37 thoughts on “Scott Darling To Start Game 3

  1. I think Q is handling this the right way. Game by Game from here on in. Any news on any other changes?

  2. Gotta respect Q. He hasn’t pulled a Boudreau or a Hitchcock with his goalies yet. Been very definitive.

    Icehogs finale tonight. Anyone going?

  3. I would rather they play Adam Clendenning from Vancouver or Re-Run from Good Times over Rosivsal. Something has to be done…

  4. If our Hawks can’t beat Nashville without Shea Weber in the lineup for them, then the hawks do not deserve to advance, plainnd simple. That’s a killer injury for them and the Hawks need to capitalize on that plus home ice.

  5. Good Good. …and in other news the friggin Edmonton Oilers of all teams wins the Draft Lottery..poor Connor McDavid. Bad for the rest of us as well because now they won’t trade any of Eberle, Yakupov, Hall, Nugent -Hopkins and they got Darnell Nurse in development….yikes. Good news is management doesn’t know what they are doing in Edmonton. Buffalo gets Eichel if they so choose. Going to be a different NHL for sure starting next year.

  6. bri- to fully test my theory…

    I would need to “Buy” $6M worth of D and O… and Play SD/Raanta… and see if the Hawks are better or worse… My whole argument all year… is hawks are too weak with Skaters they can put on ice with this roster-or in other words… put “Best” goalie in league behind this current Skating team,,, and they still ain’t winning…. so put an average/cheaper guy in net… and Spend the $6M left over to pay the skaters to keep the Puck in the O zone… Remember when the Hawks were THE Possession team of the league…. NOT anymore!!!! AND That is NOT CC’s fault or ANY goalies fault!!!

    BUT- I think ALL here can agree… if Hawks had $6M more to spend… they would be better off with Leddy and Frolik… or Kesler or Yandle in front of ANY goalie they suit up… VS. 32/44
    (Less 32 and/or 44) of course.

  7. re: “I would need to ‘Buy’ $6M worth of D and O…” – plenty of cap considerations coming. However, if you’re really, truly saying the Blackhawks would have done better to have Leddy or Yandle or Kesler than to have paid Crawford this season it indicates you didn’t watch a single game after March 1. The ONLY reason this team isn’t a wild card is Crawford’s play.

    He had a terrible game. But hit the pause button on him being an awful goalie. He was fantastic most of the regular season, and so say otherwise is ridiculous.

  8. Mining, I was going to post mths ago that no team should be allowed more then 5 top 5 picks in a 10 yr range. So, EDM has had 5 they cant pick higher then 6 until 10 yrs has passed since their first of those 5 no matter how shitty a rec. the team has.

  9. Tab, I agree with you 100%. If it wasn’t for Crawford’s play in March, Hawks could be a wildcard or out, in the worst case scenario. How do we know Darling couldn’t do the same? We will never know, he was on the bench. Wall, $6 millions on a goalkeeper is something few teams can afford. I would prefer spending the excess/saved $ on the players.

  10. Tab- 1st of all… I don’t think I ever said CC is an awful goalie!!! In fact I have said that Crow is better than SD!!! I have stated my opinion that Hawks would be better team w/ LESSER goalie ($$$) and GREATER skaters($$$)!!!

    Your Statement that “Crow is only reason”
    that is all opinion… as is my statement… so please don’t treat it as “I didn’t watch a game”… That statement is complete BS…

    BUT- “Crow is the ONLY reason”… 20 other players… two other goalies with better numbers across the stat line… Yet that equals CC the “ONLY” reason… wow!!!

    It is almost as bad and unfair to say CC was the ONLY reason the Hawks lost 2nd game… He wasn’t…

    Darling set the NHL record for saves in a relief win… and at the end of the day… SD was NOT the ONLY reason the Hawks won that game…

  11. Morrison: Not a bad idea putting a “cap” on draft picks but its doubtful it will ever fly. Not every year has a once in a generation prospect like McDavid and the quality of each years new crop is vastly different. What they need to do is somehow or other prevent teams from tanking in order to get the first pick or a higher pick. Sort of backfired on Buffalo though…all that disgraceful tanking and fans cheering for the home team to lose. Suppose #2 overall pick ( Eichel) not all that bad but its not McDavid. Edmonton sure has a huge amount of #1 and high first round picks though over the past few years. Lucky for us and the rest of the West is that Edmonton management is really bad, so poor McDavid gets sucked into a black hole along with all those other great names and never emerges! Can you imagine if LA or Dallas got him in the lottery.

