DeBrincat, Duclair Demolish Detroit

Remember how flat and emotionless the Blackhawks looked against the Red Wings a couple weeks ago in Chicago? The roles were reversed on Thursday night at the new barn the locals are calling “The Dojo.”

Coach Joel Quenneville made a few lineup changes after the Hawks lost at home to Toronto on Wednesday. Patrick Sharp was a healthy scratch with Tommy Wingles drawing back into the lineup. Lance Bouma and Jan Rutta were still on the outide looking in.

While adding Wingels to the fourth line was nice, lining up Alex DeBrincat and Anthony Duclair with Jonathan Toews from the jump made all the difference.

DeBrincat, a Michigan native who had a lot of family and friends in attendance, scored his 15th of the season at 3:19 into the first.

Duclair and Connor Murphy picked up assists on the goal, starting a busy first period for the newest Blackhawks forward. Duclair extended the lead to 2-0 less than three minutes later, posting his tenth of the season.

Duclair’s first in a Hawks’ sweater saw DeBrincat and Duncan Keith pick up assists.

But the top line wasn’t done.

Three minutes after the Duclair goal he set up Vinnie Hinostroza to make the score 3-0 Chicago. Duclair had three points in less than nine minutes and Detroit starter Jimmy Howard got the showers.

That’s where the first period would end as neither team was able to score over the final 11 minutes. Chicago held an 11-8 shot advantage after 20 minutes, but their three even-strength goals showed more life than the Hawks have in a couple weeks.

In the middle of the second period, DeBrincat and Jonathan Toews put together as pretty of a give-and-go as you’ll see and DeBrincat scored his second of the night.

The Hawks would get the game’s first power play later in the second but looked like crap with the advantage. After 40 minutes, the Blackhawks led 4-0 and had out-shot the Red Wings 18-14.

Detroit showed almost no want to come back or even compete over the first two periods.

Most importantly, the goals for Chicago were scored by players who are 20, 22 and 23 years old, respectively.

Neither side got much going in the opening 14 minutes of the third period. The Wings hit a post a couple times and the Hawks wasted another power play but for the most part the two teams skated up and down the ice with little emotion. Again, the Red Wings didn’t show much want in the game at all.

Artem Anisimov went to the box giving Detroit their first power play five minutes left in regulation. While Anisimov watched Anthony Mantha broke up Anton Forsberg’s shutout bid with his 16th of the season.

Detroit pulled Petr Mrazek with two minutes left but the three-goal lead was too much for them to overcome. Toews missed an empty net opportunity and then tried to set up DeBrincat for a hat trick opportunity but the Hawks couldn’t finish. But with 18 seconds left in regulation Ryan Hartman found DeBrincat breaking away and the kid finished his first career hat trick.

DeBrincat finished with four points, Duclair three and the Hawks emerged with a desperately needed win before the All-Star Break.

Four Blackhawks finished tied with a team-high four shots on net. Three of them – DeBrincat, Duclair and Toews – were on the same line. Toews picked up an assist and won 11 of 16 faceoffs in the win as well.

Jordan Oesterle was the fourth Hawks skater with four shots on net, and he also finished tied with Tommy Wingels for the team lead with three hits. Oesterle skated a team-high 26:05 in the game; the only other skater over 20 minutes was Keith (22:31).

73 thoughts on “DeBrincat, Duclair Demolish Detroit

  • January 25, 2018 at 9:19 pm


    Whos idea was it for the 1st line.

  • January 25, 2018 at 9:26 pm


    That was actually DeBrincat’s second career hat trick.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:09 pm

    Definitely like the lines we had tonight they all showed good pace to their game. I like the pairing of Seabrook and Gustafson. Still hope the Hawks continue to play the youngsters and are sellers at the deadline. Might not get much for the Veterans they trade but additional draft picks or prospects can’t hurt!

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:11 pm

    I’ll give them credit when it’s due and tonight they played very well. A total reversal of the game against the Wings a couple weeks ago. They used their speed effectively tonight. They’re still not a very good defensive team structurally but Forsberg made some key saves and they were better tonight at getting the puck out when they had a chance than in recent games.

    And can I get an amen for the box score showing Keith with only 3 seconds of PP time. Hallelujah! Thhe PP didn’t score and still had a few not so good moments, but removing Keith’s popgun shot from the PP is a step in right direction.

