Tarasenko, Stupidity Kill Hawks In Game 4

Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville threw his lines in a blender right out of the gates on Tuesday night, moving Andrew Shaw up to the top line with Jonathan Toews and Andrew Ladd. Marian Hossa shifted primarily with Marcus Kruger and Andrew Desjardins.

The opening 20 minutes at the United Center didn’t see a single player go to the penalty box. Only Vladimir Tarasenko – of course – was able to beat Corey Crawford, thanks to Brent Seabrook losing a board battle and then screening his own netminder perfectly. The Hawks out-shot the Blues 14-5 in the first but once again failed to beat Brian Elliott.

But things went crazy in the second period.

Richard Panik replaced Shaw on the top line for the opening faceoff of the second and went to the penalty box 39 seconds into the period. Chicago was able to successfully kill off the penalty, and Panik returned the favor at 7:05 when Joel Edmundson held him and went to the box.

Chicago didn’t convert on the power play, but mere seconds after it ended Hossa put a shot on net that glanced off Shaw’s jersey and into the net to tie the game.

Three minutes later the United Center erupted – as did the players.

Robby Fabbri was pushed into Crawford and the Hawks’ netminder took exception. The two exchanged a few words and then the gloves game off. Crawford threw a few punches and the teams came together. The result was Fabbri in the box for goaltender interference and both Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk in the box for roughing Andrew Ladd. Ladd went to the box as well, and was joined by Panik (serving a roughing penalty on Crawford).

During the power play, Artemi Panarin and Alexander Steen joined the crowds in the penalty box when they mixed it up after a whistle. Duncan Keith scored on the power play to give Chicago a 2-1 lead and the Hawks were flying.

But nobody paid attention to Tarasenko, and it cost the Hawks. Again.

With Ladd back in the box four minutes later, Tarasenko scored a power play goal – his second of the night and third of the series – to tie the game.

Keith took an interference penalty only 61 seconds into the third trying to prevent a 3-on-1 breakaway and the Blues converted another advantage. This time, Jaden Schwartz beat Crawford for the go-ahead goal at 1:36 into the third to give St. Louis a 3-2 lead.

A brutal turnover by Trevor van Riemsdyk three minutes later gave Steen a breakaway and he beat Crawford to extend the lead to 4-2.

The United Center was dead quiet, and the Hawks were suddenly chasing two goals. At home. With under 16 minutes to play in regulation.

Ten sloppy minutes followed with the Hawks fighting the puck and turning the puck over far too much. But a Keith shot – with Shaw in front – was redirected off Tarasenko’s stick and got past Elliott to cut the lead to one with 5:20 remaining in regulation.

Chicago was buzzing and getting chances after the Keith goal, but Shaw took an awful, brutal, terrible, stupid penalty with 2:04 left in regulation. He shoved Jay Bouwmeester into the net after Elliott controlled a shot and was sent to the box disgusted.

The Hawks pulled Crawford while killing the penalty and Steen scored what appeared to be his second of the night into the empty net. But the play was reviewed and, for the second time in the series, the Blues lost a goal because a player crossed the blue line prematurely. With 37 seconds left, the Hawks had a faint breath of life.

Time expired on the Hawks and there was more… conversation… after the whistle as Shaw lost it and started throwing punches at anything in a white sweater. It didn’t change the result, however, and the Blackhawks are headed to St. Louis facing an elimination game on Thursday night.

Elliott was spectacular again for St. Louis. The Hawks out-shot the Blues in all three period once again, but the best player on the ice was between the pipes for the Blues. He made 39 saves and was especially impressive in the third period when the Hawks were pressing. Chicago put 14 shots on net in all three periods.

Crawford stopped 16 of 20 in the loss.

Desjardins returned to the lineup and skated eight minutes with six hits. Erik Gustafsson returned to the lineup and picked up an assist in 13:42. Teuvo Teravainen lost all five of his faceoffs, and Kruger won only five of 16 at the dot. The Hawks killed half of the Blues’ four power plays.

Keith led the Hawks with two goals, one hit, one takeaway and one blocked shot in 24:36. Hossa and Shaw finished with a team-leading five shots on net each, and Patrick Kane skated 23:17 without a goal.

103 thoughts on “Tarasenko, Stupidity Kill Hawks In Game 4

  1. Hawks look tired and after so many consecutive seasons of deep playoff runs (and an olympics thrown in) can we really blame them? The guys need a rest.

    Losing game one hurt big time since the blues depth is clearly outperforming the Hawks. Have to capitalize on opportunities when presented, and the Hawks have not been able to take advantage. Bowman needs to take a long look at adding some d-men this summer because the blue line play has been subpar this year. Will be tough with cap restraints.

  2. Duece, I’ve been saying the same thing all night.

    Ya Kane had great season but this is when it counts and all I can remember him doing this series is take a dumb high sticking call. Toews has been a complete non factor.

    Again the dumb penalty kills the Hawks tonight.. not going to sleep well tonight after watching that one….

  3. Kane sucks……who is Hossa and Bowman Detroit playbook over…out worked and out coached patheticQ….maybe Bickell will save the day.

  4. The fat lady just sang very loudly.

    Hawks look like amateurs. Third period they passed poorly, skated and shot poorly . Blues are faster,stronger, more skilled and surprisingly far more disciplined. Hawks beat themselves.

    Time to overhaul this mess. Defense is weak after the top 3 who are terrific.

    Kane has looked awful . Crow looked bad.

    I am very skeptical that TT will ever be a big time player because he appears to be afraid of contact.

    Hawks got what they deserved. Good night Irene ! I hope Stan can get us some help — we need it.

  5. Nevermind stupidity by the players, Q panicked times infinity. Triple and quadruple shifting exhauated forwards; circa ’14 playoffs and specifically v. Kings. Q strayed from the course in the first period. Desjardins hardly saw the ice the last two periods; Fleischmann, meanwhile, had a nice front row seat the last two periods.

    This is the recipe for elimination, and its one game away. I understand Q wants to ride the core horses hard, but that has never been successful in the playoffs before. In ’13 Cup playoffs, even down 3-1 to Wings, Q stuck w roll four lines (Kruger, Frolik Bolland). That line was instrumental in winning that series, west conf and of course finals.

    The evidence and history are clearly right in front of Q, yet he chooses to panick and coach in contrarian fashion. You can’t play eight to ten forwards and run them ragged for no reason.

    These are the facts. Let s call it like it is.

  6. Not one trade bowman made worked out. Usually a supporter but this year was an epic fail. Pk is pathetic as well. Much deserved first round exit. But blues aren’t getting past Dallas either so it doesnt matter who won this series

  7. Agree that trades did not work out. First round exit will be a blessing . This team was not nearly as strong as previous Hawk teams.
    We need some D help badly . Desperately .

  8. Shaw further embarrasses himself in the postgame by saying that the late crosschecking penalty was a bad call. He had been a big part of Chicago’s success during the evening, but that last brutal penalty really washed out his effort. The post-horn fight at the end of the game was pretty classless.
    From what I could see from the replay, Ladd’s penalty was really dumb as well, and was a big downer with the period coming to an end. Yeah, you need to kill off the penalty, but that interference penalty looked dumb and reckless. No need for it.
    I like Andrew Shaw a lot. However, tonight he just lost it and let his team down. The Blues are not wilting this season. They do seem to be mentally tougher than in past years.

  9. Elliott has outplayed Crawford, Taresenko has outplayed Toews and the Blues specialty teams have been better. All adds up to a disaster.

    It’s amazing how tightly the Blues have been checking in their own end. Just no room to move.

    It’s not over. The Hawks have enough talent and experience to come back. They have done it before. Nonetheless, I wouldn’t put any money on them doing it this year.

    Toews has been brutal. Losing battles all over the place. Doesn’t generate scoring chances anymore. I hope he rebounds next year or that 10.5 million salary is going to look worse than Bickell’s 4.5 million.

    Hoping for another Hawk storybook finish. Just not too confident.

  10. Really ticked off Shaw took that dumb penalty, he seemed to be one of the only Hawks who showed up to play tonight. Unfortunately that may be his last game at the UC wearing the Indian Head.

  11. It’s weird to see the Hawks play so disjointed but, I do think now they are mentally/physically exhausted. Look at all the blowout games during the regular season. I have a feeling that if we played the Wild instead of the Blues it’d be even worse.
    Angry at all these stupid penalties that I also attribute to exhaustion. And the fighting that the Captain has led the team in all year and not doing much of anything else.
    Just really disappointing.
    Still one game but looking pretty bleak. Blues have played to win. Tarasenko impressive.

  12. Sad silly immature juvenile ridiculous and most shallow comments. If any team can come back from a 3-1 deficit it is this one. We will win the next game, then at home and fight the good fight in a game 7. Crawford was outstanding, Keith was an absolute monster, the guy was everywhere like a quantum particle. I’m not expecting a cup win this year and I really don’t think many of us really thought a cup win was realistic ( perhaps for a while during that winning streak) but we can win this series and move on from there. If not then so be it, however empty headed comments are nonsensical and speak to fools. To disrespect this team is not what a fan would do so go find a bandwagon to jump on.

    With the World Cup this September it’s going to be a short summer regardless.

  13. I’m sure that I am just as upset as anyone that the Hawks are down, 3-1. However, I think the “Kane sucks” and “Toews has been brutal” are a bit over the top. Granted, both of them are having “off” series, based on our expectations, but, come on, these are two of the warriors that have led us to those glorious three Cups. Can they have an off series, or off game, or even an off shift without everyone coming completely unglued? Enjoy being a fan of the best run hockey organization going. Will we win this season? Things don’t look good right now, but, as far as I’m concerned, we still have “one bullet” left, and I won’t stop believing in this team until we are eliminated. Once that happens, I will still positively support this team.

    Go Hawks!

  14. It’s not over yet boys. Been in this spot before. And believe it or not, but the Blues are a fragile team mentally. Hawks need to adjust.

  15. Mining Man,

    I’m not doubting the Hawks, you’reabsolutely right, if any team can come back in a series it’s the Hawks, but for that to happen there are 2 players that need to show up. Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews, who have both been non factors in this series. I don’t doubt we can force this series to 7 games and from there it’s anyones game. Point is we’ve had our chances this series and we’ve blown it so far, and that is frustrating to any fan. Just because some of the comments are depressing doesn’t mean someone’s a bandwagon fan, just a reaction to a team that hasn’t performed up to expectations set by a teams past performance and a front office who made trades to secure a deep playoff run that at this point doesn’t isn’t out of reach but doesn’t seem likely..

  16. On the Bowman trade issues: Can anyone name a player who Bowman traded for the past two seasons that is playing a big role in this years Stanley Cup run? Anisimov is the only one that comes to mind.All traded for high draft choices and prospects that if given a fair chance , could be helping now.There are more prospects Rockford and high draft choices to be had. Just give Stan a call. Oh! and if you hold out till the trading deadline, you can have the farm but not Rundblad

  17. Mining Man…Crawford was outstanding? What were you watching? He wasn’t the reason they lost but he sure didn’t come up with the big saves tonight. A great goalie but outplayed by Elliott so far. Sadly, far from our biggest problem.

    I don’t understand how you can think that criticism is immature. These guys are professionals. If you don’t earn your big bucks you take some criticism. Live with it.

    With some luck this series could be 3-1 for the Hawks. It’s not over. I agree with that. However, the top two lines need to put the puck in the net. It isn’t the bottom 6 or even the bottom D pair. It’s no finish from the top 2 lines that is killing them. The big shots making the big bucks need to earn their money. Simple as that.

    Toews…wake up!

  18. “Hawks look tired and after so many consecutive seasons of deep playoff runs (and an olympics thrown in) can we really blame them?” — yes, they do…and, yes, we can! Goddddammmittt – no matter how far they go into the post season they still have about two months recovery time. The stench of a LAME excuse.

    “Bowman needs to take a long look…” — INDEED. I’ve been consistent in giving the Hawks the benefit of the doubt, but if they go out Thursday, I believe he should try to creatively move Hossa’s and Seabrook’s contracts – they performed NOWHERE near their compensation. If anyone will overpay for Teravainen (and I’m split on this = only 22 with a lot of skill), move him. Flip a coin on Shaw = if anyone will overpay, so long. Panik, Weise, Fleischmann, and Ehrhoff were all temps – thank you. Rosival – thank you, good-bye. Fuck-it…just buy-out Bickell it was a mistake – learn from it.

    “Where are the two 10.5 million dollar men?” — GOOD question. Anyone want to offer any insight? (Tab?) (…and, let’s add Seabrook to that – to me, he looks like he’s collapsing under the weight of all that contract/term.)

    Usually, I include a “GO HAWKS!!”…what I feel at the moment is THEY SUCK!!

  19. Dickie,

    Unfortunately I don’t see takers for Hossa, Seabs or Bickell. And the first 2 I don’t see the value in moving. If Hossa can stay healthy he is a great 3rd liner over the next few years and excellent player to have in the locker room. Especially with cap hits decreasing overy the next few years. Seabs is still a top 4 d man on any team in the NHL, overpaid? Maybe, but trading him doesn’t net you a top 2 Dman at less cost. A Bickell and TT package for a fringe top 4 d man is your best bet and that depends who is available.

    Hate to say it because I love his play but one of the most valuable trade pieces we have going into the offseason is probably Panarin. He would for sure get us a top 4 D, but is that even worth the cost? Happy I’m not Stan Bowman heading into this offseason.
    However these hawks aren’t out yet (even tho it feels that way) I’ll try and worry more about the offseason culling after we’re actually eliminated.

  20. Completely agree with BLS and MKZ. Kane and Toews are 2 great players. But they have not been even good this series. They have been non- factors. Kane has looked terrible . Missing scoring chances and has had more giveaways this series than Publishers Clearinghouse !

    They look tired. Something has been missing all season. They lost 5 times to Minnesota , 4 times to Dallas and 3 to the Blues. Lost a fair number of blowout games. This is not a good team. That is on Stan.

    This front office is not going to sit idly by and accept this poor play.the Hawks will lose millions from the early playoff exit. There will be changes. No question. There need to be a lot of changes.

  21. Mkz – don’t waste time checking the history, take my word for it, I’ve been positive and absolutely given the Hawks the benefit of the doubt “until they lose a series”. Unfortunately, this is the first time after a long, successful run that it feels/looks like that will happen.

    I said “creatively” because I understand the extreme unlikelihood of anyone wanting to take-on the contracts of Hossa and Seabrook. I’ve suggested that Hossa drop to the third line (a very expensive third liner, but what price should be placed on the “intangibles”) and, yes Seabrook is a Top Four defenseman, but at what cost and for how long? I agreed with many here that the term of his contract is ridiculous, and although he stepped-up in Keith’s absences and had a career year scoring, he is already showing signs of decline. I understand he ” doesn’t net you a top 2 Dman at less cost”, but moving the salary if possible does create some operating flexibility. I suggest eating the cost to buy-out Bickell. TT might bring something of real value in return considering age and skill (many 22 year olds are in the AHL developing/much less on their resume).

    I would not trade Panarin regardless/especially because of his value (potential top 4 dman or whatever in return…) – he and Kane have a *special* synergy and the lack of scoring from the other three lines almost certainly prohibits this move?

    I agree – I’m not qualified to handle Stan Bowman’s offseason…and if the Hawks don’t win again, his going “All-in” presents quite a challenge for the next year or two (at least?). Good luck.

  22. Dickie, I’m a long time reader and rarely a commenter, not trying to argue your points of needing a “creative” change here because something obviously needs to change and whole heartedly agree that’s a difficult task for bowman given the hefty and lengthy contracts given to players who have done so much for the Hawks during a very special might we call it dynasty. I trust in bowan but certainly don’t envy the task at hand this coming off season given what happened last year with sharp and Saad no other GM is going to be out to help us relieve salary cap space. It’s frustrating to see Bowman go all in this year and for it to backfire, hence why we see the frustration in the fan base dropping games this way. At least a silver lining is not losing the conditional first round pick for the Ladd trade, but interested to hear everyone else’s thoughts on if losing Dano and draft picks was worth the Ladd deal if we don’t win the cup?
    Maybe Dano doesn’t pan out but at east he could have either been A. Moved this offseason for longer term D help or B. slotted in at a lower cost next year in a top 6 role after some seasoning and we have draft picks to move in the off season to move for a D. Either way hindsight is 2020 but just curious on everyone’s thoughts?

  23. Dickie,
    Also when it comes to Panarin, I’d much rather see him locked up long term this offseason than traded, I was just saying he at this point is probably our most coveted asset… I would absolutely hate to see him go and yes he and Kane really have something special… lets hope that special something shows up on Thursday Saturday and Monday!

  24. The series is essentially over. A St Louis team that has been a joke come playoff time for years walked into this series and committed to playing a highly disinclined defensive first strategy and haven’t deviated a second. They have choked the offensive zone for the Hawks. And they have done if with Elliot also stepping up big time. The Hawks are flat out exhausted and grasping for straws on how to combat this highly disciplined St Louis approach. Who would have thought Hitchcock and his group could ever do this. Give them credit. And Tarasenko has been money as the one offensive electricity that team has needed. He is a great and scary offensive player who has graduated to among the elite in this regard.

    The next thing to his is another round of salary cap carnage. Very very clear to me that the Hawks MUST keep Shaw, meaning to me that you package up Teuvo with Bickell to make some salary cap room. Ladd proved to be a big and expensive roll of the dice that didn’t work out and he will be gone. Combined with a Hossa who is a shadow of his former self that means Toews is left with two open question marks as his wingmen next season. Gone also will be Weise, Fleishman, Des Jardins, Rosival and Erhoff.

    So we enter a very question filled era of the Hawks. Lot of big holes at forward that won’t get filled neatly because of the cap. And a lot of big question marks behind the big 3 on defense behind Keith, Seabrook and Hjalmarsson. A season to forget for Keith in many ways. And let’s also be clear that van Riemsdyk and Gustafsson are little more than #6 type options on a truly good defense.

    My season MVP is Crawford with all due respect to Kane. Crow was absolutely huge this season and into these playoffs. He took yet another step as a goalie.

    Interesting times indeed.

  25. The one bullet Bowmab has in his chamber this summer is to trade Panarin. A player who will undoubtedly be gone after the 2016-17 season anyway because of the money he will command on the open market. So I do indeed advocate trading him this summer and getting what you can get for his services. Bowman has very few options doe improving this club longer term. The end of a great era in Blackhawks history is staring at him in the gun barrel.

    So yeah, for me I very seriously look at moving Panarin. And I package up Teuvo with Biclell to lose that later’s contract and create some room to work a new deal for Shaw, who absolutely must stay. The Teuvo apologists and fans will have to follow the massively overrated and ill fitting Teuvo in a new city next season.

  26. It’s is strange how so called Hawks fans on here turn their backs on the team. Win the next game and things are fine.

  27. We are playing one of the best teams in the league, we are not getting most of the breaks, their goaltender is a superhero, and we are basically losing coin-flip games. To be honest, I’m fine with that.

    The first few minutes was a microcosm of the series for me. We outwork the Blues overwhelmingly for about 7 minutes. Our reward is a puck that trickles onto, but not over, the goal line. The Blues then outwork us on a shift and it goes in a couple minutes later. Overall, I haven’t been counting but if the NHL counted posts instead of goals, we would be leading the series.

    I really don’t get sitting Ehrhoff. A solid skating defenseman with an offensive mindset? He fits the system so well on paper. Very puzzled he didn’t get a better look.

  28. Again TVR with assists to the Blues, 2 this game. Sad thing is, the first one was a whirlwind save from right in the blue that stuck on a Blues stick, second one was trying to recover from a turnover with a pass a foot off the ice that found Steen’s tape. It’s unbelievable to watch, don’t know if I’ve ever seen so much go in the net off of one guy who deserved it less. He’s not playing badly, but he’s not being bailed out when he needs it, and the Blues aren’t missing when he miscues.
    This team peaked and slumped at exactly the right times but hasn’t found the reins again. Toews has been good at the dot, smothered otherwise, and whoever said Kane sucks is an imbecile, but they need to show up on the scoresheet or this season is over. Or some other guys have to. Or the season is over. Or they don’t have to score a lot, but the Blues could maybe miss the net once or twice. Anyway, winner of the next game takes the series, unless it’s the Hawks, then there will be at least one more game. AND YOU CAN PRINT THAT!

  29. Hawks did had a lot of shoots on goal from the start on game one and they didnt play that bad but the blues goalie is really hot lately and the IQ system is not working well this year in the playoff plus bad penalties against a really good team ..all those things did the difference so far ..i dont see the Hawks winning this serie but maybe it can hapend ….iff they are to win this serie to loose in the next then better loose this one and just go play golf and get back rested for next year …we had 8 new faces who never played a single game with the Hawks this year…so when you have 33% of new guys on a team its always difficult to have a perfect chemistry..specially when you had another round of new faces 5 weeks before playoff ……
    I still love my Hawks and proud of the year we had so far and iff we loose to the blues its not a big deal ..we cant win every year but we shure have three cup in last 6 years and still have a great team …..Go Hawks Go …love you guys

  30. Travis, that’s what I think.

    I think every game is flip flop close score wise. I think we outplayed them in 2 and 2 were even. I think game 5, 6 and 7 will be same. If we can play 3 games with them not getting more of the bounces and breaks (even with them playing good D) we can win 3 in a row.

  31. Just sucks to down 2 games because we defiantly deserve to be ties 2-2 (or better) based on the play.

  32. If I had a wish, I wish that ……..
    1. We hadn`t lost Kevin Hayes ( Big Body, young kid, some skill, he would have looked good on Toews left wing )
    2. We hadn`t moved up in the draft to take Schwartz when we could have had Fabbri ( who is playing very well right now at the NHL level whereas Schwartz is still paying college and is an unknown in the NHL )
    3. We hadn`t traded Stephen Johns with Patrick Sharp ( another big body defensemen who is playing effectively for Dallas right now in the playoffs and can skate like the wind )
    4. We hadn`t traded a young Phillip Danault for two players that have not been able to contribute in this years playoffs and won`t be back with our team next year ( he was a very effective and cheap 3rd line centre with wheels and gumption )
    5. We hadn`t traded Marko Dano and a 1st Round Pick for Andrew Ladd ( we needed a top left winger but he has been underwhelming and that stupid penalty of his last night cost us the game ).
    6. We hadn`t given Marcus Kruger a $3 Million Dollar Contract for next year . Nice player but not worth $3, Mil.
    7. We hadn`t given cheap players to Carolina at the start of the year ( Versteeg / Nordstrom ) who we should have been able to afford and could have contributed on the third line better than our current options.
    8. We had tried to trade Terravainen to Tampa Bay for Jonathan Drouin – he `s scrappier than our guy and has equal skill….. he would have looked good on Toews left wing.
    The team we have today is on Stan Bowman…. he`s had some luck with some Free Agents ( Panarin and TVR ) but we`d have a a brighter future if we`d somehow kept some of these younger assets.

  33. Just because we love our team doesn’t mean we can’t be critical of them.

    Poor defensive coverage, very little puck possession, poor passing which leads to way too many turnovers, and sure they’re getting a lot of shots on net but they’re being shot pretty much into Elliot’s pads.

    I hate to say it but this is not the Hawks year. Could they win this series? Sure, almost anything is possible but not if they keep playing the way they’re playing.

  34. We all know that this series could be 3-1 for either team-teams need a little good fortune and the Blues have it now (plus a young superstar in Tarasenko, and a confident goalie),
    The Hawks have had their share in their past runs.
    I think the Hawks deserve the respect, until they’re out and then start your dissecting.
    This team is dead tired, especially mentally–but it’s not over till it’s over.

    Can’t listen to Pang-had to turn the volume off. And I said last night before it was over-I felt Ladd’s penalty was selfish, and surprising for such a veteran leader.

  35. Jim, I think it is easy to criticize the GM without knowing on what goes behind closed doors. We don’t know the offers that he got for sharp, and I would assume that Dallas gave the best deal if he traded within the division. The Hawks had to trade versteeg and Nordstrom to the Canes for salary cap reasons (they were over). We don’t know what Bowman could keep guys for in the future, which might explain why some of the younger guys are gone. If Dano couldn’t make call-ups before others in Rockford, then he wasn’t going to make it on the Hawks (like Pirri, Morin, Clendening, LeBlanc, Bickell, etc.)

    It is amazing to think though the puck luck that the blues have been getting. If the puck bounces the other way with animsomiv, the Hawks have an early lead. The blues are an extremely dirty team and I hope they don’t win if they knock out the Hawks. The Hawks still look good for the future, so don’t worry and enjoy the next game!

  36. Last night the Hawks just gave it away and got beat by a team that made less mistakes than they did. They got beat on special teams yet again which is just huge in these games. Gave the puck away to Steen(who made a nice play) on a dangerous pass from TVR that should not have been attempted. Took some bad penalties again at bad times. Blues made em pay. Game over. Still it was really, really close.

    Pity that Shaw melted down at the end, but the guy has no quit in him and has played his ass off in this series. He should be re-signed even if it mean other guys would have to go. Lets’ face it, that will happen anyway as far as this team going to be re-built again in the off season win or lose.

    I’m feeling pretty downtrodden and disappointed this morning, but the Blues have to win the 4th game which is the toughest one to lock down. While the Hawks are on the verge of elimination they can win Thursday if they play more disciplined. If they lose I’m ok with it because even though it is the hated Blues they have as an opponent, this St Louis group has so far not lost their defensive structure and discipline. Never mind they have a red hot goalie to fall back on which is the reason they are up 3-1 in this series. Combine that with some talent in players like a maturing Tarasenko and Pietrangelo and they are just a much better team than they have ever been. That said Ott and Reaves are still on this team which should at some point cost them dearly in this playoff run. Could it be Thursday?

    Lets Go Hawks!

  37. Bowman’s Deadline trades……..

    Ladd has added to this team and that’s about it.

    But that may not be all Bowman’s fault.

    Weise and Flash: Were a package because they worked well together this year. The idea was for them to flank TT and create a 3d line with some punch. IMO, Q did not give the time to create chemistry with TT, and Weise sits on the bench

    Ehrhoff: was acquired for experience on the bottom pair and some puck moving ability. Q has chosen not to him even while Gusty, TvR and Rosy struggle mightily.

    After these deadline deals, sports writers were praising Bowman. Writers on this blog wrote statements like “just hand the Cup over now”, etc. etc. Blaming all the Hawks struggles on Bowman is not fair. Further, the Hawks were again over 100 points, not an easy thing to do.

    So what is the problem? I truly believe burnout is a huge factor. This is evidenced by the Hawks inability to not just close out games this postseason, but they are struggling to close out periods.

    IMO Bowman gave tools for Q to work with but Q has decided that these are not the pieces he wants to use, good bad or otherwise.

  38. Mox,

    The Blues ARE NOT a mentally fragile team. Look no further than game 3. After losing a controversial (in their eyes) game 2, and falling behind in the opening moments of game 3, they could’ve caved right there. They didn’t. I’ve been telling my family and friends as well as people on the Blackhawks page I help run all year that this a different Blues team than in years past. Oh, the hell I caught for picking them not only to win this series, but advance all the way to the Cup Finals. This series is over, and I place the majority of the blame on Bowman and Q. Stan failed to address the glaring holes on defense at the deadline, made to many other roster moves which seemed to break up the chemistry of the lines, and made some bad, bad moves last off season. He’s not that good of a GM. He can only live off the core that Smith and Tallon built for so long. Q’s love affair with a bums like TVR and Rozsival, mixing up the lines every few shifts, and overuse of certain players also have a played a key role to the ultimate failure this series will inevitably be. I have ZERO faith in Stan Bowman at this point. The contract extension was ridiculous, and it’s really going to hamstring this team in the coming years. Trading Johns was a HUGE mistake. Maybe if he had taken one of the deals for Sharp that were reportedly on the table at the draft last year, we’d actually a big bodied shut down defenseman with tons of upside. Don’t believe the hype that there’s this huge talent pool at Rockford ready to be plugged in and be ready to play for a Cup contending team. Bowman mortgaged the future on this year, and he’s failed. Serves him right for being the slimy, back stabbing piece of crap he is.

  39. May not happen but one of the lead sports stories on Chicago TV this morning is that Shaw could get disciplined for a gay slur uttered from the penalty box after his melt down. We’ll see how things transpire I guess. Aside from his bad penalty and loss of composure at the end of game 4, he’s been playing extremely hard and you can’t argue that he’s been a big part of any success that the Blackhawks have had this series.

    TT had a nice run in the second period where he was around the puck quite a bit, making sure it got to the net, getting aggressive in some board battles, etc.

    I think Hitchcock will sit Reaves again for game 5. Ott is a jerk that crosses the line at times, but I think he’s a little smarter than Reaves, at least in not being as likely to get a dumb penalty.

    I wonder how the lines will set up for game 5.
    Go Blackhawks!!!!!!!

  40. Noonan I thought the same thing, Darren Pang is a bad as an announcer as he was a goalie. Yes Crawford freaked out a little but Fabbri knew exactly what he was doing in hitting 50. Crawford is just getting back from a concussion (caused by a Blues team) and was going to take it. The other foolish penalties taken by the Hawks were much worse.

    The Blues D and Elliot is the difference in this series so far. I don’t blame Toews or Kane you win and lose as a team and the Blues just have our number right now. Can the Hawks come back? yes it’s possible but will be very tough. Both Hawks and Kings could be first round exits this year. The Stanley Cup is very tough to win once within a salary cap and back to back is near impossible these days

  41. Blues are a very good team.
    Penalties/bad PK are hawks main problems.
    Trades that happened, happened, and were mostly worth the risk.
    We’re about to enjoy desperation hawks hockey for 1-3 games.
    If any team/core can come back, its them.

  42. Iceman (real). I completely agree with your comments. I sincerely believe that our coach’s ego has negatively impacted our season. I think he really panicked last night with all the blending. The goals we scored were not the result of that blending (at least I don’t recall-I haven’t reviewed the highlights). I wish he would go lefty-righty on D but it may be too late in the season to make a difference. We’ve lost our serve twice-failed to hold 2 consecutive leads. I give the Blues credit. They’re obviously a very talented team. Outstanding goaltending and I wish we could petition to have 91 healthy scratched (what a player). We’ve been on the brink before and forced a 7th game (albeit having a more experienced D in season’s past). Let’s steal one tomorrow.

  43. Dickie D and Jim Ross… great posts…

    It is time to be forward thinking ( always is time)…

    SB – has made some terrible decisions… Bickell was bad… but this Sharp and JOHNS + NOT keeping Oduya…. that was HUGE!!!

    The Seabrook deal… Will be awful very soon!!! if it isn’t right now…
    If Johns was kept… he is/was the most obvious Seabs replacement (for Pennies on the Dollar)… then Hawks would have $6M left over to sign STUD!!! Seabs will be garbage in few years (and I like Seabs– great Hawk– but that is going to be another Bickell/contract in couple years)

    How good would have Hawks been with Oduya AND Johns this year???

    DDunn… I am with you about trading Seabs (just don’t see the “takers”)…
    But — SB/Hawks are victims of their own success… and it is easier/SAFER GM move to hand the Big $$$ out versus Trading a CORE player…

    I would throw Crow into that Trade discussion too!!! This series- shows the “Team” is bigger than any one Goalie!!!


  44. Wall, how good would the Hawks be with Daley who is playing very well for Pittsburgh?

    Anyway, they played good enough to win… Again… And didnt get a result.

    Some very poor penalties and atrocious penalty killing.

    Would be cool if 19 and 88 started to dent twine.

    Hopefully they can at least stay out of the box Thursday and give themselves a chance to grind one out.

  45. Yes Tab, as much as I love Shaw as a player he has likely signed his own walking papers from the Hawks with that idiocy. Suspension seems highly probable. I’m very,very disappointed.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  46. Give some credit to St. Louis. They are defending very well and making the Hawks earn every inch of ice and their goalie is playing REALLY well. But until their are 4 wins in this series it ain’t over!

  47. We need to be/play more like the Washington Capitals. Why can’t Bowman and Q replicate that model? That organization is full of goals and wins. That’s what it takes to win a championship.

    How about it Wall, Dickie, and Iceman? Beers and Caps viewing party at The Pony for Round 2?

  48. A slightly different topic because the series is getting a little too depressing to talk about. But does anyone have insight into the Hawks “system” that players seem to have so much difficulty adapting to? We’ve seen so many players come in and be completely unable to crack the lineup but played just fine elsewhere. Daley seems to be just fine in Pittsburgh but couldn’t do anything here. Erhoff and Weiss haven’t seen the ice at all. It took Vermette until the second round last year to figure it out. So what’s the deal? What do the Hawks do that is so different? Any ideas?

  49. Wall, I’m still not with you on “Pens2.0″ or Crawford…and I don’t like to speculate ” be forward thinking ( always is time)…” — but, if this year’s “All-in” gamble doesn’t pay off, I think the Hawks should take corrective action. Unfortunately, they are likely stuck with those two contracts.

    I also think some of this has to fall on Quenneville (- I know, he has won three more Cups than I, but it might’ve four – two years ago, or 5 – this season, if not for some of his) personnel decisions – blending and loyalty/sticking with favorites regardless of performance and possible(?) options.

    Silver Lining: If the Hawks lose, maybe we will NEVER have to hear that “Flip the switch” bullshit/cliché ever again.

  50. This is the first time we’re really seeing a completely healthy Blues team in the playoffs and we’re seeing the results. That is a fantastic team and I would not be surprised to see them in the Finals this year. The Hawks don’t have the depth at key positions they had last year and in year’s past where they made Cup runs and it’s showing.

  51. “Man looks in the abyss, there’s nothing staring back at him. At that moment, man finds his character. And that is what keeps him out of the abyss.” —Lou Mannheim (Hal Holbrook), Wall Street

  52. I agree, Bowman’s trades were not very good. Should have traded Cro. Darling was the answer to keeping Sharp/Oduya/Saad. That is not intended to bash on Cro, Cro is good, great season. But I think attention is more needed elsewhere like offense. I tend to like goalies (1) Big, (2) Young, and (3) Cheap. I would rather focus on offenses. But that is just me.

    Shaw lost his dang mind, dude has 2 cups already, what’s his problem?

    Hawks are just not disciplined enough this season. Hawks are all over the place while St. Louis is cool, calm, collected. I also agree that the Q panic blender is not helping.

    The 2, 10.5 million dollar men are just not producing without the needed synergy from… Sharp/Oduya/Saad.

    I think the Stars are going to win the cup and I have been saying that since very early this season. Sharp and Oduya know how to win a cup and I kinda hope they do win…. Yet another cup!

  53. Brainstorming this morning. Even though we’re on our last life line I am reaching out to Q to go righty-lefty on the D pairs and show some aggression on the PK Thursday night. In exchange I am promising to wash his car better than Mash, TVR and Rosy combined. Anything for the team. Ok, I’m a little delirious from the loss and lack of sleep-carry on. Let’s get the lead (again) on Thursday —-only let’s keep it this time and move onto Saturday .

  54. Chevrier… couldn’t tell you for sure… BUT- I have been to plenty of Hogs games…
    Really liked Johns ( he is the closest/only Seabrook in system)… His biggest negative was “over-pinching”… but the AHL- is a good place to learn “when/when not to” pinch…

    What I do notice in AHL… Hogs really want to move puck quickly… not hold it…

    Perhaps Daley- liked to “carry puck too much”… on D side- D men are really asked to be quick to corners and back to net/post for coverage… and then use stick to Poke like Hammer and TvR…. don’t know where Daley falls there.

    Going to watch Hogs Thursday… excited about seeing Motte , Hino, Pokka, and all the Swede D guys… to see if there is “something” there.

    Not too high Hartman (as many here think he will be Shaw’s replacement)… I am not buying it.

    And still HOPING SB can land Caggiula- he will be a stud… tons of moxy, speed- will make any team faster!!!

  55. @Kid… I think your take on goalies is off base at best. When was the last team to win a Cup with a young cheap goalie? Look at the teams to win a Cup over the last decade or so. Hawks have Crow and won 2015, 2013, and 2010. Crow is a top 10 goalie without hesitation and top 5 in my opinion. The years not won by the Hawks the Cup was won by the Kings in 2014 and 2012 and they have a top 10 goalie in Quick. The Bruins won in 2011 with Tim Thomas and he won the Conn Smythe that year! Pens win in 2009 with another top 10 goalie in Fleury. Red Wings in 2008 with Jimmy Howard who was a top 10 goalie at the time without hesitation. Giguère won with the Ducks in 2007 and he was a former Conn Smythe winner (came up short to Devils in the Finals in 2003 and guess who the goalie was for the Devils that year… Brodeur!) My point here is you build a Cup winner by starting with a goalie and working your out from there. It’s not just some piece you throw in on the cheap. Just sayin’

  56. What Mike said…..exactly. Furthermore,

    Hawk defenseman used to spark the offense. Breakouts, generalship from the points, and pinching to keep the puck in their zone. And, two solid PAIRINGS, Keith/Seabs Hammer/Oduya, that even Q had the sense not to juggle. The #4 spot is now the weak link, forcing the other three, especially Keith, to compensate. Consequently the D take less risk and are less aggressive. Keith is far too important to be babysitting.

    Lastly, the Blues strategy of collapsing their large D men into a shell around Elliot has worked and forced the Hawks into a perimeter game. Shots are from low percentage places, are getting blocked before reaching Elliot, and the big dopes don’t get exposed chasing down our skill forwards, Only Shaw has established any presence in front. Everything else is coming from the outside.

    Keith or Crow must have a monster game to reverse the flow. It ain’t over ’til it’s over.

  57. It is clear we aren’t going to challenge for the cup. Unfortunately, there are way too many shortcomings being exposed. Good fortune has been abundant for the Hawks in this series, but they still have not been able to win these games. I would prefer an early exit vs. a prolonged playoff short of a cup win.

    Some are criticizing Bowman and some Q for what is happening. When making the trade deadline moves, isn’t Q involved in those decisions? Since he isn’t giving Weise or Ehrhoff minutes, I would have to think not. Is it the norm that GM’s don’t put their heads together with the coaches when making moves? It is too late to question the past, what solutions are there for this team moving forward?

    We are extremely salary cap strapped. I hate to say this, but I believe moving forward that the fastest way to ensure long term success is that this summer will require us blowing up the core. I keep Toews, Keith, Hjalmorsson, Panarin & Shaw. Everyone else is fair game to be moved.

    You have Crawford and Kane at the top of their games. Seabrook close to the top of his game (but with a bad contract). Crawford and/or Seabrook to the Oilers for their number 1 and a package of players including one of their young studs. They have needed help in goal and on D and that would give some very seasoned leadership to match with their young core. I would try to package Kane with others for the number one pick (if the leafs get it), Kadri and some young dmen or wingers. Everyone keeps talking about trading Bickell. Forget it, no one will be biting. Unfortunately, I believe TT’s value has been damaged by his own portfolio of play. The league knows he is timid and isn’t cut out for the smaller ice surface and physical play of the NHL.

    We have to shed mass amounts of salary or we will be mired in the downward spiral of patchwork moves trying to stay within the cap structure. That approach will certainly breed mediocrity sooner rather than later. We need to get younger, faster, better at the dot, and better on the defense. Keeping the players above allows us to infuse some youth with an experienced core and allow us to maintain a competitive team. I just wonder if Q is the right coach to develop that youth with his doghouse approach. Whatever happens this summer, Bowman and crew will be more challenged then any other year since putting on his GM hat.

    I hate to admit it, but our wonderful run looks to be on a major decline. Without taking drastic action, I cannot see quick fixes on the horizon.

    All that being said, I still hope this team surprises us all when things seem the most dire. Let’s go Hawks!!!!

  58. I am not giving up. The 4th win is always the toughest to come by. Q needs to roll 4 lines with everyone playing at least 10-12 minutes. The team is tired. Go Hawks!

  59. Elliott is playing great. Its like Mike Smith in that Phoenix series all over again. While its not over, I don’t feel good about it. That Tarasenko goal was a wicked shot, but Crawford was looking right at him and it was to the short side. Should he have stopped that one? I will defer to the pros on this website.

  60. Seabrook looks sick or hurt. Never seen a guy coast that much with pressure on him from the forecheck.

    Seems to me the Hawks took the approach from Game 1 of matching the defense-first focus of the Blues and they are just doing it better overall.

    Very few rushes/breaks, which is more of the Hawks strength vs cycling, hence why we are showing minimal offensive performance overall. Point shots/wristers from the dots with d-men collapsed are not going to give you good scoring opportunities.

    Definitely possible to bring this one back, but going to have to minimize the need for the PK to step up and actually capitalize on the few opportunities we get – Kane breakaway, etc.

    Let’s go Hawks.

  61. Kid… to add- trading Crow , would have been selling High, and Might have actually landed Hawks assets!!! where as what did Hawks get from 10/Johns trade??? Garbutt, Daley, ???


    JJA— Hawks won 2010 with underpaid Niemi and 2013 cup with “Cheap” Crow!!!
    both were cheap and “un-proven” at the time… which illustrates the point of skaters/system in front of Goalie… is Elliot a super-star now??? or is the System/D (big boys in front of Elliot- working???)

  62. Regarding Elliott, yes he’s playing well, but nothing spectacular. Most of the shots the Hawks are getting off are weak little writsters from 50 feet out or one-timers from the point with no screen in front. He’s made some nice saves, but he’s not putting on some goaltending clinic the way so many fans are making it seem. The key is, he hasn’t given up the bad goals which have plagued Blue’s goaltenders in past post seasons. This is a very, very good defensive minded team getting good goaltending and unfortunately the Hawks have no answer for their one real offensive weapon. On the other side, our defensive is lousy as it has been all year, and our big game and big name players are playing very poorly. I don’t think the Hawks are paying Kane $10.5 million to win Art Ross trophies, or Toews that amount to be barely noticeable. Wasn’t expecting a Cup or even deep run this year, but this effort or lack thereof is still disappointing.

  63. Would’ve been a nice game to put behind us, thanks for not letting that happen, 65.

    Could’ve sworn I saw a comment to the effect that Nordstrom and Versteeg would’ve been the answer. Really? Those are the cogs that would have made this machine run smoother? We lost two studs in the sharp and saad, but we gained a better shooter than Sharp in Panarin, and a more experienced physical player than Saad in Ladd. Anisimov has been an upgrade over Vermette as well. On paper the forwards are equal or better this year than last. They just aren’t putting the puck in the net enough. The D has been shaky in spots, always has in years past too, it’s a gambling system. But we won a cup last year with 2 D playing less than 8 minutes a game, and what are they giving up, 10 goals in four games? Hardly awful. Not good enough, but not awful.

    It really seems like this has come down to incredibly bad puck luck, and unfortunate in the case of Kane, and idiotic in the case of Shaw, penalties. Puck luck? Off of a blinding fast clearing attempt, the puck sits flat on the ice on their tape, their shot goes between a defenseman legs, over his stick, and under Crawford’s blocker. Our shot goes directly Into Elliott’s body, stands on the goal line on edge, and falls down on the goal line. How about Kane’s shot hitting and wobbling over the crossbar rather than under, Ladd’s double poster, I want to kill hockey. You could argue we have gotten a couple weird bounces that turned into goals, but so have they. The puck luck hasn’t been close to equal, and there’s no reason that that would change, it just has to be overcome somehow.

    Credit the blues with taking advantage of their opportunities. Credit their D and G for playing just better enough than ours. Credit my liver for never giving up, Credit my finger for not turning the game off after their first goal went in last night, we’ve been through a lot. There are worse things that a first round exit, Blues fans know that better than anyone. Good luck!

  64. Q’s blender exploded last night. And so did Bowman’s team. All this false bravado does not amount to anything. This version of this team is done. How he puts things back together in the offseason will be interesting…and sad.

  65. I purposely waited to post because I know my passions get away from me right after a tough loss, especially a playoff loss to the Blues.

    I haven’t read through all the comments so I may not be the lone voice in the wilderness on this but I think the Hawks have played pretty well all 4 games. The Blues have just played better. Through 4 games – the Blues have proven to be the better team. They deserve credit for winning the games more than the Hawks deserve discredit for losing. Simple as that.

  66. Thanks ER. Well said. Lots of rats jumping the ship around here, and the blame game finger pointing has started in earnest with many. I think this team deserves more respect than what is being given. Even if the Hawks lose to the Blues we should not doubt the character of this team, especially the core guys. Could be they are indeed frustrated, and certainly running on reserve given the amount of hockey played in recent years. You can doubt the results, but don’t doubt the effort. The Blues have proven to be a most worthy opponent thus far.

    I still hate that POS Ott.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  67. The greatest 8 year run in franchise history has probably come to an end. Living into a salary cap world is hard, and the achievement of winning 3 Stanley Cups in six years is a feat that has yet to be replicated in this era of the NHL. The greatness of the Blackhawks has been historical. It just has.

    But we now come to a major inflection point. Where getting back to true Cup level competitiveness will be very hard to achieve. Yes, a deeply impressive core of Kane, Toews, Hossa, Keith, Seabrook, Hjalmarsson and Crawford remains. Anismov is right there too. But the team around this aging core is not remotely what it has been.

    Tough decisions for Bowman.

    – Ladd is a goner, and Hossa has dramatically declined. So who are the wingmen for Toews next season? And what DO the Hawks really do with Hossa?
    – One more year of the Bickell contract looms. My suggestion would be to package Bickell with the massively overrated and ill-fitting Teravinen to get at salary cap relief and maybe pick up a decent young player or propsect.
    – Who replaces what Shaw provides, and does Shaw even survive period given his shameful behavior in game 4?
    – What do the Hawks do with Panarin? There is virtually no chance the Hawks can sign him after 2016-17 and this team has MANY big needs right now, so the best approach in my opinion is to sell the talented Russian to the highest bidder in the trade market this summer.
    – What do the Hawks do on defense? van Riemsdyk and Gustafasson are limited skill #6 type pairings. Svedberg is a novelty act. Pokka doesn’t look like an answer at Rockford. Rosival is likely retiring.
    – Who beyond Motte can reasonably be expected to step up and take a role in terms of the youngsters? Hartman does nothing for me. McNeil is a bust. Kero is just a guy and fourth line material.

  68. I agree ER, it aint complicated. 4 games with razor thin margins of victory. We need to stay out of the box foremost. Then the PK is a non issue.
    I see a 7th game coming but if we are to win 3 straight we must flip the special teams numbersrs in our favor. We need to be +3 or better after G 5-6-7.
    People forget the previouse long stretches of no scoring on the playoff resumes of 19 and 88. It happens. We’ve only played 4 damn games. And lets leave the 16-17 talk for when the season is over..


  69. BOOMAN, “I keep Toews, Keith, Hjalmorsson, Panarin & Shaw. Everyone else is fair game to be moved. ” — REALLY? Shaw, but not Kane?

    Nick in SD, “Nordstrom and Versteeg would’ve been the answer. Really?” – I totally agree…they’re “interchangeable parts” (like most “depth players”). “On paper the forwards are equal or better this year than last.” — exactly, on paper has proven to be MUCH better than on ice thru four games. “It really seems like this has come down to incredibly bad puck luck” — pretty lame. They Blues are working harder in the puck battles – in front and along the wall, leading to better defense. Kane, Ladd and especially Shaw have taken stupid/selfish, costly penalties, and the ineffectiveness of the PK may be the biggest reason the Hawks have put themselves in this position.

    It’s not over…but, I don’t like the odds.

  70. Jim Ross ( on your wish list post ) and Mike ( on Stan Bowman’s dead line trades post ): I bow to you. You gentleman hit right on the spot.If I may allow to add to your wish list,I wish that when prospects are called up that they are allowed to make mistakes and not be one and done.I wish that they be put on a line and let that line built chemistry between them.Mike I would like for Bowman not to make trades .Let someone else make them.If he’s going to make them ,don’t wait until the trade deadline when you will have to cough up high draft choices and prospects.Let Q give the ok on any trades that you might been working on.If this deals are made early in the season, the new players can learn Q’s system and built chemistry amongst them. If four lines brought you to the dance, dance with the four lines.

  71. The Hawks came back down 3 games to 1 against the Wings in 2013 to win a game 7 in OT. Then they beat the Kings. Then the Bruins for the Cup. It can happen. And has happened. But like @Dickie said…

    “It’s not over…but, I don’t like the odds.”

  72. The margin of loss for the Hawks has been stupid penalties (last two games) and Toews and Kane biffing break aways (games 1, 3 and 4).

    Get rid of the stupid and finish a jail break and they probably win. That doesn’t even factor in all the other shots Elliot is seeing.

    Key is getting the first two goals to stretch STL out a bit and go from there. They gotta play ’em one day at a time. Be happy to be here. Hope they can help the club. Give it their best shot, and the good Lord willing, things will work out.

  73. JJA,

    The 2016 Hawks ain’t remotely in the class of the 2013 Hawks. And with all due respect, the 2016 Blues are much more formidable than the 2013 Red Wings. The Blues have beaten us, period. Enough of this lucky bounce excuse making and playing them even crap. The Blues are up 3 games to 1 because they’ve been brilliant and disciplined on defense, and they have been blessed with great goaltending in Eliott. This series is over. The Blues have been the superior team.

  74. Lol, the Blues are going to get smoked as soon as their goaltending falls back to earth. If that happens starting Thursday or if that happens in the next round, it will happen.

    They are not playing better than the Hawks aside from what the scoreboard says. Tarasenko is the only player on that team.

    Pretty big hole dug but still a winnable series.

  75. SW, I would dis agree that the greatest 8 year run in Hawks history is over. I don’t think anyone felt that way in 2011 or 2012 when the Hawks bowed out in the first round. They had more points (103) this year than last year (102). I see a team that with a properly rested core making the playoffs for the foreseeable future.

    What team doesn’t have bad contracts? If there is such a team, that will change after success. I actually trust Bowman to manage the Cap. He has done so expertly for the past 6 years. Was this year’s deadline deals somewhat desperate? Yes but….

    Also, we all need to realize that Bowman did not make these deals without ownership’s approval. Nor did he make these changes out of the blue without consulting Q, Dent and others.

  76. Time to wake up… Trading oduya and keep hjammerson – the TURN OVER MACHINE- was bad…He “blocks shots” as a statue after Turning puck over!…We only have 2 NHL defensemen…. —Keith & Seab. Vanresdyck and rest are busts…. All are made of candy… Won’t go in corners due to afraid of being checked… When checked– swing stick . TT-another paper doll….Q getting outcoached…. Plays his pets… When Hawks have lead LATE in a game… Doesn’t ” shorten” the bench… Plays defensive liabilities and we lose… Pffffff seen enough… Koolaid all gone…..

  77. “Was this year’s deadline deals somewhat desperate? Yes but….” — But what? I understand the deals, and I think they look “desperate” or bad only because the Hawks are down 3-1 at this point. Ladd was arguably the best player available and certainly the best “fit” for Chicago. Fleischmann and Weise had good seasons and have been pretty good (depth-type) players overall. Scuderi didn’t show much, so Ehrhoff is no worse that a wash. Quenneville dresses the lineup he believes affords him the best chance to win. (I don’t always agree with/understand his choices.)

    In previous years I’ve expressed the opinion “Absolutely NOT” in regard to overpaying, and in most cases I’d stick with that. Last year, everyone knew at least one “core player” and others would be moving, so it was worth the gamble – and it paid off. This year, at the deadline, the team looked like a legitimate contender if not the favorite, so “Go For It!” made sense. If the Hawks can manufacture a greater miracle than the 1980 US Olympic team, it might still pay off…(but I don’t like the odds)

    Hey, it’s only three consecutive one-game winning streaks – GO HAWKS!!

