Sharks Shutout Blackhawks on Hockey Fights Cancer Night

Before we even get started talking about the Blackhawks’ game against the San Jose Sharks, Sunday night was Hockey Fights Cancer Night at the United Center. And it was great to see Troy Murray back in the arena. He is truly a Blackhawks legend and is battling right now. Seeing his smile was wonderful and we’re praying to see more of him in the future.

Now, on to the game itself.

Chicago came out fast and looked good in all three zones in the first period. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to beat James Reimer. The Blackhawks out-shot the Sharks 11-4 in the first period but the score remained tied at zero after 20 minutes.

The second period saw the ice flipped in favor of the Sharks. San Jose carried the action almost the entire period, leading to the Sharks having a 15-9 shot advantage in the middle period. Chicago got one power play that was an absolute gong show. There were a couple big saves by the Hawks collectively; the defensemen pitched in to help their netminder on a couple occasions. One shot nobody could stop came off the stick of Timo Meier at 13:39 into the second.

San Jose took a 1-0 lead to the third period. Reimer and Marc-André Fleury were both having good nights in net. Chicago was credited with nine blocked shots in the first two periods.

Jonathan Toews won seven of ten faceoffs in the first two periods. Even with that, San Jose won 63 percent of the faceoffs over the first 40 minutes. Again, the dot continues to be a significant problem for the Blackhawks — other than Toews.

Eight minutes into the third Brandon Hagel made a strong play by himself and was able to draw a penalty on Brent Burns, giving the Hawks a second power play at a time when they desperately needed one to go well. Their “advantage” has been a disaster over the past ten games, so getting something going would require a change in approach.

Unfortunately, this one produced nothing — again.

Henrik Borgström was having a strong night and got a good chance around the net after the power play ended. He’s been up and down lately, but Sunday night was his strongest performance in his last few outings. Now if he could just buy a goal… of course, that’s true of almost everyone on the Hawks’ roster other than Hagel, Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat, but even 88 and 12 are struggling right now.

Still chasing one and desperate for one goal, the Blackhawks sent Fleury to the bench with an offensive zone faceoffs with 2:30 left in regulation. As tends to happen when you’re desperate and leave the cage empty too long, the Sharks found the empty net with a long shot with 91 seconds left in regulation to extend the lead to two. Meier picked up his second of the night.

Reimer made another strong save with about 75 seconds left in regulation before the Sharks iced the puck trying for a second empty-net goal. The two-goal lead was enough and Reimer finished the 29-save shutout.

Fleury was good in the loss, stopping 20 of 21.

Toews won 13 of 19 faceoffs in the game. The only other Blackhawks skater to win more than half of his faceoffs (min. four) was Juhjar Khaira, who won three of four. Reese Johnson lost all five of his opportunities and Kirby Dach won three of ten.

Khaira led the Blackhawks with four shots on net and was also credited with four hits. Seth Jones was credited with three shots and three blocked shots in 29 minutes of ice time.

50 thoughts on “Sharks Shutout Blackhawks on Hockey Fights Cancer Night

  • November 28, 2021 at 8:39 pm

    Can we bring Colliton back just to run the power play?

  • November 28, 2021 at 8:43 pm

    Reichel took a nasty hit into the boards in the Hogs game tonight. Hope he’s OK.

  • November 28, 2021 at 8:54 pm

    They just don’t have high-end playmakers or finishers in the offensive zone. They have to work too hard for their chances and are shooting into a bunch of skates and shin pads. To their credit they are working hard and playing disciplined in the defensive zone with layers of defensive coverage and an approach of dropping into the slots when coverage breaks down. Got to drive the net more and create havoc and openings. As disappointing as a loss is this is still a much better brand of hockey.

  • November 28, 2021 at 8:54 pm

    Hoping Reichel is OK, that was one nasty hit he took.

