Blackhawks Finish Off The Bruins For A Four Point Weekend

Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Blackhawks and Bruins treated the natiional audience to a wonderful game that the Hawks took home, 3-2, via the shootout.

Saturday night was a rough night for the NHL.  The Red Wings forced overtime with the Kings when all four officials missed the puck hitting the net above the glass and then the Flames and Canucks put on a shit show that even made Reggie Dunlop shake his head in disapproval.  All of that was erased when the Blackhawks and the Bruins took the ice Sunday morning.  These two teams gave us one of the best Stanly Cup Finals in recent history last summer and did not disappoint in their first rematch,

You always have to worry about some "slow legs" in these early starts but that wasn't the case Sunday morning.  The Blackhawks used their greatest weapon, their speed, to open the scoring 4:13 into the game.  Marian Hossa lifted the stick of Zdeno Chara and Niklas Hjalmarsson quickly got he puck up ice.  Patrick Sharp used his wheels to beat Kevan Miller and David Krejci to the puck.  Once he gained control of the puck he waited for Hossa to get to the net and fed him for 81's 20th goal of the year.  The Bruins had some chances in the first half of the period but great stick work from both Marcus Kruger and Duncan Keith prevented some quality shots.  The Bruins would tie the game with just 18 seconds left in the period.  Keith got caught drifting to the middle of the ice which left Brad Marchand wide open to receive a nifty little backhand pass from Patrice Bergeron.  Corey Crawford came out and gave up way too much of his net and Marchand had the time and space to flick a wrist shot past him.

Brad Marchand would strike again just 50 seconds into the 2nd period.  Johnny Oduya screwed the pooch by completely vacating his side of the ice as the puck was leaving the Hawks' zone.  This left Marchand all alone where he got Crow out of his crease and froze him for his second goal of the game.  Brandon Bollig would even up the game at 9:44 with an awful goal.  Bollig shot the puck from just above the goal line, to the left of Tuuka Rask, who left just enough room away from the post to let in the game tying goal.

The game headed to overtime after a hotly contested, but scoreless, 3rd period.  The Blackhawks spent the first 1:55 of overtime on the power play after a dirty boarding play from Matt Bartowski on Ben Smith.  The struggling Hawks powerplay could only get two shots on goal with all the extra open ice.  Two of the biggest Blackhawks' stars went back to what has always worked to give them the edge in the shootout.  Jonathan Toews went five hole and Patrick Kane pulled out the slow down move to make Tuukka Rask look rather silly.  Four points in three days against the Ducks and the Bruins; it's time to stop with the "slump" crap.

*  Corey Crawford, much like Patrick Kane, loves the big game and the spotlight.  Crow was fantastic today.  He made the big stops when he had to and gave his team a chance to win.  Thankfully they rewarded him with two points.  Crow made some big saves Friday against the Ducks and carried the momentum over to Sunday.  I did not like his positioning on the first Marchand goal but Ducan Keith's positioning was a hell of lot worse.  Crawford has been great since his return from injury.  The Hawks have the luxury of a solid 1-2 punch in net led by Crawford, who has been as good as anyone else, over the last two seasons, when the lights shine their brightest.

* Jonathan Toews was given ten minute misconduct penalty for throwing his stick over the glass early in the 2nd period.  I have never seen that call before but according to Rule 53 the correct call was made on the ice.  Good to see the stripes get a call right for a change of pace.

* Michal Hanzus had himself a nice game on Sunday.  He filled in nicely while Toews was in the box and was really good on the penalty kill.  The Hawks PK is at it's best when the fowards are aggressive and that is exactly what they were.  Handzus and Marcus Kruger combined for six blocked shots during the game, three of which game during a 17 second (whoa!) span while the Hawks were killing off an early 3rd period slashing penalty by Brent Seabrook.