    DCat hadn’t done much lately but made up for it tonight eh? 12-19-91 looks pretty good. Hope they keep it clicking.

    Nice to go into a few days off on a high note.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:16 pm

    Our new plan going forward is to hope as now lower level team we will face the back-up goalie.
    The 2000-2001 faced back up goalies all season and made the playoffs…..then were swept in the first round.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:33 pm

    We have to get confidence against the bad teams so we can try and play with some confidence against the good teams.

    Confidence takes awhile to gain but can be lost in an instant.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:58 pm

    We played good in TB and TOR games, with mentals, did play better then they did. Had those non whistles change game. Only Islanders was shit.

    Game 57. NOV could be good.

  • January 25, 2018 at 11:33 pm

    It’s the Dough Joe

  • January 25, 2018 at 11:51 pm

    I hate to urinate on any Hawks parade, but…Detroit isn’t very good. Certainly, the teams effort was MUCH better (especially Keith). I’ve given them the benefit of the doubt until this season – that embarrassment against Nashville will do that. After the first 45 games this year I’m convinced that the organ-EYE-zation must continue to pursue “Younger and Faster” – and definitely not let any “mini-victories” en route to missing the playoffs detour that strategy. Focus on “the Big Picture” is imperative.

    NO trade deadline deals except to move “assets” for draft picks (or players who fit the “Younger and Faster” goal.

  • January 26, 2018 at 1:04 am

    100 % agree Dickie. I love the hunger I see from younger players like Debrincat, Duclair, Hinostroza and Murphy.

    This reminds me of the Ottawa game where everything went right. It’s fun to watch when it happens but too few and far between.

    Sellers at the deadline always prosper in the future. Franson, Kempny, Bouma could bring draft picks. Teams in need of a big Center might call about Anisimov. And now that Kane and Panerin are divorced, no use keeping their nanny around at that price (So to speak)

  • January 26, 2018 at 1:51 am

    what parade?

  • January 26, 2018 at 4:41 am

    I don’t want to rain on anybody’s parade either but our team Defence was porous. Its just that the Redwings looked like the Hawks missing the net and hitting posts on quality looks not mention their team defence was non existent.

  • January 26, 2018 at 5:50 am

    What the hell is going on with Saad… he manages to make even the Kane’s line toothless.

    Glad for Cat an Duclair, but let’s hope this isn’t a fluke. They do look good with Toews though.

  • January 26, 2018 at 6:29 am

    I agree Toews looked pretty good with the two kids and away from Saad and also shutting down Matthews in the Leafs game and Stamkos/kucherov got zero points in their game. I don’t know whats wrong with Saad but man does he blow a lot of chances. It has to be a confidence thing so let’s hope he gets that back soon.

  • January 26, 2018 at 7:11 am

    Saying Crawford to be on the ice this weekend and decide if he takes road trip next with team and possibly play. Good news heading in to break for a change.

  • January 26, 2018 at 7:21 am

    Watched highlights of chl prospect fane and 2 or 3 goalies they were high on. They might be available with a 2nd round pick if they could land one in a trade.

  • January 26, 2018 at 7:38 am

    Yes I watched it as well Ian and rough night for the top ranked goalie Gravel of Halifax. A lot of talented young players. Noah Dobson D man from the Titans would be a nice pick up.

  • January 26, 2018 at 7:48 am

    Number 1 Detroit sucks, but the Hawks aren’t much better so good for them. ADC with the hatty good for him. Lots of positives from last night. Q stayed with the same top 6; good now leave it. Keith was off the PP good! The following players have no business on the number 1 PP any longer, Keith, Seabrook and Sharp. Forsberg had one of his best games as a Hawk. Tall order to fill this team has 8-10 loses left before they are all but done.