    This is a game the Hawks could’ve won if they could only score. On the PP Kane seems to be focusing only on Toews, everything else forget about it. Maybe let Borg play in between Kane/Hagel and drop Johnny down Kubs/Khjaira where he gets 3rd pairing Dmen. He just doesn’t look strong enough.

    Trade Kub’s for a 2nd to Boston, Carpenter anywhere for a 5th, Strome also for 4th.

    Whoever becomes the next GM certainly has his work cut out for him.

  • November 28, 2021 at 8:56 pm

    Why sit Kalynuk if you only play DeHaan for 11 minutes.

    Good/great goal tending hides many of this teams problems

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:06 pm

    Not a lot of tough chances for Reimer tonight. Hope Reichel is ok, that was a rough hit. Man, after a good effort against the Blues, I thought they would roll tonight.

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:06 pm

    No news on Reichel until the morning. Sounds like a concussion after being hit into boards in an awkward position.

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:14 pm

    Dollar Bill, Good idea on moving Toews down to take pressure off. Borgstrom,Kane,Debrincat-1st line…Dach,Hagel,Kurashev-2nd line…Toews,Kubaluk,Carpenter-3rd line…. Reese,Hardman,Khaira-4th line.

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:16 pm

    Rfd. coach said be an update Tuesday on Reichel, he is being evaluated tomorrow. Update on Connelly knee last night, as well.
    A game they could have won for sure, played well enough to win, just not finishing. Thought 4th line wasn’t as noticeable tonight, rest played pretty well. RJ with no fo wins may have contributed to that, had been doing fairly good on dot lately. Good effort all around though.

    Good to see Troy Murray there tonight, hope for the best for him.

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:18 pm

    Hard to win a game when you can’t score a goal …still a good game for Hawks.
    Always in the game since King arrive .

  • November 28, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    Nobody else seems exasperated by them “trying to pass the puck in to the net.” They were playing pretty boy hockey in the second. Pass, pass, pass for highlight reel goals. It really got old given that they had good chances for SOGs that might wind up with goals or rebounds.

    It was a good effort but the PP is hideous, although the first minute of the second PP was strong. Still no SOGs on it. They played well in the third and got away from all the ridiculous, low odds passes.

    Reimer was good. Can’t take that away from him. He had some help because the puck stays out of the net almost every time you don’t shoot it there.

  • November 28, 2021 at 10:11 pm

    Robs said that a couple of games ago, that getting pucks to the net needs to be a priority not making one more pass all the time. Kurashev seems to be like a lot of young stars who try to defer to the star players to a fault. We saw that with Dach, Schmaltz, Boqvist etc. Debrincat in his first season too, now for different reasons tries to pass when he can shoot. Definitely agree with you.

  • November 28, 2021 at 10:16 pm

    That was hard to watch – they were flat all game long even in the first period when they had the shot edge nobody seemed that determined to score

    Toews on a 2 on 1 with Kane was a disaster- 19 slowed right down was obviously not going to shoot because he knows he can’t score so he forced a pass to Kane that was easily broken up – it’s sad what’s happening to him

    Borgstrom had a decent game

    I didn’t like Dach’s game – he’s not always aware of the situation around him both in the O zone and D zone – on first SJ goal he had a chance to possess the puck in the D zone with no real pressure and he just hacked at it creating a turnover that eventually became the game winner

    Still it’s hard to win when you don’t score

    Unbelievably the Hawks seemed to think after beating the Blues that this game would be a gimme

    Are you telling me Gaudette couldn’t give you more than RJ?

    With this road trip coming up they had to win tonight – I see a slide coming up

  • November 28, 2021 at 11:01 pm

    Wrap, I agree about what’s coming up. I would get ahead of it and drop Toews to a 3rd line defensive/Face-off specialist role. Move him to the 2nd powerplay unit also. Get Kane and Debrincat together and get Hagel with Dach. Kubalik and Carpenter with Toews. Get Kalynuk into the regular rotation and give Dehaan a rest. I know it’s bandaids but you got to shake things up and do what’s possible to get some production without sacrificing defensive structure.