    No fears for the Blackhawks…Darling will be a stonewall, Kane and Sharp will be huge, Jim C. will belt out a beauty, Q will write in his little book and CC will be back. We will prevail.

  12. Mining Man-
    the Oilers getting McDavid is the reason they will finally trade one of their forwards-now they can get an impact d-man or a goalie. They can finally address some glaring needs.

  13. They wont ever do that, it just would make it fair. I read somewhere about locking standings at deadline for draft picks. That seemed more possible. I think draft selection picks and coachs fire/hired, etc. should all be frozen until the off season. No one should be thinking about anything except the playoffs.

  14. Pivotal game for sure. Big pressure on Darling. Home ice can sometimes mean too much fancy Dan from the Hawks. They mouth the words “keep it simple” but often seem hard pressed to keep it simple when playing in front of the faithful. Let’s hope they give that more than lip service tomorrow.

    With their captain down, the Preds will be fight like an wounded animal. It will be a rallying point for them. I expect the Preds to come out with more passion and energy that they did in the first two games – and that’s saying something.

    On the Hawks side of optimism, Kane should be finding his game speed stride now that he’s got two games in the books. A few weeks ago we were hopeful that we might get him back sometime in the second round. So let’s keep positive because the prospects of getting through the first round against Nashville are still quite high.

    Game#3’s in a 7-game series are often the swing game, momentum wise, and this one certainy is given the situation.

    Go Hawks ! ! ! !

  15. I cannot agree with this move. Crawford has been the number one goalie for 5 seasons and is a huge reason for this team’s playoff success in year’s past. And he was my team MVP this season. He has earned the right not to be jerked around and, honestly, Quennevile is playing with dynamite here. It’s only game three and you don’t bench Crawford. This team has been speculated to have lockeeroom issues already, most notably around the Sharp infidelity soap opera. And the leaders of this team have been largely stoic in the face of a roster that is no longer elite and with real depth problems, especially on defense. Team chemistry and unity is a delicate thing and I do worry that this think could blow up in a flurry of emotions and backbiting at any moment. Let’s all be perfectly brutally clear here. We are a roster with issues. And while I think we get by Nashville, especially with Weber and Fisher out, anything we do beyond that is a bonus. We can all pontificate and protest to the contrary, but cmon. There aren’t a lot of teams that can win a Cup with 3 1/2 defensemen. And we are already seeing signs that 2 and 7 are feeling the impact of punishing heavy minutes. And we have a roster that includes the craptacular likes of Richards and Versteeg, while we keep waiting patiently by for the ghost of Hossa past to show up. And Sharp is 34 and coming off a brutally bad season on and off the ice. So if we get to the 2nd round then I for one will be very happy and count anything beyond that an unexpected blessing.

    Messing with Crawford is playing with dynamite and I for one hate it. Ominous signs of this thing goes the way it could go.

  16. Tab, thanks for inserting yourself. It was needed.

    Wall, he said Crawford was the reason for their playoff positioning vs. being a wild card team and that’s a fair statement in context, Crawford was outstanding in a lot of those games.

    Next, is it possible to turn down the !!!!!!!!!!!!! and the CAPS KEY IN EVERY SENTENCE. It’s like you’re yelling in every post. The whole board knows your point.

  17. Smart move by Q, Darling should start. Crawford has really been solid most of the year, I hate to see him sit, but it has to happen.

    My only follow up is for Q to please put Vermette in the lineup and sit Versteeg. Steeg has been awful since December and doesn’t show any signs of getting his mojo back from the start of the year. Put Vermette in, move Shaw back to wing (he can still take faceoffs) on the bottom lines and I think the team is better because of it.

  18. HOF- I believe Tab used the ONLY w caps… that is my issue…
    I will not contest Crow played a large role in the Teams end of season run…

    But- we will never know if SD in net would have been worse,same, better result…
    and SD + Kesler (instead of Crow – all year)… is another thing we will Never know.

    But – “Only Reason”… C’mon…
    Hof- you seem to have a very strong Grasp of English, spelling, etc…. I meet even think you majored/minored in English… But “only” in Caps… No!!!

  19. Wall, no. I did not major or minor in English. The larger point, which I think has been made, was (in my opinion only) your CAPS and !!!!! style is excessive – it had nothing to do with what Tab said (again IMO). I was making a general observation, not specific to one post or one reply.

    But whatever. None if this is germane to the subject at hand.