* The 4th line continues to impress.  The Blackhawks don't send their 4th line out to start line brawls, they send them out to pin their opponent's top in their own end.  Even though they created the turnover that led to the second Bruins goal they made up for that with the game tying goal.  Brandon Bollig had his best game of the season on Sunday and not just because of his goal.  Torey Krug challenged him to a fight after a clean hit in the 1st period, which might have ended Krug's season, but instead Bollig did the right thing and skated away.  Bollig finished his day with three shots, seven hits, one blocked shot and 42.9 CF%.

* I got a huge kick out of watching Jarome Iginla lose his shit over a Johnny Odyua cross check in front of the Hawks net at the end of overtime.  Ok Iggy. like I haven't watched you pulled that same move in front of your net 3782 times in your career!

Player of the Game

20140119_jcd_ag5_084

Photo Credit : Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Brad Marchand gets under my skin like few players can, but I would love him on the Blackhawks.  He is to Blackhawks fans what Andrew Shaw is to 29 other fan bases. The worst part is, Marchand is a likeable guy off the  ice.  He was the best interview during media day before last year's Stanley Cup Final.  I'd welcome him on my team in a heartbeat.  Marchand was a pest and the only player from Bean Town to get the puck past Corey Crawford all afternoon.  I am glad this Marchand did not show up in the Stanley Cup Final last June.

Advanced Stats

Player

Pos.

ES TOI

CF% Close

CF%Rel

Close

O/Dst%

Keith, Duncan

D

20:12

42.5

-11.9

50.0

Hjalmarsson, Niklas

D

21:48

58.3

14.1

50.0

Seabrook, Brent

D

21:02

46.3

-5.4

42.9

Leddy, Nick

D

13:30

40.9

-11.1

44.4

Sharp, Patrick

R

19:10

50.0

0.8

62.5

Kruger, Marcus

C

12:14

40.0

-11.9

16.7

Brookbank, Sheldon

D

11:44

40.0

-11.9

37.5

Toews, Jonathan

C

15:39

51.5

3.1

40.0

Saad, Brandon

L

14:37

44.4

-7.0

66.7

Versteeg, Kris

R

09:55

57.1

9.0

20.0

Handzus, Michal

C

10:27

66.7

20.3

25.0

Oduya, Johnny

D

22:05

62.9

20.9

42.9

Smith, Ben

R

11:55

40.0

-11.9

20.0

Bickell, Bryan

L

08:36

69.2

22.8

16.7

Bollig, Brandon

L

11:28

42.9

-8.5

20.0

Shaw, Andrew

C

14:15

48.0

-2.0

70.0

Hossa, Marian

R

18:00

55.9

9.9

66.7

Kane, Patrick

R

16:01

42.4

-10.7

55.6

Player

Pos.

ES TOI

CF% Close

CF%Rel

Close

O/Dst%

Campbell, Gregory

C

10:31

58.8

10.1

50.0

Iginla, Jarome

R

18:41

45.2

-7.9

57.1

Lucic, Milan

L

18:04

48.5

-3.1

57.1

Smith, Reilly

R

14:46

51.9

1.9

37.5

Paille, Daniel

L

07:57

50.0

-0.6

71.4

Eriksson, Loui

L

13:26

59.3

12.1

80.0

Thornton, Shawn

L

06:37

36.4

-16.0

62.5

Chara, Zdeno

D

22:42

52.2

3.2

53.8

Soderberg, Carl

C

13:27

52.0

2.0

66.7

Bergeron, Patrice

C

15:45

57.7

9.8

33.3

Bartkowski, Matt

D

20:04

61.8

17.3

57.1

Krejci, David

C

18:37

38.2

-18.9

50.0

Krug, Torey

D

15:23

38.1

-15.9

60.0

Spooner, Ryan

C

10:28

52.4

2.4

100

McQuaid, Adam

D

08:57

61.1

13.0

50.0

Boychuk, Johnny

D

22:51

44.4

-9.7

37.5

Marchand, Brad

C

15:11

55.6

7.0

42.9

Miller, Kevan

D

19:08

46.2

-7.3

71.4


X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Second City Hockey

You must be a member of Second City Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Second City Hockey. You should read them.

Join Second City Hockey

You must be a member of Second City Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Second City Hockey. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker