Blog Entry

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

Posted on: March 9, 2011 12:12 am

Turns out it wasn’t another day at the beach for the Chicago Blackhawks.

Mind you the reigning Stanley Cup champs did manage to get in a couple of those because they arrived a few days early for their game against the Florida Panthers. Kind of a reward for putting together an impressive eight-game winning streak and finally starting to look like the well-oiled machine that won the Stanley Cup last June.

But the R&R came with a price for a Chicago team that has been on fire of late. The Blackhawks took the day off after flying down from Toronto on Saturday night, had a quick practice Monday and didn’t skate on the morning of the Panthers game, then forgot to show up for the start of the game.  Apparently a little too much sun and sand made it impossible to get very worked up about playing a rebuilding team that essentially dismembered itself at the trade deadline last week.

“If you’re looking for an easy game, you’re not going to find it in this league,” Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said after the Blackhawks lost 3-2 to Florida. “That might have been the case tonight.”

Naturally Chicago players denied any suggestion of taking the Panthers for granted, but they did seem somewhat baffled by Florida’s aggressive and unusually physical start to the game. And Quenneville used the word ‘lazy’ to describe his players’ efforts at the outset, which didn’t make it any easier for goalie Corey Crawford. The standout rookie was having an off night of his own before being pulled for Marty Turco, and everything combined was enough to cost Chicago two important standings points that should have been gimmes.

“The lesson is you gotta be ready to play,” Turco said.

The bright side for Chicago came from a ferocious final two periods when they overwhelmed the Panthers and outshot the home team 29-7. The Blackhawks attack has been firing on all cylinders for several weeks and it got them back into the game with quick goals by Marian Hossa and Patrick Kane in the second period.

But with Panthers goalie Tomas Vokoun playing his best game in weeks, the bombardment wasn’t enough to overcome the three-goal deficit the Blackhawks were in after 20 minutes.

“It was our worst period of the season,” said Hossa, who extended his scoring streak to eight games with a second-period goal.  “We thought it was going to be easier (against Florida).

“It just goes to show we have to play 60 minutes, it doesn’t matter who we play against.”


Category: NHL

Since: Feb 24, 2010
Posted on: March 9, 2011 9:19 pm

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

1969, I'd totally agree with you if this was a one-off thing, but look at Goldstein's blogs for the past season - there hasn't been a single good thing about Chicago.  I can understand, it's been an up-and-down season, but that Niemi article was grasping at straws to try and make Chicago out to be the bad ones. Add to it that they ran off 8 wins without a peep from Mr. Goldstein, then this.....

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: March 9, 2011 3:30 pm

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

Wes, why the Chicago hate?  The Blackhawks go on an eight game tear and there's not one post about it, but they have an off-game that ends the run and you jump on it at the first chance.

C'mon man... that's not hate.  You have Chicago's coaches and players hinting that the effort wasn't there and they didn't take Florida seriously.. it was more of a story on how even the hottest team can't get away with taking periods off in the NHL.... that's all... nothing more nothing less.

Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: March 9, 2011 3:25 pm

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

I argee that Crawford had a chance to stop the third goal, but he was probably stunned that Campbell centered a "clearing attempt" with seven seconds to go in a period. Carry the puck behind the net. Shoot it somewhere..anywhere. Do a little spin-a-rama for six seconds. Pin it against the boards. In other words, do anything other than what he actually did. The Panthers were not going to force the issue too much. Instead, he weakly clears it to the center of the ice and directly to a Panther. Crawford likely never thought that that nitwit Campbell would do what he did. What bothers me is that, despite their repeated words to the contrary, the Hawks still think they're good enough to take periods off. They're not.

Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: March 9, 2011 2:27 pm

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

They came out slow, Crawford was the slowest, he gave up some bad rebounds and should have stopped the 3rd goal.   Just a bad game in net, FLa came out skating very hard and the Hawks eventually adjusted.   The Hawks dominated the first few shifts, I don't know why it was implied that they didn't come out ready.    They almost scored twice early and made some nice plays before the FLA goal.   It was hardly one of Chicago's worst efforts in a first period, and they only gave up 8 shots, and a few of those were because of bad rebounds that allowed FLA to keep the play in the Chicago zone.   Chicago could have adjusted quicker to Florida's aggressive play, but they did eventually and dominated play most of the game.  They shouldn't have lost, but it wasn't that bad of a game, and at least the Hawks didn't give 2 pts to somebody in the West.

Since: Dec 11, 2007
Posted on: March 9, 2011 10:31 am

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

Use the first period as a wakeup call boys. There was zero effort the first twenty minutes and you can't get away with that in the playoffs.

Since: Feb 24, 2010
Posted on: March 9, 2011 8:40 am

Blackhawks undressed to the nines

Wes, why the Chicago hate?  The Blackhawks go on an eight game tear and there's not one post about it, but they have an off-game that ends the run and you jump on it at the first chance. 

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