Penalties, Predators Beat Blackhawks

The Blackhawks penalty kill sucks, and they got plenty of work on it Friday night in Nashville.

The game actually started fairly well for the Hawks. Marian Hossa, skating on the third line to open the night, tried to hit Ryan Hartman for a breakaway but the puck was just out of Hartman’s reach. The action pushed the puck towards the net, however, and Marcus Kruger followed the play and tapped in his first goal of the young season.

Unfortunately, the next shift for that line would be the last of the night for Hartman. He got tangled up with Corey Crawford and struggled to get back to his feet, and then blocked a shot while already playing on one leg.

After Hartman left, all of the glaring issues that plagued the Blackhawks on Wednesday night returned. Penalties, more penalties and power play goals for the opposition.

Brian Campbell went to the box at 6:18 for interference, and the Preds took advantage. PK Subban scored the first goal of the season for his new team.

Niklas Hjalmarsson would give the Blackhawks the lead once again 2:05 after the Subban goal, but the lead would again be short-lived.

Jonathan Toews went to the box for holding the stick of Mattias Ekholm at 15:06 and Nashville cashed in again. This time, Roman Josi made the deposit for the game-tying goal. The goals by Subban and Josi were the first for both on an opening night.

Nick Schmaltz also went to the box late in the first period, a penalty that carried over for 29 seconds into the second period. But, just for the heck of it, the Hawks killed that penalty.

The middle stanza saw the parade to the box continue.

Early in the second, Anthony Bitetto gave Patrick Kane a hard time in the corner and Jordin Tootoo stepped in on his next shift. The two dropped the gloves and, unfortunately, Bitetto’s head appeared to hit the ice as the two went down. He was helped to the room and did not return.

Only 43 seconds after the Tootoo-Bitetto fight, Artem Anisimov went to the box for hooking Ryan Ellis. The Blackhawks successfully killed a second penalty, bringing their PK percentage back to .500 on the night.

A little more than 10 minutes into the second, James Neal whacked Toews in the face with his stick behind the play. Nothing was called, and Neal continued to get his money’s worth at the expense of Chicago’s captain behind the play. Toews finally had enough and fought Neal, officially cancelling his Lady Byng campaign.

At exactly 16 minutes into the second, Anisimov went to the box again for a delay of game call. Mike Fisher scored 36 seconds later to give the Preds a 3-2 lead. Ryan Johansen had assists on each of the Preds’ three goals through two periods, while Josi and Fisher had two points each through 40 minutes.

The Blackhawks killed only two of five Nashville advantages in the opening two periods, and piled up 20 penalty minutes. Given that Hartman skated only two shifts, having one of your 11 remaining forwards in the box for 14:29 of the 20 minutes in the second period is a certain recipe for disaster.

Chicago was credited with 11 shots on goal in the first two periods – combined. Nashville had that many in the first period.

Discipline continued to plague the Blackhawks in the third. The Hawks got a power play 11:23 into the third, but Brent Seabrook was whistled for closing his hand on the puck (delay of game) only 18 seconds into the advantage.

Four seconds before Seabrook’s penalty expired, PK Subban – who got into it with Toews on his previous shift – smacked Kane in the face. Kane sold the hell out of it, and got a penalty called… on Subban and himself. Subban went for roughing and Kane got a matching two minutes for the flop.

Kane spending two minutes in the box with only six minutes and change left in regulation doesn’t help the Hawks’ chances of coming back.

Chicago picked up the pace considerably in the final six minutes, but Pekka Rinne was incredible. With two minutes left in regulation, he robbed Vinnie Hinostroza on the doorstep to maintain the lead, but Subban went back to the box for interfering with Hossa. Crawford went to the box for a 6-on-4 with 1:46 left on the clock.

Vintage Rinne continued to erase good chances for the Hawks with Subban in the box and the final horn came before an equalizer. The Blackhawks fell to 0-2-0 on the season, and have allowed six power play goals in two games.

These two teams will go back at it on Saturday night at the United Center.

36 thoughts on “Penalties, Predators Beat Blackhawks

  1. Frustrating as hell. Veterans taking more dumb penalties. Hawks unable to capitalize on late power plays. Uhg!

    80 games to go. It has to get better. The D looks good 5 on 5. Kane and Panarin will score eventually. Specialty teams need to get going before they dig a huge hole for themselves.

    Huge game tomorrow night!

  2. Guess the penalty kills woes could a big issue, being more disciplined a must but pk has to improve. Hope hartman not serious but didn t look good. Thought schmaltz and hinostroza looked better but need someone finish in the offensive zone

  3. The Hawks lost this game b c they gave up 3 more PP goals, and won a mere 5/15 faceoffs while shorthanded. Tootoo played all of 4+ mins again; can he kill penalties? Ahhh, no. Can he take faceoffs? Ahhh, no. Jake Dowell can do both of these quite well — he can strictly be used in this role, and the team would be better served.

    This is just a plain, simple fact.

  4. I actually thought Tootoo had a good game. Did damage on his fight and made two great passes for scoring chances. Not bad in limited ice time.

    That said, I agree that a 4th liner that can kill penalties is a huge asset.