  20. a lot of the problems are system related as well, looking back at that game and even the first, they are not able to exit the zone or transition effectively

    not only is Q playing cutesy games with the roster but they were not able to adjust well to what the preds were doing on the fly. hopefully they make some type of breakout adjustment and i think the last change ought to help some.

    with both patricks looking sharp (see what i did there) id like to see them try stacking it up with toews and let vermette beat on ribero

    i think making a statement in the first period would be good too. like a 16 SOG first period and really eat these guys up.

  21. The popular thing to do right now is to defend Crawford against the kneejerk masses who wanted him out for Game 2 and accuse us of being disloyal to the player that got us into the playoffs. My question is statistically in the this NHL regular seasson who had better numbers, Crawford or Darling. My guess is that they are close either way. Bottom line play the hot goalie because it gives the team the best chance to win the next game. If Darling falters then Crawford comes back with less pressure on him because the backup failed. If Darling does great then great.

  22. The idiot brigade on here lives in abject denial that this roster isn’t as good or deep as it used to be. Quenneville hasn’t gotten “cutesy” with a damned thing. Rather he is doing what he has to do to limp this flawed roster as far as it can go, and in the teeth of a Western Conference with a lot more parity then people think. The Hawks are no longer “elite” in comparison to other teams. Yet those idiots on here who will angrily counter that statement are the same idiots who howl when Rozy, Kimmo, Richards, Versteeg, etc are on the ice making a mess of things or simply unable to play the type of intensive hockey demanded in the playoffs. And guess what, two players who used to help define this team as elite, Hossa and Sharp, simply are unable to live up to their former performance levels.

  23. Agree with you Rufus…don’t think we should mess with Crawford and I’m certain Q knows that. We can only assume they had a sit down chat with CC and this was an agreed upon thing. In the playoffs you have to play your strong hand all the time and balance that with loyalty, which is impossible at times. CC is a pro and wants what is best for the team as well. He looked utterly devastated after that 6th goal. The Committed Indians as a group generally and thankfully stayed away from those locker room issues and speculation. Darling is the right move to make at this time and I’m sure CC is fine with it and deals with it professionally. It is doubtful he was “told” but rather was aware of the facts himself.

  24. I agree with AJ concerning the difficulty of the Hawks to exit the zone. Speed and crisp passing will help alleviate the problem. By the time 32 and 44 get to the puck in the d zone the Preds are on top of them. Runblad and especially Cumiskey have good speed and that speed will give them a little breathing room. Runblad is also a very good passer. Neither player is a top 4 defenseman but they might be an improvement over the slow pokes.

  25. Wall is completely right on this issue. As I said yesterday, Crawford is a good NHL goalie and has had a very good season and still the Hawks were fighting to hold on to a playoff position over the last third of the season (and that’s with 3 veteran players added due to Kane’s injury) in spite of CC’s play. The fact is with our group of forwards and the depth we have there, the Hawks don’t need to spend elite dollars on DMen and goalies (i.e. Weber’s $ or Crawford’s $6 mil), but we do need is to field three groups of solid DMen in front of a solid goalie. That will make the Hawks a Cup contender again.

    I have watched Darling up close in Rockford last year (with MIL) and this year, and myself and another poster even made a post last year about trying to sign Darling after his contract expired in MIL (as he stoned the Hogs twice). For a big man, he has excellent athleticism and very solid positioning, and because he gets back up from “the flop” position so quickly, he has very good rebound control. The fact is, based on what I saw this season both in Rockford and CHI, Darling likely would have maintained his stats all season long…and in a more consistent fashion than CC. Those numbers are better than Crawford’s for the reasons I listed above. Raanta also had an outstanding year as well in both CHI and Rockford. Most of you know that Leighton had a great start to the season, but he went into a tailspin the moment the Hawks started trading off our top DMen and recalling our best FWD. It was Raanta’s “demotion” to Rockford that stopped our big slide and closed the door allowing the Hogs to slowly find their confidence once more and for the new DMen to settle in. Darling, Raanta and Leighton have been the MVP’s in Rockford this season. And Mac Carruth had a great second half in Indy and played well in Rockford, until yesterday.

    The Blackhawk’s would be infinitely better off next year with Darling and Raanta in net, Rozy and Oduya’s contract will be expired, and almost TWELVE MILLION dollars to throw at rounding out the roster (and that’s including Saad’s pay raise). I am certain that Stephen Johns will start the season in CHI and who knows about Paliotta? That suddenly puts the Hawks in a VERY enviable position next year and capable of competing for another Cup. The Hawks would be able to keep Sharp’s contract and still be able to afford TWO FA Dmen to fill out an excellent D Corp, with Johns and Paliotta as part of the seven.

    As for Darling starting today, of course it’s the right move because the Hawk’s coaching staff made it in spite of Crawford being so good this season. This means ONLY ONE THING: the Hawks believe in Darling’s skills and know that he is no fluke. Bowman created competition with the goalies (finally) and this is why the Hawk’s have a great chance at a Cup this season, because we have depth with the forwards and in net (I wish we had this vs. Phoenix a few years ago)! Now, if we only had a third defensive pairing (which we can’t afford because of Crawford WHO IS SITTING ON THE BENCH!) Unlike Toews and Kane who are playing with injuries, logging huge minutes and making a difference on every shift!

    Point made…game, set and match.

  26. Rufus, “the idiot brigade”, you ARE the only member of the idiot brigade on here. Talk about the kettle calling the pot black! You rip anyone for questioning Q, until its you who does it! Q knows that the Hawks don’t have a talent edge over the rest of the league like they used to have, so EVERY GAME COUNTS! For that reason Darling is starting over Crawford, who needs to get off his knees!

    Waite, Q, and the rest of the coaches know that Darling is a good goalie because of his mechanics and athleticism…he’s no fluke!

  27. Rufus -honest question. What team in the NHL is without flaws and poses a significant upgrade over the Hawks lineup? I’d say there are a handful of teams that are probably better top to bottom (Rangers, Blues, maybe the Ducks) and a bunch that are about the same (Preds, Wild, the top half of the east after the Rangers). But I don’t think you can say that any other team is radically better. I think you are correct that there are major chemistry issues upsetting what should be a better team than what they are showing. Something is going on. Not sure what to believe but the team should be better than they have been playing. They just disappear far too often.

    I also think Q had no choice but to bench Crawford and go with the hot hand. His confidence is shaken and if he gives up some early cheapie again the whole team is going to be rattled. I thought after th 4th goal he’d still get the start today. After the 5th I thought for sure he was out.

  28. Well, there’s one thing that can be said about Tab’s little round table here, there’s no lack of passionate opinion. :)

    Go Hawks ! ! ! !

  29. To echo EbonyRaptor, “Go Hawks!”
    I don’t think the goaltender switch is kneejerk. I often listen to the postgame comments and after game 1, Coach Q was asked who would be in net. His response was that he that it was an “easy decision” and that he and the other coaches, etc. would get together and finalize things. Turned out the easy decision was Crawford back in the net for game 2. Apparently going with their guy who’d played well throughout the season.
    After the awful game 2, you’d have to believe they didn’t just automatically throw Darling back in. I just always assume, as I’ve said before, that there are many things us schmucks just don’t know about. As a result, Darling is back in today.
    Regardless of the outcomes, I think the Blackhawks have looked better in these last two games energy wise than they did most of the time down the stretch. The faceoffs bother me, but they are battling. They need to not be stupid with penalties. Just being Captain Obvious here, but it is the truth. It’s gonna take a solid team effort body and mind to advance. Let’s hope Q and the staff’s changes for today’s game pan out. Go Blackhawks!

  30. Like what Chevrier says…. All teams have issues and weaknesses. We watch the Hawks all season long and know a lot about them. If we went on other teams’ blogs we would see similar discussions. Some love the coach, some think he’s nuts. This guy is crap. Play Joe Schmoe. Trade Joe Schmoe. I watch the playoffs and see a little more of these other teams and see leads fall, goalies let in easy ones, etc. I think to myself, wow, it doesn’t just happen to the Hawks. I’m a Cubs fans so I tend to think all the bad crap happens to Chicago teams. Different opinions and perspectives make the world go round and makes it interesting. Can’t we all just get along? :)

    Hofmeister – “But whatever. None if this is germane to the subject at hand.”

    ” The G** damn Germans got nuttin’ to do with it!!!” :)

  31. B % B… Very well said posts…

    the only thing I will add/correct… Crow on his knees- not only is he on his knees early… but he is bending/crouching… for no reason- making himself smaller!!!
    watch the tape… even after goal # 6, Ribeiro could have easily potted #7 on him- there was almost two feet of space over his shoulder…

    and to all Crow lovers… My point (and B & B’s)- how much better would the Hawks be with two $3M D-men skating on the 3rd pairing right now (in front of SD)???

    Answer: Tons better!!!

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