  78. Trade Teuvo, trade Teuvo, trade Teuvo , Snidley or Rufus or whoever the hell you are you need to get back under that rock you live under. And your idea of getting rid of Panarin is even funnier but you are the same one who tried to run Kane out of town also. You probably never played a sport in your life, are you sure you’re not Dan Berstein!!!!

  79. Bowman made the proper move of going for it with the trade for Ladd and Weise/Fleishman. This team looked like it had a 4th Cup run in it at the time and Bowman also knew this would be the last best shot to win. Salary cap hell was going to loom no matter what in the summer. So going for it was proper. Same as it was last year when it happened to work.

  80. Trading Panarin becomes a very real option this summer because no chance the Hawks can retain him after next season. Trading the ill fitting Teuvo as the enticement to get some team to take Bickell is very much on the radar. Especially if Quenneville and Bowman want any chance of retaining Shaw. Next year is a retooling year professor.

  81. Thank God there are still some true fans, appreciative, realistic and not giving up.
    Snidely’s last comment was bang on-they went for it, and it will take a huge effort and some luck for it to pay off. (The Panarin trade is beyond idiotic-to use a very over used word)

  82. It’s not beyond idiotic for a team in retooling mode and with zero chance of signing Panarin after 2016-17.

  83. Okie Hawks fan: On your ” blame pointing post ” a BIG , and Loud AMEN!!!! However the tone for this series was set in the Hawks season ending game against the Blues. They needed to make it a statement game. By allowing the Blues to tie the game with a little over a minute left, gave the Blues the confidence to skate with the Hawks and wait for mistakes and take advantage of them.Crawford cannot be blamed . Only 3 good d man in front of him.Even if they get past the Blues , those d men will probably be spent.

  84. Hawks in the first period played disinterested hockey. Second, missed a lot of outlet passes and more traffic needed in front of Elliott. Third was pond hockey. Blues reminded me of Kings’ down low game. Very disjointed Hawk effort and they looked game, but tired. Others have said they look tired and I agree, also looked frustrated. Shaw shifted to first line because he stands in front of the net. Comcerned about how much is left in the tank.

  85. I think I saw for the first time ever on this board, someone saying that Hjalmarsson should be let go. And, someone saying that he should have been let go in favor of Oduya.

    Wow. Hjalmarsson is nowhere past his prime. One of the best moves the Blackhawks ever made was not allowing him to go to San Jose after the 2010 Cup after the Sharks tendered him a huge offer. That meant that other people maybe had to go, but #4 has worked out pretty well for this team.

    His name may not be called that much, but that might just be because he’s not doing the wrong things. NOW, if someone is saying that the Blackhawks will be in desperation mode in the offseason, and that Hjalmarsson is someone of high value that could draw interest, that’s one thing. But that move doesn’t help solve one of the team’s biggest needs …… depth in quality defensemen. Not at all.

    I’m not happy about this series, and I haven’t thought that the Blackhawks would prevail. But, I will not be a fair weather fan. This team has given way too much effort, provided so many great thrills for the fans and the community, etc. And this is still a very good team with a very good core. And we may bitch and moan, me included, about this or that. But this is a very strong organization that we as fans have benefitted from.

    Go Blackhawks!!!!!!!

  86. Depth on D is a great need. So let’s hope Stan doesn’t decide to trade away Pokka or Forsling. Watching Dallas v Minnesota right now and it hurts to see Stephen Johns wearing that puke green sweater and playing well.

    And Rufus, or whatever your name is, yes, it is idiotic to say what you said because you have no idea what this team will look like next year or the year after, so you just can’t say that we will have no chance of signing Panarin. Because you don’t know. Saying the same things over and over and over does not convince anyone that you’re knowledgeable. Just the opposite, in fact.

  87. Hawks have been outplayed.. On defense,offense and in goal. Our Pk has been bad.Our passing and puck possession have been awful and we keep shooting pucks right into Elliott. Blues are better,younger,stronger,faster ,deeper and more skilled overall than Hawks. That’s why they will win series. It is NOT puck luck.

    I have been s Hawks fan since 1961. It is not disloyal to see this team for what it is now. Stan has s LOT of work to do to make us a contender again. We will see how good a GM he is over the next 2 years.

    Q is stubborn . Anyone recall that Frolik spent his first year on Hawks in Q’s doghouse ?

    We have BIG needs going forward. I think we should trade TT. Had has had zero impact this season. He’s afraid of contact !!

    We need a 4th Dman , at least 2 strong first line wingers, third line wings and some youth and speed . We look old and slow and lost.

    I think we will lose tomorrow nite by 3 goals or more.

  88. You all feel free to correct me if I am wrong but Rozsival is the problem, hear me out.

    Last night Rozy should have kept a puck in the zone. Because he is cheating back (old, slow, not back to where he was pre injury) can’t keep it in, passes to TVR putting TVR in a lose situation, TVR is then the goat for what is ultimately Rozy mistake and Steen scores GWG.

    The more I think about it. The more I realize our collective disdain for TVR, Gusty, Svedberg and even Ehrhoff to an extent are mainly because of the pairing with Rozy. Rozy is the constant and he is consistently putting his partner in trouble. He is largely to blame, I believe for making that 3rd pair look worse then it should be. Keith, Seabs, Hammer, TVR and 2 of Gusty, Svedberg and Ehrhoff should be the 6 D Men going forward.

    Honestly if Q wants to try something completely off the wall tomorrow, since Shaw is suspended, Skate 11 forwards and use Ehrhoff with his ability on the wing to start the game and let Gusty and Sved be the final D pair. You then have the option to use Ehrhoff on D later and double shift Kane.

    I know I will be critiqued. Ultimately my message is no Rozy. Ehrhoff as forward isn’t first choice but is better then not rolling 4 lines. Q must have faith in his 12 forwards and roll 4 tomorrow. First choice lines game 5

    14, 19, 16
    72, 15, 88
    25, 86, 12
    11, 22, 81

  89. Well said CD. The Hawks have officially entered a new era. Lots of gaps on this team now and it shall be interesting to see how Bowman tries to transform this roster over the next couple of seasons. Lots of issues that will be made harder to address because of the salary cap, the aging and slowdown of key players and a farm system that is largely void of impact talent. All the price to pay for a brilliant run that saw the Hawks win 3 Stanley Cups.

    I’m not optimistic for game 5. The Hawks are done and St Louis knows it is time to go in for the kill. Very interesting summer coming up.

  90. I think a few very proud Hawks don’t feel their done yet-
    that\s all I\m saying–I know there are changes ahead–teams go through cycles, and the Hawks have used many of their chips, and have had a wonderful run–let them officially be done first, they deserve that

  91. “I’m not optimistic for game 5.” —- in all the time I’ve had access to this site you have NEVER been optimistic. Just an honest observation.

  92. Who is playing Rosenbum over Ehrhoff??? Who has a”pet” who he had resigned? TVR WAS MINUS 7….. Thats -7…… Rots….. Maybe Shaw will be signed for 64 mil for 8 years by stanley too…. Hawks have 2 goal lead — are playing great after 2 periods and then Q PLAYS PREVENT D!!!!!! How did that Almost play out?…. Hawks are built as a SPEED TEAM… Why is RosenBUM even on this team? ….. Bench penalties almost cost them….. Again. SMH…. GL boys…..???

  93. For you Hjammerson lovers— He may be 3rd best Dman on this team…. Who is he better than to be in 3rd place????? Exactly….. Icing…. Turnover…. Icing… Turnover….. Icing….pass….. Turnover…..etc.

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