  5. A lot more things to comment on from the negative side than the positive side – that’s for sure.

    On the positive side: Kempny.

    On the negative side: pretty much everything else.

    80 to go.

  6. 2 of the biggest gripes prior to the season. Jordin Tootoo and Marcus Kruger. Tootoo had a good game and did his job. Kruger has points in both games.

  7. Who was gripping about Tootoo and Krugs ,.,sure not me . Tootoo in the house to send the message and Krugs is our new Kaner ,.,.,loving it . P.K. looks a little rattled , to say the least ,, Toews fight , not a good thing ,and i got the feeling that 19 not a happy camper right now . Did he have a shot on net ? Saturday night game just got more interesting eh ! Is there a need to post ,Stay out of the box ! How did 14 look ?
    Q was lining all kinds of forwards up when i was watching the ticker but,.,.,

  8. Lol…well, huge for game 3. It’s a tough division and 1-2-0 seems a lot better than 0-3-0 to me. However, you’re right. Huge is certainly overstating it.

    I do admit that I am not overly confident about this year. It’s strange. I think they can win the cup and at the same time I think it is possible that they can miss the playoffs. Interesting year with a lot of parity.

  9. Penalties= a lot of frustration from players that Used to dominate… no longer dominating…

    Hawks PK been bad… But PP equally bad… really miss Shaw on that PP in front of net…

    Thought TooToo had a good game… can’t blame him for most of these problems.

    Schmaltz was better… but he is nothing like he was in College so far- that is concerning to me.

    kempny and Forsling looked solid again.

  10. The Hawks currently are like a loaf of bread:

    You mix in all the ingredients (new players) and let it sit & wait for the the ingredients (new players) to blend together and the bread rises…

    Patience my fellow Hawk enthusiasts, patience…

  11. Two games in a row where Hawks let opposition set up PP and get multiple good looks with free open shots. This packed in box PK invites disaster as it gives up bombs from point men, one timers from the rings and Crow can’t see much of anything because there are offensive and defensive players screening him. You won’t win games where you give up 3 goals with guys in the box. Hawks have to play a more disciplined game and cut down on penalties.

    There were some good things going on within the game with certain players, but almost zero offense created for the second straight game. Faceoffs a mess again.

    Toews can’t be dropping the gloves with guys like Neal. Period. It is just silly, especially with Neal using a long shield. Cut hands, broken fingers, sliced tendons all come to mind. Good on Tootoo for standing up for Kane. Preds took liberties with Kane and Toews last night. Get used to it. Other teams will do the same. This Hawks team isn’t built to play that kind of game. Hartman out, not good. Kid was playing pretty well these past 2 games. Knee or ankle?

    Preds fans booing Kane is ridiculous, and that silly mocking of opposing goalie chant is bush league.

    This is a work in progress, and with some games it is not going to be easy or fun to watch early in the season.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  12. Pk will be the focus in practice for a while and Hawks typically don’t draw a lot of penalties. At least they aren’t getting scored on 5v5. Hartman going down was the worst part of the game to me.

  13. Phil… the question is, why are these guys taking dumb/frustration penalties???

    imo- frustration and “chasing the game”… due to lack of overall play from team… and maybe themselves… 19 for example- game is no longer coming “easy”… things aren’t going his way… due to ??? losing 1/2 step or Team/supporting cast not as good??? Easy answer- Both!

    You can’t blame Crow all those PP goals- especially from Point shots/screened…
    But logically it follows- perhaps a taller goalie/seeing over screens… OR- just a bigger goalie ( accidentally getting hit by puck- that he doesn’t see) might Help!

    Schmaltz- If He is gonna play- needs to play on top lines- where a 88, or 19 can give him some room… cause like TT- he isn’t ready for NHL Board play!!!

  14. Preds aren’t going to win anything with Subban on the team.
    Toews needs to stop fighting already… that is concerning to me. Focus on points!!! Hawks will get it together.

  15. This team is far from special. This is the least talented team the Hawks have iced since 08. At least the 11 team had a younger core. Ill say it now and eat my words at the quarter season mark if im wrong. The dumb penaltys are a huge surprise. The lack of offense is not. 2 games in not panicing just critical. Very poor showing.

  16. Well Kruger scored a goal…thats one more than last year.

    Pressure is on now returning home. If we lose this one then we can all panic or Panik or lose our minds or whatever.

  17. I’m encouraged by one thing. Five-on-five play has actually been pretty decent. I believe the Hawks are a plus three goals five-on-five.
    Secondly the rookies are doing their jobs. That is mainly to cause no harm.
    Hopefully they can stay out of the box long enough to create some offensive chances.

  18. Hawks no longer have talent depth advantage. I’ll keep saying it. Trading away future star in teravinen was a huge mistake. Hang on to the draft picks because they will be worth something this year and sell at the deadline

  19. Penalty kill percentage was shitty in just those two games. The 5on5 is good and we are outscoring the other teams 3-0. We will be a good PK team (I remember the first 10 game segment last yr we had a few shitty PK games and after those 10 games we were good on PK after that).

    Like to be 50% on team faceoffs though.

