OK - so maybe hoping for jungle drums was a bit much. At the moment the Hawks aren't exactly playing their best hockey of the past few years and every team seems to bring their best when facing the Stanley Cup Champions (still feels good to write that by the way). Still, can't we put on a little bit of a better show against a team like Ottawa? I know they were content to clog the neutral zone and keep a forward back all game but even games against the Predators tend to be more exciting than this one. I don't know if I'm starting to get a bit jaded and worn out by the mediocre play but this game was just torture from the puck drop right through the shootout. It was a good thing Comcast chose Nick Leddy for the first intermissiview (that's my German style combination of the words intermission and interview) because there was just about nothing to talk about in that first period. When the Hawks went down one only 49 seconds into the second period (oh wow, another failed Penalty Kill, thank god it was the only one of the entire game) I got angry thinking that would be the end of the game. Thankfully it wasn't so. It's Friday night and it was a shitty game even with the two points.. so lets get to the bullets:
- The only thing worth noting about the first was Chris Neil's continued running of Jonathan Toews. I can almost hear the meatball caucus (they've upgraded from an contingent) saying this is why John Scott should always suit up for the Hawks. But feel free to save yourself the trouble and just walk away. Neil is so effective as a pest because he won't really fight guys like Scott. He's not a coward, his fight card includes some big names, but he knows who and when to fight. At best he was trying to take Toews off his game.. at worst, out of the game but he's probably not going to drop the gloves just because Scott asks him. He came into the game knowing exactly what he was trying to do.. and getting pummeled by Scott was never part of that plan.
- Who needs Scott when you have karma on your side, anyway? Neil took a nice whack from his teammate's stick and went off to get some repairs..
- Tomas Kopecky helped create another goal and was a plus one on the night. I'm all for him chipping in as much as possible as long as it happens soon. It's your walk year and (please for the love of god) you're not coming back next year anyway. It may be unfair but I don't consider him all that valuable to the team despite him being 4th on the team in points. He's got a career high in points already.. get what you can from him soon Bowman. He can be replaced.
- Yes, a boring game - but Kaner's goal was as pretty as can be. He's credited with 31 takeaways on the season so far but fuck me if I really remember most (or any) of them. Erik Karlsson will have nightmares about him coming in from his blind spot to strip the puck away. Chris Phillips was caught in no-man's land with no idea what Kane was about to do. Pretty shot to finish it off.
- Leddy was a potential adventure in his own end tonight but his 15 minutes of TOI was unremarkable... which is a good thing. Pairing him with Jordan Hendry was another mistake waiting to happen but once again Hendry had a good game. It's just insulting that he hasn't been on the Hawks blue line for most of this year.
- Thanks to Comcast for the reminder of just how good Ottawa used to be. It's easy to forget that this team had so much talent just a few years ago and now is just an after-thought. Scary...
- Both Brian Elliot and Corey Crawford ended up with identical .923 Sv%... I have nothing to say about this I just thought it was worth mentioning.
- What's most frustrating about this team is their obvious abitlity to beat teams like this. After Sharp's goal they controlled play until they seemed to get bored again. And in OT they completely dominated, the Sens never got a shot. Please just do this shit more often guys...
- Of course those annoying "chirping" whistles go away when the Hawks are playing at their most boring. It's a sure-fire sign that those assholes have no idea what they're doing.
- I'm sick of these stupid texts from the Hawks about games. Chances are I know what the final score is long before they send me the announcement and I got tonight's text letting me know the score was tied with a minute remaining in regulation with about a minute to go in overtime. Does it really help Comcast's ratings to send these things out when the game is just about over?
- For all the line juggling, goalie jumbling, odd scratches and other nonsense - it's amazing that Q doesn't change his shootout line up. We obviously didn't get to see the third shooter but I'm guessing it was Shooter.
Player of the Game:
I really don't remember the last time he was featured here.. but that was a mighty fine goal sir. Hossa once again deserves mention but didn't quite stand out enough.