Ray Emery, Blackhawks Shutout Preds

After a soft performance on Thursday night, the Blackhawks played a complete game in Nashville on Saturday afternoon. A perfect Ray Emery led the Hawks to a 1-0 victory in the first of two games in two days against the Predators.

Nashville was only credited with 20 shots on net in the game while the Blackhawks blocked 13 more. After suffering his first regulation loss of the season, Emery posted his second shutout of the season with a strong performance.

Bryan Bickell scored the only goal of the game, converting a pretty pass from Michal Handzus. Handzus played a fantastic game, winning 10 of 15 faceoffs with one hit and one blocked shot.

Elsewhere for the Hawks, Jonathan Toews won 11 of 17 faceoffs to lead the Hawks. Duncan Keith and Niklas Hjalmarsson each blocked four shots.

Coach Joel Quenneville relied less on his top forwards than he has in recent games. Patrick Kane (16:39), Marian Hossa (16:38), Brandon Saad (18:00) and Jonathan Toews (18:46) saw their ice time cut dramatically. Only one Hawks forward – Brandon Bollig (9:33) - was held to less than ten minutes of ice time.

Also worth noting, the Blackhawks killed all three Nashville penalties. Chicago hasn’t allowed a powerplay goal since March 16, a stretch of nine games. In those nine games, the Hawks have successfully killed 16 penalties.

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16 Responses to Ray Emery, Blackhawks Shutout Preds

  1. wall says:

    I thought Kruger had a very good game… and C-Bomb played his best game of year.

  2. Sr. Brad says:

    I ddin’t see the game at all…what were the line breakdowns??? Who played 2nd line Centre with Kane…was Frolik on that line again? Thanks.

  3. EbonyRaptor says:

    Saad-Toews-Hossa
    Carcillo-Kruger-Kane
    Bickell-Handzus-Stalberg
    Bollig-Shaw-Frolik

    The top line played just about every shift in the o-zone. Carcillo and Kruger had very strong games. It looked like Kane was still feeling the effects of being sick. He seemed to be a half tick off. Normally he buries that beauty pass from Saad. Good news is they didn’t need him this game. I’m liking Handzus between Bickell and Stalberg.

    And Emery was very good.

  4. ZebraGreg says:

    Here you go Brad…
    If I recall accurately the lines to start were:
    Saad Toews Hossa
    Carcillo Kruger Kane
    Stalberg Handzus Bickell
    Bollig Shaw Frolik

  5. ZebraGreg says:

    E R, you beat me by 60 seconds…

  6. BK says:

    6-3-1 in their last 10. Hopefully we get Sharp back soon and finish the season on the up and up!

    11 games remaining. 6 home and 5 on the road.

    Think Emery gets the start again in net tomorrow night???

  7. wall says:

    Don’t look now but….

    Rusty Olesz is tearing up Rockford– 6 goals, 5 assists in 8 games-

    Hawks 4th line Handzus- Rusty-Frolik/Kruger the Czech Dream Team!!!

  8. Dickie Dunn says:

    I think Bickell-Handzus-Stalberg played very well. I see no problem with Shaw centering the 4th line and Kruger the 2nd.

    And, as ER said, the top line played just about every shift in the o-zone/Carcillo and Kruger had very strong games/Emery was very good.

    I hope it wasn’t just that the Predators were “uninspired”.

    Do it again Sunday – GO HAWKS!!

  9. Sr. Brad says:

    ER, ZG, Dickie…thanks guys…Handzus sounds like he is really panning out for the Hawks…I am excited to see the lineup when Sharp returns…sounds like the Hawks didn’t miss Bolland at all.

    One thing we forget is that the Toews/Saad/Hossa line was just starting to click when Hoss went down…they could become a terror as Hoss gets back into game shape.

    Nice to see Emery heating back up as we approach the playoffs…as I said the other day, this should be thrown to an open competition to see who has the hot hand come playoff time. CC was bad the other night.

    I just got a Rockford report from my close friend who watches everyone of their games…I asked him about McNeil and Danault, and all he could take about was Adam Clendening…he said AC is starting to look like a men amongst boys when he’s on the ice…just scored his 7th goal and is now a +14 on the season…highest on the entire team. He said Olescz has paired nicely with Pirri…good to see.

  10. Mike says:

    Tab and all, there is an interesting dynamic here and I’d your thoughts.
    Rockford probably has to pull 10-12 points out of their last 7 games to make the playoffs. SB has chosen to go to the playoffs without adding much to the roster. The question is this. Does Rockford make a push towards the playoffs or do the Hawks rotate guys in and out to ready them for the playoffs if needed.

    I think the Hawks need to pull 11 points out of their last 11 games to be the top seed. Should they take the opportunity to rest some players and give Perri, Clendening, Olsen, even Olescz some time in the NHL? Even if it hurts Rockford’s chances…..

    Or should the Hawks go all in to end the season with as many points as possibe? Their play so far has earned them the opportunity.

  11. ZebraGreg says:

    Hey Wall…your Czech Dream Team is only 2/3…Kruger’s one of my home boy’s from ‘Schwedin’.
    You’re right about Fro as he’s Czech but you may want to quickly investigate Rusty to make sure he’s Czech and not Slovak. I think he’s the former. There’s a distinct difference, and believe me, those boy’s are really proud of it.

  12. Ryan says:

    Zeus is Slovak, same as Hoss

  13. wall says:

    Zebra- I know about Kruger

    Secondly, while “they” are proud of the differences from Slov-Czech-Yugo-Croatia… It’s all means the same to me… (Rosey and Hoss included)… TOUGH GUYS w/ strong work ethic and Big Foreheads and Ugly Noses… I can say that because my blood is from the same part of the world— and very Strong Hands- See Hoss hold lift the stick or Zus win a face-off.

    I wonder if Olesz will be given chance for the Playoffs… Saw him two years ago at practices… middle of pack skating wise… but the one thing I do remember was he did drive/go to the net a lot- and seemed pretty responsible getting back.

    Can anyone report on how he is skating/moving in AHL???

    I am “Old school” — when it was just Czech and Yugo…

  14. Tails says:

    Lol I don’t think anyone would identify themselves as Yugoslavian, even when Yugoslavia was a country. They would say that they were Slovenian, Croatian, Bosnian, Serbian, etc.

  15. EbonyRaptor says:

    @Mike, you’re right – it’s a tough call. I would think that if the Hawks really needed someone, they take precedence. But, define “really need”. If things stay the way they are, meaning no more injuries, then I don’t rest players and it’s moot. Providing Sharp gets back within the next week or so, I would want the roster that will open the playoffs to play together and get some momentum and continuity. If there are injuries – then use the Icehogs as needed.

  16. Al says:

    Went to Nashville this weekend to see the game and I want to comment on ALL the hawks fans there. I was like a home game for the Hawks. What great fan support…

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