    Once we settle in (after the WC aftershocks) and the FW had enough sample size to play, were going to have a nice stretch in NOV/DEC like usual. Like Phil, going to be a few growing pains during first 10 game segment.

    Very good news 6/42/64 is good/can play and is good now. really like 42 passing. Young guys will get more comfortable with experience.

    It may not be cool for certain games, then we will be having fun in NOV/DEC talking about which rookies look good with which guys on what lines.

  20. The sky is not falling despite being on the short end of two close games. The PK woes will disappear once the boys develop some chemistry. The kids look good so far. 5 on 5 D looks good, too. Kempny and Forsling playing well. Hope that Fortin gets a chance at some point. Just have a good feeling about that kid.

    Must fix: we need to get much better at the dot. That scares me more than all of the rest.

    Agree with Pete: depth could be a huge problem. Significant injuries could kill us. But let’s hope that doesn’t happen.

  21. What does playing Tootoo give us big deal he had a fight but he skated 4 minutes. You loose a forward to injury and your really down 2 because he’s in the lineup.In fact your really down a line. We need a penalty killer not a fighter. Never thought I’d say this but I sure miss Desjardins.

  22. The rope a dope strategy is not working so well on the PK. I don’t see success by letting guys like Subban blast at will. I’m sure this will get fixed. The positive is that I thought we played much better than opening night. Lots more chances overall and Hino and Schmaltz were stronger. The Central division is going to be even more brutal this year – we can’t count on any easy games. Making the playoffs will mean you are a very good team.

  23. Pete, we’ve been through this. If the Hawks could have kept Stephen Johns, they would have. They had to trade Sharp and Johns was the only way that deal would work. And Nill has said so.

    They had to trade Bryan Bickell. They’re 50k under the cap right now with 6 rookies on the roster. They had to ice a team and the only way to do that is with Bickell not on the books at all. The only way that happens is without Teravainen. The jury is still out on him. He could be a star. But the optimists are becoming fewer and fewer. You want them to keep their prospects. They have 6 on the NHL roster. In a perfect world the Hawks would have Saad,Panarin,Ladd,Byfuglien,Teravainen,and maybe Leddy still on the roster. The salary cap just doesn’t allow perfection.

  24. It’s no surprise that this team is just not good or deep enough at forward. There isn’t enough offensive generation. And I don’t see how that is going to get solved anytime soon. To compound matters St Louis and Nashville both smartly loaded up on Kane and Panarin, knowing that they can get away with “lesser” matchups versus the other forwards.

    Hossa has been in significant offensive decline for 2 plus seasons. His value at this point is as a defensive right wing. Toews is just playing strange, and couple with his off the ice maturation and lifestyle choices, who knows where his head is anymore. He plays a different more agitated more I don’t give a crap hockey style dating back to last season. I can’t figure it out, but I’d load him up with Kane for now. Schmaltz looks slow a skate and unable to play at the pace of the NHL game. He absolutely needs to head down to Rockford. Is losing Hartman that big of a deal? Feel bad for the kid and I hope he is a fast healer. But he is very replaceable on the ice. And hence the problem…the Hawks have too many very replaceable forwards on the ice right now.

  25. Only 2 games once the big guns get going things will look a lot different . Its the old guard that has to get it together on pk too except motte and maybe he would be better served on 2nd pk unit with toews and put hossa with krueger just to change things. At this point of season 4th line doesn t log alot icetime anyway and still plenty of personal to ice a 1st class top 9 but i do agree faceoffs are a concern anisimov was supposed to be ready to put up better numbers there and not happening yet but may come around and krueger and toews will.get better

  26. The reality is that this team has two really big contracts and are kind of caught in this try to go for it mode and that will continue for several years (They were paid because they were worth it).
    Teams like Calgary, Winnipeg and Toronto with three or four young studs will face the same decisions but for now will be in the upswing soon–the Hawks are good but lack the spark, an element of surprise that they had a few years ago. I like the youth swing but it may be painful at times this year, even with 3 or 4 extremely talented stars. This model worked-3 cups, it WAS worth it, but coming up with a 4th will be quite challenging–I for one will hope but…
    I agree with Pete about TT, but they tried to be patient and this path didn’t allow it.
    Just my opinion.

  27. RTF I have to agree re: Toews. Not sure if he’s burnt out or what, perhaps some of it is WC hangover, but putting Kane on his line might light a hotter fire under him and get him going. The Hawks need him to be at his best and lead as he is supposed to but if he’s fighting all the time goodbye to the season.

  28. For whatever reason, ever since Hossa’s arrival we really haven’t seen Kane and Toews together all that much and im not really sure why. The team currently has 4 top 6 forwards. That’s a problem.

  29. Totally agree with RTF. Everyone’s playing their top defensive players against our 2nd line because we don’t have any other lines that are dangerous.

    We have no choice but to be patient with the kids because of our cap situation. That is unless Bowman does something surprising and makes a blockbuster trade involving parts of the core. I don’t see that happening so we have to watch in frustration as the young kids learn on the job. Hopefully be the 2nd half of the season, we reap some rewards from this frustrating time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *