Vanek, Boeser Lead Blowout of Blackhawks

A few days off after a couple ugly losses and the Blackhawks respond with… more of the same.

The Blackhawks returned from the Christmas break with a couple new faces in the lineup and one significant piece missing. Anton Forsberg was between the pipes with Corey Crawford on IR and David Kampf, who was recalled on Wednesday, was in the lineup. Richard Panik and Vinnie Hinostroza took a seat on Thursday.

Five minutes into the game, Gustav Forsling headed to the penalty box. Chicago was able to kill the Forsling penalty, longtime Blackhawks nemesis Sam Gagner scored three seconds after Forsling left the box to give the Canucks a 1-0 lead.

At 7:58 into the first, Thomas Vanek was caught slashing Artem Anisimov. Chicago failed to score on the power play (little surprise there) but the bigger news was the status of Anisimov, who left the bench and did not return to the game. Anisimov had skated 3:05 and won two of three faceoffs at that point.

In the wake of Anisimov leaving the lineup, we saw a fair amount of Alex DeBrincat with Nick Schmaltz and Patrick Kane on the second line.

Chicago got a second power play opportunity at 11:02 when Henrik Sedin hooked Brandon Saad. This time, the Hawks would (holds breath) score on the advantage (runs out, buys Powerball tickets) and tie the game. Nick Schmaltz picked up his seventh of the year.

The Hawks out-shot the Canucks 14-13 in the first period as both goaltenders had a solid start to the game. But the scoreboard had the score tied headed to the second.

At 7:52 into the second – almost the same time that Anisimov was injured into the first – Alex Biega took a run at Connor Murphy and provided a textbook case of boarding.

Lance Bouma rightfully took exception and jumped Biega. Bouma and Biega received offsetting roughing minors and, somehow, Biega received only a two-minute minor penalty for boarding.

Vancouver killed the Biega penalty (served by Jake Virtanen) but less than 30 seconds after that penalty ended Daniel Sedin took his turn in the box after he tripped Ryan Hartman.

Vanek got the lead back for the Canucks 13 minutes into the second, scoring his 11th of the year and picking up his second point of the evening.

The second period ended with the Blackhawks 1-5 on the power play, holding a 23-20 shot advantage and trailing 2-1 on the scoreboard.

Gagner came back and beat the Blackhawks yet again, extending the Canucks lead to 3-1 with his second of the night 90 seconds into the third period.

Gagner was up to three points on the night, almost half-way to his eight-point night from Feb. 2, 2012 when he was with the Oilers.

At 16:29 it was Vanek getting back in the scoring swing with his second of the night to extend the lead to 4-1. Brock Boeser had assists on the Canucks’ final three goals as Vanek picked up his fourth point of the night.

Boeser didn’t want to get left completely out of the scoring fun, so he added his 21st goal of the season with 85 seconds left in regulation to push the lead to 5-1. Vanek added an assist, giving him five points in the game, tying his career high. The four points tie the career high for Boeser as well.

Ryan Hartman scored with 8.6 seconds left in regulation to make the final score 5-2.

John Hayden led the Blackhawks with four hits; he also had one assist. Brent Seabrook led the Hawks with three blocked shots. Kane, DeBrincat and Duncan Keith also had assists.

Kampf won six of 11 faceoffs and skated 13:50 in his NHL debut. Jonathan Toews won 12 of 23 at the dot.

49 thoughts on “Vanek, Boeser Lead Blowout of Blackhawks

  1. How’s that performance with that cap salary. Outstanding. Power play and puck control And the speed of the team. ?

  2. Hello Stan…
    WAKE UP CALL…
    Fire Quenneville
    Fire Dineen
    – Franson OUT
    – Sharp OUT
    – Forsberg (AHL G) OUT

    Need a BIG wake up call: Toews, Saad, Panik, Seabrook…

    Sorry but… tomorrow will an another lost
    Vous jouez comme des ostis de piochons en bon Québécois !!!

  3. Dead on. Shake there hands. Don’t let door hit u on the way out. Q won’t get fired. Nobody out there and this is Stan’s doing 100 %. Dump cap 20 mil.

  4. There are limited options to shake up the lineup based upon salary cap constraints, no trade clauses and the ridiculous fear someone will be claimed on waivers if sent to Rockford.

    That being said, despite having limited options at his disposal, Q’s line up decisions leave something to be desired. Clearly, the Hawks need as much speed and offense in the line up as possible; accordingly, Q continues to scratch Kempny & Hinostroza. If memory serves correct, they both played well and contributed during the mini winning streak,

    Lastly, as it relates to Kempny, Rutta looked like a turnstile tonight; his play has regressed tremendously as the season has progressed. What is the next line up change by Q – Roszival in for Rutta, while Kempny rots away?

  5. I only saw the last 11 minutes and don’t believe the Hawks even came close to scoring in that time until Hartman scored with 9 seconds left. Oh yeah, they did have a chance when it meant something, but Hartman missed the net. This team does not fight and challenge the way they used to. Losing is one thing, but not making the other team sweat while you are supposed to be pushing is another. How many of those goals could Forsberg have stopped? It looked like a complete defensive breakdown. Can it hurt to bring Kempney back? Someone has to explain to me what he is doing that is so hideous that he can’t get on the ice. There has to be something we don’t know. The big money boys, other than Kane, just seem like average players now. It doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate what they did in the past and we enjoyed the 3 Cups, but they aren’t the same players.

  6. No trade clause lol. Can get around that. Especially if your a Canadien. And want to go home. Knowing that this team going no where. Jets look good Montreal desperate and draft piks are always a good thing. Look they all get there number retired But Keith & seabs u can move. And dare I say Towes who sold his home here. This summer. 23 mil cap room. Just to start. And seabs your going to pull another Bickel trade. Hossa retires eat his 3.2 As for the rest u can spread there ashes all over the league. Wonder if tallon can be traded for. Lol.

  7. The eye test rarely lies. This is a 500 team at best. Very few clutch goals to be found.
    Also this team does not have any type of aura about it, that it’s going to catch fire.
    Underachievers galore and just rearranging the chairs seemingly every night on the road.
    So much for the Toews and Saad reunion, that miscalculation has absolutely killed us. That’s actually pretty collasal.

    After the Hawks get smoked by Edmonton and likely Calgary, watch how the narrative quickly changes to ” We are not out of it. We’re only 4 or 5 points out of the wild card. ”

    Without Crawford though holding the opposition to one or two goals a night, it’s going to be dire.

  8. Today is my Bday ! My buddy took me to the game ( 360 Can ) club seats ( I would never pay that to watch the pecker head Canucks ! ) Once again the Hawks lay an egg here in Van. Ive really appreciated what this team has done over the last 9 years, and I hope all the Chicagoans have also , but really ! 3 days off , and a 4-1 loss in Jersey, and now facing a bad team . What a dissapointment ! I wonder if Q will last the season ? I dont see the sence of urgency, or panache that ive come to love about the Hawks. Toews looks cooked from too much big time hockey . I only see them live once a year when they come to Van. They really mailed it in tonight, and the Nucks are a terrible team !

  9. Totally agree on Rutta. I’m wondering if the concussion has left him very intimidated about contact. He appears to be turning into Rundblad before or very eyes. Kempny at least plays a heavy game with a bit of reckless abandon.

  10. If this team keeps fumbling the puck like a bunch of amateurs, it doesn’t matter who’s traded or who dresses. They will go nowhere. I counted about 10 or 15 completely unforced turnovers, and many more with minimal pressure.

    Some of those defensive breakdowns were double-bagger ugly.

    The Hawks are particularly frustrating to watch this year.

  11. Yeah this was not a pretty one to watch live. Paid a hefty price for the seats too. One thing I noticed is no one cares on this team. The compete level isn’t there and no one wants to win any battles. Chicago was down by two goals late in the third and Vancouver was the team maintaining pressure in our zone.