  • November 28, 2021 at 11:31 pm

    Wrap agree was type of game where guys like RJ, Khaira or Hardman gotta get in their faces when out on the ice, drop the gloves or whatever to spark things. McCabe did it with Blues, those guys have to learn how they can impact the game to be effective role players. Doesn’t to be dumb penalties just use their physicality to send a message to both teams.

  • November 29, 2021 at 12:46 am

    Tim W.
    I agree that the lines should be shuffled. Toews, aside from faceoffs, just is not there…in an offensive capacity. With Reichel taking a nasty hit…probably a concussion. Although I hope I am wrong…it messes up my proposed future lines. The team does not have a #1 centerman on the roster. Not for the top line. Future lines could be as follows:


    Reichel is only 19 y/o. He’s been solid, at Rockford. The only other forward I see as worthy is Josiah Slavin. He may be a good 3rd line LW. Especially if the team is looking to deal Kubalik.
    I’m not sure why Coach King sat Kalynuk. He wasn’t bad when he played against St. Louis. Maybe King just wanted the kid to see the game from above to get a different perspective. Kalynuk is a good two way defenseman. Gustafsson gets zero time on the PK…for obvious reasons. I know that C. Jones got to play and maybe King just doesn’t want too many young guys out there at the same time. Which also makes sense.
    Lastly, even though the Blackhawks were not bad and ran into a hot goalie, seeing Seth Jones get 29 minutes of TOI is just too much. Yes, he’s young, but he can also get burned out and be put at risk for injury as a result of fatigue.
    This was a winnable game. Face Offs just suck. Dach, Borgstrom, and Johnson were a combined 4 for 19. That’s 21% for your other centermen. I’ll say it again, when Reichel comes back, put the kid at center and let’s see what he can do. I can stomach Toews and Khaira but, again, that leaves the mid lines as liabilities. If they were lighting the lamp I could see the risk/reward. They’re not… and Strome isn’t playing either. Is this the HC or the GM? Stay tuned.

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:21 am

    Hockey happens.

    On a separate note: The Blackhawks could hire Marc Bergevin now that he is available (and still has a home in Hinsdale, I believe) and Groton is not. But, they won’t because Bergevin was the Director of Player Personnel in 2010 – a kiss of death, unfortunately. Should have hired Groton.

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:34 am

    Seems like the team and coaches feel getting Toews offense going is needed for this team to turn a corner and start living up to expectations of a playoff calibur team. Toews is pressing hard right now to find some offense, Kane has been trying hard to get him one, at the expense of his own stats likely. If this team is going to stay in playoff contention next 2 months he has to find some scoring in his game, move the chairs around all you want. He gets going then put 12 77 88 back together 38 and 19 going with a winger, gives 2 lines rolling, maybe TJ fits with them. Let Kub, Borg and Kurashev figure it out for a 3rd scoring line, they are close. Khaira, Carpenter with RJ or Hardman until Entwistle as a 4th line. Ability to switch Kurashev with a 4th line guy if needed to supplement that lines needs. Look at schedule, justs seems to get tougher as you move into 2nd half of December and as Janiary goes on until olympic break, tough couple of months coming.

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:47 am

    I have been hearing, especially here on this site, that Dcat is a superstar. Sure has been turning the puck over again. Trying to improve his playmaking. Only 3 assists. Hasn’t he been playing with fellow superstar Patrick Kane for much of the season.
    Ovechkin and McDavid are superstars. The difference between them and Dcat – big strong powerful athletes.
    How long will it be before Seth Jones gets to play with big strong powerful athletes. Maybe at the end of his contract. That’s a long time. That’s called being mired in mediocrity.

