by a rotating 3rd pairing of guys that aren’t helping his case. Roszival was horrible last night… like he made me miss Brookbank kind of horrible. That isn’t the way to be awarded with more ice time… if that was his goal.

    Bickell looks lost. It’s almost like he’s thinking too much out there and he keeps finding himself in bad positions. Hopefully after he gets his first goal he can relax and not look like a waste of a roster spot anymore. I would imagine that Q would have switched him and Saad if the third line wasn’t dominating so much.

    Hossa is fine.

    PP started to get too cute again. Hopefully they just jam it in St. Louis’ giggy on Thursday.

  5. Morrison says:

    I like that we havnt beat them in carolina since 1998, until this year.

  6. wall says:

    ER- did you happen to notice what PP set Sharks used to score three PP goals?

    Bickell is playing like a dog… put the 4M$$$ down, and Lets see if Pirri can skate with 10/81 at some point sooner than later…

    I wouldn’t even mind seeing 28/19/88- Smith has a very good nose for the net- and might finish the loose stuff around the goal created by 19/81- right now 29 is starting to skate like an over-paid Bruno- without Bruno’s hands.

    ER- (the answer is 1-3-1 w/ Thonton in middle- Why they can’t slot Toews there???)

  7. Mike says:

    Tab, faceoffs and hate to sound like a broken record……but playing with a lead seems to put the Hawks too much at ease. Watching the game, it would be easy to say to yourself, this one is gonna slip away. The fact the Hawks saved to 2 points is great but…….these are the Hurricanes.

    I agree. 1. Bicks is just thinking too much and putting a lot of pressure on himself. Hopefully, Toews will get him straight. 2. Bolig looks like he wants to stay. He is playing physical but clean hockey. A perfect 4th line combination. 3. Smith looks like he wants to stay too. Seems to understand his role, doesn’t try to do too much, stays out of trouble. 4. I think Leddy’s D game is hurt maybe a little bit from the constant partner changes.

    Here is a crazy idea (don’t call me a moron, just thinking out loud), put Leddy on a wing for a few games. His rushes into the offensive zone are very good. The few seconds he stays down below the goal line before retreating to the blueline look good as well. He is not physical but handles the puck well behind the net.

  8. Tab Bamford says:

    If there isn’t room in the lineup for Pirri, Morin or Hayes, why would you move Leddy to a wing?

  9. Tab Bamford says:

    Brandon Saad has shown now that he’s a top-six player, whether he’s slotted on the third or first line. The skill and work ethic is there on a nightly basis, and he makes plays whether Toews or Shaw is his center and whether Kruger or Hossa is the opposite wing. He reminds me of Ladd in that way.

    Bickell needs to spend a week (not game) or two on the third line with Shaw and Kruger… maybe longer. He worked well in that role and has done nothing this season to warrant being on a line with 19 & 88. Put Saad’s explosiveness next to the two superstars and leave it alone for a while. Odds are that it will work

  10. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    Crikey. Some of you need to relax. This team has tallied 9 out of 12 points to start the season. The early season schedule is goofy, and this team is still trying to find it’s total chemistry. PLUS, this team doesn’t have the gas pedal to the floor as it is acting like ALL Cup winners in that they are behaviorally trying to “pace” themselves for a long and brutal season. It’s a psychological thing that gets cured by December and I’m not worried about it.

    Bickell will also be fine. Nobody works harder to be the best player he can be and its obviously right now that he is pressing and feeling the anxiety of that contract. What he needs is a long road trip and to settle in with what his role will ultimately be. Not worried in the least about Bickell.

    I’m going to shove a fork in my eye if anybody clamors for Brandon Friggin Pirri to play more. I for the life of me don’t understand the fascination some of you see for a slow guy who will never have the offensive or defensive credentials necessary to be even moderately successful in this league. Just stop with Pirri. Nice kid who I’m sure helps little old ladies across the street and pays his taxes on time…but for the love of God he has no future on this team and is not the answer to anything.

    I’ll continue to say this about Hjalmarsson. It is time his name get mentioned in the talk about Norris Trophy in 2013-14.

  11. RyanDale says:

    4 doesnt have the offensive numbers that voters these days want to see., i.e. Subban Letang, Karlson etc. Not right, jus sayin. I love 4, hes a very valuable asset in Chicago but I still would want 2 before 4. Just me

  12. JS says:

    Yes Rufus, we are aware that you think the offensive Juggernaut Phillip Danault will be playing for the Hawks by Christmas. The 3 shots in 4 games he has speaks volumes of his bursting skill with the puck and how close he is to being ready.

    People want to see more of the top scorer in the AHL playing with the top team in the NHL. Can you fault them for this? Especially when you watch Handzus skate around between two of the top wingers in the game and slow them down… not that Pirri is the worlds most agile skater, but he isn’t as bad as Handzus.

  13. RyanDale says:

    can you imagine Sharps career with a solid playmaker in the middle?

  14. wall says:

    Rufus- I am not a Pirri fan- (should have traded him after winning AHL scoring title- at his PEAK value…)

    But like JS said- 26 can’t keep up with 10/81 for 60 + games… I would like to have Pirri prove me/you wrong-
    but Danault is not 2nd line answer… Hawks have at least three prospects ahead of him for 2nd line center.

    And yes- Nordstrom made the bad TO for Canes 2nd goal… but I would add him to the 2nd line list before the season ends… 42 continues to win pucks in O zone and set-up 2 grade A one timers last nite!

  15. Morrison says:

    RD, Yea his name starts with a T, but his train wont get here until fall ’15.

  16. Mike says:

    Tab…. I am of the opinion that there is no room for Hayes or Pirri because they are not the pieces the Hawks need for their type of attack, at least not now. Like I have said before, give Pirri 5-7 consecutive games and let him show the brass if he is the guy they want. As the AHL’s leading scorer, 5-7 consecutive games should be enough time to show short term potential. But to me Pirri is not fast enough for the Hawks top 6 and not a grinder type player for the bottom 6. However, I do think that Morin is the best of those 3 for the Hawks situation.

  17. RyanDale says:

    ^o yeah, well aware we have him on the horizon, i’m just thinking back over 10s time here so far. Cant wait for TT :-)

  18. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    I will take an ancient Handzus over Pirri 99 out of 100 games. Nobody claims Handzus is an every rotation 2nd line center at this sunset stage of his fine career. But he remains a better offensive and defensive player versus Pirri. And he remains a better guy at the dot.

    Danault will not be relied upon to be a wondrous scorer when he arrives. Rather he will be counted upon to be a strong complementary player at Center who is good with the puck, good moving the puck along and good defensively. Is he star material? Of course he isn’t. But he will be here soon enough and for good.

    Nordstrom is 10 times the talent Pirri is. Nordstrom is prone to rookie mistakes, but his core skill level and hockey IQ bursts through. Kid can skate, play with the puck on his stick and can generate in the passing game. He also has outstanding two-way potential and a high motor. I love everything about this kid to become a superlative specialist on the Hawks.

    Enough about Pirri. Make it stop please.

  19. Reg Dunlop says:

    Boys…….I’m with Rufus………let’s not panic. So far we are not too bad with the exception of letting our foot off the gas when we have a lead. I’m sure that Q will make the necessary mental adjustments.

    As far as Bickel, he’s not going to be a 40/40 guy. But when he’s not scoring he needs to be more physical. Again, he’s coming off a Stanley Cup season and he was injured during the finals. He’s not even 100%, yet. He’ll pick it up by mid November.

    I love that third line!! Shaw and Krueger are out to prove that last year was not a fluke for either of them. Very nice.

    Anyone see the connection with Lapierre and Torres? Both dirty players, both have multiple suspensions and both played for Vancouver. Knucleheads!!

  20. Peter says:

    Ryan,
    Can you imagine Sharp’s career if he was a center on this team? He is a great winger, but damn he could be a good center too. A monster line could be Saad, Sharp, and Hossa.

    I have only seen one game this year. Is Bickell out of shape or pressing? The pressing is understandable, being out of shape would be too bad. I tend to think if he gets a goal he might be all right. He has a lot of changes to adapt to like being paid and married…could be trying to find a balance.

  21. Phil says:

    Haven’t chimed in here lately, but since I was out of the country through early October I wanted to see how the season started. Some things I have noticed early on this long season are as follows.

    Hawks look much faster than every team we have played thus far with Zus the exception to the rule. Puck possession has been very good with d men once again joining in the up ice rushes. We are getting good net presence offensively with numerous rebound chances. Overall, we are clearing our own effectively through most of the games, however for some reason in the 3rd periods there have been some noticeable lapses once opposing teams score, which has been just about every game. Faceoffs need to get better. I think the PP looks better this year, but time will tell. Corey is getting the job done so far this year, and I can only fault him on the goal the Blues scored at the end to beat us. Defensively, the Hawks play excellent team defense and that was one of the key factors in last years championship run.

    Our best players are looking good. Especially heartening is the game by game improvement of Hossa, whom I was concerned with given his back issues late last year carrying over. Bickell I believe is suffering from big contract choke syndrome after getting a massive offseason raise. I think players of his caliber start thinking they are really talented, and forget what they did to get the bigger contract. Bickell we must also remember skated in Europe last year before the shortened season began. He clearly had a fitness edge that many other players didn’t. He was also in a contract year. He looks a bit slower to me so far this year. Could be his knee isn’t right yet as well. The good news is, if he remains healthy he should get much better. Leddy looks better this year, and as fast as he was the past few years, he seems to have added a 7th gear and some torque to those gifted skates. He just leaves most opposing skaters behind FAST. He also looks more poised in the d zone and is making better decisions. Maturity is a wonderful thing to watch in young developing players. Rozy was bad last night, but I think he has shown he can riase the level of his game when the chips are down. Hammer has been very good and I also think he is building off an excellent run last year into an elite NHL d man. His attitude is fantastic, as he comes to play every game mentally prepared. Pairing with Oduya is strong. Keith and Seabs remain stdy and Duncs is really seeing the ice well. His skating talents are amazing.

    I went down to St Louis to watch the game last week. IMO we absolutely blew that game. The Blues cannot skate with us. No way no how. Halak kept them in it. I am cracking up whenever I hear these guys on NHL Network talking up the Blues like they are the second coming of some king of dream team. The Blues still have a hack Captain, they added cheap shot Lapierre from the Nucks, and still try and goon it up whenever possible. Reeves and Stewart please…If their keepers don’t make miracle saves they will be an also run by year end. I think we beat those guys tomorrow night as the Hawks left St Louis pissed off last week.

    Lastly, I think we could be unbeaten at this point. The Hawks have squandered leads that we should hold as the season progressed. In the early season games we have seen opposing goalies keep their teams in the hunt. This should not last long, and we are likely going to see some offensive explosiveness very soon. There will some stinker games of course along the way, but I see a healthy Hawks team as a top 3 unit moving forward.

    That’s it for now, and lets beat the Blues tomorrow!

  22. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    I’m not worried in the least about Bickell. He’s the toughest critic of himself and his work ethic is off the charts. He’s playing tight right now. Last night he looked very tight and nervous to the point I’m sure he crapped out a diamond at the end of the game. The best thing for Bickell is a long road trip where he can let himself relax and find his identity once againe on the ice.

  23. StanIsTheMan says:

    Give Pirri 10-40 games.

  24. Mike says:

    You do not need to give Pirri 40 games. 10 games will tell the coaching staff all it needs to know.

  25. John Wangsauce says:

    I think Stan was being facetious…

    I can’t wait until they get through this long stretch of eastern conference games. I haven’t missed these guys since they were off the schedule all last year. Last year added to the rivalries with intra-conference play.

    Think we’ll see Kostka tomorrow? What’s everyone’s thoughts on him? Playing the best of the 3 rotating D so far? I missed the TB game he played in but I see that he played 16+ minutes in it.

  26. Windy City Z says:

    I’d like to see Kostka get a chance to lock down the 6th dman. In any case Brookbank needs to go, it’s not helping any of them (Rozi, Kostka, BB) get into a rhythm with such a long time between games and no chance to develop chemistry/feel with Leddy.

    As far as Bickell, I know he is pressing, but c’mon HIT SOMEBODY! That was the difference last year vs his crappy 2011 year. He scored more goals because he got physical, softened up the D, and cleared room in front of the net, NOT because he suddenly became Teows or Kaner. If he gets mean, the points will follow.

    Kind of makes you wonder if Stan didn’t make his first mistake? If he could let Buff go get paid somewhere else after a great playoff run on the 1st line (after multiple seasons of inconsistency), then he probably should have done the same with Bickell, considering that Saad was ready to step in, and the whole team premise of keeping the “core” and replacing the rest with the “next man up”.

    If Bick’s comes back and plays like he did last year then that’s great, otherwise hopefully he plays at least well enough that S.B. can trade him without the Hawks taking a hit.

  27. wall says:

    Z- good post… I will add that 29 isn’t hitting like Playoffs- cuz he has been too slow to get to the play to legally hit anybody… so either 19/88 too fast or 29 is slower because he is skating with a very FAT wallet…

    65 has been off all year- Hayes was a factor 1st couple of games… but since they added 42 to that line he has looked much better.

  28. Mike says:

    Wall, I am thinking that 65 will pick it up as some games go by. He is not as mature as a player as Saad (a rare commodity at 21). Thrust into the line up, The Cup, the summer, the feeling of invincibility. It will click. 29, yep, just like 65 but with a much much heavier wallet. The hunger must come back and it will. I give our guys, especially the youngest guys, 10 games or so to refocus. All that said…………….

    Tonight, while not critical, is a statement game for the Hawks. Game is in Chicago and the Hawks are 0-1-0 against their biggest divisional rival. Here is I want to see tonite. I would like to see Morin but maybe not tonite.

    Saad / Toews / Kane
    Sharp / Krugs / Hossa
    Bicks / Shaw / Smith
    Bolig / Pirri / Nordstrom
    Kieth / Seabs
    Oduya / Hammer
    Leddy / Rosy or Kostka
    Crawford

  29. Mike says:

    PS…..I have no problem slotting 65 at 2C and 16 at 3C

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