  • January 26, 2018 at 8:01 am

    Demo- way to keep it real… yes Hawks had some life… but D was terrible early… If Wings had any luck or finish… they could have had 4 in first

    Q–It took a while (a lot of people here saw it long ago)… but
    1.) 19 is no longer the Beast cycle guy- and Hossa beast cylce guy are both gone in theory… WTS- skating 19 with fast, young, aggressive sniper/shoot first (who don’t excel in Cycle game) is the way to go… (cuz once again 19 – ain’t dominant there like he was in past)… Much needed move to separate Saad and 19
    2.) Dcat- as suggested by many here in past- needs to play with elite/1st/2nd line guys… cuz he has quickest release/shot on team… and his IQ/play anticipation is off the charts… skating with turds like 10/57/Kero’s… ain’t gonna help anyone.
    3.) as mentioned in several early season posts… Bouma/Sharp/57 shouldn’t be there… much prefer Kampf/Hino/Highmore guys…

    Is it too late??? seems like it… really a bubble team… they still have Hayden/Highmore- Both would be better than Wingels (Jurco ???) – I like Jurco- does a lot of great little things/skates/checks well (but at end of day– Kruger like finish).

    and still have cap $$$ to get better…

    But- realistically- will fall short- or do little in PO’s…

    So I am still selling, banking on one/two Prospects D guys to pan out… and trying to Draft higher
    Isac Lundestrom or Oliver Wahlstrom or??? In the draft

  • January 26, 2018 at 8:04 am

    Forsberg- athletically a good goalie, when he sees it… I like his chances.

    BUT- one Big glaring problem- He really seems like He loses sight of the puck – TOO MUCH! 3-5 times a game- he doesn’t flinch until the Puck smashes the glass or posts!!!

  • January 26, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Yeah he looks the real deal Goldenbladz, probably need to pick in top 7 or 8 to land right now anyways. Good to see young guys step up last night but the road trip next week against Preds, Canucks and Flames home and home will test there ability when its tougher to find room out there.

  • January 26, 2018 at 8:29 am

    I would leave
    but change
    to showcase 15 for possible trade then 20 back to line 2, 8 to 2C, and Hayden brought up to replace 20 on line 3

  • January 26, 2018 at 8:31 am

    Golden- good post. Babcock even said after that game 19 had the puck for the forst 30min.

  • January 26, 2018 at 9:39 am

    Well, the Toews line looked very good and it is always fun to beat Detroit.

  • January 26, 2018 at 9:42 am

    No surprise to see the Hawks have some jump last night. Loved Keith popping that guy early on which really said this team was there to play and deal some payback for that crap game early Sunday 2 weeks ago. Most heartening was the play of the younger guys. DeBrincat, Duclair and Vinny had good games. Toews played well again and that line had some teeth last night sans Saad. Forsberg did his job with the aid of some friendly goal posts, but hey the Hawks know all about hitting posts too.

    Ok, that was the good stuff. The bad stuff is the disturbing trend that opposing teams are getting boat loads of quality scoring chances. That has to be tightened up if this team is to have a chance to ever get on some sort of winning roll.

    While I had been critical of Duclair apart from the Jets game, the kid came to play last night and seemed energized and engaged with his linemates. Not sure about Duclair’s hands, but he is putting himself in position to score. Dcat finally had some solid scoring chances, and one has to be impressed with how quick his release is once that puck hits his stick. Brandon Saad, please take some notes…

    Some days off to heal up. Preds game Tuesday will be interesting to watch since that team is tough on their home ice. A strong Hawks showing and a road win in Nashville could propel these guys into a consistently raised game. There is no room for days off. This team is under the gun to get their act together.

    Lets Go Hawks!

  • January 26, 2018 at 10:22 am

    Looks good Golden may be somebody moved this weekend when GMs together and Hayden likely first recall as not likely be a player coming back. Next 6 games are going to be good test to see how team performs.

  • January 26, 2018 at 11:29 am

    I am for getting a top 78910 pick as well. What if we win games and are the 67or8 seed. Only 4pts between teams with 33 games to go. Lots of hockey to be played.

    I do want one of those really good prospects though.

  • January 26, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    Mo if Crawford returns and pp play finds some life and few posts become goals they could easily slide into a 16 to 31 spot in the 1st rd. of draft.

  • January 26, 2018 at 12:17 pm

    I really want one of those top prospects and trade assets were not keeping for coming yrs. it’s tuff because we can win games and get in those spots 678.

  • January 26, 2018 at 12:32 pm

    I have watched this to long, it’s no longer funny. #20 needs to be sitting next to #10, When he is not falling down & happens to get a shot off it’s not even close to the target.

  • January 26, 2018 at 12:50 pm

    Let’s be honest about this team, they will probably finish in last place but still are far from a doormat. The central is probably the best division in hockey top to bottom. They will likely be picking anywhere from 8-12, although it is a lottery so you never know

  • January 26, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    I would be very happy with a high draft pick but I am not hoping they do nor do I think for a minute they are about to roll over and quit on the year. Q isn’t going to be happy just playing out the season and still alot of pride in dressing room. They may very well struggle the rest of the way or may pick ut up. Thats why next 6 games or so should give an idea if they can pick it up enough.

  • January 26, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    Thats the thing Ian nobody know for sure we 678 seed after next 33 games or were 78910 pick. Just that were much better then our record is and were not one of the two best teams this yr. Whats better for the team for the coming yrs when were better each yr going forward a high draft pick. As much as I want to win and were not going to not play not show up in these 33 games its about the 5 coming yrs because were going to get better with the upside of good young fast players.

    No matter what we end up 678 seed or 78910 pick were going to get younger and faster and trade players were not going to keep anyways at deadline/draft/summer.

  • January 26, 2018 at 7:52 pm

    Move AA, Franson, and others who are not the future (including Keith) for picks or prospects . The Hawks are better than their record. Some good moves (including goalie) will put them in a powerhouse position in two years. Duclair shows some good stuff and is now with a great organization who will help him develop. This could be a great trade. Fingers crossed.

  • January 27, 2018 at 1:27 am

    Obviously, professional teams do not “tank” a season…in the NHL, at least not since Mario’s draft year. But, the Hawks can really play their young players to assess what they have…and if they don’t win too many games in the process…that’s the way it is.

    Honestly, this group is not going to win the Cup, and looking at this season so far, probably will not win a playoff series – the Western Conference is that strong. I really hope that Stan and John McD are in that mindset – maybe if they “sacrifice” this year, it will expedite the return to being an actual contender.

  • January 27, 2018 at 8:30 am

    If not for this season then do whats better for coming yrs. Load up the younger players are going to get better each yr and we will be a top team again. Regardless of this many guys in 1st yr and not getting any where close to 50% of bounces and breaks and not going to say it. We can always get guys like 57 for decent cap hit and he would understand the situation and come back if it fits for us.

    Still in these wks coming up want to see a 7 game win streaking.

  • January 27, 2018 at 9:45 am

    DD – agree, but would add it will take more than McD and Stan to decide to trade hopes for a playoff berth for future success – Rocky will have to agree because even the minimum of 2 playoff games is a chunk of change Rocky won’t make to “pay the bills”. Rocky has shown he will spend money to win, but this is asking him to concede playoff money which is not quite the same thing.

    The Hawks are in the opposite position from what they’ve been in only a couple years ago where they had to decide to future assets for present enhancement. For the most part they spent those future assets to enhance their chance to win that season and it worked out well. Now the question is reversed – should the Hawks trade enhancing this team for future assets? The difference between then and now is that then the Hawks had a legitimate chance to win the Cup, and did in 2013 and 2015, now – they really don’t have a legitimate chance to win the Cup so the cost they will pay will be to enhance their chances to get a couple home playoff games – not win the Cup.

    This is the same dilemma many declining teams have – look no further than Detroit who squandered away their future for a few more chances at the Cup while they still had their generational players Lidstrom, Datsyuk, and Zetterberg. That’s where the Hawks are now. Hopefully they make a better decision than the Wings did.

  • January 27, 2018 at 12:34 pm

    DD this no I don’t think this teams will win a cup this year but with 33 games left, if they win 17 of them get 5 or 6 points in the losses they are probably in the playoff hunt. With all the teams chasing a spot and amount of times they play each other low to mid nineties gets you in, not impossible but with a few breaks as Mo mentioned. EB it appears with the youth they may taking a better route than Detroit, but moving core players will come down to how important Bowman and McD. they believe honouring nmc are. Right now there is no indication they intend on requesting anybody waive them. If they do deals can be made, some easier than others.

  • January 27, 2018 at 3:52 pm

    If ‘dojo’ is to the red wings, would we then be ‘cc&uc’?

  • January 27, 2018 at 4:54 pm

    Coach Q is notorious for throwing the lines in a blender. Maybe he should consider the opposite for a while. Don’t shake up the lines and let the new lineups marinate for a while….

    Moving Saad to the 2nd line is I think the perfect remedy for Saad’s scoring woes in the short term as well as making Kane more effective in the post-season for the long term. Anismov’s size was effective in the offensive end, but his speed was a liability in transition. Saad brings decent size with great speed. He could replicate what Anisimov does in the O-zone with the added benefit of being an asset in the transition game.

    Moving Duclair and DeBrincat to the top line is another great move. The speed that Duclair brings to that line is impressive. DeBrincat has a head for getting into good scoring spots and finishing. Let these guys get some chemistry with the Captain and see what develops. I think this line could potentially be a disruptive opportunistic line that has some explosive offense at the drop of a hat. I can see some great counter attacks with Toews getting some takeaways and starting a counter attack.

    Moving Hinostroza and Hartman down the lineup to me is not a punishment for these two but a way to augment the bottom 6. I like having a third line that can wear down a teams top line in the offensive zone with their speed and puck control. Having these guys spend quality minutes with Toews and Kane has to have helped their development. But the time is right for them to move into a 3rd line role I think. Anismov makes sense here in the short term as 3rd line center, but I like Kampf here long term. Barring injury, if the Hawks can move Anisimov’s contract for high draft picks or legitimate prospects they should do it. Ultimately his speed is going to be a liability as he gets older and if they can sell high on him to a team looking to win now, they should do it.

    I know the pressure to win to make the playoffs is high but I think if Q can resist his instincts to constantly throw the lines in a blender and let this combination sit for a while, I think it will pay dividends in the long term. Balancing out the speed among the top 3 lines like this has to make things disruptive for opposing teams.

  • January 27, 2018 at 8:39 pm

    I like the d-pairs the last few games. Rutta has needed to sit for a while.

    Posession stats say this team should be better than their record. Kampf being above 50% and sound game elsewhere is a godsend.

  • January 27, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    Hey Ogie buy ya a soda after the game.

    Were in a good situation because we have to do things instead of maybe this maybe that. Younger and first yr league guys have to learn the harder way is a good thing. Interesting thing is how many current top 10 teams have really good players that are 30 now and in 2 yrs when were mcuh better team those teams core players on not as good and those teams donot have a wave of good young players.

    The timing of this and where other teams are at for this is factor.

  • January 27, 2018 at 10:40 pm

    Not that a ton of you care about prospects. But I watched a ton of college hockey this weekend and spoke with an NHL scout about certain prospects :

    The Good :
    Ian Mitchell – playing top pair defense for Denver as a teenager. He scored an incredible goal in overtime Saturday night as Denver defeated North Dakota.

    Blake Hillman – shutdown defender for Denver. Plays tons of minutes. Looks much bigger than his bio describes. Makes really good outlet passes. Fantastic tight gap. A really really good defenseman.

    Josh Ess – Wow. What a find. He’s 18 and playing in the top 4 for Wisconsin. He has a nice low shot from the point that gets on net often. Really good edges on his skates. Watching Wisconsin, he out there A Lot.


    Dennis Gilbert. Plays tons of minutes for Notre Dame but really struggled against Minnesota. Had a tough time trying to stay with Middlestadt from the Gophers.
    Got pressured a lot on dump ins and had some turnovers that Q would never put up with.

    Chad Krys. No points against Arizona State on Friday. Did not play Saturday. Hmmm. Same as last weekend. Only played one of two games. If he is healthy and not playing in the top 6, that is very problematic. He should be growing not regressing.

  • January 28, 2018 at 2:24 am

    Penn State pounded WIS 5-2 and a close 2nd game a couplefew wks ago at home. On the road the other night PSU up 2-1 I heard Ess name scored or assisted the game tieing goal in 3rd. I had the audio on.

    I am liking this Mitch person.

  • January 28, 2018 at 7:39 am

    Good stuff Craig, don’t like to see that about Gilbert and Krys as both mentioned as possibky signing with Blackhawks before next season. Mitchell seems he will, Hillman & Ess hopefully at least a couple of them keep progressing enough to be in Blackhawks lineup in a couple of years.

  • January 28, 2018 at 10:22 am

    I think everyone has problems with Mittelstadt. That said, Gilbert’s game has been off this year. I know he missed some games early. He can still play the body. But I wonder if the NHL game has evolved and made Gilbert’s skills less coveted.

    Craig, did the scouts have anything to say about Mitchell’s game? We know he’s a big point producer and big minute kid and essentially took over for Butcher. Strengths and weaknesses?

    Wish we could learn something on Snuggerud. Almost like a lost year at this point. Just hope it’s not career altering like Fournier.

  • January 28, 2018 at 10:49 am

    Ernie I think injuries slowed Snuggeruds progress this year, hopefully just blip and he gets back on track.

  • January 28, 2018 at 10:51 am

    Too bad Coach Q’s stubborness kept Jurco, Vinnie, Gustafson and Kempf in the minors in AHL. Never understood Gustafson playing in AHL. But, Stan did not helping signing slugs like Wingels, Bouma, Franson, and Kero???
    I truly hope that AHL line sticks together until game 82. They had chemistry at ROCKFORD and it shows. Sharp should be playing on right wing to take advantage of his speed and shot. Hartman can play on the left side to dig the puck for AA. If the HAWKS are out of the playoffs, AA and Osterle should be traded fodraft picks or a prospect (left wing or left D).

    Murphy is much better playing on his natural right side. I think POKKAn should be called up and reunited with Gustafson and finally Seabrook with Keith. Osterle is a poor in his own zone and Keith struggles with him.

    Schmualtz has arrived!!!

  • January 28, 2018 at 12:32 pm

    I am convinced that with Nalimov showing a big progression in KHL this year and no talk of bringing him over, with his agent saying he wants to do his development there rather than Rockford and then come over in another year. Looks like if he continues to impress he signs a one year elc for 2019-20 season as backup, coincidently last year of Crawfords deal and they make a decision if he is the no.1 of future or resign Crawford if not. The possibility of bringing a FA or trade for no. 1 be there too at that point.

  • January 28, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    Didn’t mean don’t try develop a Peeters or any other young goalie just think to be ready when Crawfords contract up would possibly be rushing them too much.

  • January 28, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    Jurco has the worst posession numbers in his short stint here.

    7 points in his last 76 NHL games.

    Kampf was 22. And even his Czech coach said his numbers werent good enough for the NHL.

    Gustafsson and Hinostroza was a numbers game. Hinostroza was the last cut. And the Hawks never lost anyone to IR and couldnt recall. Gustafsson was injured for a portion of the season and lost out to Forsling and Rutta who were the number 1 pair for a stretch. Not putting Oesterle on waivers when he wasnt playing was the best move of the season.

  • January 28, 2018 at 1:41 pm

    The knock on Kampf is can he produce offensively at NHL level and so far he hasn’t put up alot and may be best fitted as 4th line center. They gave him a good look at center in preseason as outside of 8, 15, 19 and 67 he was only other to take any significant amount of faceoffs. So be was sent down to work on his offense. Odd thing about Jurcos numbers if you look at fenwick which doesn’t use blocked shots his possession numbers are very good. Which would suggest in a small sample either more shots getting through to opposing net without being blocked or less getting through to Blackhawks net when he is on the ice

  • January 28, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    64 is like a mini Krugs thats a good thing. Faceoffs is what people were talking about now its about pts. Cant have both unless its a Bolly.

    13 was young and then had surgery so for get hi career numbers for now. What he does now is what matters.

  • January 28, 2018 at 3:06 pm

    Watching. Introducing of players for all stars. Didn’t notice hawks 10 mil capt cry baby out there. Oh that’s right not good enough. ! Says it all.

  • January 28, 2018 at 6:25 pm

    Hardest division in hockey. Last place in allstar game. Says it all.

  • January 28, 2018 at 6:36 pm

    Slammer, Malkin, Tarasenko, Benn, kuznetsov, Backstrom, Betgeron, Pastrnak weren’t there either are they not good enough either…you moron. Btw Kessel should be the representative of the Pens not Crosby but he is the face of the league

  • January 28, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    Mr. Captain serious.

  • January 28, 2018 at 7:42 pm

    I know I’m beating a dead horse because Q has never shown a willingness to play for next season – it’s always win now and I understand that has to be the coach’s mindset. But building/reloading for the future should be the primary objective at this point – both in terms of acquiring young players and developing the ones already in the system. Players having no future with the Hawks should not play another game this season – specifically Bouma and Wingels and probably include Anisimov there too. Play Hino, Kampf, Jurco, Duclair and get Hayden back up here and maybe Highmore too. Get Sikura signed and into the lineup after his college season ends.