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:57 am

    Unfortunately Toews should come off PP1 – to me the best player to take his spot is Strome (he can win a FO he can pass and he can shoot – he won’t dig out pucks but at least he’s a threat to score which Toews isn’t) so you need to find a place for Strome in the line up – bump Kurashev down and take out RJ put Strome with Borg and Khaira

    Kalynuk could go in as well – he was tentative his first game back but hopefully will pick it up again – if deHaan were to come out I wouldn’t be disappointed but if you do it too much it affects his trade value

    I think when Stillman comes back Kalynuk goes to RKF until there’s another injury or a trade

    I agree that they’re still playing a better brand of hockey than the JC version but they have to be emotionally engaged or their lack of high end skill is too much to overcome

  • November 29, 2021 at 7:14 am

    i listen to games more than i watch them. i really miss Troy Murray a lot. God bless him

  • November 29, 2021 at 7:21 am

    Well now that Groton is gone who else is out there??? At least Bergevin is a Hockey Guy. That’s got to be better than the “intern” isn’t it?? Even if he was there in 2010, so was the intern, as long as he wasn’t connected in any way in the Beach mess, why not??? IDK but it certainly seems that Wirtz is content for now to kick back and count his $$. I said I wasn’t spending a dime on this club until this mess was straightened out but I had to buy my wife a Purple Hockey Jersey the other day. Sometimes you just got to pick and choose your battles and the “boss” usually wins. Good goalie win by Reimer.

  • November 29, 2021 at 8:37 am

    Bergevin? Really? With his first round pick this year he took Logan Mailloux – a player that didn’t want to be drafted . That’s a waste of a pick and shows questionable judgement.

  • November 29, 2021 at 8:44 am

    The more that I watch the current AHL the more I don’t want to see our high-end talented forwards there. It is just a new age edition of the movie Slapshot down there that puts our future assets at risk. I get that D Men should develop there and maybe your 2nd to 4th line forwards but it is a bit out of control as far as bad hits and the linesmen not getting in to breakup fights when a player is clearly done and at risk of serious injury. On Saturday night Barratt was getting his head repeatedly banged off the ice while linesman stood back. Get Reichel out of there and develop him here. Just my opinion.

  • November 29, 2021 at 8:50 am

    At G.M. DiMao from the Blues, Mellanby from Canadians, Patrick Roy are a few available. The Avalanche and Bolts Assistant G.Ms are also on the hot lists.

  • November 29, 2021 at 9:03 am

    Happy Belated Thanksgiving to all of my friends on C.I.!! Especially to my HC Billy Reay, my Director of Hockey OPS – Tim W, my Information Director – Tab, our superfan – Mr. E Raptor, and of course to Ian, Wrap, Johnny Galt, Pops4, and the rest of the crew!

    First, let me state that Marc Bergevin is not getting the Hawks job! They will not hire anyone with ties to 2010 – too toxic! Second, I must say that Toews is looking more and more like David Backes! Except, Backes accepted the fact that his skills diminished and took 3rd and 4th line duties. And finally, Kirby Dach is not the sharpest tool in the shed! That right there says it all. That guy should be dominating and he’s just a tad above average. It’s clearly evident that Bowen Byram would have been the better choice. We need a hockey guy – like Tommy Ivan! :-)

  • November 29, 2021 at 9:10 am

    Tim W: 2 points: The Saturday Hog-Wolves game was one the worst reffed games I can ever remember seeing, they actually called icing on a Power Play!!! and of course the Barratt fight was horrible, you may be right about Reichel, why not give him a shot(if he’s OK). As far the “hot list” is concerned I’m good with any of those guys you listed. We need an experienced person in here to figure out the mess StanBo left us in. They have to do this right but for now it seems they are content to go the status quo route. Its frustrating as all heck to watch the ineptness here.

  • November 29, 2021 at 9:11 am

    TimW kind of no win with Reichel isn’t it, leaving him in minors to develop and not put unneeded pressure on his development at Nhl level to help a struggling team seems like the right call. Risking his health and future to do it is questionable though, leaving him Europe another year doesn’t allow a hands on ability in his development or help get him comfortable to smaller ice surfaces, new customs to be ready to play in Nhl. Seems there is a need for Ahl to start protecting the star quality assets playing there alot better.