    Do 3 championships make you soft? Is our core tired? Unmotivated? Both? The drive is gone. It may show up for stretches, but honestly I noticed a lot of sloppy play in the defensive zone and absolutely no interest by anyone willing to get down and dirty in the corners. Perimeter shots with zero traffic in front. A very easy night for Markstrom. I think me made one difficult save all night.

    It begs the question, if our core group of millionaires don’t care why should I? Why watch night in and night out?

  12. Notwithstanding decline in core players there is enough overall talent to be winning some of these games. This team is sloppy and disengaged. That’s on players and coaches. What an embarrassment!

  13. Just went thru jets cap 5.8 cap space. And plenty after end of this season for years ! I absolutely trade Toews to his home town. He will wave no trade to go home And he will get a statue. At United Center Bobby Hull left. For the team named after him. This is a very doable deal. Keith can be moved easily Cause since his divorce he’s ready. And package Seabs to move. And u just dumped 23 million ! Retire Hossa and u save 2 mil more. 25 million and the cap is going up next year. You can now look at young UFA. Next year. Karlsson C from knights 24 yr And there’s plenty UFA on that team and Others. This is only way I see u start over and put a Young hungry Fast team again.

  14. Apart from some push in the 1st period the Hawks just played without a glaring sense of urgency. I see this as a big problem as this team appears to be stumbling badly into mid season. This team is seriously challenged offensively this season apart from a few exceptions. Imagine if Crow hadn’t kept them in so many games? It would be ugly.

    The give a damn just wasn’t there from key players again. Toews, Keith, Seabrook, Saad are playing woefully below from an offensive standpoint to what even the most patient observer what expect.

    While Saad does not look slow in his skating, something is just off with his game. He is not a used up old horse. Saad is still a young guy and to my eyes his puzzle is a tough one to solve. I was very positive about moving Panarin for Saad due to the sample size we had seen from both players. While Panarian was more dynamic from an offensive standpoint, Saad to me always brought the full package. What did Torts do to that kid mentally? Q has always loved Saad. I just don’t get it.

    While I am hesitant to go there due to respect, I must point to the play from Toews as a glaring problem. Many here have pointed out the fact that Toews isn’t making simple plays he once did. Passing off, fumbling passes, missing whacks at rebounds. Losing board battles, getting knocked around as though he does not have the strength to push back. It’s all sadly true. I fear the player we knew is no longer physically capable of raising his game to the level we had become accustomed to. If so this is truly a sad development for the team and for hockey in general. Can it be that a radical change in his diet or his workout regimen is misguided based on his physical makeup? He looks slighter in stature. I think he has lost lower body strength, but that is just my view. We would all love to know WTF is going on with the Cpt. Signs of steady decline have been there over the past 3 seasons. Too many concussions? Tazer start eating steaks again regularly.

    Duncan Keith while brilliant defensively at times is also trending lower imo. His skating has slowed, passing not as crisp, turning pucks over more regularly. The real change though in Duncs game is his offensive output. It’s gone from really good to barely a blip on the radar. His shot is rarely accurate and has lost velocity. To his credit his hands are still good and his hockey sense is still there. Where the hell did the offense go?

    Seabrook can still play, but his lack of speed and some bad decision making makes me shake my head frequently in wonder. Sadly, Seabrook is no longer a threat to opposing teams when the Hawks go on offense. Teams don’t fear his increasingly inaccurate shots. His passing like Keith on power plays is not as crisp and more importantly not as quick as it was just a year ago.

    Decline in play by Seabrook and Keith on the power play due to slow puck movement is one of the big problems with low PP production. Other teams with PP advantage rotate players constantly and connect with one touch passing and one timer shots. When the Hawks get a shot setup on the PP defensive rotation has already occurred to block shots and goalies are set. Its no wonder the Hawks seem to get so many shots blocked.

    I fear this road trip will turn ugly. Oilers will likely be ready pounce tonight. Lets’ see if the Hawks can win what I would consider to be a must have 2 points. The 2nd and 3rd periods were listless from this team last night. We will find out what they have tonight and in Calgary Sunday where they tend to suck most of the time.

    Man I;m really down from these past 3 games. Something ain’t right and it needs to change in a hurry.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  15. Just when you expect the Blackhawks to roll over everybody they seem to let up.
    Then when you think the train has derailed they bounce back up. Far from washed up but no longer do they dominate, time is still on their side.

  16. This team shouldn’t let up on anyone because they are mediocre at best. It looks like we should be sellers at the trade deadline. We have had a great run with this group and I thank them for that. I have to blame the coaching staff for the terrible power play and if the team doesn’t get up for all games. Can we please put Kempny in the line up. Every time he has played he has been respectable. Time for Sharp to sit more than one game. It’s sad to see your team on a down turn but let’s not kid ourselves and bring in some ham an eggers just to make the playoffs. We need to start building for our next group which means some of the core must go but please no more give aways like the Sharp and Bickell trades.

  17. Fire coach Q absolutely NOT! Firing Q would be yet another misstep by leaddership. I wouldnt be surprised if Q leaves. His contract ends after next season anyways. This team is playing itself to sellers at the deadline. I’m fine with it. Their aging core isn’t good enough to do it by themselves and their younger players aren’t elite. Outside of Crow and Kane there isnt anyone elite on this team anymore. Look no further then the guys who are wearing letters on their sweater and eating up a big chunk of salary!

  18. The bright spot last night was possession numbers for 20,19 &38 were very good (19 shots for only 6 against)although didn’t help outcome. Leave them together tonite. Try 12,8 &88 to see how they work, sit 10 and play 48 & 14 with 64. Move 5 to rightside with 42 and sit 44 and 6 and 7 together on blueline. Fresh legs and see how looks, even give Glass a shot in nets.

  19. Encouraging news, Jokiharju is having a really good World Juniors, as is Kayumov for Russia. Galvas for the Czechs is looking top minutes for his team.

    The only way this organization is going to remain a contender long term is to draft and develop. Trades like Denault and a 2nd round pick for a fourth liner and a healthy scratch are killers.

    Stan must resist the temptation to put this mediocre season on the Hawks credit card. Teams like the Islanders have lots of draft picks and need depth players like Kempny to stay in contention.

  20. When, in addition to players lost to the salary cap, you add the loss of their top talent (excluding Kane and Crow) to age and/or chronic injury (Toews, Hossa, Keith, Seabrook), it seems clear that the greatest era in Hawks’ history is over. Let’s face it, the Hawks have not had a true 1C this year, nor a true 1D or 2D. Without those components, no team is going to be very good in today’s NHL.

  21. Been watching the world juniors and prospects playing very well. Jokiharju looks like a Blackhawk type defenseman, jumps up in the play offensively and logs big minutes, seems to take care of Dzone well too. One player of game and 2g a d assist in 2 games so far. Scott Powers said he thought he would sign a elc for next year rather than return to juniors with a Forsling type european clause, to keep his options open.
    Also with the 2 russians playing Kayumov and Altibarmakyan along with Shalimov who says he is still going to play with Blackhawks plus Nalimovs development this year there is a good possibility of a bright outlook from khl in 2 or 3 years.

  22. The Hawks had a great run. The sad reality is they are no longer a threat to win the Cup. Q is not the problem. He still has the fire and hates to lose. I have been critical of Q in the past, especially his line mismanagement in the LA series in 2014. Zus around Kane’s neck until game 5 was a major mistake. Q can only do so much with the talent assembled by Mr Bowman. I agree with several posters that Kempny should be playing. That move alone will not turn a mediocre team into a winner. Saad for Panarin and Murphy for Hjalmarsson were terrible trades. Bowman inherited a great nucleus of players from Talon. He has been a mediocre GM. Many give him a pass because of the cap. His job is to effectively manage the cap. I would show Stan Bowman the door. He has lost my confidence.

  23. “Uninspired, listless, slow, no fight, no sense of urgency, no clutch goals, losing 50/50 battles, dropping passes, giveaways and even No panache” are all correctly attributed descriptions in these posts.
    When you look at it ALL summed up in this way and try to take out your home team bias…this can ALL be absolutely blamed on LACK OF LEADERSHIP.
    Be it the General Manager or Coaching or Captains and Alternates…Somethng is missing!
    Are they old, tired and/or complacent?
    Never thought I would ask those questions, especially of the core and leadership of this group, BUT something like this needs to be asked of them and someone needs to ask it! What is going on right now “In the room?” How do you have a few days off and lay a complete egg? Actually this has happened TWICE this month alone.
    The calls for a coaching change or dump of guys like 19 are not too far fetched when you look at it this way.
    We have been waiting for them to flip the switch as they have done so in the past but it is a day away From the New Year and getting way too late to do so….PLUS there has been given NO reasons of optimism to even think this team is capable of flipping a switch.
    Of course I will continue to watch and pull for them BUT As others have stated….
    It is getting increasingly difficult to watch them crash and burn.

  24. What about trying 8, 19 & 88 together and have 2nd line of 20 , 64 & 12 with 15 out. 38 and 48 on 3rd line with 10 or 14.

  25. Same suspects Toews Keith Seabs Saad. I had earlier comment on All of them so Bowman can pull off the trades that we all and literally can see needs to happen to put a great fast young team on Ice next year with Craw & Kane to be veteran voice. Stop believing line change of players stop thinking those guys are the same. And cut the apron strings. All u need to do is look at talent UFA & there age. And what they make now. Then take 25 mil of cap space and you can absolutely crush the trade market With cap going up. There it is Your cold hard truth.

  26. The core boys need to look deep inside their competetive souls, if there’s anything left of them after 3 cups and all of their successes as individuals and as a team, and ask themselves if this effort is how they want to be remembered? Because glory and respect takes a long time to earn and far less time to lose. You can’t blame Q for this (though I agree, some of his personnel choices are suspect, and please just fucking play Kempny already). He can motivate but he can’t prepare them as professionals and champions, they are responsible for that. Last night was another embarrassment, another in a long line of dumpster fires this year. If they are spent and this run is over, as evidenced by the debacle against the Preds in the first round last year, then so be it. Then it’s time to change. And that is up to Stan. Can he stay at the helm and see clearly what needs to come next to keep this franchise from falling (again) into disrepair? I’d like to believe so, though efforts like last night and the others before it are taking a large toll on my sense of hope. Looks like some positive talent on the way for us, but most of that is 2 to 3 years away. Can Stan bridge that gap and keep us competitive, or do we transition from champions for 10 years to bottom feeders for the next 10? Tough question to ask, and I have no answers.

  27. One of the first rules of business management is, “If you can’t change your people it is time to change your people”

    Just sayin…

  28. Also it is clear as has also been stated here by others in the past, 81 must have had an impact even bigger than we all realized both on and off the ice (i.e.: “In the room”)

  29. Well put 2nd balcony. Edmonton is -215 odds. The End. Jets Center Scheifele. Is out. Could be 6 to 8 weeks. Opportunity knocking at Stan’s door. Toews can open it.

  30. 31 teams have negative posters on their case and each year 30 of those teams posters get to champion their posts. I wonder what Pens fans are saying now, probably alot of the same as they said 2 years ago. Wonder what Preds fans thought last year at this time. We have with salary cap, parity and if you get hot at the right time over 50% of the teams can win. As far as regular season the top teams seldom follow it up in playoffs. To quit now is foolish, i don’t quit at all but this season is not over.

  31. 4 5 or 6 days inbetween games. Almost everytime first game or two back after a long break we do not play. Then after that we play when we get up to speed. I think were 2-6 in games after a long break which means we only have 3 of those fuckers left. We have 11 times in the 82 games a long break inbetween games.

    We did outplay
    NYR
    PIT
    TB even
    FLR
    ANA
    NAS
    then we didnt when it 5 in 7 days.

    Then when people were giving up, again. We won 3 and outplayed 2 good teams
    BUF
    ARI
    FLR
    WIN
    MIN
    then we didnt after a 4 5 or 6 days inbetween games.

