GAMETIME: 8pm Central
TV/Radio: CSN, WGN 720
OPPONENT BLOG: Five For Howling
WHERE YOU ARE WATCHING: At The Whirlaway with us, silly
This'll be an eerie flashback for Hawks fans. The Men of Four Feathers playing in front of barely 4,000 fans in an absolutely dead building. Except this time, the Hawks will be wearing white and not red, and it won't be the UC. We've come so far.
The Hawks absolutely fustigated the Yotes last season, winning all four games by a combined score of 20-4. The high point clearly was one of former coach Wayne Gretzky's vagina bleeding everywhere, culminating in him sending his goons after known-thug Cristobal Huet. Or maybe it was Matt Walker dropping longtime overrated guy Ed Jovanovski like a bag of hammers. Whatever, these games were a walk.
It won't be tonight. The Yotes are off to a flyer this season, and unlike their opponent last night -- the Lanche, the Lanche -- the numbers suggest this isn't a fluke. They've been getting incredible goaltending from both Ilya Bryzgalov (I didn't even have to look up the spelling of that!) and Jason Labarbera (owner of maybe the best mask in the league. Hetfield, Vedder, and The Ultimate Warrior? This dude clearly passed out in my dorm room at some point). Bryz got the start last night in Denver, so we wouldn't be shocked to see ol' Barby in net tonight. This team sure don't score much though. Scottie Upshall is their leading forward with four goals. That's Scottie Upshall. Their d-corps still contains Adrian Aucoin and James Vandermeer (or as he used to be known, the Wisniewski Prequel), which means it just can't be all that good.
Hey, remember when the Hawks played a game? Cuz I don't! Seems like forever since our beloved were on the ice in anger. Toews won't play tonight, per Kuc, which is fine. Get him completely healthy, it's a long season. Eager also won't suit up. Toews might make tomorrow's game in Colorado, and if not you can be sure he'll be ready for the homestand that follows.
This one has the makings of another one of those nights where the Hawks fire a lot of rubber and have a goalie stand on his head to keep it close. The Yotes are much better drilled under Dave Tippet than they were under Gretz, but this is still a team the Hawks skated circles around last year, and there hasn't been that much change. It'll take a period to shake off the rust, and hopefully it's all clear from there.
Remember, we'll be at Whirlaway tonight for a blog-watch. Fullerton just west of Kedzie. Be there or be stupid. McClure will be both.