    Wrap i would like to see Strome moved but unfortunately the years of rfa control an acquiring team may look at are lost by a qualifying offer of 3.6m needed to retain his rfa rights, which makes moving him alot harder. Davidson in one of his first interviews took credit for negotiating that deal too. Just don’t see any long term future for him in Chicago, hopefully they find a change somewhere for him and he gets another contract for a few more years.

  • November 29, 2021 at 10:31 am

    Disappointing that the Hawks could not find any offense to speak of. I appreciate the level of commitment to defense, but the Hawks skill level is simply not there.

    I was hopeful that Reichel would be coming up to the club at some point to give the bottom six some scoring, but that no longer is a given considering that injury he sustained…

    Not sure I understand the Hawks love of cultivating fourth liners at the expense of players with some semblance of skill. Khaira, Carpenter, R Johnson and Carpenter are not going to become 20 goal scorers no matter how many times you play them up in the lineup. Strome, Borgstrom and (formerly on the team) Gaudette might. There has to be room in the Hawks lineup for guys who have potential to actually become top six forwards instead of force feeding guys with a fourth line ceiling.

    At some point Toews and Kubalik will come around, but when? Toews used to be a guy who could generate offense, but perhaps that is no longer the case? I still have hope he will shake off the effects of his bout with Covid, but maybe not. Kubalik was never a player who generated chances, his MO was to bury chances created by those around him. He needs guys like Hagel or Kane or Strome to feed him the puck.

    This coaching staff needs to find a way to get the Hawks to generate offense. I was hopeful that the Hawks would start generating chances on the counter/odd man rushes, but too many times the Hawks are getting caught from behind before being able to generate a shot. Maybe this roster simply doesn’t have the horses.

    Before last night the Hawks won 6 of the last 10. Can the Hawks find the offense to maintain that pace? There is no way this team digs itself out of the hole they started the season in without maintaining that win rate. Something has to give.

  • November 29, 2021 at 10:39 am

    Tommy, Great to have you back. Our group is working hard to mold thisvBowman/Collison mess into something. At least it’s watchable now but man is there a ton of work to do. We need high end finishers and another monster and puck mover on defense. It’s doable with the right people captaining the ship.

  • November 29, 2021 at 11:05 am

    Would we want the headache of Evander Kane at $3.5 mil for the following three years to get rid of the head scratching of Dylan Strome? He, EKane was a 30 goal scorer and has a mean streak which is needed.

  • November 29, 2021 at 11:43 am

    JR, If we were alot closer with a strong G.M and head coach and he was a final piece, I would consider it. But given that we don’t even have a legitimate productive Center or any semblance of an organization yet,you have to pass. I know many will say absolutely not given his history and I can’t argue with them. The kid at his best is the type of high-end forward that this team needs. Just not now.

  • November 29, 2021 at 11:45 am

    Where has Ebonyraptor been?

    1. Busy disbanding the Stan’s Fans and Jeremy’s Kids fan clubs?
    2. Switched to the Bears (now goes by St. Jude – patron saint of lost causes) to defend their incompetent GM and Head Coach from critics calling for their firing?
    3. Working on his farm trying to figure out the difference between oats that been through the horse and those that haven’t

  • November 29, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    A hard pass on Evander Kane, should not be a consideration at all.

    You’re bad today, John Galt, you’ re bad.

  • November 29, 2021 at 12:34 pm

    Interesting Montreal looking to Gorton hired as vp of hockey ops and new Gm to run on ice affairs in a novel approach of a 2 person model. Saying todays game is too much for one person to handle.

  • November 29, 2021 at 1:34 pm

    Until the Hawks name a new Gm and Prez of Hockey Op’s they are in no mans land. Let’s say for instance they consider signing Gus to a 2 year $2mil contract extension or DeHaan gets an extension would anyone in their right mind consider that a good move?