  32. When we have a normal or more normal sch. we play good. When we do not we do not play.

    If one’s a incident two’s is a coincidence and three is a pattern.

  33. Ruutu took some heat and rightfully so-but I watched Forsling and he wasn’t good (again) He does have upside but between lack of strength and poor position with the body he is hurting the team right now.
    Way too many turnovers each and every game–by the whole team.

  34. Thanks Ian for some patience. I’ll admit in not happy with the way they are playing or the results but the Hawks and the Preds for that matter had 39 and 38 points respectively at the same time last year. The biggest problem is the PP and that must be corrected to make teams pay for taking liberties. Still have 3 plus months to get it right.

  35. Were going to go somewhere between 10 to 15 over .500 in these 29 games. Then theres 26 games left to play for the 1 2 or 3 seed. We started 5-0 and now took 3 hits so that plus 2 in 8 games. Win 3 in a row or 4-1 or a 5-2 and were back to plus 5 at 11 12 or 13 games. That would be on pace for a plus 10 to 15 in these 29 games.

    Its games 16-29 where were going to be rolling.

  36. Rutta’s numbers havent been great since well before the concussion.

    Regarding Jokiharju… hes a late birthday. Doesnt turn 20 until after 12/31/2018. So hes ineligible to play in the AHL. Would sending him to Europe on big ice help his developement…both on ice and being more comfortable in north America. Going back a few years i cant find any case of that happening. Ehlers threatened to if he didnt make the big club. But it didnt happen.

    Interestingly all these rules regarding CHL drafted players have to do with the player signing. If a CHL player chooses to delay signing his elc 1 year. How can the nhl control where a prospect is playing. Jokiharju hasnt signed with the Hawks yet. The Hawks still hold his rights through next season. So, theoretically Jokiharju could sign an AHL deal of his choosing. Hawks still hold his NHL rights. There is no agreement between the CHL and European leagues. There is no agreement directly between the CHL and AHL. Just that NHL teams can’t assign CHL drafted players to the AHL unless they turn 20 prior to 12/31 of that season. NHL teams can’t assign a player that hasnt signed yet. Loophole?

    David Branch has been on record of saying that a player has never been hurt by staying a year longer. I tend to agree with that. Hed play more games in the WHL than he would in Europe. So theres pros and cons for each.

  37. Ernie watch him play he looks ready for nhl, strong fast skater who quarterbacks the powerplay. As I said before he plays Chicago way of jumping into offense and gets back and looks after Dzone. Don’t be surprised if gets a shot next year.

  38. Am getting tired of blaming Q. He’s doing great with the talent he has to work with. Be patient with Hartman, Schmaltz, Debrincat, Forsling, Rutta, Hayden. They will get better. Saad will be fine.

    You should ask: What happened to the 1st round pick in 2010 (K, Hayes) – released for nothing? In 2015 and 2016 – no 1st round picks? Sending two 2nd rounders to Philly for Timonen? Sending Danault (was Hawks 1st round pick) and a 2nd round pick to Mtl for Weise and Fleischmann? Sending Johns to Dallas in order to unload Sharp for two nobodies? Signing slowing Seabrook for way too much term (is he tradeable) ?

    You need to continue to restock your pipeline with good talent. Bowman’s moves has left the Hawks too thin. At this point, it would make sense to offer up Keith and Seabs (if possible) for young talent or high picks.

  39. K Hayes refused to sign with hawks. Probably had everything to do with hawks dumping his brother . As for Johns to dump. Sharpe. We had cap issues. Again to sign and keep that roster. We did get a D guy for sharpe That. Q didn’t care for. So traded him to pitt. Which he won 2 cups. Danault. Was sent packing to get veterans. And. They did win the cup that year.

  40. re: Slammer’s limited memory of Bowman’s trade history

    Shaw got them DeBrincat, Krys
    Clendening got them Forsling
    Barker got them Leddy

    Anyone can pick & choose good/bad deals in a vacuum.

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