    Play these young players so you can make assessments on them and know which ones are keepers and which ones either aren’t or aren’t ready to be counted on next season. Go into the offseason with a plan so the team is best prepared to compete next season.

  • January 28, 2018 at 8:50 pm

    Highmore can skate-watched him in the fastest AHL allstar trials-he was the leader but someone beat him.

  • January 28, 2018 at 11:44 pm

    Like Sikura his college is good so prob wont play this yr unless were in playoffs.

  • January 28, 2018 at 11:56 pm

    Its good experience though certain players take it to another level like 8 did between spring and fall. Know what your saying.

  • January 29, 2018 at 7:17 am

    Don’t know if thats a good thing Mo because the ability to eat up one of his elc years as Hayden did last year was an incentive for Sikura to sign and not wait to become free agent. If his season doesn’t end to April that opportunity may not be available.

  • January 29, 2018 at 7:34 am

    I hear you.

  • January 29, 2018 at 7:39 am

    imo- on Ian Mitchell… very quick feet, he resembles DCat- in that he won’t blow you away in any specific skill/drill… But- Like Dcat- His IQ and play recognition and
    anticipation of where the “right play” is- is off the charts.

    In Prospect camp- Mitchell- looked so much quicker and faster compared to ALL D guys including Snuggy/Joker… especialy in 3 on 3 or scrimmages… just KNOWS where puck and play are going- or he is 2 strides faster… I opted for IQ.
    Weakness- size… but it didn’t show up in camp- cuz his reads/decisions were so good versus the prospects

    Joker- just the opposite… looked slow ( Ironically- most scouting reports- say he he is a very smooth skater– so let’s hope he was just OVER thinking) cuz he didn’t seem too quick to me…

    Hillman- looked solid too

    Tim Soderlund- is going to be a great 3rd/4th line buzz saw forechecker some day

  • January 29, 2018 at 8:26 am

    Highmore will be an NHL player, Bowman honor roll on that signing. Steve Sullivan type that can skate faster, good call Noonan. If things go south, bring him up, let him get a taste of the NHL, there will numerous important games v. other teams that will give us all a glimpse of what he can and cannot do to date.

  • January 29, 2018 at 9:20 am

    Iceman – I agree that Highmore is an NHL player. The problem w/ the current Blackhawks roster is that they have 12 forward spots to fill every night and have too many players who SHOULD be on the ice (and a few more who have contracts and histories w/ the club that keep them on the ice). Guys like Hayden & Highmore should be in Chicago over Bouma, Sharp but that isn’t happening… yet. At least they made the right call(s) w/ Forsling & Franson.

  • January 29, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Tab – spot on. Not that Bouma & Wingels (performed better than expected) are the cause of the Hawks’ problems this year, but as we both stated in the summer leading into the season, no reason for them to be signed in the first place. Those two along with Sharp will be gone next season, possibly Anisimov as well (and hopefully we’ve seen the last of Jurco sooner than later). This opens up four slots, three for sure.

  • January 29, 2018 at 11:02 am

    If AA is moved and Wingels not resigned that leaves Toews, Schmaltz, Kampf and Kero who didn’t work out this year and who else at center. Is there anybody else in Rockford who looks like they are ready to step into a 3rd or 4th center role. Highmore and Louis played alot on the wing so not sure if they would. Nobody on current roster seems to fall into that spot. Possibly a free agent if not a top 2 then an upgrade on Wingels and Kero and cheaper than AA.

  • January 29, 2018 at 11:13 am

    Anything I saw on Sikura says he would be more likely a winger too

  • January 29, 2018 at 2:51 pm

    In the Q Highmore was the number 1 Center so he is capable of playing centre. I would rather him stay in Rockford this year and he should be ready to compete in next years squad. He does everything well good skater, forechecker, PP,PK, and a bit of an instigator kind of Bolland type player

  • January 30, 2018 at 12:28 am

    Just like From… right Wall?

  • January 30, 2018 at 12:25 pm

    Ogie- ya got me there (so far)… Soderlund has wheels and IQ is better than From’s

    And Mock me if you want… But- I did say Pre-season… Kampf/Hino/hayden would be better options than Bouma/ wingels/Kero…

  • January 30, 2018 at 2:58 pm

    Cant get everyone right. Could get return for those kind of guys so the team record has a lot to do with that. In which we would get a return instead of no return.

Leave a Reply

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