    Also say they trade Kubalik for whatever at the tdl, would that be a good move?

    Can we trust KD to trade Kane if he decides he want’s to go to a team trying to win another Cup?

    I’m sorry but IMHO KD and DK aren’t the answer to what ails the Hawks. Remember it was KD who took credit for signing Strome to a 2year $3mil deal, a massive overpay. And King although he has the team playing better than JC did(nothing to brag about) he’s made some comments/decisions that lead me to believe he’s also in over his head.

  • November 29, 2021 at 2:23 pm

    John Galt –
    Re: Ebony Raptor- last I heard he was at the border handing out green cards and Free Blackhawks tickets

  • November 29, 2021 at 2:24 pm

    Hopefully Coach King doesn’t know Strome either. Seems to be the best way off the ice and out of town. We better get a real Team President and General Managet in here before the new age front office thinks they are in charge.

  • November 29, 2021 at 2:39 pm

    Be careful what you ask for.

    The new President of Hockey Operations, GM and Coach may need to meet Danny Wirtz’s woke model and societal reform requirements, hockey knowledge be damned.

  • November 29, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    1st point….Toews sucks
    2nd point….Toews sucks
    3rd point…..Toews sucks
    He is playing below 4th line…. can’t put him in the 4th line because he checks like a girl….put him in the press box or make up a health excuse and put him on LTIR…..oh wait….that was done last year….oh what the heck….do it again

  • November 29, 2021 at 4:46 pm

    Beer League, Yes but he wins face-offs. That makes everything all better doesn’t it? I think we have also been told that he will breakout any game now . At this point at the least he should be centering a 3rd line and come out to take 3rd period D Zone faceoffs. If Dach would progress and we grab another real Center it would be a moot point. Until then we have to push all our chips in the He will breakout of it soon and be relative. I don’t like our poker hand right now.

  • November 29, 2021 at 5:51 pm

    Jake Debrusk is asking for a trade from the Bruins. Could we get him for Strome and a bag of pucks?

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:02 pm

    Beer League- so what’s your point?

    I agree with your 1st few points

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:04 pm

    TimW, be a good trade but Debrusk is due a 4.34m QO in the summer to retain him or he is a ufa. Like his game but fact is at the end of the day he is another streaky scoring, being healthy scratched now because not producing, 3rd line winger. If he was willing to take less than his QO for a new deal, i’m all in.

  • November 29, 2021 at 6:35 pm

    Bluto, I think Beer League,like many of us, is wondering how long you allow your top Center to put up stat line 0,s before changing something. Problem is this team really does not have any quality Centers anywhere in the organization. I still would flip Borgstrom to the top and make Dach 2nd line Center for now. I would also put Carpenter back at Center and try and address our faceoff problems. I would not go down the Strome rabbit hole anymore.

  • November 29, 2021 at 7:09 pm

    Slavin up, Kurashev down. Get a look at him and see what he does, King knows him from Rfd.

  • November 29, 2021 at 7:36 pm

    @Tim W.

    Debrusk for Strome would be ideal and ya give the Borg a shot between Kane/Hagel.


    Kurashev could use a stint at the Rock like many others, while Slavin won’t change the chessboard maybe he can pull off a Hagel.

  • November 30, 2021 at 6:55 am

    Watched Rock few times this year… as for Forwards
    Reichel and Slavin – only 2 guys who have chance of being NHL ers right now… Connolly – NHL shot but rest of game is Strome like.

    Slavin- competes/skates pretty good/ position good… we will see how it translates… but not expecting much – cuz overall Hawks team and structure and skill just seems behind other teams.

    SB- has left the cupboard empty!!!

    Looks like Boqvist is putting up some decent numbers w Jackets… which points to either POOR system or Poor supporting talent… OR Both!!!

    I am going with BOTH. To think SB was a Buyer this summer is an F^&* n JOKE

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